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Theresa May Under Pressure Over Brexit; Deafening Silence in Gaza's Border; An Adviser That's Always Heard; V.P. Mike Pence Takes on Aung San Suu Kyi. Aired 3-4a ET
Aired November 14, 2018 - 03:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[03:00:00] ANDREW STEVENS, CNN HOST: A big decision ahead for U.K. cabinet ministers. They have to decide whether to support a draft Brexit agreement.
Israel and Hamas step back from the brink agreeing to another ceasefire.
In California, slow progress as fire crews struggle to contain two massive wildfires and the death toll continues to climb.
Hello and welcome to our viewers and joining us from all over the world. I'm Andrew Stevens. You're watching CNN Newsroom.
The British prime minister is laying her leadership on the line. Theresa May is looking for cabinet backing for a draft Brexit deal.
It's been nearly 900 days since Britain voted to leave the European Union. And now, finally, a draft deal has been reached but it's not in the bag just yet. She still got to sell it.
So, Mrs. May is summoning her cabinet to an emergency meeting later this Wednesday.
Let's go to CNN's Nic Robertson he is standing by outside the houses of parliament with the latest. Nica, are you getting a sense of this, we're still a few hours before that meeting, of which way the wind is blowing, is Theresa May going to carry the day?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: We've heard so many times, haven't we, through the Brexit process that Thresa May is about to lose the support of her cabinet, yet each time she manages to squeak through. She was meeting individually with cabinet members last night. Those are the cabinet members who have been most critical of her negotiating position on Brexit so far.
But it does seem overnight as if most M.P.'s that we hear speaking in British media here at least, are sort of keeping their powder dry on which way they will go with this. And part of it is because it is a 500-page document that Theresa May will have been briefing them on last night. It's the same 500-page document that they will have to make a decision on, whether or not to support Theresa May. And the concern is that some of the very important details that have
given them cause for concern until now will remain in that document somewhere sliced up. Fundamental to all of this of course is the backstop agreement with the European Union and this have been giving Theresa May the greatest difficulty.
How she can manage this and how she can manage to get Britain out of this backstop agreement which aims to keep a frictionless border for trade between the Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to the south, what will effectively be Britain's now land border with the European Union after Brexit.
And this has been the key test. And this is likely what many of those cabinet ministers will be looking at. But it is broader than that. She has criticism on both sides that Asia is not being tough enough and on the other side that she has been essentially too weak.
And the criticism at the moment seems to land in the position that Theresa May's agreement will leave the U.K. in some kind of customs arrangement, the whole of the U.K. in the customs arrangement through a transition period.
And the concern of some of her ministers will be that this could just roll on and on and that Britain essentially is in a position of having to accept rules and regulations from the European Union while no longer having a seat at the table through that long transition period, a period where they were hoping that Britain would be free of all of these ties to the European Union and able to cut its own trade deals around the world.
So, she is going to face a very, very tough position from both spectrums of her cabinet here.
STEVENS: Yes. That customs union goes to the very heart of why the Brexiteers wanted to leave the U.K. I want to ask you, Nic, about the timing of this. There's 135 days before Brexit is officially triggered at the end of March. Does the fact that the clock is ticking so loudly now help Theresa May because the alternative, a hard Brexit thrashing out of the E.U. is unacceptable to most members of cabinet.
[03:05:05] ROBERTSON: She is presenting two documents today, that 504-page document plus a full page much loose or more aspirational document which will talk about the future relationship, these 500 pages is essentially the divorce agreement, the four pages will be the future arrangement with the European Union.
And that is, in some ways, what she will be making her pitch on, that this is the place that we're going and this is how things will look in the future.
But there will be a concern that as essentially as the clock is ticking for her, the European Union still holds the whip hand, that there's much from the European Union that Britain wants and therefore Theresa May is in a weak position. That's certainly been the way her critics have been -- have been saying that she's been negotiating essentially, you know, very poorly. So, the fact that the clock is running out on this doesn't really seem
to play to her favorites, running out in many ways there's a hope that once if she gets this pass the cabinet, there would be a meeting with the other heads of state of the European -- E.U.'s of the 27 nations before the end of November. That's the aspiration.
They also have got to take the document to their -- to their heads of state. It's got to be agreed there. Then you have the meeting with the E.U. leaders and then of course, Theresa May has to bring this back, what she's agreed, this legally binding document back to the houses of parliament to get it passed through here.
And the clock ticks there as well because it takes time to put through that kind of legislation. And there's quite a possibility at the moment that the deal as it looks right now and as people are talking about it right now would not get through parliament.
And that of course -- you know, we -- if it fails to get through parliament then you're crashing up very, very close to that exit day to the 29th of March next year. Andrew?
STEVENS: You certainly are. And now less than eight hours before -- excuse me, less than six hours before the cabinet meeting, Theresa May's cabinet meeting takes place in London. Nic, thank you so much. Nic Robertson outside the houses of parliament there.
Now, as Nic said, 135 days left until the Brexit deadline which means the pressure on Theresa May is only growing.
Let's take a quick look at some of the key dates, though, still ahead. December 13th, that is the final scheduled E.U. summit of 2018. On January 21st it will be the take it or leave it vote in the House of Commons. That's critical. Will the British parliament sign off on any sort of Brexit deal?
And of course, March 29th as we said, that's next year, is the deadline, the day the U.K. actually leaves the European Union deal or no.
Remember, though, there is this transition period that does remain in place until the end of 2020.
There are ceasefire deal looks to be holding at the Israel-Gaza border. Israel launched air strikes after Palestinian militants started firing hundreds of rockets on Monday. The rockets continued through Tuesday afternoon but then went quiet.
Palestinian health official say that Israeli strikes killed seven people in Gaza. Israeli authorities report one Palestinian was killed by rocket fire in Israel.
Let's go to Oren Liebermann now, he joins us from Ashkelon in southern Israel for the latest there. It's vastly different picture than it was 24 hours ago, Oren.
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. We're standing on this exact spot, Andrew, that 24 hours ago we saw rocket fire, we saw it intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome aerial defense system. When we heard the red alerts that have been sounding during the previous 24 hours all along the Gaza periphery, warning of incoming mortar, warning of incoming rocket fire.
Andrew, you can see behind me now, it is very much a normal day here around Gaza. People have gone back to work. They're not required to be near shelters. They were notified that they could resume normal daily activities and certainly a sigh of relief in Gaza.
We have a CNN team in there, as well as producers who have that said there was a sigh of relief when that ceasefire was announced. That was right about at 6 p.m. yesterday coming from Gaza, the joint operations room which is sort of a headquarters of militant factions in Gaza, saying that Egypt had brokered a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza putting to an end, the worst, the most volatile, the most violent 24 hours we've seen between Israel and Gaza since the end of the 2014 war.
Israel wouldn't comment on the reports of the ceasefire. And that's not uncommon. All they've said in the past is, simply quiet will be met with quiet. And yet, you look behind me, Andrew, you see that ceasefire put an end to that 24 hours that very volatile period between Israel and Gaza.
STEVENS: So that suggest that quiet will be met with quiet, if hostilities were to resume, they would be triggered by moves from the Gaza side of the border. Because I know there has been -- or there's been reports certainly, Oren that the -- that the Israeli cabinet is not united about this ceasefire.
[03:10:06] LIEBERMANN: So, reports came out shortly after that ceasefire were announced. That there was a unanimous decision within the security cabinet which is a generally secret meeting that the entire security cabinet would support this ceasefire.
Quickly thereafter, both the right-wing education minister and hard line defense minister said we came out against a ceasefire. So that raises the possibility that inside that security cabinet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu simply walked in and said that's it, this is over right now.
And now it's all about domestic Israeli politics. The defense minister has announced that he has a press conference at 1 p.m. this afternoon. It raises the possibility that he may resign in a statement about this ceasefire. In effect that he wanted to deliver a harsher blow to Hamas and because Netanyahu wasn't willing to deliver that, he will resign.
Certainly, that's not 100 percent now, the defense minister has quite a few options. But you see internal rifts within a right-wing government about how to have handled the ceasefire and how to have responded to Hamas. We'll know much more after the defense minister has that 1 p.m. press conference.
But Andrew, right now there are internal politics here about how to come out of the ceasefire and what political moves the politicians here can play.
STEVENS: OK. Oren, thank you for that. Oren Liebermann joining us.
Plus, why Democrats are going to court to keep this man from taking control of the U.S. Department of Justice.
STEVENS: Well, U.S. first ladies don't normally make the rules in their husband's administrations at least not in public, but the White House was quick to respond to Melania Trump's criticism of a high- ranking adviser.
CNN's Jeff Zeleny has the story.
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Another White House drama today, this time featuring first lady Melania Trump calling for the firing of a deputy national security advisor, an extraordinary shot across the bow from the East wing office of the first lady which issued this statement today, indirectly at a top West Wing advisor.
"It is the position of the Office of the First Lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House. "The first lady spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham telling CNN, she is Mira Ricardel, the deputy national security advisor who is tangled with several officials in the Trump White House from Defense Secretary James Mattis to the first lady.
[03:14:54] But today Ricardel was standing only a few feet behind the president at a Diwali lighting ceremony, marking India's most important holiday of the year.
CNN has learned the first lady and Ricardel were at odds during their recent trip to Africa.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MELANIA TRUMP, FIRST LADY OF THE UNITED STATES: I give him my honest advice and honest opinions. Then he does what he wants to do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ZELENY: It was on that trip where Mrs. Trump said she didn't trust all of the president's advisors.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Has he had people that you didn't trust working for him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ZELENY: The latest dysfunction coming as a staff shake-up is already looming in the West Wing and the cabinet. The president ignoring those questions today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you firing Secretary Nielsen?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ZELENY: Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen could be the next to go. Officials telling CNN the president could ask for her resignation at any point.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KIRSTJEN NIELSEN, UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Thank you, sir, for your leadership.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Thank you very much. Great job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ZELENY: She's been unable to win him over on a signature issue, immigration and border security. It could touch off a domino of departures, including White House Chief of Staff John Kelly who is Nielsen's top advocate in the administration.
Trump is already talking to a handful of potential replacements for Kelly, CNN has learned, including elevating Vice President Pence's chief of staff Nick Ayers to the post.
But as Democrats assume their majority in the House and prepare to open an investigation of the administration, it's unclear whether the ongoing turmoil in the West Wing could complicate recruiting qualified candidates. The president has rejected that premise.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
D. TRUMP: This is a hot White House. We are a White House that people want to work with.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ZELENY: So the president saying many people want to work at the White House, that may be true but Republicans here in Washington wonder whether it's a smart idea to come into this administration as the Democrats are about take control of the House of Representatives opening the floodgates of potential investigations.
One thing is clear, more shake-ups on the way, one official said that the only people that seem safe are those who are related here to the president.
Jeff Zeleny, CNN, the White House.
STEVENS: Well, while Melania Trump was lashing out at an aide, President Trump was lashing out at his one-time bestie, the French President Emmanuel Macron. But he did wait until he was at his time zone and more than 6,000 kilometers away to do it.
On Tuesday, Mr. Trump tweeted, quote, "Emmanuel Macron suggests building its own army to protect Europe against the U.S., China and Russia but it was Germany in World Wars I and II. How did that work out for France? They were starting to learn German in Paris before the U.S. came along. Pay for NATO or not."
Well, President Trump also took aim at Emmanuel Macron's low approval ratings and the tariffs on French wine.
CNN's Melissa Bell reports about the reaction from Paris.
MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Several tweets delivered in quick succession, and this on the third anniversary of the 2015 attacks in which 130 people were killed here in Paris.
It is every year a moment of emotion and great surprise also that his tweets should have come just a few days after Emmanuel Macron had hosted the American president. Tweets that were quite personal for some taking on the French president on his popularity ratings which are historically low.
But also, taking on France on the question of its history and American president perhaps digesting the poor headlines of the weekend, missed opportunities and a stinging rebuke delivered by the French president at the Arc de Triomphe on Sunday.
The first time the French president had taken on his American counterpart on more than simply his unilateralist foreign policy, taking him on this time in the heart of his political platform, by talking about nationalism and the fact that according to the French president, it is the opposite of patriotism.
For now, no response from the Elysee but the French president is due to speak on French television tomorrow evening.
Melissa Bell, CNN, Paris.
STEVENS: A U.S. district court judge has scheduled a hearing in coming hours to CNN's lawsuit against Donald Trump. The network is suing the president and several aides to restore the credentials of the senior White House correspondent, Jim Acosta. His press pass was suspended last week.
The White House published a doctored video claiming Acosta put his hands on an intern. Acosta and CNN have been frequent targets of President Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
D. TRUMP: I'll tell you what. CNN should be ashamed of itself having you working for them. You are a rude, terrible person.
I think Jim Acosta is a very unprofessional man. He does this with everybody. Look, I don't think he's a smart person, but he's got a loud voice. [03:19:50] TED BOUTROUS, ATTORNEY FOR CNN: Prior comments that
President Trump has made including in the press conference on November 7th and many before and about CNN are also important parts of our suit because the Supreme Court said many times that courts and government officials, no one in government can discriminate or punish people based on their viewpoints and based on the -- what they're reporting if they're journalists.
That's a core part of the suit. We argue that it's clear the reason that Jim Acosta's press credentials were taken away is because President Trump doesn't like him, he doesn't like what he's reporting. And that's the president's prerogative. But that's what the first amendment protects.
It protects that sort of vigorous reporting that sometimes can be very irritating to government officials but that keeps them honest.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
STEVENS: And from the White House, press secretary there, Sarah Sanders calling CNN and also grandstanding and says the administration will vigorously defend itself.
Senior U.S. Republicans say that they're confident that ethics officials at the Justice Department will clear Matthew Whitaker's appointment as acting attorney general. But with the future of the Russia investigation now in the balance, Democrats are not taking any chances.
CNN's Laura Jarrett reports on their legal challenge.
LAURA JARRETT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Operation gearing up Tuesday for its first legal challenge on the controversial appointment of Matt Whitaker as the acting attorney general.
The State of Maryland arguing in court papers that President Trump bypassed the Constitution when he named Whitaker to replace Sessions, writing that Trump is, quote, "attempting to fill a vacancy he created himself with a temporary appointment that might last for many months or years."
Concerns echoed for days by Democrats on Capitol Hill.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. DENNY HECK, (D) WASHINGTON: I think Matthew Whitaker's appointment was unconstitutional, illegal and just plain wrong. It's unconstitutional because he's not been subjected to the confirmation process.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JARRETT: As part of a lawsuit over the future of Obamacare a federal judge may now decide that Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein is Sessions' rightful successor if Maryland prevails. At the same time, the office of legal counsel at DOJ preparing soon to issue a legal opinion defending Whitaker's appointment under federal law.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RON WYDEN, (D) OREGON: No matter what the Trump Justice Department says, there is no acceptable justification for this appointment.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JARRETT: The chairman of the Senate judiciary committee, Republican Senator Chuck Grassley who like Whitaker is from Iowa tried to dismiss his colleague's concerns about Whitaker shutting down the special counsel's Russia investigation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CHUCK GRASSLEY, (R) IOWA: It doesn't matter what Whitaker thinks. The president said it is going to be done.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JARRETT: While also signaling clear disagreement with Whitaker's views on a famous Supreme Court case that many people view as the cornerstone of the judiciary branch of powers.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GRASSLEY: If you like to have a fellow Iowan tell another Iowan which Mr. Whitaker is, and I know him well, that he ought to forget that. I'm not a lawyer but Marbury versus Madison is the basis of the judicial branch checking the other two branches of government as far as I'm concerned.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
STEVENS: And just to refresh your memory on that Marbury versus Madison is the 1803 case that established the power of the courts to determine whether laws or decisions taken by the president and Congress are constitutional.
Now thanks to CNN's Laura Jarrett for that report.
Now the U.S. vice president is taking Myanmar's de facto leader to task over the Rohingya crisis in her country. Mike Pence raised the issue with Aung Sang Suu Kyi at the ASEAN Summit in Singapore.
Myanmar's neighbors at the summit are likewise calling for accountability in the crisis.
CNN's Matt Rivers is following the story. He joins us from Beijing. And Matt, it was interesting that Mike Pence was speaking directly to Suu Kyi.
MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. You know, in some ways what we heard from the vice president is what we've heard from basically the entire international community at this point chastising Myanmar's government for what happened to the Rohingya people. But most of the international community doesn't get the chance, Andrew, to say it directly to her face.
And the vice president took the opportunity to really call Myanmar's government out on this. Let's play you just some of what was said in that bilateral meeting.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The violence and persecution by military and vigilantes that resulted in driving 700,000 Rohingya into Bangladesh is without excuse. I'm anxious to hear about the progress that you're making holding those accountable who are responsible for the violence that displaced so many hundreds of thousands and create such suffering including the loss of life.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
RIVERS: Now the vice president also brought up the two jailed Reuters journalists in Myanmar. These are two journalists who were sentenced to seven years in prison, really in what again, the entire international community calls a sham trial.
[03:25:01] They were put on trial for allegedly stealing state secrets as the state called it, but really what they did was expose a massacre. They documented through really just comprehensive evidence of massacre that the Myanmar military undertook killing 10 Rohingya men in the village of Indian in Rakhine state where all that violence against the Rohingya happened.
The vice president said that that concerned millions of Americans because Americans believe in a free and open press and journalists should not be jailed for doing their job. So, he really took Aung San Suu Kyi to task there.
She responded with shorter comments of her own, basically saying that she looked forward to explaining her country to Vice President Pence better than her critics could.
So, that's really what happened here, Andrew. But this all comes as tomorrow, apparently, we could see repatriation begin of the Rohingya who were currently in Bangladesh. Myanmar insists that they are going to start taking back a 150 refugees per day over the next two weeks.
Now there's all kinds of confusion as to whether that's actually going to happen, Andrew. And the U.N. is already saying that is a travesty, it should not happen, because these people who had to flee the violence in the first place could be walking right back into it.
STEVENS: Yes, exactly. What a waste when they go back indeed. Matt, thanks very much for that. Matt Rivers joining us live from Beijing.
Now the long-awaited trial for accused drug lord Joaquin El Chapo Guzman is now underway in New York. Very tight security as you can imagine. The man once considered the world's leading drug trafficker pleaded not guilty to gun running, money laundering, and conspiracy to murder.
Guzman says he only played a minor role in Mexico's Sinaloa cartel. In court, his defense team accused the current and former Mexican presidents of receiving millions of dollars in bribes from the Sinaloa cartel. Both men deny that allegation. If convicted Guzman faces a life sentence.
The police shooting of a security guard in Chicago has sparked outrage. A lawyer for the man's family says 26-year-old Jemel Roberson was doing his job when he was killed outside a bar early on Sunday.
A witness says Roberson had caught a shooting suspect and was holding him down with his gun drawn, that's when he was shot by police officer arriving on the scene. Roberson's family has filed a federal lawsuit saying his civil rights were violated.
The Brexit backlash begins Theresa May's agreement with Brussels is facing accusations of betrayal already and she put her political future in the hands of her senior ministers, the meeting taking place in just a few hours from now.
And the pilots say that they weren't warned about potential safety problems with Boeing's newest 737 planes. We've got more in a live report in just a moment.
[03:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDREW STEVENS, CNN NEWSROOM GUEST ANCHOR: You're watching CNN Newsroom. I'm Andrew Stevens. Here are your headlines this hour. The British Prime Minister Theresa May will hold an emergency cabinet meeting on Wednesday trying to win support for a draft Brexit deal between the U.K. and E.U. She needs the backing of her ministers before she can then try and sell the bill to the broader parliament. Brexiteers in Theresa May's own Party say she is surrendering too much to the E.U. and that they will not approve the deal.
Palestinian militants in Gaza have announced a cease-fire with Israel, it ends the era's most severe fighting since 2014. Gaza militants fired hundreds of rockets on Monday after botched Israeli Special Forces operations. The Israeli responded with dozens of air strikes.
Officials found six more victims of the wildfire in Northern California on Tuesday, bringing the death toll there to 48. The so called campfire is the deadliest and most destructive in the state's history. Meanwhile to the south, powerful wind continue to fuel another deadly wildfire near Los Angeles.
Let us return now to the top story, the E.U. and U.K. apparently see eye-to-eye on the draft Brexit deal. But opponents still are not buying it saying it would keep Britain under E.U. control.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JACOB REES-MOGG, HARDLINE BREXITEER AND CONSERVATIVE MP: If what we heard is true, this fails to meet the conservative party's manifesto and it fails to meet many commitments to the Prime Minister makes. It would keep us in the customs union and in the single market. This is a failure of the government's negotiating position. It is a failure to deliver on Brexit and it is potentially dividing up the United Kingdom. It is very hard to see any reason why the cabinet should support this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
STEVENS: Annabelle Dickson is a political correspondent for Politico E.U. and she joins us now live from London. Annabel, thank you so much for joining us here. Quite a lot to get through. Wasn't that long ago, couple of days, Theresa May talked about 95 percent agreement? They obviously reached a deal between the E.U. and the U.K. on the other 5 percent. What do we know about that? Obviously it involves around the Northern Ireland issue and the hard border. What is your understanding of the agreement?
ANNABELLE DICKSON, POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, POLITICO: That is right. So, what they finally agreed is the 500 pages about concrete black and white deals. And the 95 cents included things like the divorce bill, how much the U.K. is going to pay to the E.U. systems. That last sticking point was what happened over in Northern Ireland. Now what they agreed, no one has seen this yet, apart from the cabinet and the negotiators. But the leaks coming out, the U.K. agreed to all U.K. customs plan which suits the -- what the E.U. we're asking before which was a -- a northern Ireland only backstop plan, but -- here's the big but, it is going to have some sort of special arrangements for northern Ireland on things like regulation and goods.
STEVENS: Does that mean that it keep -- this deal would keep the U.K. in the customs zone of the E.U. which plays in the hands of the Brexiteers saying that nothing is different. Not different enough.
DICKSON: Yes. So this is a backstop. So, in an ideal world, and what the U.K. government would argue, this is temporary and ultimately we end up getting a great free-trade agreement, this is what they're saying. So that means we don't have to fall back on the backstop. And we will be able to leave customs union and sign trade deals with the rest of the world.
So this is an E.U. assurance that a hard border is not going to go up between Northern Ireland and the republic of the Ireland, because we'll be able to keep same customs arrangements, but the ultimate aim of the U.K. government is to agree to something with the E.U. in the future that will replace this.
STEVENS: OK. I take it that is not an open-ended backstop. But -- when you ask that, could you also talk about what are the chances then of cabinets signing off on this? Has Theresa May done enough to convince her supporters and her sceptics in cabinet that this is the best plan, the only plan given the critical timing? We got a 130 old days to Brexit.
[03:35:05] DICKSON: Yes. That is actually your key point. We only got 130 days till Brexit which is likely to concentrate. Which I suspect this is why she waited until now to put forth this proposal. So this is a hugely significant cabinet meeting this afternoon. Now sources seem to be saying in London that they think she will get it through her cabinet. The majority sort of key figures in the cabinet will grudgingly accept this. There may be one or two marginal resignations, but smart money seems to be that -- that a majority of her cabinet will fall in line, because as you say, the clock is ticking. And actually they're looking down the barrel of no deal, political crisis and a leadership challenge which the conservative party suddenly don't want right now. Certainly the cabinet don't want right now.
STEVENS: OK. Annabelle, we'll have to leave it there. Thank you so much for joining us. Annabelle Dickson, columnist and political commentator with Politico, E.U.
You know, pilots association is accusing Boeing of withholding critical safety information about the plane involved in the last month's deadly crash in Indonesia. The allied pilots association said Boeing did not inform them about potential hazards of the new flight control feature on the 737 max. That was the plane which crashed, it only inform them a week after the crash. Now Boeing insists the plane is safe. The cause of the crash which killed 199 people remained under investigation. Let us turn now to Ivan Watson, he joins us in Hong Kong with more on this. You've been following this. This is a potentially huge allegation against Boeing that they withheld information, what information specifically are we talking about here, Ivan?
IVAN WATSON, SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT, CNN: This is something that Boeing put basically out last week. It is called a flight crew operations manual bulletin. And it informs pilots that during manual flight, if there's a failure of the center called the angle of attack center that the plane's computer can basically kick in automatically and start to push the plane into a dive. And basically the update to the flight manual informs the pilots how to correct that auto pilot dive. What we're hearing from this allied pilots association which is the main labor union for pilots from American airlines which has a number of Boeing 737 max 8 airplanes, the same kind of plane that crashed on October 29th off the coast of Indonesia, they're saying this information was not in our original flight manual.
This is new information and thus it is important. Now CNN reached out to Lion Air the operator of that doomed flight that crashed with 189 people on board and drew on October 29th. And they tell us this information is not in the flight manual that we got from Boeing. In addition, this was not explained to our pilots, there is no training for this. We have reached out to Boeing and asking Boeing was this included in the original manual or was this some kind of a mission? And their response was to say they're confident in the safety of the 737 max and that safety is a top priority. And going on to say well, we can't discuss specifics of an ongoing investigation, we have provided two updates for our operators around the world that we emphasize existing procedures for these situations. I might add, the real cause of the plane crash has still not been confirmed, Andrew.
STEVENS: Absolutely. As Boeing points out, under this continuing investigation, all sides, all parties are limited in what they could say at this stage. Ivan, I want to move the conversation away from Boeing to Lion Air, because that specific -- that particular plane which crashed had not one, but four previous flights with the same equipment had not been functioning properly. Is that correct? What did Lion Air do about that? Why is the plane flying at all?
WATSON: Yes. We learned in the wake of the crash that the same aircraft's that its angle of attack center was malfunctioning. According to the investigators, four times previous to the October 29th early morning flight. And in fact, the day before, on the eve of the crash, this particular device had been replaced. So, that leads to a question. Could this have contributed to this -- to this terrible disaster that resulted in 189 deaths?
[03:40:06] That has not been confirmed yet, but given the response that we had seen from Boeing, this addendum that they made to their own manual suggest this is something that their examining, some aviation experts that you and I had spoken with have suggested that the aircraft in question should never had been allowed to fly again after having so many proceeding problems including one in which just hours before the doomed flight, the same plane had a very bumpy flight according to a number of passengers on board the plane that we talked to.
So things did not seem to be working well on that flight. And maybe that could have contributed to the fact that -- that the plane crashed at high-speed only 13 minutes after takeoff on the morning of October 29th.
STEVENS: And we should point out here, I guess, Ivan, that the black boxes which could unlock the key to this, of what exactly happened have not yet been located. Ivan thank you so much for that update. Ivan joining us here in Hong Kong.
Now, one man decides that he won't lose his home without a fight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There was times we were laying on the ground pouring the water on ourselves so we wouldn't burn.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Was there ever a point where you thought that you --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. Quite a few.
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STEVENS: Coming up the battle against the wildfires in California.
STEVENS: California's unprecedented wildfires are still growing and so is the toll they're taking. Firefighters have been dealing with gusty winds as they try to contain the so-called Woolsey fire in southern California. That blaze had killed two people and burned more than 388 square kilometers in northern California. The death toll in the campfire has climb to 48. Evacuated residents are still waiting to get back to see what is left of their homes, but one man stayed behind to save his home. Nick Valencia has his story.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everything around us was on fire and we knew it was time.
NICK VALENCIA, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT: While everyone else in paradise was fleeing the fire, Brad Welden decided to stay put at home and fight it himself.
BRAD WELDEN, CALIFORNIA RESIDENCE: For the first few hours.
VALENCIA: You're using this garden hose?
WELDEN: This garden hose. One out there, one on the front, one on the roof and one out by the shop.
VALENCIA: So how much help to you have? I mean you have --
[03:45:00] WELDEN: Me and my 26-year-old helper. My mom's caregiver.
VALENCIA: Inside his 89-year-old mother.
WELDEN: Here we go, Mama.
VALENCIA: She was blind and she didn't want to leave, so the two men went outside to fight the blaze as it close in on them.
WELDEN: There was times we were laying on the ground and pouring water on ourselves so we didn't burn.
VALENCIA: Was there ever a point where you thought that you --
WELDEN: Yes. Quite a few.
VALENCIA: Four hours in battling the blaze, the garden hose runs out of water, so they used his above ground pool.
WELDEN: There time we are running with a 5 gallon buckets. That is even more intense. You are already tired.
VALENCIA: Who are you?
WELDEN: I'm just an old man, just old guy.
VALENCIA: Just an old man that wanted to keep his home from burning up.
VALENCIA: He recorded cell phone video as his home began to burn.
WELDEN: Feel so sad for everyone, everybody I know lost everything. And it is sad.
VALENCIA: The camp fire tearing through northern California is now the most lethal fire in state history. Responsible for more than 40 deaths and now 30 percent contained. Woolsey fire also remains active in southern California destroying 93,000 acres so far. In Butte County alone, more than 1500 welfare checks have been called into officials from residents who cannot find their loved ones. Brad and his friend Nick consider themselves lucky.
WELDEN: We got donations and we got a few loaves of bread.
VALENCIA: Five days after surviving the blaze they say they still have enough supplies to last for a few days. Police had told them, if they leave to get more, they won't be allowed to return.
WELDEN: I'm not asking anybody for a handout, I'm just asking to be able to take care of myself. If they will let me do that, we can live here indefinitely.
VALENCIA: Welden said that there is a lot that he could be discourage about, but instead he is choosing to focus on the positive. He is determine to see paradise rebuilt. And we know that the secretary of interior, thinks he is coming to California to not only meet with those impacted by the fire but also those that are on the frontlines. Welden said he wants to see the President here. He says this is too big of a disaster for President Trump not to show up. Nick Valencia, CNN, Paradise, California.
STEVENS: Let's see what we can expect now in the weather. Meteorologist Pedram Javaheri joins us once again with the latest on conditions in California. Pedram, what is it looking like?
PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN METEOROLOGIST: It is looking like it is going to improve over the next 24 or so hours. Seems the winds calm down, at this hour, less than 10 kilometers per hour. You take a look in the skies. Officials say now over 5 million liters of water have been dropped from the skies and of course about a million liters also of fire retardant dropped down across these region. The concern remains critical to extreme across southern California, another day again of windy weather, and low humidity, and the dry fuel this place, so through Wednesday and we really get the pressure on the upper hand on this at least moving forward for a few days and containment numbers for the camp fire, up to 35 percent and expected date now for full containment set to November 30th. So still about 16 days out while down toward the south, sitting at 40 percent containment and no expected date given for full containment across the region as the weather remains unsettled at this point.
But we go to 55 potentially in some of those favorable areas, up to 80 kilometer per hour winds. Yet again, that is really going to be the most dangerous part of this, what is left of this particular Santa Ana wind event. And you know, as we go to Wednesday afternoon, Wednesday night and into Thursday, the winds really begin dying down rather quickly. Just becoming breezy at times and certainly firefighters can deal with that versus the hurricane force winds that we've had in place. So that is the high pressure that is responsible for the gusty winds in the Santa Ana's, it pulls away, so, we keep it breezy going in on Thursday and Friday, Andrew, and that is again we think you see those numbers bump up to 50, 60, hopefully 70 percent containment going to this weekend across Southern California, Andrew.
STEVENS: Well, let us hope that is what we want to see. Thanks Pedram. Still to come here on the show, Prince Charles marks his 70th birthday as we get a special tour of a home that showcases his passions and a foundation that is for his legacy. Stay with us.
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STEVENS: Welcome back to "Newsroom." Well, Wednesday marks Prince Charles 70th birthday. He will spend at least milestone attending a party honoring 70 inspirational people who are also turning 70 and then he is off to attend a private event for family and friends hosted by his mother. CNN's royal correspondent Max Foster joins us now from London with more details. Max, you have -- you have the great pleasure of talking to the prince and looking at one of his real passions.
MAX FOSTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. They just released a photo as well. We can bring you that, we can show Prince Charles with his family and credit to the photographer to manage to get them all looking at the camera with children involved as well. That is making the rounds today. And of course, this is the part of the royal family that many people are interested in, the dynamics, the celebrity, but actually what Prince Charles is trying to do, he used his 70th year to highlight his public work. Because of that we're invited up to Scotland.
FOSTER: An 18th century stately home set in a vast estate about 30 miles south of Glasgow. Not an official royal residence, but particularly close to the heart of the heir to the British throne. The Prince of Wales is one of the busiest members of the royal family. He has projects ongoing across the U.K. and indeed the world, but to mark his 70th birthday, he is brought up here to Dumfries house. And that is because it encapsulates so many of his passion and his causes. The wider estate is home to many different projects including this science and technology hub for the school groups.
Vocational training for local people is a recurring theme here as is his organic farming and food production, issues that the prince has a long history of promoting. The house itself has fallen into disrepair in 2007 and was about to have its contents sold off at auction when the Prince of Wales stepped in and bought the entire estate, he quickly reopened it as a visitor attraction.
Here in the blue drawing room, we have what is thought to be the most expensive item of furniture in the world. It is not the chandelier. It is this. The lady's Chippendale cabinet and it is thought to be worth $30 million. There are no gates in this state. People wander freely and able to enjoy it without having to pay.
The Prince's Foundation that runs all of the Dumfries house projects is now the second largest employer in the county. From the start, Charles wanted this to be a community project, even going beyond the estate to fund a new town hall and renovate an outdoor pool in a former mining town nearby. As Charles turn 70, he marks 50 years of public works, this is the project that best defines his legacy according to those that work with him closely.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: From young adult there was concerns about social issues and community issues and ecological issues, and all that has happened is that he is got more and more involved. He had the time to do that and develop these ideas and take them further. What I would like to think is that -- and bring it together so many strands in the Prince's Foundation of his charitable initiatives and dedication to charitable work, I like to say, you know, there's a fantastic physical legacy to that work that will always be here.
FOSTER: Each Friday night, Charles sent an update on Dumfries house. In a report stretching to dozens of pages, he writes notes and gets it back to his team here on Saturday morning, I'm told. This is an heir has is not sitting around waiting to be king. He is busier than ever even as he heads to his 70s.
STEVENS: He certainly is busy there, Max, just looking at what he does and he his many interests. I just wonder, though, at 70 years old, does he still -- do you know have a burning ambition to be king?
[03:55:05] FOSTER: What he says or his aides say at least is that he is aware of what coming up and spends a lot of times thinking about it, because it weigh heavily, he is affectively focusing on his career tight now as Prince of Wales. He must transform that position to the past as the throne probably lie low and probably make the most of the spoils of royalty without getting too involved before they step up. He is actually professionalized the role and he wants people to sort of take note of that.
But he does obviously think about the next position. It is sensitive subject, because it is about transition and its effects his mother. He is stepping to a very big shoes with her. What she is done has never gotten involved in politics and never express opinions, we never know what she thinks. Prince Charles has done that. So, he won't be able to move in the position in the same way. He is more divisive figure, but what he does say, is he does sees the two roles very distinct. When he becomes king, he won't be expressing himself and saying the sort of things that he is saying now, but, he feels he has the free rein to do that at the moment, Andrew.
STEVENS: And he is always been something of a -- of a rebel, too strong word, but he is always being ahead of the curve. You think about his environmental concerns. His architectural concerns. Organic farming for example. He has been be a leader in that way, hasn't he?
FOSTER: Yes. And he was talking about climate change in 1970s before it was even a thing. That is why he still talks about it. He is got credibility on that issue as well, but since then, obviously it is not become a mainstream issue, it has become a political issues. There's a big question about whether or not he should continue talking about those sort of things when he is meant to be independent and impartial and will be head of state and only will act on advice of government ministers. He won't be able to say things on his own. You know, he can't express his own thoughts. Because he'll be expressing himself on behalf of the nation. So it is interesting the way he is done it. Big question about whether or not he will have the widespread his appeal his mother has currently in that role.
STEVENS: Anyway, I have to leave it there. Max, thank you very much for that. Max Foster joining us from London. You are watching CNN Newsroom. I'm Andrew Stevens. The news continues on CNN, right after this.
STEVENS: She made a deal on Brexit, now Theresa May must sell it to her own ministers just hours away from a crunch cabinet meeting. We are live from London and Brussels with the latest. After days of intense fighting Israel must agree to a ceasefire.