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HALA GORANI TONIGHT
U.S. Fires Teargas at Migrants Rushing Border; U.S. Condemns the Russian Outlaw Action Against Ukraine In UN Security Council; Trump Threatens to Permanently Close Border Crossing; Theresa May Says No Better Brexit Deal Is Available; UAE Pardons British Academic Charged with Spying. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired November 26, 2018 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[14:00:00] HALA GORANI, CNN HOST: Hello, everyone. Live from CNN London I'm Hala Gorani. Tonight, there is concern around the world as a tense
standoff between Russia and Ukraine shows no sign of stopping. We'll be live in the region. Also. tonight, a rush on the border. Teargas and a
warning from President Trump as tensions rise on the U.S./Mexico border. We are live there. And in this hour, we are expecting a dramatic story,
not on this planet, millions of miles away and NASA's spacecraft is going to try and land on Mars and we'll hopefully bring you that live.
We begin in Ukraine where the military is getting ready to take control of the government after a dramatic standoff with Russia. It's led to global
alarm from the U.N. to NATO. They're all calling for restraint while also calling out Russia. Matthew Chance has the details on exactly what
MATHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (off camera): This is the moment simmering tensions on the high seas burst into outright hostility. Russian patrol boat intercepted a Ukrainian naval
tug ramming it dangerously hard. Audio recordings broadcast on Ukrainian media which CNN can't independently verify, the Ukrainian boat can be heard
protesting. Then, Russian officers order the Ukrainian vessels to surrender or face attack.
UKRAINIAN CREW (translated text): There is no intention to use weapons. There is no military [or armed] aggression.
CHANCE: Then Russian officers order the Ukrainian vessels to surrender or face attack.
RUSSIAN CREW (translated text): Hands up everyone on the vessel, hands up. If you have weapons or hands under your clothes, we will shoot to kill.
CHANCE: The Ukrainian navy says at least six of the sailors were injured when Russia fired on three of its vessels then seized them, an act of
aggression say Ukrainian officials by Moscow.
PETRO POROSHENKO, PRESIDENT, UKRAINE: I addressed the leadership of the Russian federation with a demand of the release of the service men who in
violation of international law brutally detained and whose fate is unknown. We demand they be immediately handed over to the Ukrainian side with the
ships to deescalate the situation in the Azov Sea.
CHANCE: But that situation has been escalating since Russia's President Vladimir Putin opened a controversial bridge earlier this year spanning the
narrow Kerch Strait between Russia and annexed Crimea. All maritime traffic to and from the Azov Sea must pass under it. U.S. officials say
Russia has been harassing international shipping there for months, stopping or delaying vessels heading for Ukrainian ports. Russia said it's reacting
to dangerous naval maneuvers by Ukraine which have now forced it to curb access.
SERGEY LAVROV, FOREIGN MINISTER, RUSSIA (through translator): Maneuvers in the narrow strait naturally creates threats and risks for normal movement
of vessels in these waters.
CHANCE: This is how Russian state television cast the naval clash as a provocation orchestrated by Ukraine and its supporters in the United States
to disrupt a planned meeting between Presidents Trump and Putin at the upcoming G20 summit in Argentina. Ukrainian government said it's imposing
martial law in response to the crisis and amid international condemnation for coming days may yet see this confrontation on the high seas escalate
GORANI: Matthew Chance has the view from Moscow now. Are those Ukrainian crews still held by Russia?
[14:05:00] CHANCE: Yes, they are. There's some confusion about how many it is. It's a couple of dozen. About 24 people is what the Russians say.
The expectation is that they will be appearing in court, perhaps as early as tomorrow, because they're being charged with violating Russian borders
and did expectation is appearing in court on the Crimea peninsula annexed by Russia and Russia controls it to answer those charges, Hala.
GORANI: All right. And Nikki Haley, the outgoing U.S. ambassador to the U.N. U.S. had this to say about the U.S.'s relationship with Russia and the
aftermath of this incident. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NIKKI HALEY, OUTGOING U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED NATIONS: This is no way for a law-abiding civilized nation to act. Impeding Ukraine's lawful
transit through the Kerch Strait is a violation under international law. It is an arrogant act that the international community must condemn and
will never accept. As President Trump said many times, the United States would welcome a normal relationship with Russia. But outlaw actions like
this one continue to make that impossible.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: So, Matthew, how would the Kremlin be reading this statement by Nikki Haley?
CHANCE: Well, imagine they'll be casting it as more of the same. There's all sorts of theories in Russia why this take place and saying it's
instigated by the Russians to shore up the popularity of the Russian President Vladimir Putin. But of course, as I mentioned in that piece,
there are all sorts of theories that it's the Ukrainians to orchestrate this to undermine that meeting between Trump and Vladimir Putin and bolster
the Ukrainian President's precarious political future in his country.
GORANI: Trump and Putin will be meeting in a few days at the g-20 summit so it's interesting. Also, to keep our eye on that. More analysis on this
breaking news story later on in the program. Matthew Chance, thanks very much.
A key border crossing of the U.S. and Mexico was the scene of a mad scramble Sunday. Hundreds of migrants from central America rushed the
border gates. Patrol fired teargas at them. There were kids among the crowd. Mexican police used shields to forcibly push the migrants back.
You can see the images there. If you have been following the news over the weekend, you have seen pictures of mothers holding toddlers. Mexican and
U.S. authorities made dozens of arrests on both sides of the border. The American President Donald Trump says if Mexico does not control the
situation he may close the border crossing permanently claiming without evidence that many of the migrants are criminals and he vowed never to let
them into the United States. We are following all angles of this story.
CNN's Miguel Marquez is in Tijuana near where the border rush happened and CNN's Jeremy Diamond in Washington and starting with Miguel Marquez. What
is the situation now? What exactly happened? Because the President has been tweeting that these are criminals, that they rushed the border, they
had no choice but to use teargas to push them away. What is the reality of what happened?
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: So, he has been talking about this same class of migrants for some weeks now. These were people part of the
caravan of migrants coming up from central America, many, many weeks. There was a protest, demonstration. Most of them are staying in a sports
facility four miles from here. They protested. Marched up to this area here. This is the pedestrian crossing. This is a crossing where thousands
of people cross by foot into the U.S. every day from Tijuana. And once the protest got going they were emboldened and they took -- they went over
police check points, Mexican police check points and then continued on to the border, spreading out along the boarder and trying to push in at
different points of the border and happened in the past. And Border Patrol was able to take action in the form of teargas and pepper balls. Shooting
pepper balls at the protesters.
GORANI: This has happened before, Miguel? This happened before.
[14:10:00] MARQUEZ: Teargas has happened before. Five years ago, they used teargas for a similar situation where they rushed the border. They
closed the vehicle lanes and the pedestrian crossings because they didn't want like hundreds of protesters or migrants running through the vehicles
and the vehicle lanes and going up into the border. That would have been much more difficult to control so they closed all those lanes for several
hours and then kind of because they didn't want like hundreds of protesters or migrants running through the vehicles and the vehicle lanes and going up
into the border. That would have been much more difficult to control so they closed all those lanes for several hours and then kind of got control
of the situation. Made several arrests. Those that are arrested on the U.S. side interestingly will not only stand for their crimes but they will
also be allowed to claim asylum if that's exactly what they're doing so they will have a shot at it. That's what all of these individuals want.
The frustration is that very few of them are getting asylum claims heard because they have to come to a crossing border like this and rare to get
the chance to go up to a U.S. officer making that first asylum claim. Hala?
GORANI: Jeremy Diamond in Washington, the President tweeted that if this continues let's put up the tweet by Donald Trump, that he will close the
border permanently. I want to put the exact wording up here for our viewers. Mexico should move the flag waving migrants many of whom are
stone cold criminals back to their countries. Do it by plane, bus, any way you want. But they're not coming into the USA. Congress fund the wall.
Can a President of the United States unilaterally decide to seal the border with another country?
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we have seen this administration already seal some of those ports of entry between the United States and
Mexico to shut down the entire length of that border would certainly be unprecedented. And certainly, it is something that the President feels he
has the authority to do. Whether he would actually go through, you know, follow through on that, we have heard him threaten this several times in
the past before today. Most recently was when he was making that thanksgiving call to troops serving aboard and compared it to keeping the
asylum seekers out United States and heard the President threaten to close the border over that issue so clearly the President is continuing to see
what kind of ways he can do this and really it is about keeping the focus on the issue. Every time he tweets about this, every time he talks about
it, we go back to the images of individuals trying to get across did border and that, of course, has political implications for the President, as well,
and helping him ramp up the pressure on congress to take action on this issue. We know, though, beyond shutting down the border the President
talked about potentially shutting down the government over this border wall funding so that's something he's continuing to try to get.
GORANI: And Miguel, for our international viewers, is this really a crisis at the border or manufactured? In other words, are these numbers similar
to what we have seen year after year? This is not the first time a caravan of migrants tried to claim asylum at the border. Could you fact check that
MARQUEZ: The difference is -- there have always been thousands of migrants trying to get into the U.S. we have seen these caravans before. The
difference is they're kept in Mexico in sort of this legal limbo, the shade of gray, this -- you know, sort of a no man's land where they don't really
have a true existence. The U.N. Human Rights Committee that all the sort of international aid organizations are here to some degree but not big
enough to actually help them. What is growing is a massive refugee issue. It used to be that the individuals could come through, claim asylum, have
their cases heard and either stay in the U.S. or be deported if they had a criminal record or if they didn't have a legitimate asylum claim. That is
not happening so you have a massive backlog now of people who just have no country sitting in Mexico waiting for their chance to walk up to a U.S.
officer at entrances just like this.
GORANI: Just so I'm clear, so it is not the number of people requesting asylum are making it traveling thousands of miles to the border. It is
that the U.S. is making it harder to claim asylum at legal entry points? Fair to say?
MARQUEZ: Individuals have been lining up here to get a number so that they can get into this entry point to claim asylum. They say that about 100
numbers are called every day. I've spoken to several lawyers and others on the ground saying some days four numbers called. You have thousands of
people waiting for their numbers to be called.
[14:15:00] It will take an eternity for that bottleneck to be resolved and there are just too many people looking to get in with their asylum claims,
wanting the claims heard and the system has just slowed down to an absolute trickle.
GORANI: All right. Thanks very much. Miguel Marquez in Tijuana. Jeremy Diamond in Washington. Thank you.
There's another aspect of the story and one on social media over the week. Look at the video on screen now. These are pictures from inside of Mexico.
Of teargas fired from the U.S. side of the border. But simply the U.S. launched projectiles into Mexico. Teargas. Is it legal to do that? Over
the border into another country. Other than your own. Joining me to talk about this is CNN legal analyst Joey Jackson. I was wondering people said,
look, you have a chemical weapons convention, international law that dictates when you can use gas, teargas in this case, over the border into a
foreign country. Is it legal to do so?
JOEY JACKSON, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Well, it begs the question. And here's what it is. To your point, Hala, 1993 apparently under the chemical
weapons convention, which the United States is a signatory to, we participate in, the interesting issue is that you don't and you cannot and
are not supposed to use teargas during times of war. So, the question it begs is if in times of war it's unacceptable to be used in addition of
chemical agents why would it be acceptable in this instance, particularly when you're dealing with women and you're dealing with children? And the
other issue it raises is teargas has a number of what we call externalities and it means that essentially what happens is you have a target that you're
using it for but it affects people that are not related. So, there's collateral issues.
GORANI: You use teargas to control riots, for instance.
GORANI: In this case with the Border Patrol officers would say is the border was being rushed. We didn't have a choice. This is what they would
JACKSON: This is very true and there are certain, number one, rules of engagements and proportionalities of force and why would you need to resort
to that? The question as to whether it's legal, it has been done before. It was done under Obama apparently. Which the Republicans will be quick to
remind the Democrats about. And as a result of that, the issue is that it's not war. It is a crowd control and it is a riot control measure to
your point but it does beg the question. If at a time of war it can't be used, how can we logically justify it here? Whether or not it is
proportionate to the force being used.
GORANI: What about using it knowing there are children in the crowd? Does that change anything?
JACKSON: Well, it doesn't make certainly, look, there's a saying in law and that's the risk perceived is the duty to find. When you shoot teargas
there's always a risk that you perceive that children are going to be there. And so, while you may not intentionally to my earlier point it's
not hitting the potential target they're external to it. Collateral measures and damage occurs and while it's a lawful measure not a time of
war the issue is it moral, justified, just measure to be used controlling the border? Many would think including me it's not and people are speaking
out against it in the strongest of terms.
GORANI: Lastly, Donald Trump did tweet that, you know, he would close the border permanently if need be. That is not the -- can a President of the
United States unilaterally seal an entire border?
JACKSON: The answer is, yes. It has been done before. President bush did it back during 9/11 when the country was under siege. You might recall.
And then it was done before him by Ronald Reagan in 1985 when a DEA drug enforcement agency was killed in Mexico and there's precedent for it.
Whether it's a temporary measure is one thing which I think the President has the authority to do in protection of the country and long-term closings
of the border I think require congress to be involved. That, of course, is our other branch of government to check the President because as we know
the President is not a king. The President is not someone who unilaterally has the authority to do whatever he wants. But it has to be checked by the
congress but for temporary measure I would say based upon precedent, a President could shut down a border.
GORANI: All right. Of course, the house of representatives at least will be under Democratic control starting in January.
JACKSON: That's right.
[14:20:00] GORANI: Things will change quite a bit there for the President. Joey Jackson, as always, pleasure having you on the program. Thank you so
A deal few in Britain seem to like but the prime minister said there's no going back on the Brexit divorce agreement. We look at her tough road to
get her deal through parliament. It is a tough road.
Plus, a swift reversal of fortune for the British man jailed in the UAE for espionage. Why they freed him less than a week after handing down a life
sentence. We'll be right back. Why they freed him less than a week after handing down a life sentence. We'll be right back.
GORANI: Now to the very and I mean very uphill battle that the prime minister of this country, Theresa May faces to get parliament to approve
the Brexit divorce deal and started the PR appeal in parliament today in earnest telling lawmakers the deal delivers for the U.K. and fulfills the
will of the people.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THERESA MAY, PRIME MINISTER, U.K.: I can say to the house with absolute certainty there is not a better deal available. And my fellow leaders --
my fellow leaders were very clear on that themselves yesterday. Our duty as a parliament over the coming weeks is to examine this deal in detail, to
debate it respectfully, to listen to our constituents and decide what is in our national interest.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: You heard the jeers there. The prime minister basically faces opposition from all sides and united both people that want to remain in the
EU and to exit in disapproval and some people joked is not an easy thing to do to get a country so divided to agree one thing is how much they dislike
the plan by may. Bianca Nobilo at 10 Downing Street. You would be foolish to bet the prime minister gets the deal through. Is there a path to
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You would be foolish to place that bet and the bookmakers notice U.K. think that the prime minister can get the
deal through because she needs about 318 votes to pass this. She only has 315 of her own MPs. We know at least 57 of those MPs have come out on the
record saying that they'll not back this deal. She also relies on the support of the Democratic Unionist Party. Ten of the MPs to govern with
her slender majority, they have said on the record they're not backing this deal. And then we had Jeremy Corbyn the Labour leader confirm on Sunday he
won't be voting with the deal either.
[14:25:00] Not that the prime minister expected him to but the Tory party hoping to mop up a labor MPs who have Leave voting constituents and didn't
sound like it's possible based on the leader said today. Let's take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEREMY CORBYN, LEADER, LABOUR PARTY, U.K.: The prime minister may have achieved agreement across 27 heads of state but she's lost support of the
country. This deal is not a plan for Britain's future. So, for the good of the nation, the house has very little choice but to reject this deal.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NOBILO: Now, Hala, there were members of the prime minister's own party, too,
like Anna Soubry who said to her in the chamber today addressing the House of Commons and the nation in this big PR push to sell her deal that she
flat-out doesn't have the numbers to do this so they asked her what's the plan "b," prime minister. You asked me whether or not there's a chance the
prime minister gets it through and achieve that. Well, according to MPs today, she needs to change the current plan to do so.
GORANI: Right. Well, that's not going to happen. She has the EU on board. They said this is the plan. I guess the question is, if this
doesn't go through and she doesn't have the numbers, what happens to the country? Because then they have no deal. So, does that mean they just
leave the EU without agreement or extend the period, the negotiation period?
NOBILO: Well, if the prime minister fails to get her deal through parliament then we are in completely unchartered territory and all bets are
off really. It is the default option that if no other decision is made then Britain is leaving the EU on the 29th of March 2019. Of course, the
EU don't want a cliff edge no-deal scenario either and there would be an option to extend article 50 with the unanimous support of the EU 27 and the
U.K. and many in the parliament to not want that to happen, as well, because it's a delay of Brexit and the delay of if may's deals fails that's
a vote of no confidence and then a change of leadership and then, Hala, we both know that there could be the option of a second referendum put back on
the table. There's cross party support of that from Labour and Conservatives to MPs coming out again last night really pushing that case.
So, all options would be on the table if the prime minister's deal did fail at the next hurdle.
GORANI: All right. And I believe we mentioned the vote will take place on December 11th. And December 11th is a Tuesday. That's make or break for
Theresa May. We'll see if she gets the deal through parliament.
Let's turn now to a pardon for the British PhD student sentenced to life in prison for spying in the UAE. We interviewed his wife, Daniella, Matthew
Hedges is now free and expected to leave the country soon. His imprisonment threatened to up-end relations with UAE and U.K.
In Abu Dhabi, here is Sam Kiley with the story:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL REPORTER: A moment of relief and release.
JABER AL-LAMKI, NATIONAL MEDIA COUNCIL, UAE: Mr. Hedges will be permitted the leave the country once all the formalities are complete.
KILEY: A Presidential pardon for Matthew Hedges convicted of espionage to mark the United Arab Emirates National Day and an end to the bitter row
with the United Kingdom that soured a close friendship. Mathew Hedges was a spy they say.
AL-LAMKI: Mr. Hedges confessed, he was acting as an agent for a foreign intelligence service. He confirmed that he collected sensitive and
classified information about the UAE. The evidence was documentary and electronic are irrefutable.
KILEY: As part of the Emirati proof that Hedges was indeed a spy, they played journalists some video we aren't allowed to publish. It is
allegedly of his confession. In it, he says he is both an analyst for MI-6 and a field operative. That's an unlikely combination but on top of that,
he also says that he's a captain in MI-6. Mi-6 does not use military ranks. The British deny he was a spy and so does his family and his wife's
delighted that he is freed from a life sentence.
DANIELA TEJADA, WIFE OF MATHEW HEDGES (audio): I'm just so happy and so relieved and really incredulous that this is all happening finally and I
just can't wait to have him back.
KILEY: The U.K. has supported the Emirati participation in Yemen and the fight against al Qaeda there. There economies are deeply interlinked.
[14:30:00] A row between these close allies could have been a strategic setback for both.
JEREMY HUNT, FOREIGN SECRETARY, U.K.: First of all, it is fantastic news for Matthew Hedges and his family and I want to pay tribute to him, his
wife Daniella who really has been incredibly brave. The truth is that we should never have got to here and we are deeply perplexed as to how it
KILEY: The Emirates will see it as a childish response in a week to celebrate independence of Britain. But the Hedges' case has at least
proved that they're just that, independent of Britain. Sam Kiley, CNN, Abu Dhabi.
GORANI: Still to come tonight, a NASA spacecraft trying to slow down from 20,000 kilometers an hour during what some are calling seven minutes of
terror. Hopefully it's one soft landing. By the way, this is a live image coming to us of mission control in Pasadena, California. We'll have more
details on the Mars landing coming up.
And another Facebook controversy. This time here in the U.K. We'll tell you about the files that the tech firm does not want you to see.
GORANI: Let's get back to that ongoing standoff between Ukraine and Russia after Russia seized three Ukrainian navy ships and detained two dozen
sailors on board. They are still detained according to our Matthew Chance who we spoke to at the top of the hour.
In response to the incident, Ukraine's president, Petro Poroshenko, is pushing to temporarily declare martial law. The proposal though still
needs parliamentary approval.
CNN's Moscow bureau chief, Nathan Hodge joins me now. So, Nathan, let's talk a little bit about what Vladimir Putin is thinking a few days before
this big G20 Summit where Donald Trump and Putin will be meeting.
NATHAN HODGE, CNN MOSCOW BUREAU CHIEF: Hala, well, if there's anyone who has the capacity to keep the world guessing, it's Vladimir Putin. And what
the Ukrainians fear and the reason that they say that they're introducing this push for martial law, President Poroshenko of Ukraine, he said that he
fears that Putin plans to go further, that this clash at sea is just the beginning.
It's only one provocation and that they will go further and they say that they have intelligence and that's the reason that they're pushing for
martial law, Hala.
GORANI: Yes. And what is Vladimir Putin's strategy here? As I said, I mean, he's going to the G20 meeting. He'll meet with President Trump. We
heard from Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Look, we'd love to have better relations but they're arrogant and they're acting outside of
international norms. What is his objective here?
HODGE: Well, I think Putin's objective is clearly to speak one on one and keep building on the rapport that he is built with President Donald Trump
because members of Trump's administration have often had very strong words, very strong words condemning the actions of Putin and the Russian
They've been consistent in saying, for instance that Crimea is not part of Russia. The annexation was illegal. Yet Putin has, I think placed a bet
on building a very strong personal relationship with President Trump and I think that's what he's counting on much as we saw at the Helsinki Summit
when Trump, I think defied expectations and had very warm words of praise for President Putin.
GORANI: But he's building that personal relationship. We saw a little bit of a wink, as well, when they crossed paths in Paris, on the 11th of
November. However, sanctions are still in place. Russia technically diplomatically is still very much isolated.
[14:35:16] So by pursuing this strategy, I mean, in the end if the end game for Putin is to get sanctions relief, it's not working.
HODGE: That's right. And it was never clear, for instance, when Putin intervened in Syria, if he was creating just another distraction to divert
from this larger problem that he's had on his hands since 2014, the problem of sanctions and imposed by the west.
But he has, again, he's placed a lot of faith in his ability to build personal relationships with other leaders, to work with them on a bilateral
basis, even when he faces and he's bene ostracized in the past.
You remember at the G20 several years ago, I think it was at the end of 2014 he was essentially shunned and left a summit in Australia, went home
early and look how he's -- how far things have changed today. He's very much the man to talk to. Hala.
GORANI: So, Nathan, we have some breaking news according to Reuters that the Ukrainian parliament has now approved martial law in Ukraine. Not
hugely surprising in the sense that Poroshenko has a majority in parliament. Talk to us about what this means practically.
HODGE: Well, Poroshenko had put out a statement earlier in the day saying that the martial would last 30 days, that it would be primarily aimed to
doing things like step up cybersecurity, stepping up Ukraine's border security, upping the general preparedness of the Ukrainian military for
what Poroshenko was warning was additional action by the Russians.
Now, kind of a wild card in this scenario here is that there are going to be elections early next year, there are scheduled to be elections early
next year in Ukraine. Presidential elections. And there's been a lot of speculation about the timing of this and questions raised about what the
impact of martial law would be on the elections and on campaigning for the election.
GORANI: All right.
HODGE: So we're going to actually have to take a look at the details here of what the actual decree of martial law says and things.
GORANI: All right. Just thank you very much, Nathan Hodge, is our Moscow bureau chief with more analysis and context around this breaking news
As I mentioned, the Ukrainian crews of those seized navy ships are still detained and Reuters is reporting that the Ukrainian parliament has
approved martial law for 30 days. So very much this has a potential to escalate in that part of the world. Just as president Vladimir Putin and
Donald Trump get ready to meet at the G20 Summit in five or six days. We'll keep our eye, of course, on that important developing story.
A quick word on something that's happening in the business world. Just as the holidays approach. A major American carmaker is announcing layoffs of
thousands of employees. General Motors says that it's cutting 15 percent of salaried workers. Fifteen percent. It's a big number and shutting down
five plants across North America.
This is part of the company's plant to reinvent itself for the future. But, of course, very much comes in direct contradiction with what the
president of the United States, Donald Trump, has promised in that part of the country which is to bring manufacturing jobs back. Instead, thousands
are being laid off.
Cristina Alesci is in New York with more. What numbers are we talking about here? How many people are getting laid off?
CRISTINA ALESCI, CNN TELEVISION & DIGITAL CORRESPONDENT: The numbers are in the thousands and I'll come back to that in a second. But this is
certainly a big blow for the president, for President Trump's plan, as you said, to bring manufacturing jobs back to the U.S.
The move to close five plants in North America, four in the U.S., is more evidence of what every auto analyst has been saying for years, that
production of smaller cars will go abroad because that's where the growth and the consumers are. Trump or a Republican policies have done nothing to
change that dynamic fundamentally.
And one of the most striking details about this announcement when you talk about the numbers is that it hits a part of Trump country in Iowa -- in
Ohio, sorry, which could lose 1,600 jobs at the GM Lordstown Assembly plant. Now, we'll see how voters there react.
But across the country average people are going to feel this. In total, about 8,000 jobs are impacted by the end of next year. The company also
made a point that it's not just manufacturing but also the executive ranks that are being reduced.
One of the largest automobile unions here, the United Automobile Workers says the General Motors' decision to shut our production at four plants in
the United States will harm workers and will not go unchallenged.
[14:40:59] Now, it's unclear what action they could take. But in a statement, a union official did say, quote, "This callous decision by GM to
reduce or cease operations in American plants while opening or increasing production in Mexico and China plants for sales to American consumers is,
in its implementation, profoundly damaging to the American workforce."
Look, this restructuring for the company will result in $6 billion of free cash flow. Now, part of that savings is from the cost reductions that we
talked about. But some of the savings is also coming from reduced investment which is also a remarkable part of this announcement. Tax cuts
were supposed to boost investment and now you're seeing a major American company cut investment.
GORANI: All right. Cristina Alesci, thanks very much. We'll see if it has any political impact. These are parts of the country, I some cases,
that did vote for Donald Trump and there are a majority with the promise of manufacturing jobs or the creation of manufacturing jobs. We'll see what
impact that has. Cristina Alesci, thanks very much.
Now, to a showdown between the U.K. parliament and Facebook. It's over internal documents, one that Facebook fought to keep private. But now
British lawmakers have managed to get their hands on. The tech firm has been under pressure over its data policies. You remember the Cambridge
These confidential files outlined a range of accusations including some about Facebook's alleged disregard for user privacy.
Hadas Gold joins me here in the studio. First, Hadas, explain to our viewers what happened over the weekend. Because parliament used a power
that it has to compel the employee of a third party, right, a software company.
HADAS GOLD, CNN INTERNATIONAL MEDIA & BUSINESS REPORTER: Right. I mean, this is --
GORANI: To disclose documents.
GOLD: This is straight out of a movie. What happened is this -- there is this app company called Six4Three that had sued Facebook, has been dealing
legally with them for years. Their CEO happened to be in London in this past week.
And what happened was the chair of the committee that's investigating Facebook here in London, the parliament committee, pretty much allegedly
sent the sergeant and arms of the parliament to go get these documents from this person. That's according to the observer newspaper.
We haven't been able to independently confirm that, but CNN has confirmed that these documents are now in the possession of this U.K. parliamentary
committee and now they're deciding what to do with them. These documents could contain internal communications between Mark Zuckerberg and other
executives. And this app company claims that these documents will shed light on how Facebook really thinks about user privacy, data, how they
think about other apps on their platforms, on their rivals.
Now, I should note that these documents are likely a few years old. So they're not necessarily recent. But Facebook doesn't want these out in
public. These documents are under court seal in California.
GORANI: OK. So we're talking what? E-mail communication here, messages potentially even involving Mark Zuckerberg?
GOLD: Yes. E-mails and also some internal data.
GORANI: Right. That could what? Shed light on whether or not Facebook was aware or even lent its support to the harvesting of data on its
GOLD: That's exactly what we don't know. Could be in the state that this app company claims that these are explosive pieces of information.
GORANI: So why didn't they freely hand the documents over then?
GOLD: That's what we don't know. It's probably because of this court- ordered seal in California and they're pushing sort of international law. Does the court-ordered seal in California apply to the U.K.?
Now, the chair of this committee says, that's not my problem. That's California. We're in the United Kingdom here and also members of -- U.K.
has something special called parliamentary privilege which pretty much protect them from whatever they might want to say while conducting
legislative business and that would potentially protect them from being able to show what's in these documents in a very important hearing that's
actually happening just tomorrow.
GORANI: And, of course, what we care about is whether or not we're going to be able to see. Will they be revealed? Will they be published or
disclosed these documents?
GOLD: We don't know that yet. The committee is discussing that right now. But tomorrow, there's this grand international committee, that's actually
what it's called. Representatives from nine different countries will all be having this big hearing in London tomorrow. Where they will be
questioning among other witnesses a Facebook vice president and that's where we might see some of the information from these documents come to
GORANI: Perhaps embedded in some of the questions, we'll have some information.
GORANI: OK. Well, it's going to be fascinating. And that's -- I'm sure you'll be covering that and we'll talk about that tomorrow.
GOLD: That'll be all day tomorrow.
GORANI: Yes. Good luck with that. Hadas Gold, thank you so much.
And still to come, major aid groups are getting together to issue another dire warning for Yemen. It tells you the world isn't listening. They say
they don't have the means to avert a catastrophe there, but the U.S. does. We'll be right back.
[14:45:46] GORANI: Another urgent plea, this one directed to the United States on the crisis in Yemen. Five of the world's biggest aid agencies
penned a joint statement writing that the U.S. will share in the blame for civilian deaths if it doesn't change course and stop supplying weapons to
The aid group says 14 million people are at risk of starving to death unless the violence ends. Nima Elbagir joins me now to discuss it all.
So, let's talk about this. So we're talking about five aid groups. How do they -- because, you know, the world has not acted. There have been so
many pleas in the past. What do they think will be different this time? What's their strategy?
NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, there is definitely a sense that there is a vulnerability in this moment. That
post-Jamal Khashoggi's killing, post the uproar that finally started kicking in post when the little boys were killed on that bus on August 9th.
There is a sense that there is momentum. And for these U.S. NGOs who are primarily responsible for a lot of the aid that's delivered in Yemen, there
is a feeling that they have to try and capture this moment and it really speaks to how extraordinary a moment it is that you have U.S. NGOs speaking
out against the U.S. president.
I mean, they haven't just said you will be responsible for the famine if you don't act. They have said, the U.S. is responsible to its military and
diplomatic support for Saudi Arabia, prolonging this conflict. So they're also putting at the U.S.'s doorsteps already the deaths that have happened
to this point. That's pretty unprecedented.
GORANI: And, of course, it's not just the presidency of Donald Trump. It's the presidency of Barack Obama before him.
GORANI: U.S. arms. There was a brief moment where some of the precision- guided munitions weren't being sold.
There's a Senate briefing on Yemen, as well. What's the hope there? What could be achieved?
ELBAGIR: This is also pretty extraordinary a measure. This is the War Powers Act, which was brought in essentially to ensure that nothing like
the Vietnam War would happen again.
The last time it was successfully invoked was against Ronald Reagan. And this isn't just the usual suspects. This is being put forth by Bernie
Sanders and Chris Murphy who are, of course, both democratic senators, but it actually is gaining mainstream Republican and Democrat support.
And if they survive this, there is another measure which is co-sponsored by one of President Trump's main allies, Lindsey Graham, a Republican senator,
and that's all before you're going to January where the Democrats take over the House.
After three years of the world ignoring this conflict --
GORANI: What could it lead to? I mean, what would change the situation on --
ELBAGIR: If the Democrats take over the House?
GORANI: No. What could -- what are the efforts here that are being pursued in on Capitol Hill that could change the reality on the ground in
ELBAGIR: Well, first and foremost, they're blocking the arm sale to Saudi Arabia. It's a $2 billion arm sale. And that's really what has gotten
Trump incensed that he believes this is impacting American workers.
What's interesting is that the representatives of the American people feel that they can get away with pushing this, even if it is at the expense of
the American workers, because you have now seen dying and starving Yemeni children in mainstream media organizations in the U.S. and it's clearly
finally having an impact.
GORANI: All right. Nima, thanks very much, as always.
More to come after the break. Seven minutes of hell. That's what scientists are calling the nervous wait while they see if a NASA spacecraft
has landed on Mars.
[14:50:06] We speak to a former astronaut about the bold mission. We'll be right back.
GORANI: Any moment now we are expecting touchdown for a NASA probe on Mars. These are live pictures from mission control. It's called the
InSight Spacecraft. It's expected to land any time. You're looking at an animation now. I'm going to put that up, an animation of how scientists
hope that will go. Let's listen to the conversation from mission control.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The lander will separate from the back shell and begin terminal descent using its 12 descent engines.
Altitude convergence. The radar has locked on the ground.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes!
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Standing by for lander separation.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Carrier interruption on Marco Alpha and Marco Bravo.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lander separation commanded. Altitude 600 meters. Gravity turn. Altitude 400 meters.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're getting there.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Three hundred meters. Two hundred meters. Eighty meters. Sixty meters. Fifty meters. Constant velocity. Thirty-seven
meters. Thirty meters. Twenty meters. Seventeen meters. Standing by for touchdown. Touchdown confirmed (INAUDIBLE) at the Mars.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wow.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That is fantastic.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This never gets old.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, it doesn't, Rob. Control room just erupted.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Fabulous, fabulous.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And the Marco team there.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This team, you did great. Kim Brizer (ph) and the key designers of Lockheed. Sandy Grab (ph). What a great team. This is
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Fantastic news.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I got picture on it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lots of fist bumping going on in there. What a relief.
[14:55:04] We've cut over to the camera over in Times Square. Boy, people are weathering the rain to see this.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They can't believe --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That is so fun --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's do it again.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Let's do it again. Let's do it again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Wow. Well, that was exciting. That was exciting. NASA has landed a probe on Mars. You could hear the applause erupting. People
hugging. Jumping up and down. Losing their headsets.
The probe emerged from what they were calling seven minutes of hell. It was seven minutes of hell, of course, because they didn't know, they had no
communication with the probe during those seven minutes of terror, I should say, is what they were calling it.
Leroy Chiao, former astronaut, can join me now on the line. Leroy, talk to us about why this is significant.
LEROY CHIAO, FORMER ASTRONAUT (through telephone): Well, this is a pretty huge deal. I mean, any time you're landing a spacecraft on Mars, it's
pretty tense because basically, you know, only about 40 percent or so of spacecraft we've sent to Mars have made it. And, you know, you've an eight-
minute delay right now because of the relative positions between Mars and the Earth.
And so, you know, the Mars' atmosphere is tricky because there's enough of an atmosphere that you need a heat shield to dissipate that heat and as you
reduce speed. But the atmosphere is not thick enough for a parachute to slow you down enough to land. So you start out with a parachute in the
But then once you get lower, you've got to use other strategies. And today, we saw basically a propulsive landing using rocket engines to slow
the vehicle down, keep it stable and touch it down. And I think that it's just fantastic.
GORANI: It's great to see these images of celebration from mission control in California just a few moments ago. So, now that the probe is on Mars,
what's the objective of the mission?
CHIAO: So this probe, the InSight probe, is designed to use very advanced instruments to look inside the planet and it has very sensitive
seismometers. It's going to detect Mars' quakes and that's going to give a lot of clues into the inside of the planet. It's also going to measure
temperatures and heat glow and so we hope to learn how Mars formed and a little bit more about how our Earth -- on Earth probably formed, as well.
GORANI: How long does it take to send data back from the probe to Earth?
CHIAO: Well, it depends on the relative distance and that's because of our two different orbits. Generally speaking, Mars is about half, again, as
far from the sun as the Earth. So when the two planets, our two planets are aligned, you've got about a six-minute time delay that is traveling at
speed of light, radio waves take six minutes to go one way.
Right now, we're fairly well aligned. So there's about a little over eight minutes delay. And so that's been interesting. The actual landing
happened eight minutes earlier than the celebration going to took that long for the information to get to Earth.
GORANI: That's what they were calling, the seven minutes of terror where they had a loss of contact. And how long does it take to plan something
like this? I mean, I just love these, you know, positive stories. We cover so much death and devastation in the news every day and it's just
such a joy to see people celebrate something positive and advance in science like this. How long would it have taken them to plan these?
CHIAO: Oh, absolutely. These missions are planned many years in advance. You've to get the idea for the mission accepted. And then proposals put
together. You got to get it through Congress and the administration for funding.
And then once the program is funded, you've got to get your spacecraft built, get a rocket scheduled for it and then you launch it and it's going
to take, in case of Mars, when the planets are lined up, about six or so months -- six to eight months to get there.
CHIAO: So this has been many years in the making.
GORANI: You're saying that the data will be used to determine seismography and how Mars was formed. I mean, what will that -- if you look at other
Mars missions, what have we learned about this planet? Because the big question, of course, is not just how it was formed and what's in it, but
whether maybe billions of years ago, this is a planet that could have supported life. Right?
CHIAO: Oh, absolutely. Yes. The Mars probes evolve in complimentary in what they've done. You know, the Phoenix lander landed near the poles of
Mars and detected water and even observed snowfall.
Other probes have determined that there are large -- the rock formations suggest that lakes and oceans. In fact, you know, billions, maybe four
billion years ago, there were huge oceans on Mars, very different place, had a much thicker atmosphere, had a magnetosphere that would have
protected the surface from the sun's radiation to a large degree, and so, yes, very possible that perhaps billions of years ago, there was some kind
of perhaps microbial life on Mars. So it would be very exciting to discover.
HALA GORANI, ANCHOR, CNN: And I guess, now how often do the people, the scientists and the people who have worked so hard to make this happen, how
often can they check in on what kind of data is being collected by this probe?
CHIAO: Well, the probe will send back the measurements that it takes, it'll receive commands from the Earth. So with that time delay, these are
all very carefully choreographed, and hopefully soon, we'll be receiving some images from Mars and some actual scientific data. And then that will
continue - this probe will continue to operate for - I'm not sure exactly how long, but you can bet it's not going to be just a little while.
They're going to operate it as long as they can.
GORANI: All right, Leroy Chiao, former astronaut, thanks very much for talking us through this breaking news. And NASA probe has landed
successfully on Mars. We spent several kind of nervous minutes there alongside Mission Control hoping it would reemerge and complete its mission
at least in its initial phase to land on Mars and to collect data so we can all learn more about the planet. We're expecting comments, by the way,
from the US President Donald Trump. We'll have that and a lot more on "Quest Means Business" next.