Return to Transcripts main page
HALA GORANI TONIGHT
U.K. Opens Murder Probe Into Death Of Russian Ex-Pat; U.K. Foreign Secretary Blames Putin For Attack On Former Spy; U.S. Accuses Russia Of Cyberattacks On Power Grid; White House: No Personnel Changes "At This Time"; Rescue Operation Shifts To Recovery Sweden Offers To Mediate Trump- Kim Dialogue; Sweden And N. Korea Extend Talks to Third Day; Former U.S. Envoy Supports Trump-Kim Talks; Rihanna's Anger Over Snapchat Ad; Young Innovator Makes Her Mark On Printing. Aired 4-5p ET
Aired March 16, 2018 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Hello, everyone. Live from CNN London, I'm Hala Gorani. Tonight, Russia says it will expel British
diplomats as the crisis over a nerve agent attack deepens.
Also, ahead this hour, speculation over the next firing at the White House goes into overdrive as President Trump is said to be ready to dump more
And Rihanna tears into Snapchat for an extremely offensive ad sending the tech app stock sliding again.
Now we begin with yet another day of fiery rhetoric as diplomatic relations between the U.K. and Russia appear to be crumbling. The Kremlin says
explosive comments from Britain's Boris Johnson about Vladimir Putin are, quote, "shocking and unpardonable diplomatic misconduct." Here's what
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: Our quarrel with Putin's Kremlin and with his decision and we think it overwhelmingly likely that it was his
decision to direct the use of a nerve agent on the streets of the U.K., on the streets of Europe for the first time since the Second World War.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Now, as you can hear there, those comments represent the most direct accusation yet against Russian leader in the poisoning of a former
spy, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter. They are both still in a critical condition in the hospital.
We are still waiting to hear how Russia will respond to Britain expelling 23 of its diplomats and that is in awe that it's expanding its own
blacklist of Americans in response to new U.S. sanctions.
Now meanwhile, against the backdrop of all of this, another big revelation, police are now launching a murder investigation into the death of this man,
a Russian businessman, Nikolai Glushkov.
Investigators say the cause of death was, quote, "compression to the neck." Russia says its launching its own probe into that death and we are covering
all of this across Europe.
You heard there at the beginning of our program, many, many new details emerging this hour. Fred Pleitgen is in Moscow. Melissa Bell is in
Salisbury, and Nic Robertson joins me live in the studio. Fred, first of all, the Russian response to the U.K. today.
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. The Russians are absolutely (inaudible) at what Boris Johnson was saying there
saying it's overwhelmingly likely that Vladimir Putin himself ordered the poisoning of former spy, Sergei Skripal, and we have to keep in mind, the
Russians are still saying they have absolutely nothing to with it.
Now I actually after that happened gotten in touch with Dmitri Peskov, the spokesman for the Vladimir Putin, and he sent me a message back
immediately. He said we have said on different levels and occasions that Russia has nothing to do with the story, any reference or mentioning of our
president is nothing else, but shocking and unpardonable diplomatic misconduct.
So, clearly a lot of anger and just a couple of minutes before we went to air, Hala, the Russian Foreign Ministry came out with a new statement
saying that all the decisions on the retaliation had already been taken by the Russian Foreign Ministry, however, have yet to be announced.
They are still not saying when they are going to be announced. It seems as though the decisions of what the Russians want to do have already been
finalized and now we're waiting to hear what exactly they plan to do, and we'll wait to see when that happens.
GORANI: We'll see also they will be expelling British diplomats. And Melissa Bell in Salisbury, of course, as we've been telling our viewers,
Sergei Skripal and his daughter are still in critical condition. But we are now hearing that the death of another Russian on British soil in
London, Nikolai Glushkov is now being treated as a murder investigation.
MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A murder investigation which against the backdrop as you say of this ongoing investigation into
what happened in Salisbury nearly two weeks ago now to the Skripals is of huge interest, of course.
Now the police are (inaudible) that no link is being made at the moment between the murder of Nikolai Glushkov and the attempted murder of the
Skripals. But clearly, the facts within just over a week of each other, these two kremlin critics were found attacked on British soil will race
Now when Nikolai Glushkov was found dead on Monday night, the police had initially said, look, we are opening an anti-terror investigation because
of his association, and this is a man who was extremely well connected in (inaudible) circles.
He's knowns Boris Berezovsky and worked with him for many years and was a friend of his and had been an outspoken doubter on the fact that he might
have committed suicide in 2013 and believed and said over and over again that he believed he's been murdered speculating even about his own possible
murder when he spoke to the press.
[16:05:08] So, that, of course, raises questions. It led the police to open that anti-terror investigation initially into what they described was
an unexplained death and it now seems that it was murder -- Hala.
GORANI: And Melissa, in the case of Skripal, quickly, U.K. authorities pointed the finger at Russia. In the case of Glushkov, we're not hearing
anything like that, right?
BELL: No. Nothing like that at all. No finger pointing, and we are talking about very different men. On one hand, Sergei Skripal had been a
double agent for many years. We're talking about a very different case and the profile of Glushkov. He was not a spy and he was not involved with any
He was a businessman who went way back with a number of different Russian immigrants. He'd known and met Alexander Litvinenko, the Russian spy, who
was killed in 2006 and poisoned in London, but there is no suggestion that he shared that sort of background -- Hala.
GORANI: All right. Melissa Bell in Salisbury and Fred Pleitgen in Moscow, thanks to both of you. I want to get to Nic now and let's talk a little
bit about just the unbelievable news week that we've just had involving Russia with the Brits and Russians and the war of words like we rarely see.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: And the White House are in on as well with sanctions against Russia, a roller coaster, but the
end of the week I find this roller coaster slowing down as the Russians sort of put the brakes on events because it's really down to them now.
The world is watching them to see what they're going to do. We've just heard Fred tell us there that the Foreign Ministry is saying they've
decided what they'll do with the diplomats and everyone is waiting.
This is kind of where President Putin likes to be in that position where they're controlling the narrative. They're sort of driving the train at
the moment, if you will.
GORANI: In what way?
ROBERTSON: That -- that the world waits for them. It turns on them and all this week is sort of been -- you know, they've been put -- the message
has come out from various officials that the British are doing this from a position of weakness. These allegations are untrue. They're unfounded and
they won't give us access. This isn't right. This isn't right by any standard you measure it by. So, that narrative has had a chance to emerge.
This is their defense.
GORANI: But what's in it for Putin?
ROBERTSON: We don't know why somebody chose to try to kill Skripal and his daughter. So, to know entirely what is in it for President Putin at the
moment would be unclear. What we do know is that this week President Putin is going to the polls and one of the most important things for the Kremlin
because there is no doubt that President Putin is going to win is that there is a high turnout.
So, this time he is able to sort of show to the Russian public because he controls the media, he is able to show to the Russian public that the
country is under threat from these old forces outside who criticize us from a number of things and don't give us the Russians, a strong and fair
nation, a fair response.
The hope would be it would drive up the numbers turning out, which is the way it would validate him and his position as leader.
GORANI: We're going to look at the U.S. sanctions against Russia in just a moment, but it seems like it's coming from all sides now.
ROBERTSON: It really isn't today. Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel meeting in Paris and Angela Merkel said that many trails lead back to
Russia on this.
GORANI: So, this is going to start hurting them. Already their economy isn't doing great.
ROBERTSON: And they recovered from the sanctions that were put on them and still have maintained over their annexation of Crimea and crossing the
border into Ukraine, both illegal actions. Those sanctions have had an impact and they've come back and recovered to a degree from that.
More stringent sanctions, let's say controls on Russian banks that trade, have operations here in the U.K. that use international financial
institutions to be able to do business. If those institutions were targeted and there's no indication yet the British government would do that
or any government.
But if they were, this would really put Putin in a much tougher position. The thing that he wouldn't want is by next winter to have people being
thrown out of jobs and out on the streets hungry and cold. That would really work against him
GORANI: But we haven't seen those much more severe sanctions.
ROBERTSON: But we are seeing very quickly this international narrative that's standing behind Britain. You had Theresa May talking on the phone
with the Italian prime minister who supported her position. Boris Johnson was standing next to the Polish foreign minister who supported Britain's
position. So, that's a narrative that's being expressed.
GORANI: Thanks very much, Nic Robertson, and you've written a column as well on cnn.com just ahead of the Russian elections.
Russia is facing another serious allegation, this one from the United States. We're not talking about election meddling here, but Washington is
accusing Moscow of staging cyberattacks on the U.S. power grid.
[16:10:12] The claim came out on the newly unveiled U.N. sanctions against Russia. Officials say Russia accessed U.S. government networks by
targeting commercial third-party networks that weren't as secure as they should be.
Let's bring in CNN's national security analyst, Samantha Vinograd, is a former senior adviser to the National Security advisor and she joins us now
from Washington. Samantha, thanks for being with us. So, how far did they get, these hackers into the U.S. power grid system?
SAMANTHA VINOGRAD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: I don't think we'll ever know exactly how far they got, but Hala, one of the telling moments for me
was the fact that there was another alert issued yesterday by the U.S. government basically warning that the attacks maybe ongoing.
The Department of Homeland Security issued an alert indicating that there was a multipronged intrusion into the critical infrastructure. And so, not
only was Russia able to attack us before. I think it is highly likely that that attack is continuing, which should make all of us very nervous.
GORANI: But if it is continuing it means the protection, I mean, the defenses against cyberattacks aren't strong enough.
VINOGRAD: Most definitely and here in the United States, we know that our defenses aren't strong enough on other areas of critical infrastructure
like our election infrastructure. We've had the U.S. intelligence chiefs briefed that Russia's attacks on the election infrastructure are ongoing.
So, it is clear that the defenses across the board are not sufficient, and I would imagine that the U.S. intelligence community is reaching out to
private sector entities right now to try to shore up those defenses.
GORANI: And what's the worst-case scenario? What is the aim of such an attack?
VINOGRAD: Well, I think we can just look at what Russia did back in Ukraine. I mean, Russia literally launched a cyberattack and turned off
the lights in the middle of winter. So, if Russia's goal is to destabilize the United States to sow divisions and to undermine the credibility of
their institutions, you could see them doing things like turning off electricity or seizing control of water or nuclear plants.
One, to show that they can and two to sow mass panic and so, I don't think we can rule that out and it's something that I think the White House has
focused intently on and also other capitals are focused on whether it's Macron or Theresa May.
The more that our intelligence communities across countries are coordinating on what's happened, what's ongoing and what we do about it, I
think that's the best shot that we have.
GORANI: But if it's the case that the attack potentially is still ongoing, that the worst-case scenario is that you might have hackers able to flip a
switch and turn off lights in literally the world's most powerful and richest country. Isn't this code red? I mean, shouldn't this be just one
of the most important emergencies the country should respond to at this stage?
VINOGRAD: Most definitely, and we have seen the administration take steps trying to elevate the cybersecurity portfolio and the cyber command, which
is part of the U.S. military, but it also begs another question, which is what actually going to deter Russia at this point? Is it sanctions? Is it
kicking out diplomats?
And we know that the United States has made a decision not to launch offensive cyberattacks against the Russian government, for example. So,
are we doing things like issuing sanctions and Theresa May kicking out diplomats that are really doing nothing to change Putin's calculous and
leaving us exposed?
GORANI: Yes, because the kicking out of diplomats, that strategy has been tried on a smaller skill before, it didn't necessarily yield the results
that officials in western countries were hoping for, but we will continue following this story. Sam Vinograd, thanks so much for joining us. We
really appreciate your analysis.
Now the White House is trying to publicly tamp down intense speculation about more staff shake-ups in the works, but behind the scenes, we are
hearing that President Trump himself is actually enjoying all of this.
That he is stirring things up, revealing in all of the uncertainty. There's a lot of talk that the national security adviser, H. R. McMaster
could be on the short list of top aides to soon receive their walking papers. Here's what the White House press secretary said just a short time
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The chief of staff actually spoke to a number of staff this morning reassuring them that there
were personnel changes. No immediate personnel changes at this time and people shouldn't be concerned. We should do exactly what we do every day
and that's come to work and do the very best job that we can.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Well, Sanders also praised H.R. McMaster as a dedicated public servant, but sources told CNN that Mr. Trump wants him out and that it's
just a matter of timing and also we've heard in the past some denials that certain staff members or officials were about to leave or that there were
issues with the president and just a matter of days later, in some cases they were out the door.
[16:15:06] Let's bring in Larry Sabato, director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia. Sources telling CNN Donald Trump is
actually enjoying all of this.
LARRY SABATO, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR POLITICS, UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA: Hala, I believe it. I think he enjoys stirring the pot. I think he enjoys
making staff members a bit insecure, and who knows? Maybe he's trying to distract from other things in the news, be it Stormy Daniels, the porn star
or Bob Mueller's investigation.
GORANI: So -- but, what does this do to the -- to the government to how it's able to run the country? Because this is quite unprecedented this
type of turnover.
SABATO: Moral cannot be high in the White House. If you value job security, I would think the Trump White House is one of the last places you
want to work, and that's even more true today. The turnover re has been higher than for any other modern president well above 40 percent, and it's
only been about 14 months.
GORANI: Because, I mean, in order for a government, an administration to essentially function like a well-oiled machine, typically, it takes at
least a year. By then you kind of are used to, you know, the position that you're in and you have a strategy in place and you've chosen the people
around you, but it appears as though we're still at the stage of just replacing high-level officials one after the other.
SABATO: That I absolutely correct. And what makes it even worse, Hala, at the secondary level where most of the work is done, assistant secretary and
that kind of thing, there are numerous vacancies and the worst place of all is the State Department and turning over the secretary of state's job isn't
going to help this very bad situation.
GORANI: And there still is no American ambassador to South Korea, which is one of the big foreign policy issues facing this administration and there
are reports that John Bolton, the ambassador to the U.N. during the second Bush administration and certainly is a big fan of conflict over diplomacy.
I mean, he -- in terms of North Korea and Iran, and not believing in sanctions, not believing in talks and believing that regime change is a
disaster for countries in the Middle East every time it's been tried is an answer. What happens if Bolton becomes national security adviser?
SABATO: I think just about everybody outside of the far-right wing in the United States will be appalled. They've been through this once before it
was toward the end of the Bush administration when he was U.N. ambassador, but he is an ultra-war hawk.
This would not help the situation in South Korea or many other places around the globe. Keep in mind, it's possible this is another distraction
and that when we get mainstream conservative people will breathe a sigh of relief. Who knows? But I'm saying it's possible given prior floating
balloons that have been shot out of the sky.
GORANI: But he'd be in alignment with Mike Pompeo who could become the next secretary of state. They hate the Iran deal and John Bolton even
believes regime change should be the ultimate aim in Iran.
SABATO: Yes. There are others as well in the Defense Department and Department of National Security, in the CIA and in other places, key places
in government on the National Security Council, who also agree with him.
So, once you get a critical mass of people in there who are basically repeating what each other says, you can get this sort of momentum toward
military action and though obviously, we hope it doesn't happen.
GORANI: So, you say that potentially this could be a distraction so that journalists cover the Russia investigation and the Stormy Daniels scandal a
little bit less and perhaps people think about it a little bit less if they're having to spend more time covering all of these staff changes. But
I wanted to ask you for your thoughts on the Stormy Daniels story because it's not going away and she's going to be giving interviews.
SABATO: It's inevitable that the full story will come out. Whether people will be interested, I don't know. I'm sure his base isn't. But I'll tell
you, there are several legal components to this, but the one I think they ought to be most concerned about is federal election law in the United
That 130,000 (inaudible) came right before the election, pretty clearly was designed to make sure that Stormy Daniels didn't affect the election.
Well, that is (inaudible) contribution way above the limits that we place on the donations in the United States. That's where they have to be
GORANI: Larry Sabato, thanks so much for joining us as always have a great weekend.
[16:20:03] Still to come tonight, emergency crews are still trying to recover victims a day after that pedestrian bridge in Miami collapsed.
We'll bring you a live update.
Snapchat takes a financial hit after pop star, Rihanna, lashes out over an ad. We'll tell you all about it ahead. Stay with us.
GORANI: Well, emergency crews have shifted their operation from rescue to recovery at the site of that bridge disaster in Miami. It's been more than
24 hours since the collapse and they haven't even recovered all of the bodies. Now a caution that the video we are about to show is disturbing.
It was taken in the moments after the disaster near Florida International University. You can clearly see that the pedestrian bridge just collapsed
right on to that busy road. Police say members of the public climbed into the rubble. They tried to rescue victims from their crushed vehicles. Now
it's too early, officials say, to know whether the investigation will result in any criminal charges.
CNN's Dianne Gallagher is live in Miami with more. What is the latest death toll?
DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Right now, Hala, it is still sort of up in the air. At this point they say at least six were killed in
this bridge collapse, but you can probably see a little bit behind me the emergency vehicles, some of the bridge still sticking up in the air and
those construction vehicles there, they've been going at it really all afternoon.
They stopped a little bit earlier with the jack hammer trying to break those pieces apart because they are not entirely sure who else maybe
underneath there. They say they don't believe there are any survivors, but at this point, they know there are five bodies still in the rubble. They
just don't know how many more there could be.
At one point, authorities said they thought that there were eight cars underneath where the bridge had fallen, but they're not entirely sure if
there are more underneath there and they say it's going to be a slow process getting these large pieces, these heavy pieces, 950-ton bridge that
So there trying to do this carefully and as slowly as they can so they can afford those who are underneath this rubble the dignity and respect that
GORANI: This was a brand-new bridge. Do we have any idea why it collapsed like this?
GALLAGHER: Hala, it was installed this Saturday before this happened. It wasn't even five days old and it wasn't even officially open. It wasn't
going to open until very early 2019. It was a pedestrian bridge. It was actually installed to help save lives here at Florida International
They're not entirely sure what caused this to happen. There were two different investigations going on. There is the criminal investigation
right now with the Miami-Dade detectives and the FBI.
They're working to see because there were at minimum six deaths what may have caused those deaths. Was there negligence when it came to the bridge?
Was there something else? No guarantee there will be charged.
[16:25:06] But then there was an NTSB investigation, as well, and it's their job to figure out not just how this happened, but why it happened and
how will we prevent something like this from happening again.
Now there are a lot of theories that are out there at this point, but investigators have cautioned not to go with any of them yet because they
are still not entirely sure. At this point, their focus is picking up those large pieces of concrete and trying to recover each of the bodies
underneath it, and they're working to determine why this happened.
GORANI: All right. Dianne Gallagher live in Miami, thanks so much.
Here in London a teenager has been convicted of attempted murder after he left a homemade bomb on a packed underground train in September. Thirty
people were injured when 18-year-old Ahmed Hassan's bomb exploded at Parsons Green station.
You'll remember we covered that and it turned out that it was just this young teenager who wanted to be on the run from authorities, pretty strange
motive there, but thankfully, it didn't cause any deaths.
Still to come, as Sweden offers to mediate a meeting between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un, we hear from the former U.S. envoy for North Korea, who
has been pushing direct diplomacy for years. Is he happy that it could be happening? That's next.
GORANI: Well, laying the groundwork for an unprecedented diplomatic meeting cannot be easy. So, even talking about talks is running into
overtime in Sweden today. A meeting between the Swedish foreign minister and her North Korean counterpart will continue for a third day.
The meeting in Stockholm is North Korea's first major diplomatic move since the American president, Donald Trump, said he would meet with Kim Jong-un.
Sweden says a statement will be issued tomorrow. Earlier today, the country's top diplomat said Sweden is ready to assist the United States and
North Korea in staging a dialogue.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARGOT WALLSTROM, SWEDISH FOREIGN MINISTER: We value this opportunity to arrange a meeting. We believe in dialogue and in political process, but we
are not naive, but we are hoping that if we can use our role and also our contacts, then we will put it to the best use and then it's for the parties
to decide what is the way forward and the process from now on.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: So, what is the next step? Joining me now from Ottawa, Canada, the former prime minister of Sweden, Carl Bildt. What is the next step
then do think?
[16:30:01] CARL BILDT, CONSERVATIVE SWEDISH POLITICIAN: I think they made a step is supposed to make certain that the meeting happens and there were
some issues, I think that needs to be cleared up. Sweden has a particular role that we are the protecting powers for the United States among others
in Pyongyang and (INAUDIBLE) held, I guess that is the focus on quite a lot of attention to see that that can be sorted out in order to facilitate that
the meeting actually occurs. Then there is an awful amount of substance, of course, but that is the most primarily up to the Americans directly with
GORANI: What do you read into the fact that these talks have gone into a third day? We were expecting them to wrap up today, Friday?
BILDT: I think it was indicated only the earlier that they might be prolonged.
BILDT: But of course, from our point of view and from the wider point of view, every in sight that we can get into the thinking in Pyongyang is
important. There were, of course, the extremely important meeting between the different Korean delegations that paved the way for this, but I guess
these meetings in Stockholm, I hope they can give further insights into the possibilities and the problems that are there. They've got to be in
abandon also the latter.
GORANI: Yes. What would be top of the list of talking points here? What would be the essential things to get sorted do you think in these talks
BILDT: I think the conversations are important that they are sorted out. That's politically important from the Washington point of view, obviously,
then it's a question of where to go from here because the normal thing in a process like this is that you have prolonged talks on a sort of diplomatic
and official levels and then you end (INAUDIBLE) to announce the result. Here, it's the other way around. There's got to be summit meetings and
what we can hope to come out with that, is of course the process afterwards and perhaps a continuation of restraints.
GORANI: So, is the logistics now, really is where, who, when, the format? Is that what we're trying to establish now?
BILDT: You can call it the diplomatic logistics, I would say.
BILDT: To make certain that there is the beginning of the process. I don't think anyone expects a quick resolution of these issues by one
meeting. So it's a question of making certain the meeting doesn't fail, that the meeting results in a process, that there is an element of
confidence, as well and then there are other factors that are going to impact it and of course, how President Trump handles the Iran deal which is
going to have to be in prior to this is going to be very important.
GORANI: That was going to be my next question because if you're North Korea today, and a deal that appeared solid that was negotiated by the
former side administration of Barack Obama is just torn apart by Donald Trump, why would North Korea, you know, sign up to any deal that would
involve it having to scale back its nuclear program?
BILDT: Yes. A good question. And if it is up to President Trump, he's in disagreements with the Iran deal. It's among other things. It's sanctions
really. And if there's one thing that I would expect that Pyongyang would like if they have restrained and if they take certain measures, it is an
element of sanctions relief and if it doesn't accept that in the case of Iran, of course, it's going to make it much more difficult and more likely
that the Pyongyang people are going to play hard ball with them and then it could become the interest of a pause again.
GORANI: How would you expect such an unusual and unprecedented meeting of two leaders to unfold? It couldn't happen in North Korea. It wouldn't
happen in the U.S. It would have to be some sort of mutual ground, a country like Sweden, for instance. Do you see that potentially as being an
BILDT: I guess they are discussing different options or deliberations on that, but Pyongyang and Washington and other possibility, I understand that
the in degree in meetings is going to be (INAUDIBLE) with the armistice line and that's of course another thing that is easier for them logistics
point of view.
BILDT: But remains to be seen. I think it's important now to make certain that nothing happens prior to the meeting that disturbs it and possibly
that I think is happening that facilitates it and then should have a meeting that launches a process with certain parameters and as you
indicated as well, I think how we handled the Iran agreement is going to be obviously important and that according to the time schedule that Trump
present himself is going to happen before the meeting with the North Koreans.
GORANI: And some Trump critics have said, well, why is Donald Trump offering this face-to-face meeting with this dictator Kim Jong-un? He's
giving him what he wants. It's that recognition that he's a world leader on the American president's level. Do you think it's a good strategy?
[16:35:04] BILDT: Well, that's true. He's giving them a meeting or not yet, but he's promising a meeting and that is something that the North
Koreans have been seeking for a long, long time. You can argue that both Pyongyang, if that is correct, it's a given, is that that's going to be no
more missile test, that's going to be no more nuclear test during this particular period. They've also evidently and allegedly said that they
would accept that there are some South Korean-U.S. military maneuvers in the meantime. So that's been an element of accommodation on the North
Korean side and there's no question that he gives the meeting. Yes.
GORANI: So you think it's a good idea, then? Because you've been a Trump critic. You've been a Trump critic. We read it every day on your Twitter
BILDT: Well, true. But I've -- I think this is far better than if we are on a straight course to sort of an Armageddon on the Korean Peninsula. And
the risks were there, the risks are still there, but if that can be avoided, much better.
GORANI: Yes. I think that many people would agree with you on that one. Carl Bildt, always appreciate you having on the program. Carl Bildt, the
former prime minister of Sweden joining us from Ottawa, Canada.
Donald Trump may have shocked everyone, even the North Koreans with this move. The U.S. diplomat who formerly spearheaded diplomatic efforts on
North Korea says Pyongyang is probably surprised by how quickly President Trump agreed to a meeting with Kim Jong-un.
Our Elise Labott spoke exclusively to the former America envoy on North Korea policy and she joins me now from Washington. So he was always a
proponent of direct talks. He must be happy.
ELISE LABOTT, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: He is. He's very happy and, Hala, he said he would have loved to deliver that deal, but what Joe
even told me is that both the North Koreans and President Trump have been wanting to meet for over a year, but infighting in the Trump,
administration between those hardliners who were pushing for military action and those who have favored diplomacy have held it up.
JOSEPH YUN, FORMER U.S. SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR NORTH KOREA POLICY: Right now, the most important thing is to reduce tensions.
LABOTT: America's former top diplomat on North Korea says while he didn't expect it, he doesn't think there is anything wrong with President Trump
sitting down with Kim Jong-un.
YUN: I would have loved to bring it forward and this is a great outcome.
LABOTT: Joe Yun said he's not surprised Trump agreed to the meeting, but says national security advisor, H.R. McMaster pushed a different strategy.
LABOTT: So, why has it taken a whole year for this invite to come?
YUN: I think that's a good question. I think one reason is really we could never get all of the administration together on our side, and on
their side, let's not forget, Elise, they have been relentless in testing missiles, nuclear devices so this is not easy. It's a complicated problem,
but I know we're getting a great start if we start off with a summit.
LABOTT: When you say that you couldn't get all the administration on the same side, do you mean that somewhere more favoring military action?
YUN: Well, I think there was obviously voices within the administration and it is natural to have different voices who are more aggressive and
those who wanted more of a diplomatic solution.
LABOTT: Like the national security advisor who had advocated a bloody nose, so to speak? Yes.
YUN: Well, it's really in an administration. You're going to have different views. But I think time has now come really to speak with one,
single, unified voice and that voice has to that of the president.
LABOTT: Yun who has decades of experience working on North Korea dismissed critics who worry by meeting with Kim Jong-un Trump will only give Kim what
he wants, legitimacy on the world stage.
YUN: I don't think there is anything wrong in acknowledging that he's a leader of North Korea who has nuclear weapons.
GORANI: Yes. We're back on air there after that. But I'm wondering then if he believes that North Korea would, you know, sign on to any agreement
that would require it to scale back its nuclear program if the current administration tears up the Iran nuclear deal because that's going to be
and it's from Carl Bildt, the former Swedish prime minister just told me, that's going to be something they'll be looking at.
LABOTT: Hala, the short answer is he doesn't know. Nobody knows the North Koreans have not said what it would take to get them to give up the nuclear
weapons. Certainly, they've looked to this Iran deal in terms of, you know, kind of parameters of what President Trump would do, but I think what
he says, what Yun says is that North Korea has these weapons as a deterrent. He says what North Korea really wants are some kind of
guarantees that it's only about the nuke, that some kind of regime guarantee that the administration is not looking for regime change would
give them the kind of confidence to move forward on this process. Is that there are a lot of expectations about this one meeting this is going to be
a long haul, but he says that summit is a good start, at least.
[16:40:30] GORANI: And it will be important as well if there any big staff changes, right? For instance, if someone like John Bolton replaces H.R.
McMaster. John Bolton is a big fan of regime change.
LABOTT: And let's not forget, part of my friends here, but the North Koreans called John Bolton human scum. I mean, there's not a love lost.
John Bolton wants regime change. He wants forced unification, forced North Korea to give up its weapons. I think that the North Koreans are watching
all of these, you know, staff interplays, what's going on. There's a lot of confusion, who was even handling North Korea policy right now? You
don't have an ambassador in South Korea. You don't an envoy. You don't really have a secretary of state yet for a couple of months, at least, and
you don't even know who's running the policy. That I think one of the reasons that we haven't heard from the North Koreans yet. They're kind of
scrambling is what Joe Yun said. They were surprised that President Trump said yes so fast and now they're scrambling about how to play this. I
think these talks in Sweden are very interesting in terms of what they're going to be telling the Swiss about their thinking.
GORANI: It rings a bell but remind me of what context they called Bolton human scum because I personally can't remember.
LABOTT: I can't remember either, but I know it was when John Bolton was the undersecretary of arms control and he was very much regime change, very
much forceful. The U.S. wanting to have these, "six-party talks" they've been dragging on. John Bolton was not in favor of those talks. He hasn't
been in favor of diplomacy with North Korea and that's why there is a larger issue about John Bolton in particular about whether he is going to
be willing to implement President Trump's new policy which is to negotiate with North Korea. That's a big question about concern whether he is going
to be willing to do that.
GORANI: Elise Labott in Washington, thanks very much for joining us.
Now, authorities in Israel are investigating a deadly attack in the west bank. They say a Palestinian driver rammed his car into a group of
soldiers. They were guarding routes around a settlement near the town of Jenin. Two Israeli soldiers were killed, three others were wounded.
Israel's military says the attackers being questioned after he was taken to hospital. You're seeing images of the aftermath of that attack there.
Still to come tonight, pop star, Rihanna, snaps back at Snapchat and its cost the company, listen to this, $800 million. Find out what the ad that
sparked it all is about. We'll be right back.
[16:45:15] GORANI: Rihanna is the latest a-list celebrities to deliver a massive financial hit to the parent company of Snapchat. Snapchat is
apologizing to the musician for running an ad that she says is insensitive to victims of domestic violence.
This was it, it's for a game called would you rather. The choices were, would you rather slap Rihanna or punch Chris Brown? Now, obviously let's
all remember together that Brown assaulted Rihanna. He pleaded guilty to hitting her when they were dating. Rihanna blasted Snapchat in a statement
that prompted investors to sell off its shares. The damage $800 million wiped off the firm's market value.
Snapchat pulled the ad earlier this week and apologized, but this comes just weeks after the reality show celebrity Kylie Jenner complained online
about a redesign of the app. Investors dumped the stocks slashing $1.3 billion off the company's market value. I think this is what you would
call a "influencer."
Let's bring in Pete Pachal, tech editor at Mashable. He's live in New York. So the big difference here between the Jenner story and what
happened with Rihanna is that Jenner was simply complaining about a redesign. Here', you have the super offensive ad asking users whether
they'd rather slap Rihanna or punch Chris Brown. They apologized but she's not accepting the apology.
PETE PACHAL, TECH EDITOR, MASHABLE: No, she's not. She's not thrilled with Snapchat right now. It's definitely safe today that a lot of people
aren't. It's obviously directly involved Rihanna but many, many people were calling them out on it, including Chelsea Clinton. While this
particular ad was obviously offensive and it's hitting them very hard right now. I honestly think what Kylie Jenner is touching on probably is going
to affect Snap more in the long term because that is fundamentally like a part of their app. Like she was complaining about how the direction
they're going and how it's not good for celebrities and influencers and that has much more long-term magnifications. Even though this particular
PR storm seems pretty intense right now.
GORANI: I wouldn't have wanted to be like one of the PR exec for the Snapchat at the morning meeting. I can't imagine the giant headache for
them, especially after the Jenner incident. But this is an ad. This in content from Snapchat. But don't these ads go through some sort of
PACHAL: Yes, that's correct. So very good to point out. This was not -- this was not content Snapchat actually created. This was an ad by another
service that appear in their network. Now, what Snapchat has for a good chunk of their ads is what's called a self-serve network. So basically, an
advertiser can create their own ad and submit it and it will appear on the network.
Now, importantly though, all of those ads so Snapchat says are reviewed. They don't necessarily say they were reviewed by a human or some automated
system, they seem to strongly imply it to human being, actually looking at these which could be true, because Snap is not really been known -- if you
want to go back even further, for its judgment on these kinds of sensitive issues. I mean, quite infamously in 2016, they were called out for a Bob
Marley filter that would sort of give you digital black face. And then shortly after that, there was another one that was sort of an animated type
lens that would had these exaggerated Asian features and they're both called out for being racist.
So Snapchat, it doesn't have a good history of having good judgment on this kind of content.
GORANI: That's interesting, because I have an app called Duke (ph) Face which gives you a Donald Trump or a Barack Obama face and they also have
sort of Asian and African features -- I'm seeing it right here. I just opened it. So it's something that's out there but for Snapchat, this is
something that's given them a lot of bad publicity.
But I want to just go back to that point that you made about what Kylie Jenner said. What's going on here? Why are, sort of, young influencers
and people use social media a lot unhappy with some redesigns?
PACHAL: Well, for two reasons. Like one is that the redesign has moved to their content out of the friend feed. So it used to be you would get a
celebrity influence or stories and mixed in with your friend's stories. So there was kind of like if you were checking in with your friends, you sort
of naturally run into this influence of or content.
Now, that's changed. The influence or content is separate. And so the people aren't sort of spanning that content in the same way. And they also
don't really have the same kind of discoverability. This is the second reason. So, for example, on Instagram, they have a tab that's called the
explorer tab and it suggests new content and people for you to follow, that sort of lines up with what you're already following. Snapchat doesn't
really have that. Even though they do mix in a little bit of stuff you may not be following onto their -- what's called the discovered tab, it's not
sort of quite the same thing. So people -- one, they're not being seen by their fans a much anymore and two, it's very hard for them to get new fans
on Snapchat in the way they've done it.
[16:50:23] GORAANI: OK. All right. We'll see if they'll reverse person results on some of these criticisms. But, yes, don't mess with Rihanna.
And that ad was absolutely terrible.
Thanks very much, Pete Pachal, the tech editor at Mashable. We appreciate your time on this Friday.
After the break, going viral. Two doctors spread their musical skills all over the internet. You do not want to miss this. You know why? Because
it's Friday and we want to bring you a feel good story. We'll be right back.
GORANI: Usually, doctors try to prevent things from going viral, but not the surgeons in this next video. They're prescribing a different kind of
medicine at the famous Mayo Clinic in the U.S. and that medicine is music. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ELVIS FARNCOIS, SURGEON AT MAYO CLINIC: When you're feeling low and there's no around, when it looks like it's over and life's got you down,
hold on to me, brother, I'll be here when you need, because there's probably tomorrow, this I truly believe because everything, everything is
going to be all right, everything, everything is going to be all right.
GORANI: So that's Dr. Elvis Francois on vocals. His fellow surgeon, William Robinson backing him up on piano and Dr. Francois shared this video
on Monday and since then it's rushed up more than a million views. They save lives, they're handsome and they can sing and play the piano. Full
For the next few weeks, CNN is filling the stories of young scientists, entrepreneurs and inventors in a special news series, Dr. Sanjay Gupta
introduces us to one of tomorrow's heroes. He's using algae to help save our planet.
SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: When ink is disposed of in landfills, the heavy metals it contains can contaminate and wreak havoc on
the environment. That's why tomorrow's hero, Shaima Alqassab came up with a cleaner way to produce ink from a renewable material.
SHAIMA ALQASSAB, INNOVATOR: I am crazy about the environment, and you would find this in any chemical engineer. We really strive to make this
planet a better place using more sustainable and renewable resources to make product.
My name Shaima Alqassab, and I'm 22 years old. In 2016, it was innovation week in the United Arab Emirates and everyone was calling for thinking out
of the box and creating new things. As chemical engineering students, we print a lot of lectures. So we thought how about making a small portable
printer that's eco-friendly.
[16:55:09] We're developing the printer and then we said, OK, how about the ink that the printer is going to use? We come to know that ink is really
toxic. It contains something known as carbon black that which is the pigment gives the black color on the paper that you print on. We thought
how about replacing the carbon black with something from nature?
This is working good for my experiment. It's known as Chlorella. This one is toxic. Another one is eco-friendly. So what we are doing is we're
replacing the carbon black with the green algae. Algae has pigment. Here, we have we grow our algae and we make them ready so that they can extract
the pigments from the algae and take it to the next step.
And we dry it, and then when it's dried, we add some natural ingredients in. We test the product, and it goes through a certain process so that
it's, like, nice and fine and then we add it to the ink cartridge and we test it if it's printing or not.
And it's having the same function. So we're moving towards the vision of sustainability and in the UAE and algae life is moving along with it. We
believe that the future will be written with algae.
GORANI: I love this series. Really profiled and inspiring people.
I'm Hala Gorani. Thanks for watching. If it's your weekend, have a good weekend. Stay with CNN. Richard Quest and QUEST MEANS BUSINESS are up