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Melania Trump Visits Immigrant Holding Center; Separated Families In Limbo After Trump's Reversal; White House Repeatedly Changes Its Stance On Separations; Teen Who Killed Rapist Husband Shares Her Story With CNN; Russia Celebrates team's Surprising Success; Pentagon Asked To Prepare Bases To House Up To 20,000 Children; Israeli Prime Minister's Wife Charged With Fraud; NATO Secretary General Considers Future Of Alliance. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired June 21, 2018 - 15:00   ET



HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. Live from CNN London, I'm Hala Gorani.

Tonight, Melania Trump makes a surprising trip to the U.S. border with Mexico to get a firsthand look at the crisis affecting immigrant families.

This comes as questions still swirl over what comes next for children separated from their parents.

Also, tonight, CNN reports from Sudan on a story that set off a global outcry. We hear from the teenager who is on death row for killing her

husband, who she says raped her. That is coming up later in the hour.

As Donald Trump tries to douse the firestorm of criticism over immigration policy in Washington, immigration policy that his administration

instituted, his wife, Melania, is traveling to that part of the country to, she says, get a firsthand look at what's going on, along the U.S.-Mexico


The first lady made a surprise trip today to a facility housing migrant children in Texas. There she is. She pressured her husband, it was said,

to reverse the policy of separating families who illegally enter the United States.

And he did, in the end, do that. He signed an executive order yesterday. We were reporting on that live during this show. Mrs. Trump says her

priority is seeing families reunited.


MELANIA TRUMP, U.S. FIRST LADY: I'm here to learn about your facility, and now you have children on a long-term basis. And I would also like to ask

you how I can help to reunite these families as quickly as possible.


GORANI: The president says he's ordered federal authorities to work toward reuniting separated families. But here's the thing -- we have no details

on how that might happen. And some experts say that children were placed in foster care or in facilities that it could take a very long time for

those children to be reunited with their parents, if their parents, after they had been deported, have access to them at all.

The president also talked briefly about his new executive order today but may have confused things with this remark.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: I signed a very good executive order yesterday, but that's only limited, no matter how you

cut it, it leads to separation ultimately.


GORANI: So unclear, at least separation ultimately, what does that mean? That after the parents and kids stay together, that after a certain amount

of time the kids are taken away? We don't have those answers.

Meantime, the White House has been furiously lobbying Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform that would include funding for Trump long-

promised border wall with Mexico. House lawmakers have already rejected one hardline bill today and we've just learned delayed a vote on a

compromised Republican measure until tomorrow.

While politicians in Washington arm twist and debate, the reality is that on the ground thousands of migrant children are still sitting in detention

centers away from their parents and uncertain of their fate.

Let's get an update now from the U.S.-Mexico border. Nick Valencia is on the phone from Brownsville, Texas. Nick, there was -- the reason you're

not in front of a camera, there has been some very inclement weather and some flooding in some cases, but you're with us on the telephone. Talk to

us first about this surprise visit by the first lady.

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (via telephone): Well, she's certainly getting a lot of attention nationally. But it's interesting, Hala, when

you look at the local newspaper website or the local tv station, they're leading with the life-threatening flash flooding.

This is one of her biggest days as first lady, if not the biggest day as first lady. She rarely comments on political issues, and instead, has

chosen to come out over the weekend and go against what her husband created essentially with this zero-tolerance policy.

This trip, as we understand it, Hala, was a hastily planned trip to get a firsthand look of the ongoing crisis we've been witnessing ourselves with

our own eyes. It was put together we're told in less than 48 hours.

Her first stop was to an HHS-funded facility, Health and Human Services government funded facility, housing 60 children between the ages of 5 and

17, though, we believe the children at that facility are between the ages of 12 and 17.

[15:05:02] It comes a morning after President Trump signed an executive order having the practice of separating families come to an end. But in

the leadup to the story, he's caused some confusion with the comments that he made at the briefing earlier.

This is a problem he says that was the Democrat's fault for not being tougher on border security, a problem that only Congress could fix. And

ultimately, as we understand it, it was pressure from the first lady behind the scenes that led, in part, to President Trump's signing this executive

order ending the separation of families.

GORANI: The first lady, I've seen the video we're showing our viewers now meeting with some of the people responsible for looking after the children.

Did she meet any of the kids?

VALENCIA: We believe that she did. Cameras, again, have not been allowed in. Cameras were again denied access as she went back, we assume to meet

with some of the children. She asked something interesting as well to one of the directors at this facility saying when will these children be

reunited? And they said as soon as possible and that's what we're unclear on. There's a lot of confusion, not just among the journalists covering

this story but --

GORANI: Nick, we need to see what's going on inside those buildings. I mean, these kids have been taken from their families. It's great that

occasionally you have the odd person that gets to see what's going on inside. But we're relying on handout video and pictures. Why won't they

let us in?

VALENCIA: There are some agencies that are choosing not to run the Customs and Border Protection provided that photos because we haven't been allowed

in, and agencies are being blocked. Even local journalists haven't been allowed in.

That is the question here, if the conditions are so good in these facilities that are run and funded by the federal government, if these

children are getting the proper care, infants that have been separated from their mothers, infants as young as 8 months old, why not let journalists in

to see it with our own eyes so we can report out to the world what is happening.

And I talked to a congressman who went inside on Monday, got a tour, and he said he could not say in the good faith that the children are getting the

right kind of care. He said they were being tended to in the situation he saw four infants, two of them that had been without their mothers. The

other two mothers were teenagers and were there with their children.

But he said the two infants that didn't have their mothers were getting bottle fed by the staff. He did say, though, I said are they getting the

right kind of care? You know, all the baby needs after its born essentially is its mother. He said I'm not in a position to say whether or

not they're getting the right kind of care.

And that's why it's so important for journalists to be allowed into these facilities, these children detentions centers as they called. They're

being labeled tender age facilities. These are detention facilities for children.

We're trying to get in. We repeatedly asked the question and asked for a tour with the Office of Refugee Resettlement, and we haven't even been

given the courtesy of a denial to our request.

GORANI: All right. Nick Valencia in Texas, thanks very much.

You may have seen this the new cover of "Time" magazine is using very few words to send a scathing message about the immigration crisis. The picture

says it all. You'll remember this child, Honduran toddler separated from her mother. Well, "Time" put the toddler on the cover of the magazine with

Donald Trump looking down on the little kid with the words "welcome to America."

The U.S. government is trying to dampen criticism of its detention centers by releasing pictures like these, however. This footage comes from a

facility outside Washington, D.C. It shows a woman rocking a baby in brightly decorated rooms with stuffed animals on many beds.

But, here's the thing, again, we do not have access to these shelters as the media. So, these are panned out, government hand out pictures and

video. And so, we take them for what they are. Material provided by the authorities. Not independently gathered by journalists. Is it a true

picture of what these child detention facilities are really like?

let's check in now into New York City. You may not know that many of these migrant children are being moved across the country, thousands of

kilometers away from the Mexican border. CNN's Maria Santana is live in Harlem. So, you're at a facility. What's going on where you are?

Describe the building behind you.

MARIA SANTANA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Right. So, this facility behind me is a center where Mayor Bill De Blasio says that hundreds of children, some 239

children that have been separated from their parents at the border are being sent.

Now, this came as a total surprise to the mayor, who said he found out only yesterday that hundreds of these children have been sent to New York City.

Not only to this center, but to others across the city.

And he has not been able to get an exact number as to how many are here. Now, similar to what is happening at the border, we, as press, are not

allowed to enter this building to check its conditions.

[15:10:08] We haven't even been allowed to ask questions. We are getting absolutely no information about how many children are here, what their

conditions are, what kind of services are being provided to them.

The mayor actually did go in. He showed up yesterday, went in, met with some of the kids, and although he said that it seems like the staff is

doing a good job at taking care of these kids, many of them have obvious physical and emotional trauma.

And he wants to help them, but he cannot do that if he doesn't know where all the children are. And this is what he said, Mayor De Blasio said



BILL DE BLASIO, NEW YORK MAYOR: They're experiencing mental health challenges and trauma because of the separation. There's also physical

health challenges, the health workers were telling us these kids, because they were held in group facility when they came across the border, some had

lice, bed bugs, chickenpox, all sorts of contagious situations.

And just think of the chaos of all this, both what the kids are going through emotionally and mentally, but kids who contracted some kind of

disease and being sent to where a bunch of other kids are. There's no rhyme or reason to it.


SANTANA: And Hala, we also got an update this afternoon from New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo. He says that about 700 children from the

border have been sent here to New York state. Again, he has very little information.

The Department of Health and Human Services with the federal government is not answering his questions. As a matter of fact, he said that these kids

are being sent to these agencies with federal gag orders.

That means that the agencies cannot share any information with local and state authorities about these kids. How many they are, where they are, who

they are, who their parents are, they're being shifted around from agency to agency, arriving in the middle of the night.

That is making it very hard for the state not only to provide them with care, but to track them. That will become a big problem Governor Cuomo

says when they try to reunite these children with their parents. They have no idea, no one has a clear idea at how that is going to happen or when --


GORANI: Thank you, Maria Santana. Maria said something very interesting, that these facilities are having to deal with federal gag orders, which

means in other words that the federal government is telling them they cannot share information potentially. That means they can't also speak to


I'm going to be asking experts about this in a moment. So, there could be legal challenges to all this.

Let's have more on now part of the story from CNN's Tal Kopan, live on Capitol Hill. Jessica Stern is a criminal and immigration defense

attorney. Tal Kopan, let's talk first, Ivanka Trump tweed that the priorities should be to reunite families now. But how do we -- how do they

do that? How is that possible at this stage?

TAL KOPAN, CNN POLITICAL REPORTER: Yes, Hala, that's a great question, because we don't know. And the fact is, when this order began, when this -

- excuse me, this zero-tolerance policy began, basically the parents and children were separated, the children sent to HHS, given their own sort of

track on this, their own case.

The parents were sent to the Department of Justice and then returned to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, an entirely different federal agency.

No one seems to have been sitting there with a database that could track where the kid went and where the parent went on the same level.

So, the way the parents have been told that they have to find their kid is to call a hotline and try to navigate through that, through HHS, to figure

out where their kid has been. The notion that suddenly these families can be reunited, the database infrastructure does not seem to exist to do that

with any sort of expeditiousness.

GORANI: Just how so I am clear, when the kids were separated from the parents, there was no list established linking the children in some central

database with the family they were taken from?

KOPAN: We have never heard of any such thing being done. Rather the children were reclassified as unaccompanied minors, seemed as if they had

come here without parents and put into the HHS system that way.

The government has never once told us that they made any effort to simultaneously track where a parent and children were being sent or placed

any responsibility on any single agency to manage the reunification of these families, rather providing parents these resources to call when they

got out of the federal court system.

GORANI: That's absolutely remarkable. It's remarkable to hear that. Tal Kopan, thanks very much. I'll let you go. I know you have more reporting

to do.

Jessica Stern, our reporter, Maria Santana, in Harlem, was saying that some of these shelters were hit with federal gag orders. What does that mean


[15:15:08] JESSICA STERN, CRIMINAL AND IMMIGRATION DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, Hala, I think it's important to start off by mentioning that yesterday's

order was completely show business. There's nothing that's going to change based on yesterday's order signed by President Trump, because ultimately

there is a federal order in place already.

As far as the gag orders, I can't speak to that exactly, because I don't understand how the government would not be able to share information about

the detainees. It is something they have to be able to track in order to do what they're promising, which is that they're going to reunify the kids

with their parents.

But what's important to focus on is that this policy, this zero-tolerance policy, as long as it still continues, then separation of children is going

to continue. Because what is happening is that the parents are being prosecuted criminally, instead of being allowed to go through the

immigration process to seek asylum first and their kids are taken away and put through the process as unaccompanied minors.

And the law in place right now is there to protect where the kids go. What happens with the kids. And so ultimately, if this law says you can only

keep kids in detention for 20 days before you put them in a licensed facility, there's not enough room for them. And that's going to continue


They can't be detained with other adults or delinquents. And so yes, why would we ask the federal court to change that law when we want to make sure

there are protections in place for what happens to kids if they have to be detained, which they don't need to be in this situation.

GORANI: Yes, Jessica, stand by, because we're getting some breaking news from our Barbara Starr at the Pentagon related to this story. The

Department of Defense, so the Pentagon, has received a request from HHS to be prepared to house up to 20,000 unaccompanied children on U.S. military

bases. This is according to a U.S. defense official speaking to CNN.

Congress has been notified of this at the request of Health and Human Services, the Department of Health and Human Services. So, it is expected

that the Pentagon will fulfill this request if required.

So, Jessica, we're getting a sense here potentially of what the government believes numbers will swell to, that eventually perhaps they're preparing,

at least logistically for the ability to house unaccompanied minors, up to 20,000 of them. That's been requested of the Pentagon. Where do you think

we're going with this legally speaking?

STERN: That's extremely unfortunate to hear. I don't know how that will actually happen, because the facilities have to be licensed by the Office

of Refugee Resettlement. There's no way that the military bases are going to become licensed facilities that can protect children in the way that the

federal court has required.

The fact that we are expecting more numbers and higher numbers means there's not an intention to stop separating families. Instead, there's an

intention to continue to scare people away from asserting their right to seek asylum in this country.

And instead of using the alternative measures that had been in place before this zero-tolerance policy, to allow parents to be released monitoring with

their kids. And ICE's own records show that 95 percent show up for their immigration court hearing.

So, there's no need for this. It absolutely can be stopped, and we don't need Congress to act on this. It's something that can go back to the

policies that were in place before, because they were working. People were showing up to court and being able to assert their rights to seek asylum

and protection in the United States.

GORANI: But one of the accounts that I've read from someone who assists an NGO that assists migrants entering the United States undocumented basically

said that these legal entry points sometimes get clogged up, that they have to wait for sometimes up to ten days for anybody to process them.

And that some therefore choose to go undocumented across the border and seek asylum some other way. And there is an article in the "Refugee

Convention" that states that it is improper to use criminal laws to deter asylum. In this case, can you make the argument that this is being done?

STERN: It is absolutely being done. The process is this -- someone comes to the border and they are presenting themselves for asylum or they are

trying to come in without being detected and they're detained.

At that point, they can claim fear of persecution in their country, and they have to be given the right to seek asylum through the proper channels

through the immigration process. Now instead they're being ripped away from their children, if their children are with them.

And they're being prosecuted in the federal correct court for criminal charges of illegal reentry.

[11:20:01] They are then presented with the option, do you want to be sentenced in a prison, in a federal prison for violating the criminal laws

of illegal reentering or do you want to give up your right to keep challenging your deportation and decide to go home?

And what choice is that really? I mean, these parents don't know what's happening with their kids. So essentially, it's taking away the right to

present their asylum claim, because first they have to be facing criminal federal prosecution and imprisonment.

GORANI: Jessica Stern, thank you for joining us. We really appreciate your time on the program this evening.

STERN: Thank you.

GORANI: Still to come tonight, is President Trump planning to upstage the NATO Summit by meeting with Vladimir Putin first? I talked about their

possible meeting with the secretary-general of NATO.

And a scandal surrounding the wife of the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, we'll tell you what she's accused of that has to do with food

deliveries. We'll be right back.


GORANI: The wife of the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has been charged with fraud and breach of trust. Prosecutors say Sarah

Netanyahu misused public money to pay for meals and private chefs at the prime minister's residence. She's denying wrongdoing. Let's get more on

this with Oren Lieberman in Jerusalem -- Oren.

OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hala, this is one of a number of criminal investigations that have been circling around Prime Minister

Benjamin Netanyahu's wife, Sarah Netanyahu. This is known locally as the meals ordering affair. In it, prosecutors say that between 2010 and 2013,

a period during which Prime Minister Netanyahu was holding the premiership.

Sarah Netanyahu, meanwhile, prosecutors say, along with the deputy director general of the prime minister's office, ordered meals from some of the most

expensive restaurants in the city and high-end waiters to serve those meals on weekends and private affairs.

It may sound small, but over the course of those three years, prosecutors say that they ordered $100,000 misuse of state funds, taxpayer dollars.

Prosecutors say she went to lengths to conceal that, to make sure that wasn't found.

Meanwhile, a lawyers team for Sarah Netanyahu responded and said it's the first time in Israel and the world that a wife of a leader is put on trial

for food entrees. There was no fraud, no breach of trust, or any other felony -- Hala.

GORANI: All right. Oren, thanks for the update.

Fresh from the summit with Kim Jong-un last week, President Trump has now turned his attention to a new meeting with another leader known for his

strained relationship with western countries, Vladimir Putin.

President Trump says he's considering meeting the Russian leader in July. He's already scheduled to visit the U.K. and attend a NATO Summit in

Brussels during that period. The NATO secretary-general, Jens Stoltenberg, today seemed to question the future of the alliance, saying, quote, "it's

not written in stone that the transatlantic bond will survive forever."

Well, I sat down with Stoltenberg after he made those comments and began by asking him, is he really worried that NATO is at risk?


JENS STOLTENBERG, NATO SECRETARY GENERAL: We have to work harder to preserve and maintain the transatlantic bond, but it's absolutely possible

to succeed because we have had these agreements before.

GORANI: But not as big as this one.

STOLTENBERG: Well, they were very different, but at least we have proven before we're able to overcome disagreements. I also said that we're

actually doing that right now, because there are disagreements on trade, climate change and other issues. But we are strengthening the cooperation

between Europe and North America, the United States when it comes to defense and security within NATO.

GORANI: The U.S. president, Donald Trump on his way to the NATO meeting will stop by and meet with Vladimir Putin. This has raised eyebrows. Why

do it in that sort of trajectory by going to Russia first?

STOLTENBERG: Well, the meeting has not been confirmed, but in regards to that, I can say that I have no problems with the U.S. president meeting the

Russian president. NATO is in favor of dialogue with Russia. We are not aimed at isolating Russia, but the deterrence combined with dialogue.

Russia is our neighbor and we are to speak with him and improve our relationship. We need to manage a difficult relationship, and therefore,

we need to talk to them.

GORANI: But I mean, this I a specific and very particular historic scenario where you have a U.S. president, there's an investigation going on

whether or not Russia tried to influence the election, and then you have Russia having annexed Crimea, and acted in ways that are perceived as being

very aggressive. So, this isn't just Russia at think time, it's Russia at this specific time.

STOLTENBERG: Absolutely. But for me, Russia has been responsible for aggressive actions against Ukraine, against the Salisbury attack and so on.

So, we have seen a more assertive Russia. But that's not an argument against talking to them. I think it's even more important to talk to


GORANI: Do you think Donald Trump, he's been such a disrupter. He's left the TPP, he's left the Paris agreement. He has -- the U.S. has left the

U.N. Human Rights Council. Why is NATO, do you think, safe from President Trump deciding, you know what, all countries are not spending 2 percent of

GDP on defense, we're out of here?

STOLTENBERG: President Trump has a point when it comes to defense spending, because we have not a fair burden sharing in the alliance now.

The U.S. is paying more than 70 percent of total spending in the NATO alliance.

GORANI: It's also a much bigger, bigger country.

STOLTENBERG: The GDP of Europe is almost as big as the GDP of the United States, but the United States is paying more than twice as much. But the

good thing is all allies agree we have to do something with that, and all allies have stopped cuts in defense spending and increased. More allies

spend more than 2 percent of GDP on defense, which is the guideline. So, we are really moving in the right direction. European allies are spending


GORANI: How are they in these summits, and you've met President Trump and the NATO allies. He's ruffled feathers obviously, hasn't he?

STOLTENBERG: He has a different style, but I think we have to relate to the substance of what the United States and President Trump is doing when

it comes to NATO and security. The fact is, they are not reducing their presence, they're increasing their presence in Europe.

GORANI: You don't think that the communication style of the president could potentially even unwittingly create tension and cause even conflict,

the tweets, the threats, that type of thing?

STOLTENBERG: My main responsibility is to do whatever I can do avoid that from happening. So, I have to try to, as I say, focus on the decisions we

are going to make, on the substance, increased forces, stepping up the fight against terrorism, modernizing the NATO structure.

GORANI: It's not a concern you have?

STOLTENBERG: What I've seen is despite this, as I say the language, the disagreements, we have been able to then deliver more deterrence and

defense in NATO and stepping up the fight against terrorism. So, as long as NATO delivers, I think we have to live with some disagreements and some



GORANI: The NATO secretary-general, Jens Stoltenberg.

Still ahead --


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I told him I don't want to marry. I want to study. I was in the eighth grade.


GORANI: We hear from a young girl about her brutal ordeal after her husband raped her. Why she's now on death row. Our exclusive report

coming up.



GORANI: A day after Donald Trump reversed his own practice of separating family at America's southern border, First Lady Melania Trump made a

surprise visit there. She's now left after a planned second stop was canceled because of flooding. The weather is apparently terrible there in

that part of Texas right now. But she took a moment to thank those looking after some of the children at the facility she visited.


MELANIA TRUMP, FIST LADY OF THE UNITED STATES: We all know they're having -- they're here without their families, and I want to thank you for your

hard work, your compassion, and your kindness in these difficult times.


GORANI: Well, we've been talking a lot about this issue over the last few days, and we haven't focused as much on what brings people to the border.

We've been at the border -- granted we haven't been able to go with our cameras inside the facilities. But the journey that thousands of migrants

have been making from Central America to the U.S. is not a new one or an easy one. Just reaching the border that you see here between the United

States and Mexico comes at the end of a grueling and very risky trek. Imagine yourself days and days on foot, hungry, thirsty a lot of the times,

with hardly any money. You may even have very young children crying out for family members they've had to leave behind or demanding you stop for

even a bathroom break. But as we've also reported here on CNN, what these people are leaving behind can be often times a whole lot worse.


LEYLA SANTIAGO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The pushing, the walking, the riding, the waiting, the exhaustion. But Gabriela Hernandez says she has no

choice. This is what she must do to reach this point. Off in the distance, behind a tall fence, for the first time she's getting a glimpse

of the United States of America.

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Welcome to El Salvador. The cruelest of homelands. And the toughest of places to be forced back to. These are

the first moments of men deported from the United States back to a land they can't really call home anymore.


GORANI: Well, the separation of families at the U.S. border has not gone unnoticed by other migrants hoping to make the journey to the U.S. CNN's

Leyla Santiago who you just heard from a moment ago has been covering this extensively. She's reporting today from the border between Mexico and


[15:35:10] SANTIAGO: Hala, immigrants that we have talked to here are changing their plans on their journey north. We are in Tapachula. That's

right on the border with Guatemala and Mexico. The reason we're here is because typically whatever happens here, as Central Americans from El

Salvador, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Honduras, as they make their way north, what we typically see here is the first indicator of what you will see on

the U.S.-Mexico border. We visited a shelter to talk to families about the news coming from the U.S.-Mexico border. Many were already aware, had seen

videos, had seen images of families being separated. One mother noted the audio that was heard of children crying and asking for their parents. They

said that was enough to sort of bring their plans to a halt for now.

The goal for many of them is still to try to make it to the United States. But when they heard about the child separation, they said it very much does

deter them. But again, just for now. When I talked to them about the news of President Trump signing that executive order, many seemed to be confused

about what that will mean for them. And in the meantime, they say they cannot go back to Central America. I talked to two mothers from Honduras

who said they will wait. But if they go back to Honduras, they will be killed, because of gang violence and threats, not only on their families

but also on their children. So for them, this is a time of uncertainty. Hala?

GORANI: Thank you, Leyla Santiago. Between Guatemala and Mexico.

Now, you may find that there's something that feels familiar about the way Donald Trump has handled this latest outcry. From his initial tweet storms

to the national firestorm and finally, a dramatic reversal. Signing an executive order ending family separations. That's because there were other

moments like this historic summit a few days ago, months after Mr. Trump called Kim Jong-un Little Rocket Man, among other things, this happened.

The furry that erupted when the president first introduced his travel ban, only to back away from it somewhat to calm the furor. And then there are

other examples, as well. That Mr. Trump, for instance, pulling out of the Iran deal or the Paris accord. Is the president manufacturing crises

needlessly, only to portray himself as the one ultimately fixing them?

Let's bring in our next guest, CNN digital contributor, Michael D'Antonio. He's a Trump biographer and author of "Never Enough," and "The Truth About

Trump." Michael joins us from Long Island, New York. That's my question - - is he -- what is he doing? Because there was no border crisis before the president made it a border crisis.

MICHAEL D'ANTONIO, CNN DIGITAL CONTRIBUTOR: Well, that's true. And there really wasn't a crisis involving Muslims visiting America and causing

problems. So much of what the president has done over the course of his first 500 days has been about manufacturing problems and then posing as the

hero who's going to save the day when he started it all off in the first place. And this is a life-long habit of his. He's often in private

industry, done the same kind of thing, proposing something enormous or getting into a spat with someone, whether it's a Hollywood star or a public

official. And then backing off at the last minute or coming in with a project that was satisfactory to all in order to achieve some dramatic

effect. He's spinning a fantasy much of the time.

GORANI: You wrote about the children separated at the border, and you related it to Trump's own childhood. How?

D'ANTONIO: Well, he's a person who, as a 13-year-old boy, was sent off from his family home, which was very luxurious. He was attended by nannies

and butlers and chauffeurs, and then sent suddenly to a military academy where he was miserable. This was a place where, by his own admission and

by the recollections of his classmates, the young boys were beaten and humiliated on a regular basis. Corporal punishment was really the means

that they used to control the young men. And all of this was done because his own family was fed up with him. So he's experienced the trauma of

being yanked away from a comfortable home and from his parents, and put in a frightening situation. So I see parallels directly with his own

experience as a kid. I also see the bully boy that he was as young as age 6. He told me that he's no different from when he was a 6-year-old boy.

And back when he was a 6-year-old boy, he tormented the other children and actually gave a teacher a black eye and just was a terror.

[15:40:24] GORANI: Is that why when you say his family had had enough of him, so they shipped him off to the military academy, is it because of that

kind of behavior?

D'ANTONIO: It's precisely why. He was the kid who prompted endless phone calls from the school, with teachers and the administrators complaining

about his behavior. His father was a trustee of the school and a major donor, and nothing they did could stop this terrible behavior. And really,

the only thing that put a lid on it was the imposition of this brutal education. Later on, he would brag how tough it was and how he got smacked

around. But it taught him discipline and I fear that it's just discipline to carry out the worst within his heart.

GORANI: How would you think then his relationship is with career politicians in Washington? Because there are really -- especially in his

own camp, the Republican Party, very few people coming out and criticizing him for any of the things he does or tweets. How do you think he manages

those relationships?

D'ANTONIO: As is typical in any group where a bully runs wild, a great majority of people will hang back, they're afraid of being targeted by the

bully themselves. He went into a meeting with Republicans in Congress this week and taunted them by asking where was the fellow who I helped defeat in

South Carolina in a primary last week? They groaned in response to this and off the record complained to the press. But they're afraid of him.

And so far, profiles and cowardice among Republicans in the House and Senate.

D'ANTONIO: Michael D'Antonio, trump biographer and CNN contributor, thanks so much for joining us. Really interesting conversation.

And still to come this evening, on death row for killing the husband she says raped her. Now we hear Noura Hussein's story as she spoke to CNN. An

exclusive report coming up.


GORANI: We've been bringing you the story of Noura Hussein that teenage girl who's sitting on death row in Sudan. Noura is facing the death

penalty for killing her husband, a man she says raped her after she was forced to marry him as a minor. Her story sadly is far from unique in

Sudan. Children as young as 10 are regularly married off to much older men. Well, Noura shared her story with CNN's Nima Elbagir and gave a

harrowing account of what happened to her.


[15:45:06] NOURA HUSSEIN, SUDANESE TEENAGER ON DEATH ROW: I had no idea how I got there. I was still carrying the knife. He told my parents that

he wanted to marry me. The first time I even saw him was a week after he proposed the marriage to my uncle. I told him, I don't want to marry. I

want to study. I was in the eighth grade. And they fooled me.

NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: These are the words of Sudanese teenager, Noura Hussein. For her safety, this is not her

voice, but it is Noura's story in her own words.

HUSSEIN: They did all the usual rituals for the wedding. I was overwhelmed with anger. I didn't want this man. I sat in the

hairdressers, contemplating suicide.

ELBAGIR: This is Noura on her wedding day. Noura is on death row. Convicted of the murder of her 35-year-old husband. Noura's case has

caused controversy across Sudan. A controversy Sudan's government has refused to comment on. Noura's husband's family have, we're told

activists, threatened violence against her supporters. They also refused CNN's request for comment.

The badly kept secret here is that more than a third of marriages in Sudan are child marriages. A number that is rising. Aggravated by the financial

realities in Sudan and a law that sets the legal age of marriage at 10. But some brave little girls are choosing to speak out.

This is Amals' story in Amal's own voice. For her safety, we're not showing her face. Amal is seeking a divorce from her abusive husband.

AMAL, 11-YEAR-OLD SEEKING DIVORCE (through translator): He treated me horribly. I went to my father but he sent me back to him. Then when he

beat me again, I fled to my father but he sent me back again. That last time he beat me, I went to the police station.

ELBAGIR: When it's all over, Amal wants to be a doctor. Beside her, her father wipes away tears. Unlike Noura, Amal's father is here in support of


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Twice, she came to my home twice and was terrified and frightened. I sent her back.

ELBAGIR: The man is 38 years old and wanted to be married to an 11-year- old girl. Shouldn't you have been suspicious?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I'm regretful, regretful.

ELBAGIR: Her father promises only to think harder the next time a proposal for marriage comes to his underage daughter.

Nahid Jabrallah office walls are adorned with art from rescued child victims. Nahid Jabrallah is one of the organizations fighting on Noura's

behalf. It worked to combat violence against women and forced marriage, in spite of a regular diet of threats.

Aren't you afraid when you talk about these cases?

NAHID JABRALLAH, DIRECTOR, SEEMA (through translator): I think that we, at the SEEMA center and other organizations, do this as a conscious choice.

Noura is just one of the 37 percent of girls married in Sudan under the age of 18. Just one of the cases that has reached U.S. There are so many

other that are similar, even down to the details.

HUSSEIN: We arrived at the honeymoon flat. I locked myself inside one of the rooms. I refused to eat. I refused to leave my room. On the ninth

day, his relatives came. His uncle told me to go to the bedroom. I said no. So he dragged me by my arm into the bedroom. All of them tore my

clothing. His uncle held me down by my legs, and each of the other two held down my arm. He stripped and had me while I wept and screamed. I was

bleeding. I slept naked.

[15:50:06] ELBAGIR: A familiar childhood ritual, part and parcel of growing up. Women and girls across Sudan are fighting for the right of

childhood against laws that legalize child marriage. Laws that don't recognize marriage or rape. Laws that empower their abusers. Noura still

had the knife in her hands when she fled to her parent's home. It was her own father who handed her to the police. And it's there that she learned

that she killed her husband. She's now awaiting the results of her appeal.

Nima Elbagir, CNN, Khartoum, Sudan.


GORANI: Well, since Nima gave us that report, CNN has continued to reach out to the Sudanese government officials. Still no response to Noura's

case. We won't give up, though. We will keep trying to reach them.

For more on Nima's report, visit our Web site, as part of our #asequalsproject, which puts the spotlight on inequality and the fight

against it around the world. We'll be right back. Stay with us.


GORANI: A major shocker at the World Cup right now. Just minutes ago, Argentina lost to Croatia three nail. That would make it extremely

difficult for Argentina to advance out of their group. On the pitch today, France beat Peru, one nail. Yay. Which moves them into the knockout stage

of the World Cup. Russia and Uruguay, so far, are the only other teams to advance. Russia's success certainly is a surprise. They came into the cup

as the lowest rated team in the tournament. They have something called a home advantage though, I think Fred Pleitgen has been following the Russian

national team and he's in Moscow. Fred.

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hala, we visited their training camp earlier today and what we saw there was a very

confident team, obviously bolstered by those two win that they got and a team that believes that they could do great things at the World Cup. And

so now does this nation. Here's what we saw.


PLEITGEN: It's not often that you see Russians this emotional. But the country's been in a football frenzy ever since the World Cup started.

Thanks to Russia's Cinderella squad, a team most experts thought would fail miserably, but has outscored its opponents Eight to one so far. Defender

Andrei Semyonov told me the team always believed in itself.

Nobody believed in us, he says, now everyone does and they're starting to put medals on us. But we don't look at it. We studied our opponents

really well and predicted everything.

But few observers could have predicted their success. Russia is the lowest ranked team at the World Cup. Wouldn't have even qualified if they weren't

the host nation. And many feared the mood at the World Cup would sour and the home team performed poorly. Now, the squad, led by striker Artem

Dzyuba is on a roll.

Team Russia has already proved all of its critics wrong, well, in all of its matches and already qualifying for the next round. And now both this

nation and this team believe they can do great things at the FIFA 2018 World Cup. And with a successful squad, Russians are embracing their

nation's role as hosts of the tournament. Striker Fyodor Kudryashov telling me, home field advantage has also helped elevate the team's


The fans are the 12th player on the field for us, he said. We feel their overwhelming support and our team goes forward.

If there is a knock on the Russians, it's that they haven't played any of the really strong teams so far. But for now, Russia is enjoying the

winning streak, hoping their World Cup fairy tale doesn't end any time soon.


[15:55:00] PLEITGEN: And, Hala, of course the next game they have will be against the stronger team, it's against Uruguay. And after that, of

course, we get to the knockout stages and it's really going to be there that the Russians are going to show whether they are for real or not, Hala.

GORANI: Yes, we will be watching. Thanks, Fred.

For Shakespeare, it was the sonnet, for Rembrandt and Picasso, a masterpiece painted in oils. But in this day and age, there seems to be

only one way to truly honor the special moments in our life.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Let me take a selfie.

The Chainsmokers there capturing the very essence of social media's magnum opus, the selfie. A photographic custom being honored today on National

Selfie Day. Selfie is a relatively new term. But did you know the first selfie was taken in 1839 by photographer Robert Cornelius in Philadelphia?

Truly a visionary, so who we were to resist the tide of history? This is our HALA GORANI TONIGHT team in London. That's a selfie. One of these

team has a super long arm. We reached out to our colleagues at CNN center in the U.S., but unfortunately, they were all having bad hair days. So

instead, and keeping with another great internet tradition, here's a picture of a selfie taking cat, and his name is Manny. Manny takes these

photos with a GoPro cam, and he's seen here with a close friend.

New Zealand's prime minister has given birth, becoming only the second female world leader to do so while in office. Jacinda Ardern and her

partner Clarke Gayford posted this snap with their newborn daughter earlier. Is it a selfie? Looks like it could be, actually. She will now

take six weeks maternity leave and has handed over her responsibilities to the deputy prime minister, who is now serving as acting prime minister.

She follows in the footsteps of the former Pakistani Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto, who had a child while in office in 1990.

Thanks for watching tonight, everyone. I'm Hala Gorani. Stay with CNN. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is up next. I'll see you tomorrow.


[16:00:04] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Dow's losing streak continues. It's Thursday, the 24th of June. Tonight, a retail revolution.