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Turkish President Erdogan Wins Re-Election; Almost 350 Migrants Stranded in the Mediterranean; Trump Warns U.S. Must Protect Itself from "Invaders"; Saudi Women Officially Allowed to Drive; Prince William on Visit to Middle East; Erdogan Strengthens His Grip on Power; Final World Cup Matches of Group Stage Underway; Egypt Star Mo Salah Considering Quitting Team. Aired 11a-12n ET

Aired June 25, 2018 - 11:00   ET


[11:00:00] IVAN WATSON, CNN HOST: Welcome to CONNECT THE WORLD. I've Ivan Watson filling in for Becky Anderson at CNN Center.

Now we're going to begin this program in Turkey. That's where the President has walked unscathed from the country's elections declaring

victory. Now Recep Tayyip Erdogan tightens his grip on the country looking ahead to five more years in office and unprecedented sweeping new powers.

His privilege challenger, Muharrem Ince, had hoped to stop the President's party from controlling Parliament. But following the result he told

journalists, quote, we're now in a one-man rule. There's no mechanism to prevent arbitrary rule. We continue to have great concerns about this


Our Sam Kiley has more on what this result means for the country.


SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Political ecstasy at the re-election of Turkeys President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In a

moment of glory, his supporters reveling in an outright victory for the man who has led his country for the last 15 years by claiming to have won

almost 53 percent of the vote.

He announced his victory that avoided a Presidential runoff before any official results had been published.

(on camera): After jailing tens of thousands of his political opponents forcing through a change to the Constitution which concentrates power in

the hands of the presidency and stifling the free press. This is what victory looks like to President Erdogan.

(voice-over): Erdogan survived a coup two years ago. His followers hope he'll stay in office long enough to lead the next generation.

RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN, TURKISH PRESIDENT (through translator): Our nation has given me the mandate for the presidency along with the people's

alliance. A great responsibility has been placed on our shoulders by our nation by these results.

KILEY: Some of the President's voters were almost incoherent with joy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (translated text): I'm happy! I'm so happy!

KILEY: A different scene at the headquarters of the opposition's main candidate, Muharrem Ince. Its leadership initially convinced that they had

been robbed of a presidential runoff. But their own camp later confirmed the Erdogan win which was greeted by jubilant crowds in Ankara. And pretty

soon Mr. Ince conceded defeat.

MUHARREM INCE, TURKISH OPPOSITION LEADER (through translator): And in the documents submitted to us by our officials, are different, not different,

not significantly different than those announced by the wire state a supreme electoral council. They are not such that they would change the


KILEY: Close to 60 million Turks were registered to vote. Erdogan said turnout was nearly 90 percent and that his coalition had also won control

of the 600-seat parliament. He now has complete executive control of Turkey, the right to rule by decree and to pick his own cabinet.

ERDOGAN (through translator): Turkey did not only choose one President and 600 MPs, it changed the whole system of government. We will get this

working fast and perfectly.

KILEY: For his opponents, this is a moment of political agony that holds little prospect that Erdogan can heal a nation that remains bitterly



WATSON: OK, now, Sam Kiley now joins me live. Following the developments and fall out on the ground in Istanbul. And CNN emerging markets editor,

John Defterios is watching how the markets are responding from Abu Dhabi. Let's start with you, Sam. You know, Erdogan, this is a strategy he's used

in the past. He appeals to his base, he's been consistently winning around 52 percent of the vote just a little bit more than 50 percent. And that is

a loyal base that's been with him now for like 16 years since he first swept to power. The warning that this will usher in one-man rule, critics

have been arguing that he's already had a system of one-man rule for years now.

KILEY: Well certainly, Ivan, since the referendum passed last year, as you say, by a slim margin, 51 percent which led to the legal entrenchment of a

level of executive power that he had, as you rightly point out, already been wailing. Whether that was to jail tens of thousands of his opponents

accused of being members of the coup plot against him. Whether that's eviscerating his political opponents or even independent people within the

judiciary, the security forces, intelligence services. Most of the organs and the levers of power, he's already accrued to himself.

[11:05:00] Now there could be an argument that says now that he's secure in power, under the law that he now has the executive power that he wanted

under the law perhaps he might be a little bit more liberal. But the problem with that argument is that he hasn't been taught any lessons if you

like by this election. The lesson he's been taught is not had he been forced to a run up that maybe he had overstepped the mark. But rather a

fairly authoritarian approach to the free press, to any kind of political criticism or indeed wider freedoms on social media, for example, actually

works. It delivers political success.

I think that is really what the opposition in the longer term will be worried about on top this under the law, this power that he's now which is

to rule by decree. Really very few checks and balances there to stop him - - Ivan.

WATSON: Yes, and of course, this election was conducted under a state of emergency from that failed coup attempt. All right. Sam Kiley, thanks

very much for that update.

Let's turn now to Abu Dhabi, to John Defterios. Good to see you there, John. You know, Erdogan always ran in the past on the tremendous economic

growth that unfolded during his first decade in power. But that success has been tarnished somewhat, at least over the last year. How are the

markets reacting now to his latest electoral win?

JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNNMONEY EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Clearly, Ivan, this is not the Turkey of his five, six years first in office when it was boom

tonight in Turkey. We had initial very good reaction with the lira rising 3 percent, but that really quickly vanished, the same thing with dollar

denominated bonds. We saw a rally but then again it leveled off here.

He has a very clear mandate though, Ivan, for this term as executive President, if you will. Very high turnout, better than 87 percent, didn't

have to go to a second round. It's what he does with the mandate that has great concern for the investors from the outside looking at Turkey. We're

going to watch his economic appointments very carefully to see if he can bully those to lower interest rates again. As you know, he's pursued

growth at all cost in particular when it comes to inflation which spiked up above 12 percent a month before the polls.

If you look back over the last five-year, inflation was running at above 7 percent which is high, if you put it into the context of four, five, six

percent of growth, is being wiped out by inflation. Spiked above 11 percent in 2017 and is projected to stay above 11 percent again. This is a

market to his credit that grew to $850 billion of GDP. He quadrupled the GDP in the first six, seven years of office.

The real concern now is he's this conspiracy that there is an interest rate lobby in London, in New York, in Asia against Turkey. So, he's

particularly decided to leave interest rates low, let inflation rise and the growth as a result has been hit. And we can't overlook the fact, Ivan,

by any stretch of the imagination after the attempted coup, the thousands who were arrested. He scared off foreign investors, so they like Turkey's

size, it's adjacency to the European Union. They don't like the heavy hand of President Erdogan and they think that it will be even more consolidated

as executive President, if you will.

WATSON: All right, and you'll watch that very closely as this moves forward. I'm going to ask you to pivot now to Turkey's neighbor Iran.

Because we're hearing reports now of the main bizarre in Tehran being closed due to a protest. Can you explain more about that?

DEFTERIOS: Yes, it is the Grand Bazaar, Ivan, in a place I've shot some stories in the past. It's the concentration of power around the bizarre

and particularly with the class of bizaarees or the shopkeepers who have a great deal of political clout particularly with the clerics. That's why we

thought it was worth marking. You're looking at the video here. Thousands took to the streets. In fact, is being signified as the largest protest

since 2012. And we saw a lot of protests over the last few years particularly in the rural areas at the end of 2017.

It's not difficult to see why these shopkeepers in fact took to the streets today. The real is trading about 90,000 to the U.S. dollar. It was

trading at 65,000 before the announcement on May 8 by President Trump to move out of the nuclear agreement.

For a purpose of perspective here, the currency is down 50 percent since the end of 2017. Ivan, it's worth noting back in 2012 to 2016 during the

height of the sanctions, this is an economy that went backwards, it lost 10 percent of its GDP. They had rays of sunlight in 2016 and 2017 and then

the unraveling of the deal right now. And it's reaching a very powerful class of shopkeepers who know that they have clout and signify their hit to

the streets today. It's circulating not only in Iran, but neighboring countries as well.

[11:10:00] WATSON: And they played a pivotal role back in 1979 as well, I believe. John Defterios from Abu Dhabi, thanks so much for bringing us up

to date on these two stories.

And we'll move now to a standoff between European countries over immigration which appears to be deepening as almost 350 migrants remain

stranded on two boats in the Mediterranean. Both have been barred from docking at nearby Italy and Malta, who want other EU countries to take in

the migrants. So, we're going to start our coverage of this with CNN's Melissa Bell in Paris. Live now, good to see you. Let's start with the

ships that are in limbo. I believe this is the second time in a month, Melissa, that a ship operated by a nongovernmental organization has rescued

migrants and then been denied the right to dock in Italy and in Malta. And I guess is becoming a political issue increasingly. You can tell me more

about that?

MELISSA BELL, CNN PARIS CORRESPONDENT: This all began, of course, you'll remember earlier this month when the Aquarius was first prevented from

docking at Italian ports. And this really took the world by surprise. Since those rescue operations that had led to those migrants being rescued

by the boat and the other operations that you've seen in the Mediterranean, had long been coordinated by the Italian maritime rescue agency. What

changed is the coming to power of a coalition that involves both populists, the Five-Star Movement, and the lead party, a right-wing, anti-immigration

party that now holds power within that coalition. And it has lived up to the many pledges that it made on the campaign trail, most spectacularly

possibly by its attitude toward these NGO ships. It had said at a time we simply will not be taking other NGO ships in to Italian ports and it is

sticking to that pledge with these two new ships currently stranded just off the coast. That it become in a sense victims of and symbols for a

European migration policy that is in disarray.


BELL (voice-over): To the Aquarius, the life line. One of two ships carrying almost 350 migrants now stranded at sea as Europe closes its

doors. Sunday night a group European MPs visited the Lifeline where the outlook for the migrants remains bleak.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Nobody cares about these. Nobody helping.

BELL: Over the weekend, Maltese armed forces delivered boxes of supplies, but with weather conditions expected to worsen, the ship's crews say they

only have enough to get either to Malta or Italy, both of which have closed their ports to these ships.

CLAUS-BETER-REISCH, LIFELINE CAPTAIN: The Italians told us the responsibility is on Libyans. And the Libyans if you try to call them,

they don't pick up the phone.

BELL: By Monday, Italy's new hard line interior minister was in Libya thanking authorities there for taking back another group of migrants that

had attempted the crossing.

In all, nearly 1,000 migrants were back in Tripoli Sunday according to Libyan officials. This as a result of the deal that was signed last year

between Rome and Tripoli that led to a 50 percent drop in the numbers of migrants landing on European shores from Libya.

Too little too late for European unity on the matter. The migrant crisis now more than 3 years old has brought to power a hardline coalition in Rome

and led to a more fragile one in Germany, with the German Chancellor now under such pressure to toughen up her position that the meeting of 16 EU

leaders on Sunday was dubbed "the save Merkel summit" by the press.

ANGELA MERKEL, GERMAN CHANCELLOR (through translator): We all agree that we want to reduce illegal migration. That we want to protect our borders

and that we're all responsible for all topics. It cannot be the case that some only deal with primary migration and others only with secondary

migration. Everybody is responsible for everything. Wherever possible, we want European solutions. Where this is not possible, we want to bring

those who are willing together and find a common framework for action.

BELL: But agreement among the 16 won't be enough. On Thursday and Friday, 28 European nations including the four hardline East European who boycotted

Sunday's meeting, will meet in an effort to find unity on the very issue that has for three years now driven them so much further apart.


BELL: Now even as Europe tries to grapple with this issue, with these problems, Ivan, you have to think about the people who are on these ships.

We're talking about Migrants who have risked everything to get this far. We're talking about migrants who have been rescued from death in the

Mediterranean. And amongst them, there will be candidates to asylum in Europe, genuine refugees, who have a right to asylum here in the European

Union -- Ivan.

WATSON: And according to the International Organization for Migration, Melissa, some 785 migrants have died in the first six months of this year

trying to make that perilous crossing. Thank you very much, Melissa Bell live in Paris.

[11:15:00] Now it's not just NGO ships. There's also a cargo ship from the Danish shipping giant, Maersk, that's caught up in the latest drama. That

ship answered a mayday call from an Italian government maritime service and rescued more than 100 migrants. But it's now being denied access to

Italian ports to then drop these people off. My colleague Richard Quest spoke to that company's senior vice President earlier. Take a listen.


PALLE LAURSEN, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, MAERSK LINE: It is so deeply engrained in any seafarer that, you know, whenever they hear about fellow

people, or fellow colleagues being in distress, they will always try to help out best possible. And we are -- we have been in this business for

many, many years. And again, it's so engrained in our DNA that helping out people in distress is an absolute top priority. And we will do that no

matter what.


WATSON: From Europe to the firestorm over immigration here in the U.S. Donald Trump is warning that the United States must protect itself from

invaders. Saying it should end legal proceedings for people who illegally cross the border and immediately deport them instead.

The U.S. President is stepping up attacks on his own judicial system tweeting a short time ago, quote, hiring many thousands of judges and going

through a long and complicated legal process is not the way to go -- will always be dysfunctional. People must simply be stopped at the border.

The President's hardline on immigration has created a firestorm especially since thousands of migrant children remain separated from their parents.

CNN's Abby Phillip has more.


ABBY PHILLIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Protests intensifying as the Trump administration struggles to reunite the thousands

of children still separated from their parents. Democratic lawmakers touring detention centers at the border, blasting the conditions they saw


SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), MASSACHUSETTS: It's a disturbing picture. There are children by themselves. I saw a 6-month-old baby. They are all

lying on the concrete floors in cages. There is just no other way to describe it.

PHILLIP: But despite the public outcry, President Trump ramping up his hardline immigration rhetoric suggesting that those who cross in to the

United States illegally should be sent back immediately without due process or an appearance before a judge. The "New York Times" reports that the

President Trump complained to aides about why he could not just create an overarching executive order to solve the problem. Those aides explained to

him that immigration overhaul is beyond his powers.

TOM BOSSERT, FORMER TRUMP HOMELAND SECURITY ADVISER: The problem with his executive order is, it's in direct contradiction to the standing order and

ruling from the judge.

My guess that stroke of the pen does not survive three weeks before this court overrules it.

PHILLIP: The President blaming Democrats for failing to pass immigration reform legislation last week. And calling his party to focus on

immigration in the fall, not now.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I like the issue for election too. Our issue is strong border, no crime. Their issue is open

borders, let MS-13 all over our country.

PHILLIP: President Trump's comments leaving Republicans confused on how to move forward.

REP. MICHAEL MCCAUL (R), TEXAS: I did talk to the White House yesterday. They say the President still 100 percent behind us.

SEN. JEFF FLAKE (R), ARIZONA: I don't know how in the world we're going to fix this in the short term.

It's really a big mess.

PHILLIP: This as the Department of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services revealed their plan to reunite immigrant families separated at the

border. Children will remain in custody of Health and Human Services based on the results of their parents' immigration proceedings. If the parent is

released, they can apply to be the child's sponsor, a process that could take weeks. If the parent is deported, the child will be reunited before

they leave the country.

But it's still unclear who will link the parents with their children. Backlash over the crisis hitting home as Press Secretary Sarah Sanders was

kicked out of a Virginia restaurant Friday night.

Sanders firing back on Twitter, her actions say far more about her than about me. I always do my best to treat people including those I disagree

with, respectfully and will continue to do so.

The owner of the Red Hen saying, I explained that the restaurant has certain standards that I feel I have to uphold, such as honesty and

compassion and cooperation. I said I'd like to ask you to leave.


WATSON: New protests are getting under way this hour against President Trump's immigration policy. People have been taking to the streets across

the country and I believe those are live pictures there from McAllen, Texas. They're demanding better treatment of asylum seekers and other

migrants detained at the Mexico border.

So, let's get an update now from a detention facility in Los Fresnos, Texas.

[11:20:02] That's where CNN's Polo Sandoval joins me now. Good to see you, Polo. You know, President Trump, he had this tweet where he effectively

argued for the suspension of due process. That came out over the weekend, some of our viewers may have missed it. Let me read that tweet out for


He goes on to say, we cannot allow all of these people to invade our country. When somebody comes in, we must immediately with no judges or

court cases bring them back from where they came. Our system is a mockery to good immigration policy and law and order.

Two big things we're dealing with there. First, he's alleging, claiming that there is an invasion of illegal immigrants. Maybe you can help us out

with the numbers on that. And second, a suspension of due process. What do you think?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely, Ivan, and I can tell you that there are many Democratic lawmakers who have toured facilities

throughout the country particularly here in south Texas. We're only about 88 kilometers from where the pictures are coming out of right now in

McAllen, Texas. But this entire region is continued to be one of the busiest for border patrol when it comes to apprehensions.

This is the region that sees the highest numbers. It is why we are here, while we are trying to, of course, trying to see what's happening behind

these gates. What is considered to be the principal or at least the main family reunification center for the government's efforts to bring the

children and family members back together here.

This has certainly sparked a lot of outrage as you're seeing in some of these pictures right now. People taking to the streets in protest of

President Trump's zero-tolerance policy. And just yesterday I actually -- or 48 hours ago, at this same location where these pictures are coming out

of, we saw, of course, tempers flaring and some tense moments here as several demonstrators tried to block the route of one of these white

immigrant detention buses that are often used to transport detainees from centers to hearings. Of course, that eventually coming to a peaceful end.

But it just goes to show you how tempers certainly are flaring in this part of the country, Ivan. And people certainly want answers and more guidance

on how exactly the government plans to get about 2,000 children back with their families again.

WATSON: And they're still separated I understand guidance has come out from the Department of Homeland Security just trying to set up phone calls,

right, for the separated children with their relatives.

SANDOVAL: Correct. Some of the latest numbers that have come out, Ivan, are that about 538 children have already been reunified with their family

members. Some of those taking place beyond these gates here. So clearly there is some information coming, but it is still very difficult to try to

get our hands on the freshest numbers, the latest information. And more than anything, just answers on how the government plans to reunite these

remaining 2,000 children or so. What they say is, it will take time. They want to make sure that these children are in fact going back with their

parents and not somebody else.

WATSON: It sure looks like these agencies are scrambling to try to come up with a way to implement President Trump's executive order from last week.

Polo Sandoval live from Texas, thanks so much.

Still to come, they're behind the wheel even taking customers on board. But they still can't believe they're actually driving. We'll have more

from Saudi Arabia next.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The nice things about driving is that you can go with your kids and have like memories and like go on road trips. So, it also a

bonding thing for the family.


WATSON: That was Roseanne, a Saudi woman reminding us of the beauty of a daily activity that many of us may take for granted. Driving. Her

comments just hours after a ban on women driving in Saudi Arabia was lifted. While many women around the kingdom like Roseanne are getting

behind the wheel some others are holding off for now. But this change has been a long time coming in Saudi Arabia and CNN's Jomana Karadsheh, she got

in the passenger's seat and went along for this historic ride.


JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Mona Al-Fares has waited her entire life for this moment. And at the stroke of midnight, she was

one of the first women behind the wheel and we got to ride along.

(on camera): So, how does it feel, has it sunk in yet?

MONA AL-FARES, SAUDI MOTORIST: No, I'm having like a weird feeling that someone is going to stop me now, get arrested, you know.

KARADSHEH: Did you ever think this day would come?

MONA AL-FARES: No, never actually, never. It was one of the things that I thought it's impossible. It's never going to happen.

KARADSHEH (voice-over): But many around the country say they are in no rush to get on the road just yet. They want to wait and see how one of the

most conservative societies in the world will react and some just want to practice a bit more before making their way on to territory once reserved

only for men.

It's been a long and rough journey, women who protested and defied the ban over the years were arrested, shunned by society.

(on camera): Some of these women will not have the chance to get behind the wheel yet because they're behind bars, detained recently as part of a

crackdown on human rights activists. Some feel it is perhaps a message that in this kingdom, change will only come from the top down.

(voice-over): Many here credit their young Crown Prince, Mohammad bin Salman, with a wave of once unthinkable changes in the ultraconservative

country and his so-called Vision 2030, am ambitious plan to modernize Saudi Arabia, diversify its economy away from oil. And bring more women into the


SAHAR NASEIF, SAUDI WOMEN'S RIGHTS ACTIVISTS: Oh my God, where am I? Am I still in Jeddah? You know, is Saudi Arabia, what is happening? Because

every time there is something, it hits you. A new decree, something new, something -- and it was like, wow, all these changes all of a sudden.

KARADSHEH: For more than 40 years, Sahar Naseif has campaigned for women's rights in Saudi Arabia. In 2013 she was one of the women who protested the

and by driving. She was briefly detained.

NASEIF: I'm 64 right now. And to be honest, this is not done. I didn't do all this for me. I did it for my kids and grandkids to make sure that

they live in more freedom and they have their rights. I never thought that I would live through it.

KARADSHEH: You'll see, like many others, wants to see an end to the oppressive guardianship law where women no matter how old or how young

can't do some basic things like travel or work without the consent of a male guardian.

NASEIF: And the next step I'm so optimistic is going to be getting rid of the guardianship. Like the driving, I always said the driving is only a

door opening to a lot of other things.

KARADSHEH: For now, though, it is about savoring this moment. Jomana Karadsheh, CNN, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.


WATSON: Congratulations to those women in Saudi Arabia.

Now live from CNN Center, this is CONNECT THE WORLD. And coming up, Prince William continues his tour of the Middle East. We'll tell you where this

is a challenging royal assignment. Stay with CNN.


WATSON: There you have a sampling of the sights and sounds of Jordan greeting Prince William on the second day of his Middle East tour. Earlier

today he met with Syrian refugee children and aid workers and visited some of the countries ancient sites. And now his tour continues to Israel and

the West Bank. CNN's Oren Liebermann tells us his trip will include Jerusalem.


OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): if there's a more sensitive spot on earth, it certainly doesn't have this view. Like so many

visitors to Jerusalem, the Duke of Cambridge will be taken to see this vantage point. But what exactly will he be looking at?

For the British, this is occupied East Jerusalem. They abide by the language of the international consensus. Unlike the Americans who moved

their embassy to Jerusalem last month. The move the British said they would not follow. Israel sees a united Jerusalem as its capital. But to

stick to that language is to angers the Palestinian. To break from it is to anger the Israelis. Prince William will have to balance politics,

diplomacy and royalty during his visit.

DAVID HOROVITZ, EDITOR, TIMES OF ISRAEL: The idea is not to plunge yourself into controversy. And as you say, even the geographic of

essential points on the visit are by themselves controversial.

LIEBERMANN: Members of the royal family have made private visits here, but this is the first ever official royal visit to Israel at the request of the

British government. And that makes Prince William's visit even more sensitive. His every word will be scrutinized.


spiritual visit, educational visit and religious visit, and in between there is a political message. We are here to. Jerusalem cannot be, should

not be closed city exclusive for the Jewish people. It has to be open shared city for the world.

LIEBERMANN: The Duke's itinerary includes stops in Tel Aviv and Jaffa, away from Jerusalem as well as Ramallah in the Palestinian territories.

Balance is the watch word for the British. One part of his visit will be intensely personal. At the church of Mary Magdalene on the Mount of

Olives, Prince William will pay his respect at the grave of Princess Alice, his great-grandmother, buried here in Jerusalem. Maybe the only part of

his visit to the region that's not entirely political.


[11:35:10] WATSON: All right, now to get more on this, we've got two fine correspondents there. Oren Liebermann in Jerusalem and Max Foster who is

traveling with Prince William. And I believe that you are on the tarmac there at Ben-Gurion airport. Good to see both of you there. Let's start

with you, Max. We're hear that Prince wants to avoid politics. How do you do that in Israel and the Palestinian territories where every step is a

potential mine field of political symbolism?

MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: As you say, royals have got to stay above politics, so I don't expect to hear much in terms of words. But a

very carefully orchestrated series of engagements -- as Oren was outlining there is piece -- to show fairness to all sides here. To show sympathy

with all sides here, but not to show any favoritism. So, they worked very closely with the palace, with the British government, but also with the

authorities locally here, to try to be sensitive to the political and religious sensitives here.

Some of the itinerary hasn't been revealed yet, but we know that Prince William wants to highlight some of the causes here that he cares about

without upsetting anyone. So, I think one of the main messages that he wants to get across is that, you know, there's been a lot of attention to

the crises across the Middle East recently, but the Israeli/Palestinian tensions have been on going and he want to highlight that they are still

there. And we need to still think about them. A bit like when he was in Jordon. He was highlighting the issue of refugees. A huge amount of

refugees have been taken into that country. And they've got a lot of concerns about that.

So, it is all about treading carefully and also not making any mistakes. This is the first ever official royal visit to Israel. It has already gone

down in history. Just the images of him coming down the steps is part of royal history. He could cause huge eruptions if he messes this things, he's going to be very, very careful. But he's feeling pretty confident going into this because he's very, very prepared -- Ivan.

WATSON: All right, Max. Well, I'm going to go to Oren now. And we're going to talk about a different personality, that's Jared Kushner, the of

course son-in-law of the American President who is charged with working out a peace deal for Israel and the Palestinians. But I understand he's given

an interview over the weekend with some critical comments about the Palestinian leader, Mahmoud Abbas. Is the son-in-law of the U.S. president

going to get a face-to-face meeting with Abbas?

LIEBERMANN: Well, the son-in-law, that is Jared Kushner, has already left town after a series of meetings throughout the Middle East. You're exactly

right though, he did not meet with the Palestinian Authority President, Mahmoud Abbas, or any other officials from the Palestinian Authority.

Remember the P.A. froze contacts back in December when President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and relations remain

frozen. So, in this interview with the Palestinian daily, Al-Quds, newspaper, Kushner said that the Trump administration remains committed to

a peace process. He says both sides, Israelis and Palestinians, will have to make tough concessions, but in the end, he says both sides will be

better off for having made those concessions.

The part that angered that Palestinian Authority President, Mahmoud Abbas, has the desire or the ability to make the concessions, to make the moves

towards peace. Well, it wasn't Abbas that fired back but others certainly did. PLO Secretary General, Saeb Erekat, very much fired back saying the

Trump administration is trying to topple Palestinian Authority and once again rejecting whatever it is that the U.S. is working on with their

peace proposal. So those relations very much remain frozen here Ivan--.

WATSON: All right, Oren Liebermann, live from Jerusalem. Thanks for that update.

And I'm going to have to shift gears now to take a look at some numbers from Wall Street. U.S. stocks are falling right now on fears of a trade

war with China or Canada and Mexico. So right now, it looks like the Dow is down 1.5 percent. Some 379 points. That is something that we'll both

keep an eye on it. It looks like a tough day for traders at least in the first couple of hours of trading there. We'll keep you updated on that.

Now just ahead, a win for Turkey's President as he's reelected in a pivotal vote. But amid the celebrations are grave concerns. We're back with our

top story next. That's coming up next.


WATSON: Welcome back to the broadcast. A major challenge to Recep Tayyip Erdogan defeated. The Turkish President has emerged victorious from a

high-stakes election granting him another five years ruling the country he has already led for 15. Sunday's result strengthens his grip on power in

Turkey winning him the right among other things to dismiss Parliament members and directly hire or fire other top officials including judges.

Now, Asli Aydintasbas, has spent years as a journalist and is a senior policy fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations focusing on

Turkish foreign policy. She is live for us via Skype from Istanbul. Great to see you, Asli. I guess, you know, in these first hours after election

day, I'm wondering, what kind of message does Erdogan's latest victory say to you about politics and society in Turkey today?

ASLI AYDINTASBAS, TURKISH JOURNALIST (via Skype): has spent years as a journalist and is a senior policy fellow at the European Council Oh, that's

a very tough one, Ivan. Because I think not just in Turkey, but in many other countries including the United States, people are thinking about

implications of a society deeply divided. In this case polarized in part, where one-half thinks the other half is signing on to a deal that is

essentially undemocratic.

I think that's been the story in Turkey all along. Starting with the uprisings and the sort of previous elections, always fought very hard and

emotionally in a very contested manner. Where, you know, we essentially have a frozen picture of society since the referendum. A society divided

nearly in half even though Erdogan won 52 percent of the vote, it was around 51 percent during last year's referendum. And not necessarily

agreeing on the general mandate and the general direction of the country. That's what's troubling.

You may vote or not vote for a candidate, but when you think that they are essentially taking the country in a very wrong direction that is

essentially a recipe for continued tensions in society.

WATSON: Well you know, Erdogan is saying he's won another mandate, this is the people who have spoken. But let's be clear here. This was not an even

contest because President Erdogan has been in power for some time. This was an election conducted under a state of emergency after the failed coup.

There are many, many journalists in jail, journalists who cannot work because they've been viewed as too critical of the government. Perhaps

yourself included in that. And you can tell me more about that if you like. You know, was this entirely fair for the opposition going into this

electoral contest?

AYDINTASBAS: The OSC monitors have just held a press conference. They've been here to observe the elections in Turkey and they talked about the

uneven playing field.

[11:45:00] The truth is I think of course, you know, it is not just media, but the government did have an absolute hegemony and absolute control over

the television networks and does control much of the mainstream media at this point. With the exceptions of a few papers here and there. But other

than that, you have one of the presidential candidates, Selahattin Demirtas, the Kurdish politician, in jail. Trying to run a campaign --

WATSON: Campaigning from behind bars.

AYDINTASBAS: Sending out tweets through his lawyers. And essentially trying to hold a Twitter rally and trying to answer questions. Truly very

difficult. I was in Diyarbakir last weekend and I have to say, there you do understand what the state of emergency feels like because people were

telling me that many mayors and Kurdish politicians in jail. And I think everything that is done in terms of campaigning for the pro-Kurdish party

is much closely watched by security officials.

When I say watched, I mean during the rallies, there were drones flying about and cameras with facial recognition software, so things I had not

seen before that almost feel a bit futuristic and surreal. So that is the climate. And I've given you an extreme example in terms of the Kurdish


But even the main opposition party, the CHP complains that they got no air time and that their messages and rallies were not broadcast. And not to

mention the sort of fake news we had all over the place on both sides, coming from both sides of the aisle. And tensions on the street, even on

election day, I went to my own polling station to witness the counting of the ballots as Turkish politicians do. People really have taken the

matters into their own hands. That is because there is a touch of the mistrust in society. To count the ballots where there were 321 votes,

there was 18 of us in the room including representatives of all political parties. And just citizens thinking their votes might be stolen.

And I came away thinking that this was a very good thing in terms of hands- on democracy, but also how deeply divided and distrusting we are as a society.

WATSON: And that is a situation that's been in place for years and years unfortunately. Asli Aydintasbas live from Istanbul. Thanks very much. I

could go on for hours. But have to move on in the program. Thanks for taking the time to speak with me.


WATSON: We're live from CNN Center, this is CONNECT THE WORLD. And coming up, they've been one of the big surprises of the World Cup. Now host

Russia ends the group stage with their toughest test yet. A live report on all the cup action when we come back.


WATSON: You're watching CNN, and this is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Ivan Watson in for Becky Anderson. Welcome back.

Here we are, we're nearing the end of the first stage of the World Cup. The final group matches, they're underway with the first two of those

wrapping up right about now. But day's end, two teams each from group A and group B will move on to the knockout stage and four teams, they're

going to be making a long trip home.

[11:50:00] We're covering all sides of the World Cup story. Amanda Davis is getting ready for the final games in group B and Fred Pleitgen is

focused on the tournament hosts who were looking to finish group play unbeaten. So, Fred, I believe you're there in the fan zone. And we're

going to talk about Russia's performance, but let's start with this controversy involving Egypt's star, Mo Salah, and a source telling us that

he's threatening to quit the Egyptian National Team. That is big World Cup drama.

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's certainly a big World Cup drama that we saw there, Ivan around the Egyptian

team apparently Mo Salah not happy with the fact that they had -- it's been going on in Chechnya, where all of a sudden, he was declared an honorary

citizen of Chechnya by Ramzan Kadyrov. It was a big public event there.

Now it's interesting because the Egyptian football association is now saying that apparently none of that is true. Mo Salah is very happy with

his position. He wants to stay on the Egyptian national team. The Chechens also coming out, Ivan, as well, and saying none of it is true.

Kadyrov's spokesman, Karimov, well he said that this was all fake news and that this whole event, this whole evening was nice, and Mo Salah was very

happy with the fact that he is now an honorary citizen of Chechnya.

But you're absolutely right, I mean, this is big drama with those sources telling CNN that apparently, he was contemplating quitting that national

team. So certainly, a lot of drama going on around the Egyptian team. Which led to a dramatic play apparently today on the pitch as the Egyptian

play Saudi Arabia. A lot of action going on in that match -- Ivan.

WATSON: And there we hear that term again, fake news coming from the Chechen leadership there when it comes to the unhappiness of an Egyptian

star player there. I'm going to switch over to Amanda now. Can you tell us about today's matches? And Amanda, is there the possibility there could

be an upset when we've got Iran versus Portugal playing? What's happening?

AMANDA DAVIS, CNN WORLD SPORT: Arguably, Ivan, group B there's more to play for today than in group A. Where of course the hosts are playing in

group B. We've three of the four teams still in the hunt. And looking for a place end their knockout round. Iran many people suggested could be the

site to finish bottom of group B. But now heading into the final round of games, actually they are still within a shout of finishing top of the

group. But this is quite a big but. They're up against the European champions Portugal of course complete with Cristiano Ronaldo.

Iran are a traditionally defensive side. They are very, very that ready to beat. But with Cristiano Ronaldo and his moments of individual brilliance,

is certainly going to be tough for them. And we know there is nothing fair in love or football, Ivan. And the Iranian fans overnight posted something

of a social campaign, to all collect outside the Portuguese hotel to try to keep Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo awake overnight. Maybe hoping that if he

didn't get enough sleep, he won't be at full fitness to perform for the game today. Some fantastic pictures of him waving out the window to them

and saying please, please let me sleep.

But Portugal do know that they are pretty much favorites on to head through from that tie. They only need a draw to guarantee their place in the

second round. Spain also know that they only need a draw in their final match. They are up against the Moroccan side who are already out. But

this is a Moroccan side widely regarded as being one of most unlucky in the tournament so far to be heading home at the moment with zero points from

their showing. They're determined that they have incredible support that we have seen out here in Moscow, they're determined that maybe they'll be

heading home with a couple of points as well as a prize.

WATSON: Naughty, naughty Iranian fans, you are not supposed to be doing that. Harassing the players at night, losing good sleep. Amanda Davis,

thanks. Let's go back to Fred, You're in the fan zone there. The Russians have had a good run so far. Are they playing fair, are the fans being fair

right now?

PLEITGEN: The Russian fans absolutely being fair. The Russians fell a little flat today, Ivan, which obviously matters to them, but not as much

as if this would have been a more important match to them. They lost 3-0 against Uruguay. They were a man down until about the end of the first

half, I think it was the 40th minute, when one of their player got a red card. So, the Russians not very happy about losing a match. You can see

some folks behind me leaving. The match actually just ended. However, the mood here in Russia is just still absolutely amazing. Let's listen in into

what some people said despite this match, very happy with the World Cup. Let's listen in.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People around me, they all believe in our team and hope they do their best.

[11:55:01] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But they are satisfied, and we hope that other countries and other fans from other countries are come in Russia now.

And we hope they all thinks now that Russia will be more friendly for all over the world.


PLEITGEN: So, then Russians now looking forward to the next round. It's something big for the Russians actually, Ivan, that neither Russia nor

Soviet Union has gone further than the first round of the World Cup since 1986. So certainly, already very successful tournament for them, but both

for them and the Uruguayan's, the next stage will get a lot more difficult. Because one of them is going to be up most probably -- if things all go

according to the way most people think -- either against Portugal or against Spain, so very tough things ahead for both the sides.

WATSON: Frederik Pleitgen, Amanda Davis, thanks for that World Cup update.

All right, you don't have to jump very far from the World Cup to get to tonight's parting shot. It is the story of a kangaroo that invade a

football match in Australia. It came on the field twice. The second time it hung out by the goal as officials kicked balls at to try to chase it

away. But then a truck was driven out on to the field and chased it away. Final score, truck one, kangaroo zero. I'm Ivan Watson that was CONNECT

THE WORLD. Thanks very much for watching. I'm going to hop out of here.