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HALA GORANI TONIGHT
World Weighs Response To Suspected Chemical Attack; White House Briefing After Comey Blasts Trump In Tell-All Book; White House: High Confidence Syria Responsible For Chemical Attack; Leaders Posture Over Response To Alleged Syrian Attack; Trump Calls Comey "Leaker & Liar.Slime ball"; Telegram Founder Vows To Defy Russian Ban; CNN Speaks To Liverpool Superstar Salah. Aired 3-4p ET
Aired April 13, 2018 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Good evening, everyone. Live from London, I'm Isa Soares sitting in for Hala Gorani.
Tonight, the world weighs the response to the suspected chemical attack in Douma. Will there be missile strikes in Syria? We are live in Washington,
Moscow, and Northern Syria for the very latest.
And the feud escalates, insults traded between U.S. President Donald Trump and fired FBI Director James Comey. Fresh tensions over new tell-all
And Super Salah, CNN speaks exclusively to the Liverpool star on his remarkable first season at (inaudible).
But first, we are keeping an eye on the White House press briefing, but we begin tonight with a grim waiting game. There are claims as well as
counter claims over what happened with the suspected chemical attack in Syria as world leaders consider whether to act with military force.
A U.S. official tells CNN biological samples from the area of the alleged attack have tested positive for chlorine as well sarin-like nerve agent.
Meanwhile, there are contention it seems at the U.N. U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley didn't mince her words blaming for the attack squarely at the door in
Moscow. Listen to what she had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NIKKI HALEY, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED NATIONS: We know who did this. Our allies know who did this. Russia can complain all it wants about fake
news, but no one is buying its lies and cover-ups.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: Well, that outburst came after the Russian ambassador made some strong claims of his own, Vassily Nebenzia claiming that the Saturday
attack on Douma was faked by foreign intelligent services.
It's a busy day or busy week as CNN is covering this story right around the world, Kaitlan Collins is following the latest developments from the White
House, Nick Payton Walsh is on the ground for us in Syria, and Sam Kiley is in Moscow following Russia's reaction.
I want to start, if I may, with Nick, there's a sense that the international allies and U.S. are being much more cautious, aren't they,
much more measured in terms of their response. Is this a question from your understanding of not when but if? What is your take on the ground?
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I think it's really a case of when. The if disappeared really to me disappeared when I
heard Nikki Haley talking earlier on today in New York being clear that she says Russia has six times vetoed resolutions to try and get chemical weapon
Talking about how multiple options, moments of checking again have been done by the current White House referring to how the Syrian regime have 50
separate times used chemical weapons she says according to U.S. count cheering the war saying how the U.S. and the U.K. and France have all
separately verified the use of chemical weapons through testing samples here.
That to me made a very clear case for the fact they believe the U.N. processes now spent and some kind of retaliation --
SOARES: Nick, I'm sorry I'm going to have to interrupt you. We want to go into the White House press briefing. Sarah Sanders is speaking now. Let's
take a listen.
(WHITE HOUSE PRESS BRIEFING)
SOARES: You have been listening to Sarah Sanders, White House press secretary, is taking selection of questions really (inaudible) questions
from everything on Syria to Comey to Cohen. On Syria, though, we just focus on that, the questions that were asked is what in terms of timeline
We've heard Donald Trump earlier in the week if you remember saying they'll be some sort of decision between 24 and 48 hours. What has happened to
that, that was one question. The other is how big of a coalition does President Trump have in Syria?
And then the interesting question is, does President Trump believes Syria is responsible, and she said, high confidence that Syria was responsible
for the attack and they hold Russia responsible because they didn't stop it.
Well, let's wrap all this up. I want to bring CNN White House reporter, Stephen Collinson, on Syria developments and Sam Kiley is in Moscow
following Russia's reactins. Let me get your take, Stephen. What did you make of what Sarah Sanders have to say?
STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN POLITICS SENIOR REPORTER: Well, the Syria issue there, it's clearly that later on today at the National Security Council,
White House, that's going to be the next step in the decision-making process. She didn't indicate that any decision had yet been made to strike
You're talking about that timeline that the president established earlier in the week, which now has elapsed. My colleagues in the White House are
reporting that the secretary defense, James Mattis, has been warning the president that the large strikes that apparently, he wants to conduct to
make more of an impact than the strikes he did on Syria a year ago would risk escalating the conflict and could potentially bring in Iran and Russia
So, that's something that could be playing potentially into this delay of the timeline. As far as the Comey issue in that briefing was concerned, I
mean, that was quite a show. What the White House is trying to do here is to make this an issue about James Comey.
To make it a partisan war in Washington over these books and these revelations to distract from the main argument of Comey that the president
has no respect for the rule of law and acts like he is a mafia boss, which is quite a stunning thing to say about a sitting president.
SOARES: And Stephen, we will talk in a few minutes about -- exactly about Comey, (inaudible) because she said, Sarah Sanders, that he has a
credibility problem and grounds for firing.
I want to go to Sam Kiley for us in Moscow. Sam, we heard today from the Russian ambassador speaking at the U.N., and he said that there was
evidence that the chemical attack was staged, he said, not only staged by the White Helmets, but directed by the U.K., Britain. What evidence does
Russia have for this?
SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, that allegation was trailed in the United Nations and then filled out, if you like, here in
Moscow by the Ministry of Defense, who said that between April 3rd and April 6th heavy pressure have been applied by London on the White Helmets
conduct some kind of chemical weapons attack.
Now this goes back actually as allegation predating the attack. General (inaudible), the head of the Russian Armed Forces suggested that there was
Russian intelligence that similar sort of plot was in the works.
They have provided absolutely no evidence whatsoever for this theory, and of course, the British have hotly and swiftly denied it, but one notes with
interest that chemical weapons attack on British soil has already been conducted, which certainly in the view of the western allies was ordered
out of the Kremlin.
So, I think we say it all in that context, but what this does, though, is start to try and undermine the case under international law that the
western alliance is trying to put together to conduct punitive raids against Syria and at the same time, of course, rattle planners in the
Pentagon, in France as to the extent of the attacks that could come from the allies because of the fear outline by General Mattis that that could
escalate into a war between the United States, our allies, and Russia and Iran.
And that certainly something people closer to Syria are very, very concerned about. Today, for example, the Israelis have been attacked
verbally by Hezbollah in a statement that threatens retaliation for an attack against Iranian forces inside Syria.
So that could escalate multilaterally. Things could get very nasty and that kind of plays to the Russian hand at the moment.
SOARES: Sam Kiley for us in Moscow. Steven, I know we will Talk in a few minutes about the new tell-all book from Comey. We will take a quick
break. We'll have more on the Syria story right after a very short break. Do stay right here on CNN.
SOARES: Let's return now to our story. The U.S. and its allies are considering their military options over whether to act in Syria. Someone
who knows the complexities of the Middle East very well is George Mitchell, a former U.S. envoy to the region.
Senator, thank you very much for joining us here on CNN. You and I were listening to Sarah Sanders, the White House press secretary, taking a
variety of questions on Syria. More questions it seems than answers at this time regarding the plan of attack, let's say, when it comes to
strategy militarily with its allies.
GEORGE MITCHELL, FORMER U.S. SPECIAL ENVOY TO THE MIDDLE EAST: Well, more questions than answers applies to the entire Syria situation. It's an
extremely complicated internal conflict with many intersecting and overlapping factors and parties on all sides.
[15:25:02] Secondly, the world is horrified by the behavior of the Assad regime in gassing its own people, and even before then the bombing of
elementary schools, can you imagine a government bombing the children of its own country, school?
However, it's complicated by the fact that it's clear from the action over year ago that a one-shot military attack several missiles one night had no
effect whatsoever on the course of the conflict, and in order to directly effect and have a long-term effect it takes much more than that.
But if you do that then you run the risk of conflict with Russia, that's what is motivating Secretary of Defense Mattis to say hold on, slow down.
What is missing, of course, is any kind of long range plan that gives you - - has a clear objective, a path towards that objective and an exit strategy.
SOARES: Secretary Mattis basically wants evidence and has been calling for that and you are saying that he's slowing down. At the same time, there is
a sense in terms, with, you know, we all watch this playing out, this 24, 48-hour window that President Trump suggested. He's kind of boxed himself
in, so what is the strategy or game plan when you are saying slow down? Is diplomacy still an option? Do you think was a way to pass that?
MITCHELL: This is not subject to a final military solution. Eventually there has to be a diplomatic outcome. There is going to be a third world
war staggered over Syria. So, military force has utility only as part of an overall diplomatic structure, unless you are in an all-out world war,
which I don't think is going to happen.
And I think that's what is lacking here. It's complicated by the fact that the American people, while horrified by what is occurring, are not
interested in another 12-year American war in the Middle East.
We have already seen what has happened in Iraq and Afghanistan. So, the president is caught in the same bind that his predecessors were caught in.
SOARES: It's a balancing act?
MITCHELL: A balancing act on that. It's also complicated by the fact that President Trump's approval rating in the United States is the lowest of any
president at this point in history, and among our allies, it's even lower.
It complicates a situation for Prime Minister May, who apparently is unwilling to take the decision to parliament for fear of losing in part
because of the tremendous disapproval of President Trump among citizens of the United Kingdom and the members of the parliament.
In the end, however, a military strike while satisfying, a single attack is not going to change the course. There has to be a broader strategy. It
may include military force as part of it, but the end goal must be a diplomatic solution.
SOARES: We heard from Nikki Haley today speaking at the U.N. I want to play some of what she said. Let's take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HALEY: I started to listen to my Russian friend and respond, but instead I am in awe the silly of how what you say what you say with a straight face.
I really am.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: Everyone in disbelief really as some of the comments coming out of Russia and their analysis of what exactly happened on the ground, for
blaming as you heard me speaking to our Moscow correspondent, blaming the White Helmets and Britain for fabricating this and this chemical attack.
Where does this leave relations with Russia and the U.S.? Because it seems (inaudible) you know, this last week, we've heard them at the U.N. and it
has been extremely -- it is really ratcheted up, hasn't it?
MITCHELL: Well, the disbelief does not occur in isolation. It's based on a pattern of false statements that have come out of the Russian government
recall if you will not too long ago that President Putin was on international television denying that there were any Russian troops in the
Crimea or Ukraine, even as television cameras like these were showing Russian troops there.
He later acknowledged that they were there. So, the statements were obviously and blatantly untrue. So, when a person and a government have a
pattern and a history of making false statements, it's very difficult to accept their word on a disputed issue like this.
Now the British, French and American governments appeared to have concluded that in the words of the one of the government officials, it's highly
likely and it will probably take some time before you get conclusive evidence, but you also have to look at the pattern, there was a chemical
attack a year ago.
[15:30:00] That the existence of a chemical arsenal in Syria was an important issue years ago in the Obama administration and the Russians
proposed and undertook to see that there would -- the chemical weapons would be destroyed and not used. I don't think Mrs. Haley's statement
should be viewed in the isolation of just this statement. It's like every human relationship is based on pardon past behavior.
SOARES: It's a very fine balancing act and that's perhaps why it's taking much longer to hear from President Trump in terms of action.
Still to come right here tonight, why the danger is rising in Syria of a direct clash between Israel and Iran. We'll bring you that story after a
very short break. Do stay right here.
SOARES: Now, I want to bring you another angle on our top story now. The war in Syria seemingly could not be more complicated, in fact, messy. Now,
Hezbollah leader, Hassan Hezbollah is accusing Israel of a historic mistake that brings it into direct conflict with Iranians. Now, Damascus and its
allies blame Israel for Monday strike at a T-4 Airbase in Syria. When Iranian state media says at least four of the country's military advisers
were killed. And Israel is now saying the Iranian drone shot down in February was armed with explosives to attack Israeli territory.
Let's put all into perspective. CNN's Ben Wedeman is in Beirut. And, Ben, you know the region better than most of us. Let's start with exactly
what's happening in Syria. How is the ratcheting up of tension being felt where you are?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Certainly everybody is feeling it. In fact, several people today came up to me and asked me if
they should leave the country at the moment out of fear that perhaps a possible strike on Syria could have a spillover effect on Lebanon, keeping
in mind frame since that alleged Israeli air strike that took place early Sunday morning targeting that T-4 Airbase northwest of Damascus. Those
Israeli planes, according to the Russians and others, in fact the Lebanese army as well, flew over the Lebanese airspace from which they fired those
It's also important to remember that today is the 43rd anniversary of the start of the Lebanese civil war that lasted for 15 years. And it's an
example of a war that started in Lebanon, among the Lebanese plus Palestinians were also here, then eventually dragged in the Israelis, the
Americans, the Iranians, and series of other local players and tore this country apart. And therefore people still have very vivid memories about
what war really means. And when they see -- they've, of course, been watching and feeling the effects of the Syrian war now for more than seven
years. There are more than a million Syrian refugees in this country. And so when they see the possibility of this conflict escalating further,
people are, indeed, very alarmed. Isa.
[15:35:39] SOARES: Yes. And you can really understand why. Ben Wedeman there for us in Lebanon. Thanks very much, Ben.
Now, on the wide frontier, France is leading course to take action after that alleged gas attack. Let's speak to someone with firsthand experience
of how that might transpire, retired general Dominique Trinquand was one of France's top military officials, leading the country's mission to the U.N.
and NATO and he joins me now from Paris.
General, very good evening to you. Thank you very much for taking the time to speak to us here. We know President Macron has been leading the charge,
let's say here in Europe speaking to President Trump almost daily about the international response and what that should be. What do you think is being
considered from the French side from the military perspective?
GEN. DOMINIQUE TRINQUAND (RET.), FORMER HEAD OF FRENCH MISSION IN U.N.: I think for President Macron, it was very important to say that a chemical
attack in Syria was not possible, no longer possible. And so France, as you know, four years ago, has already proposed to launch attack, it was
refused at that time by the British and the Americans, this time President Macron is coordinating very closely with President Trump in order to take
action on this attack.
SOARES: What would be a credible plan for President Macron and from the French people?
TRINQUAND: I think the French people were also relay surprised by the fact that after the attack one year ago and others attack, there was still
chemical attack where it was not really needed, because Ghouta, anyway, was in the hand of President Bashar al-Assad. So I think that now the French
have the means to be able to strike. They want to be part of the coalition if there is a strike, and so -- but they don't want really to have a
conflict with the Russians and the Iranians. That's why it is very dangerous. At the same time, you need to do something about this attack,
and at the same time you can't destabilize a region which is already very destabilized.
SOARES: Yes. And as I was speaking to a senator earlier, such a fine balancing act. So this being as far as the action from the French side,
would this be simply a punitive message to Syrian president, Bashar al- Assad? Because I believe the last punitive message and really worked as a deterrent.
TRINQUAND: Yes, exactly. My view is that it's going to be only a finishing attack, and you need an overall plan. You know, we are not in
the same position like four years ago when Bashar al-Assad was really on the slope of defeating. Now, he's running the country due to the action of
the Russian mainly. And so if you destabilize Bashar al-Assad you've got nothing in Syria.
SOARES: Let me ask you this, because I read an interesting comment from President Macron. He said, he told the French newspaper and I hope my
translation was done correctly, he said -- he said, "When you fix red lines, if you can't enforce them, you decide to be weak." How much do you
think this is about showing strength and increasing France's influence on the world stage?
TRINQUAND: I think you're right. At one stage, you can claim that you will be strong and you are weak. So in this position, what we've got is
that we've got Syrian government which is very strong, because it's supported by the Russians. But you don't need to attack the Russians so
you're in a difficult position to show that you are strong. I think at the end, if there is a strike, it should be a strike really powerful against
the Syrian, and that's -- may I say the technology of the west will show that they are able to do that without striking the Russian.
SOARES: Retired General Dominque Trinquand, thank you very much for taking time to speak to us here on the show. Thank you, sir. Have a good
[15:40:01] TRINQUAND: Thank you.
SOARES: Now, last April's U.S. attack on Syria's Shayrat Airbase didn't do any lasting damage. Syrian planes were taking off from the airfield later
than -- less than 24 hours later. Daniel L. Davis is a retired U.S. army lieutenant colonel and a defense analyst. He joins me now from Washington.
Lieutenant colonel, thank you very much for joining us on the show. I want to start off with something I heard you say recently. I think it was about
a week or so ago, and correct me if I'm wrong, but I heard you say that a swift withdrawal from Syria by President Trump was right on the money. Do
you still stand by that comment?
LT. COL. DANIEL DAVIS (RET.), U.S. ARMY AND DEFENSE ANALYST: Oh, it's a little stronger now than it was when I said it last week and this just
underscores why that is. Because Syria is just a big sea of chaos, and there's so many different conflicting forces in the area, and they're
constantly changing alliances and allegiances to each other and there is nothing that's going on in there that 2,000 American troops on the ground
can have an influence over much less a decisive influence over, but they are saddled with enormous strategic risk for the United States with no
possibility of upside. So it is no good for us to be there and what we need to do is redeploy as quickly as possible, even despite this attack.
SOARES: Well, talk about what that means for President Trump and some of strategy then when President Trump is thinking what to do in Syria with its
allies here in the U.K., as well as France, what would you say is the best plan?
DAVIS: Well, what we should do, I think, is, you know, coordinate as much of a unified plan as we can and a response, but I think if there are many
avenues left that we could use, the diplomatic levers, political matters -- levers, economic measures to really bring as much consistent and sustained
pressure as possible on Syria, assuming that they actually did do this, which is why I'm also a very much strong advocating that we need to find
out exactly what happened before any action is taken, because I can imagine if we take action and then later on, we discover that actually this was
maybe some of the Islamic rebels that made it look like Bashar al-Assad, so that we would do their dirty work and attacking and that would be
catastrophic. So we have to be careful that we don't play into someone else's hands and make the matter worse than it is already.
SOARES: Well, we heard Sarah Sanders, the White House press secretary, said less than 40 minutes ago, she said there's a high confidence that
Syria is responsible and they hold Russia responsible from not stopping it. Are you then saying, sir, that -- are you questioning that? Or are you
saying that perhaps it wasn't then, there was someone else behind it?
DAVIS: There could have been and then actually, U.S. secretary defense, James Mattis yesterday in congressional testimony said that exact same
thing. He said, "We need to make sure that we understand exactly what happened and we don't make the matter worse." Because he talked about the
potential for a military clash between the United States or the west and Russia, and that would make everybody's situation much worse. So I
caution, you know, that we need to be slow in doing this and very deliberate with what we do so that we don't make a bad situation actually
SOARES: What does it mean for President Trump then? Because he's really put himself into a corner not just with a tweet, but also promising to
DAVIS: Yes, he has. And I wish he would be a little bit more judicious on what he sends out on tweets because you truly don't want to be making
threats that you're not going to back up with. But I do give him credit that if he's being told behind closed doors that the intelligence is not so
sure, and then taking this action could actually worsen the situation. It's very difficult to backtrack off of that, but that's the right thing to
do, because he should not go forward with a bad plan just because he's already said something about it. So I hope that he would maybe learn a
little bit something risk and not be quite so quick on the trigger with his Twitter account, but he's got to take into consideration what is going to
make the best chance for America's prosperity and security.
SOARES: Well, we haven't heard the decision, so maybe he's listening to Secretary Mattis and to the others around him. Daniel L. Davis, retired
U.S. Army lieutenant colonel and defense analyst, thank you so. Ti's great to get your analysis.
DAVIS: Thank you for having me.
SOARES: Pleasure. And still to come right here tonight, making its message clear. Russia cracks down an encrypted communication app Telegram,
and the company's boss has something to say in return. Samuel Burke will tell you what that is.
[15:45:23] SOARES: We return now to a story that is almost too strange to actually be true. You are about to hear the former head of the FBI, James
Comey talk about a private conversation with President Trump and the topic of that conversation was, well, rumors that a tape exist that shows Mr.
Trump watching a pair of prostitutes urinate on each other. Have a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES COMEY, FORMER FBI DIRECTOR: I started to tell him about the allegation was that he had been involved with prostitutes in a hotel in
Moscow in 2013 during a visit for the Miss Universe Pageant and that the Russians had filmed the episode and he interrupted very defensively and
started talking about it, do I look like a guy who needs hookers? And I assumed he was asking that rhetorically, didn't answer that, and I just
moved on and explained, sir, I'm not saying that we credit this. I'm not saying we believe it. We just thought it very important that you know.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you tell him you thought it wasn't true or didn't know if it was true or not?
COMEY: I never said I don't believe it, because I couldn't say one way or another.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How weird was that briefing?
COMEY: Really weird. It's almost an out of body experience for me. I was floating above myself looking down saying, you're sitting here briefing and
incoming president about prostitutes in Moscow.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: Well, Comey's interview is part of an effort to promote his new book about his interactions with President Trump, as you can imagine. The
president has fight back calling Comey a liar and a slime ball.
Let's bring back up Stephen Collinson with more. And, Stephen, you and I were listening to the press conference from White House press secretary,
Sarah Sanders who basically said that he was -- he's a disgraced partisan hack and he created this problem for himself, and it seems the president is
tweeting back. What is he saying?
COLLINSON: Right. So the president is seizing on a report that was sent from the watchdog, internal watchdog of the justice department about the
former deputy director of the FBI, Mr. McCabe. Now, he was fired because of -- he was accused of not showing candor to FBI investigators who were
investigating his handling of the Clinton e-mail investigation. It's all very convoluted. But basically what the president is saying is that McCabe
is an example of corruption and he says he's part of the den of thieves and liars at the FBI, and he's clearly using that to take a swipe at James
The president argued all along argued that Comey and the intelligent services of the United States, particularly the establishment within the
FBI, the leadership is corrupt and has been out to get him from day one to invalidate his election. So this is one way that he is now trying to
defend himself from the accusations in the Comey book by lashing out at Andrew McCabe and lashing out at Comey himself.
SOARES: Yes, and the book, it has been absolutely boosting have been pretty salacious and explosive and I'm sure that we'll hear more from
regarding the book next week, because I know that -- we know that Comey is going to do a whole media blitz next week. So expect more of the semi
Tweets won't we? As even from President Trump next week. Thanks very much, Stephen. Thanks for staying with us.
SOARES: Now, the founder of the encrypted messaging app Telegram says he will fight Moscow's attempt to ban it. Pavel Durov who is himself Russian
says the app all used built-in methods to bypass the ban.
Samuel Burke is here with more on why this is so significant. Before we talk about why this is significant, wow exactly are they going to bypass
[15:50:55] SAMUEL BURKE, CNN BUSINESS AND TECHNOLOGY NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's going to be very difficult. He says they'll have to have VPN,
virtual private networks which make it so you can log in but it looks like you're coming from another country like the United States. You and I both
know that VPNs are not what they're used to be, whether you're in the U.K. trying to watch Netflix from the U.S. or whether you're more seriously in
China, Iran or Russia. They've really cracked down on this. So Telegram, one of the most important, one of the largest messaging apps in the world
with 200 million users. The Russians are asking them for the keys to get in to these apps.
SOARES: Why? What are the allegations here?
BURKE: Well, what's interesting here is basically it was not one of the big stories like we had in the United States, for instance when you had the
San Bernardino terrorist attack, the whole country, if not the whole world just looking at it through the lens of this terror attack, the United
States wanting to get into the iPhone.
In this case, the Russian government says the laws here require companies, tech companies like Telegram to give us the keys, but experts say, listen,
this is end to end encryption and only Isa and Samuel have the keys, if we're messaging each other. Nobody in between has them. So what they're
asking for they cannot give them. We've seen this play out with other apps like WhatsApp in Brazil. Before it's there, eventually the service is
turned back on because they don't have the keys. They would have to re- write and completely change the app for this to be changed. We'll see how that plays out in Russia.
SOARES: But like you said, we've seen similar cases. We've seen similar cases in Brazil. So, where does this go from here?
BURKE: Well, maybe they'll look at alternatives. I mean, even Dmitry Paskov who's the spokesperson for the kremlin said he uses the app and
he'll use an alternative but he's not great with text. It'll be very difficult with him. It's interesting because a lot of leaders have stopped
short of banning apps like this because they're so popular. When you have a place like Iran or Russia where secretive messaging is so important to
people because they know that there's a lack of privacy in these countries. You're talking about -- all of a sudden millions of people being frustrated
because they can't communicate the way they've become accustomed to. So in some ways, you see this become a big risk for other government. Russia is
a unique situation, though. SOARES: What are Telegram saying?
BURKE: Right now, they're just saying we will work around this, but it gets back to that whole issue with the VPNs. And keep in mind, the man
behind this app is also the person who started Facebook. This is a message that they had sent out previously. "Since the day we launched in August
2013, we haven't disclose a single byte of our users' private data to third parties. This is a guy who created the Russian version of Facebook and
eventually had to leave Russia and come to the United Kingdom. He knows how tough life can be in Russia, especially for these tight startups trying
to balance privacy with a very strong government when it comes to tech issues."
SOARES: yes. Again, we're talking about privacy data or data, as you said. Samuel Burke, thanks very much.
More to come right here including he has taken the Premier League by storm. CNN sits down with Liverpool and Egypt superstar, Mo Salah, that's next.
SOARES: Now, the city of Liverpool is used to worshipping its heroes like John, Paul, George as well as Ringo. But right now, there's a new man
whipping the city into a frenzy, and that is Mo Salah. The Liverpool footballer has had a remarkable first season that has led the red to the
semifinals of the Champions League by beating Manchester City.
Becky Anderson sat down with him on field for a chat about exactly that game.
MO SALAH, LIVERPOOL FOOTBALLER: We knew before the game, it's going to be hard. It's not going to be easy, especially the first 20 minutes. When we
had a chance to score, we scored.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Yes, you do. What do you remember about the goal?
SALAH: It's a great feeling to score in that -- in that game, like to have your team to qualify to the semifinals is a great feeling. I was called in
front of the goal. I did it well, so I'm happy about that.
ANDERSON: And the fans love you. You went to the end where the traveling fans were. Could you hear them?
SALAH: Yes, of course. Every day, they come. I heard them because they sing a special song for me. But I love them because I play here, and I
hear that every game and I feel the love in the city, and the love in the training.
[15:55:09] ANDERSON: Do you think you and the team here can win the Champions League, this season?
SALAH: We can. We are at the semifinals. I say always we take it step by step. But we are in the semifinal. Anything can happen. Everyone go to
the game in the semifinal or the quarter final, because we has emotion we have to win. We can do it. So now it's semifinal, two games until the
ANDERSON: As a 7-year-old when you used to catch five buses to play in your first little team, did you know who Liverpool were?
ANDERSON: Had you heard of the team?
SALAH: Of course. Of course. It's a big club. Everybody knows of the club in the Middle East, huge club. So everyone knows that. When I was a
kid, I was playing the PlayStation, it was Liverpool. I know the club, of course.
ANDERSON: Understandably, people are comparing you to Messi and Ronaldo. How do you rate yourself? You're the third best player in the world?
SALAH: I leave that for the people. They can say what they see or what they want. But I'm always -- each game, I'm thinking about the game to --
has the game to get the points to score a goal, to do my best in the game. That's the most important thing for me. I take every game with a passion.
I want to score. I want to do different each game, so that's what I have in my mind.
ANDERSON: You want to win the Golden Boot this season. There's somebody on your heels Harry Kane have thought them?
SALAH: Yes, Harry Kane and I were -- I said before that I'm a striker. They play number nine. I play as a wing more, so it's easier for them
because they're always in front of the goal. But I play as a wing. It's a little bit more difficult because I have to give assists, have to give the
balls, create chances. But they are number nine, and it's more easier for them.
ANDERSON: Do you think you're going to win? You want it, don't you? You want that Golden Boot?
SALAH: No, no, and there are still five games to go. We will see at the end of the season.
ANDERSON: We will see.
SOARES: A very modest man there.
And finally, we want to wish a happy 61st birthday to Fatou. And you might be asking who exactly is Fatou. He is the oldest gorilla in the world and
resident of the Berlin zoo. Fatou celebrated by devouring a birthday cake filled with blueberries, strawberries as well as grapes for the healthy.
In truth, the zoo does not know exactly how old Fatou is. She was sent to the zoo in 1959 after a sailor used the young gorilla as payment for a
drink at the bar. Very happy birthday.
And that does it for us. Thank you very much for watching. Do stay right here. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" with Richard Quest is coming up next. Have
wonderful weekend. Bye-bye.