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Macron to Address Nation Amid "Yellow Vest" Protests; Drought Forces Many Migrants to Leave Latin America; Southern U.S. Hit By Dangerous Winter Storm; Audio Recording of Khashoggi Killing. Aired 12-1a ET
Aired December 10, 2018 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CYRIL VANIER, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): The last words of Jamal Khashoggi, the Saudi journalist's dying moments captured on an audio recording and CNN got exclusive access to a transcript of that recording.
High stakes, the French president gets ready to addressed the nation after weeks of protest.
Can Macron find the right words?
Plus the real cost a hamburger. The latest in our CNN special series on climate change.
Thank you for joining us, everyone, I am Cyril Vanier from the CNN Center here in Atlanta.
VANIER: So outrage is growing in the U.S. Congress about the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Both the White House and Riyadh have repeatedly denied that Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman is behind the killing but lawmakers are not buying it.
Senator Marco Rubio is among the latest Republicans to break ranks with the Trump administration. It appears he's backing the CIA's assessment of who is responsible for Khashoggi's murder at the Istanbul consulate in October. Here is what Rubio told CNN's "STATE OF THE UNION" on Sunday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: We don't need you know, direct evidence that he ordered the code red on this thing. The bottom line is that there is no way that 17 people close to him got on a charter plane, flew to a third country, went into a consulate, killed and chopped up a man and flew back and he didn't know about it, much less order it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VANIER: Key U.S. senators were briefed by the CIA on the agency's assessment of Khashoggi's killing. They were horrified and they said so publicly. Now a source has given CNN a briefing on a transcript of an audio recording of Khashoggi's final moments.
CNN's Nic Robertson was provided with details of the transcript reproduced in this report of that audio. It correlates with the CIA finding that the Saudi team sent to Istanbul came with the intent to kill.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: CNN can now reveal Jamal Khashoggi's last words.
"I can't breathe. I can't breathe."
These previously undisclosed details of what happened that afternoon in October come from a source who's been briefed on the investigation. The source has read a full transcript of an audio recording of Khashoggi's horrific final moments.
Within moments of his fateful steps into the consulate, Khashoggi recognizes someone, asks why they are there.
The answer, "You are coming back."
According to CNN sources, the Turkish transcript identifies that person as Maher Abdulaziz Mutreb, former Saudi diplomat and intelligence official working for crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, whom Khashoggi knew.
Khashoggi is clearly alarmed and replies, "You can't do that. People are waiting outside for me."
According to the source, the conversation ends right there. The transcript indicates noises as people set upon Khashoggi.
And very quickly Khashoggi can be heard saying, "I can't breathe."
He repeats it again, "I can't breathe. I can't breathe."
What happens belies initial Saudi claims his death was a grave mistake. A CNN source says it's clear from his reading of the transcript Khashoggi's murder was no botched rendition attempt but the execution of a premeditated plan to murder the journalist. But it is what happens next that is really horrific.
The transcript records many voices and noises, then a scream from Jamal, again, a scream, then gasping. Noises are identified as sawing and cutting.
Then a voice Turkish authorities identify as Dr. Salah Muhammed al- Tubaigy, the head of forensic medicine at Saudi Arabia's interior ministry. He says, "If you don't like the noise, put your earphones in or listen
to music like me."
According to the source, Mutreb, the apparent leader of the team, makes at least three phone calls during the murder to a number Turkish officials identify as being in the Saudi royal court.
Only Mutreb's side of the conversation can be heard, but there is no sense of panic or of an operation gone wrong. Mutreb tells the person in Riyadh --
ROBERTSON (voice-over): -- "Tell yours," that the source takes to mean your boss or your senior, "the thing is done."
CNN reached out to Saudi officials to get a response from those named in this report and were told Saudi security officials have reviewed the transcript and tape and nowhere in them is there any reference or indication of a call being made.
A Saudi source close to the Saudi investigation says both Mutreb and Tubaigy deny making phone calls.
And while the transcript provides no smoking gun directly tying crown prince Mohammed bin Salman to the killing, it seems to echo Senator Lindsey Graham's sentiments after hearing the CIA's assessment of Khashoggi's killing.
"There's not a smoking gun, there's a smoking saw." -- Nic Robertson, CNN, London.
VANIER: And CNN shared our source's detailed description with the office of a senator who was briefed by the CIA last week. And we were told that the CNN report of the transcript was consistent with the briefing that senator received.
VANIER: CNN global affairs analyst Aaron David Miller joins me. He's the vice president and a distinguished scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center.
David, first of all, your reaction on this reporting.
AARON DAVID MILLER, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: I think the transcript seems to bear out the horrific accounts of probably available to Turkish intelligence and by this time to American intelligence that this was a premeditated act of willful murder. It was not a rendition. There was nothing accidental about it.
Jamal Khashoggi went into that consulate and almost immediately was set upon by agents commissioned by the Saudi government to kill him. And the transcript seems to make clear that the process of dismembering his body began almost immediately after he was killed.
And I think this validates, it seems to me -- and it seems to be the most thorough, credible accounting of what transpired in that consulate in the final minutes of Jamal Khashoggi's life.
What the transcript doesn't confirm or validate is with great authority or authenticity is the involvement or at least the order --
MILLER: -- intercept or phone call from Mohammed bin Salman, MBS. But it suggests that I think CIA report I suspect pieces together both in terms of intercept and context the fact that MBS ordered Khashoggi's murder and was informed that it had taken place.
VANIER: Yes, phone calls were being made, according to our reporting now, phone calls were being made from the room where Khashoggi was being murdered at the time that he had been murdered or just after to numbers that correspond to Saudi royal court numbers. We don't know who exactly.
VANIER: But the Trump administration decided a while ago --
VANIER: -- the Trump administration decided a while ago that they were siding with Saudi Arabia on this. They've made it abundantly clear. Essentially they're giving the Saudi leadership a pass on this murder. And it feels like nothing we can learn today or tomorrow will change that.
MILLER: I mean, I think, barring an intercept which substantially confirms, with the crown prince's fingerprints or voice prints on it, that this administration is committed to Saudi Arabia, the linchpin in its so-called Middle East strategy.
It's personalized the diplomacy delegating the president's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who is clearly in charge of it.
VANIER: He was actually advising MBS, according to " The New York Times" reporting.
MILLER: Yes. I mean, this has been a willful effort from the beginning to court Kushner. And it seems to me that, amidst all of the failures of Saudi foreign policy under MBS and during the course of the last two years, the greatest success is what I would call or describe as the bamboozling of the Trump administration.
MBS has convinced the Trump administration that Saudi Arabia is an ally of the United States. It's reliable in terms of oil production, countering Iran, the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. And I think the administration, for a variety of reasons, bought off on this, which I think is a mistake and it's undermining both American interests and values.
And I think the key point here --
MILLER: -- is not just that Jamal Khashoggi's murder is a huge violation of human rights and a horrific killing of a journalist, it's the reality that since the ascension of MBS to the rule of crown prince, the Saudis have also undermined American interests, not just their values; a disastrous war in Yemen, a boycott economic siege of Qatar, which has backfired, repression at home.
And I think, frankly, it's the whole package. And we need to reset and to rethink this relationship and I don't think the administration is interested in doing it. I'm not entirely persuaded yet that Congress will be able, despite the signals it's sending and the prospects of a resolution in the Senate under war powers that could be passed, even just for a couple of weeks, in essence, it will be able to restrain the administration, either.
VANIER: And your assessment is interesting because the administration appears to believe otherwise, that the Saudis are actually key to protecting their interests in their region and beyond.
Aaron David Miller, thank you so much for joining us on the show.
MILLER: Thank you, Cyril.
VANIER: French President Emmanuel Macron is hoping to convince the Yellow Vest movement to work with his government. That's a tall order, as many have called for his resignation. The protesters say the cost of living is too high and that Mr. Macron's government only cares for the rich.
More than 130,000 Yellow Vests held rallies across the country on Saturday. President Macron's challenge now is find a way to defuse this crisis, especially as the anger is squarely direct at him.
CNN's Ben Wedeman is in Paris.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Life in Paris and much of France has gone back to normal on the Champs-Elysees below me. Most of the stores that were boarded up are now back in business.
We have heard from the economy minister, however, who said that these protests, which have been going on since the 17th of November, are a disaster for the French economy in the run-up to Christmas.
Monday, President Emmanuel Macron is expected to meet with union and business leaders, where he's going to listen to their grievances.
Now this protest movement, which began more than a month ago, the one thing that unites them -- because it really does span the political spectrum -- is their demand that the president resign. He's probably not going to respond to that particular demand at the moment.
We also know that the French president is expected sometime within the coming days to address the nation specifically on these issues, perhaps to provide some sort of concessions. But he's not giving anything away on that count.
We also know that, on Friday, French trade unions will be joined by students in a protest that will come a day before what the organizers of these nationwide protests are calling Act Five, the fifth Saturday, during which they will yet again take to the streets of France -- I'm Ben Wedeman, CNN, reporting from Paris.
VANIER: British prime minister Theresa May is warning of grave uncertainty if her Brexit deal doesn't pass in Parliament on Tuesday. And that seems likely, with opposition from Labour, Liberal Democrats, the Scottish National Party and Northern Ireland's Democratic Nationalist Party, not to mention her own Conservative Party.
CNN's Hadas Gold reports.
HADAS GOLD, CNN POLITICS, MEDIA and BUSINESS REPORTER: There's only two days to go until a make-or-break vote in Parliament on Theresa May's Brexit deal. And as it stands, the outlook does not bode well for the prime minister.
Speaking to the mail on Sunday, May sent a warning to members of her own party that voting no on Tuesday could risk the U.K. canceling Brexit and leading to Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn getting his hands on power.
Meanwhile, Central London on Sunday saw dueling protests, one called Brexit Betrayal March with controversial activist Tommy Robinson.
Protesters carried many anti-Theresa May signs and one even carried a noose. A counter-protest also took place called, Unite Against Fascism, and was organized partly by Labour Party officials.
But adding insult to injury for Theresa May were members of the parliamentary committee on exiting the European Union, which published a report over the weekend, slamming May's Brexit deal.
They said that it fails to offer sufficient clarity for certainty for the future of the U.K. and said that the Brexit process will not actually be concluded by March of 2019, the date that the U.K. is officially supposed to leave the European Union. Despite several calls for the vote on Tuesday to be delayed, the Brexit secretary told the BBC on Sunday --
GOLD (voice-over): -- that the vote will go on as planned.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEPHEN BARCLAY, BREXIT SECRETARY, UNITED KINGDOM: The vote is going ahead and that's because it is a good deal, it's the only deal. And it's important that we don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
For the Brexiteers in the party, for people like me, we campaigned in the referendum to take back control of our immigration policy, to have a say on things like not sending the sums of money to the E.U.
And this is a deal that does that but does it in a way that balances the need to protect your rights and to keep the supply of goods flowing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GOLD: If the Brexit secretary sounds like they're desperate, it's because they are. Businesses in the United Kingdom are anxiously awaiting any sort of clarity on what's going to happen next.
And for Theresa May, Tuesday's vote is important for another more personal reason. Should her deal be voted down, it could signal the beginning of the end for her time as prime minister -- Hadas Gold, CNN, London.
VANIER: And we are learning more about the Mueller investigation. What new court filings reveal and if it actually means trouble for the man known as Individual-1. We'll explain.
Plus the world's capital of cattle produces much more than just beef. Ahead, how Texas contributes to the production of greenhouse gases, harmful to our planet. Stay with us.
VANIER: On Wednesday, Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election hits a milestone. President Donald Trump's one-time attorney and so-called fixer, Michael Cohen is due to be sentenced in connection with the Mueller probe and another federal case. Cohen has pled guilty to tax fraud and to charges related to paying
off two women who said they had affairs with Donald Trump before the election.
Court filings say that Cohen paid the women at the direction of Individual-1, seemingly implicating the president. Mr. Trump denies that he directed Cohen to make those payments.
VANIER: Let's bring in Matthew Bevan. He's a reporter on ABC Radio in Australia, host of, "Russia, If You're Listening." It's a brilliant podcast that dissects the Russian investigation.
Matthew, thanks for joining us. So what we just mentioned about Cohen was one of several court filings on Friday both from the Southern District of New York and from the special counsel Robert Mueller. You update your listeners on the twists and turns of the Russian investigation. You always weave it into the bigger picture.
So what's the biggest thing we learned over the past week?
MATTHEW BEVAN, ABC RADIO CORRESPONDENT: I think the biggest things we learned is how much trouble potentially other members of the Trump Organization are in based on what Michael Cohen has told Robert Mueller.
And the reason I say that is, say, you and I, Cyril, were going to commit a crime together or had committed a crime together. I'm not admitting to that, of course. But then subsequently we didn't want to tell anyone about the crime and we wanted to use each other as an alibi. But we couldn't talk to each other.
So what I could potentially do is, once I speak to the police, I could declare publicly what I have told the police and then hope that you will get your story straight when you speak to them.
That seems to be what Michael Cohen's done in this situation. He has spoken to Congress. He has lied to them, which he's now admitted to, and then he's gone and released the statement that he made to Congress, saying, I told Congress that the Trump Tower Moscow deal ended in January 2016.
And what it seems has happened is other people who were tied to that deal have then gone to Congress and sworn under oath that the same deal ended in January 2016.
But we now know that Michael Cohen has admitted to lying about that and has said that the deal continued until June of 2016. And while, you know, it doesn't particularly matter legally, potentially, at this point, as far as we're aware, when that deal ended, it matters if anybody lied about it.
And it seems from our reporting that Donald Trump Jr. may have been one of those people that has followed on with Michael Cohen's lie. And he may be in trouble because he was under oath when he said those -- made those comments to Congress.
VANIER: There's something else that I keep coming back to since I read the court filings, especially the Mueller court filing on Cohen's sentencing. He explains that a Russian individual tried to reach out to Cohen late 2015 and offered "synergy." That's the word that's used, "synergy" with the Trump campaign at a Russian government level.
How do you read that?
Because, to me, synergy, if you translate that into American legal language, wouldn't that be intent to collude?
BEVAN: Certainly sounds that way. I think the biggest thing that this tells us is that there was contact between the Russian government and the Trump Organization in the form of Michael Cohen quite early on in the piece.
We know that during the negotiations over that Trump Tower Moscow project, Michael Cohen and his business partner, Felix Sater, e-mails about getting the Russian government on side with the Trump campaign, which was quite a big deal. And you know, we'll see whether that comes back into it, because it wasn't mentioned in these filings.
But it certainly seems like there was a long period of discussion between Michael Cohen and the Russians that previously he'd lied about and denied and now he's coming clean on. But you're right, it is a big deal and a big development this has now happened.
VANIER: We find out incrementally a little bit more regularly as these court findings came out or as we get information from people who spoken to Mueller and cooperated with him.
Is there -- do you now have a better sense of what the endgame is?
BEVAN: Well, it certainly seems like Robert Mueller is now ready to delve right into the Trump family. That seems to be what the reporting is coming out about that from "The New York Times" today, that Robert Mueller is ready to delve right into the castle and look at Trump Tower and look at the business dealings of the Trump Organization and really find out what everyone knows and whether anyone committed crimes in there.
And it certainly seems like that is the endgame here, that Donald Trump is at some point either going to --
BEVAN: -- have to intervene in the Mueller investigation or accept that they are going to delve right into his own family and his own business.
And it's difficult to see exactly how Donald Trump will respond then. The forum guide indicates that what will probably happen is he will intervene because he will be left with few options whether or not -- whether he will intervene or allow his family to be probed and potentially indicted. VANIER: All right, Matthew Bevan, always a pleasure to talk to you. Thank you.
BEVAN: Good to talk to you, Cyril.
VANIER: It's known as the world capital of beef. But all the meat the state of Texas produces could also be harming the Earth. Ahead, we investigate an overlooked cause of global warming. Stay with us.
Welcome back to the CNN NEWSROOM. I am Cyril Vanier, let's look at our headlines.
1.5 degrees Celsius, if the Earth's average temperature rises any more than that, the results could be disastrous. CNN has been exploring the consequences of actions that contribute to climate change. Our Nick Paton Walsh travelled to Texas, the world's beef capital, to investigate a major, often overlooked, cause of greenhouse gases.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: What do you eat and what does it cost you? The planet, your children's future, how does it affect our struggle to limit global warming to just 1.5 degrees Celsius?
Texas is the beef capital of America, the world. Meat was once a luxury, but now, it's at the core of life, here. It's a tribal symbol. Meet Bevo, the steer, a mascot. The grill out, burger, sausage, steak, ribs, excess is the point.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, beef and climate change, how are they related it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don't be asking me that.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not today, because this is delicious.
WALSH: Beef and dairy agriculture is a key and often overlooked cause of the greenhouse gases. Human kind must rapidly curtail if we want to live like we do now.
This is amphitheatre of teenage dreams glows now, but it's for a generation who may see these excesses, these heights of everything being everywhere and cheap, end in their lifetime. Well, think about it this way, half a pound of beef causes as much greenhouse gas to be emitted as driving 55 of these cars for one mile.
If mankind were on this planet for the length of this football game, it would have this much time left of the game to fix it.
We drive out as the sun rises over beef country. Twelve million cattle in Texas, where the extraordinary toll of something so natural as beef, on the planet, emerges. You have to make drastic changes by 2030 to keep global warming to 1.5 degrees.
If we don't, beef and dairy will cause 10 percent of greenhouse gases. If we do meet other 2030 emissions targets, they'll cause much more, 30 percent. Either way, we must act.
America's hunger has hit an unnatural edge here, radically compressing the cattle's space to roam and time to fatten. The first thing that hits you is just the smell. There's just so many, so tightly packed together. There are 19,000 here, on this feedlot, fed the corn that gives their flesh the fatty taste that we're used to.
And there are nearly 1.5 billion cattle on earth, one for every five people. The United States and world will likely, this year, eat a record amount of beef. We're going the wrong way. But it is the bottom line, livelihoods that understandably matter more, here.
Now, when I said global warming, you said, they say. Do you believe in it or do you think this is all just a --
RAYMOND BUTLER, OWNER, NIXON LIVESTOCK COMMISSION: I don't believe in it.
WALSH: Why not?
BUTLER: I just don't.
BUTLER: I just -- it's hard for me to believe that global warming has something to do with the rainfall.
WALSH: What would it take to change your mind about that?
BUTLER: There would have to be a drastic change in our weather, because I don't feel that our drastic change, yes, we have -- go through some draughts, but that's just a normal period. We go through droughts, we have rainfall. We go through winter.
We don't have -- you know, here, the last couple of years, we haven't had much winter. I mean, it doesn't get that cold down here. In year's past, we used to go months and months of freezing weather, even down here in East Texas, but --
WALSH: So you're saying you are seeing it get warmer down here already, but you want it to get really bad before you believe the scientists. BUTLER: Right.
WALSH: Wherever you roam here, the land is inured to the love of beef. Dusk and the endless acres here, seem haunted by the corn that went before. Nearly 100 million acres of corn are planted, grown, fertilized, processed and transported around America, the biggest producer in the world.
Feeding cattle corn means clearing carbon-absorbing forests for fields, adding to the animal's emissions from burping, farting and manure, that's CO2, but also the more potent Nitrous Oxide in Methane.
[00:35:00] It's not just cattle using up land, pigs, sheep and chickens, all mean animal agriculture takes up as much of the planet, as the United States, most of Europe, China and Australia combined or put another way, the land mass of Africa.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I got the ribs, I got pork loins. I got ribs, I got brisket, I got sausage.
WALSH: So how do we change, or can we? There is hope and it is both distant and tiny.
Enter cultured meat. It's never seen a cow, doesn't-emit any gas and grows in a dish and it's developing fast.
DR. MARK POST, CHIEF SCIENTIST, MOSA MEAT: In 2013, it had -- this would be about $20,000. I mean, two, three years from now, it is $0.25 cents.
WALSH: What does it tastes like?
POST: This tastes like meat.
WALSH: Mosa Meat's Mark Post is getting funding from food giants and even the co-founder of Google. By 2021, he hopes this might be served as a niche alternative and years later, become the mainstream.
The process is natural to a point, giving a single stem cell taken from a cow all the nutrients it needs to divide again and again, but no instruction as with the living cow, to stop. Ten billion cells are formed and woven with these fatty cells for flavor, into one burger, or even a steak, one day.
Are you vegan yourself?
POST: I'm not. I should be, but I'm not.
WALSH: You like meat?
POST: Yes, I do.
WALSH: And is any of this --
POST: It's kind of sinful, I think, but I do. We really -- we really need to do something about this to avert all of the environmental effect of meat production, which is going to increase. In 2050, we will need 70 percent more meat, on this planet, than we currently have.
WALSH: But it can't come soon enough. And however naturally we make beef, we can't change soon enough either. Consider this, it's never going to happen, but if we all went vegan tomorrow, we would cut greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent, a huge change to cure part of the problem. Are we even ready for that or more, to keep existing as we do now?
Nick Paton-Walsh,, CNN, Texas.
VANIER: A spokesman for the U.S. meat industry said they have made changes and they are leading the way in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. They said U.S. meat farming proportionately emitted less gas than other countries, and that a drastic reduction in meat consumption would also impact human health.
In the next part of our 1.5 series, CNN looks at the growing number of so-called climate migrants, people who are forced to leave their home countries when their crops dry up. With severe drought striking parts of Latin America, many are making the journey northward to the United States.
And as CNN's John Sutter found out, they are willing to make that journey more than once.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TEXT: When it rains, the cob grows. And as you can see, because of the drought it doesn't.
JOHN SUTTER, CNN SENIOR INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER: Emilio says he fled to the U.S., three times, with the help of a smuggler. Each time, he was deported back to Honduras.
TEXT: We didn't have much to harvest this year because of the drought. We had very little corn to harvest. We had even fewer beans, very little, because of the drought.
SUTTER: His wife, Nora, says their family would have starved if a relative hadn't sent them help from the states. She wants Emilio to try the dangerous journey again, but they don't have the money.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VANIER: Now, you can watch John Sutter's full report starting Monday, at 11:00 p.m. in London and Tuesday at 7:00 a.m., in Hong Kong. It airs only here on CNN.
Up next, a dangerous winter storm, hitting the southern U.S., disrupting travel and impacting millions of people. Stay with us.
[00:40:00] VANIER: A heavy duty winter storm crippled travel, across several southern U.S. states and millions of people are at risk for more snow and ice. Meteorologist Pedram Javaheri joins us now with the latest, Pedram?
PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN INTERNATIONAL METEOROLOGIST: Yes, Cyril, you know, this actually happening exactly one year after the previous major winter storm across the southern United States, that was last December, the first week of December in 2017, when we had significant snow across the same region.
And once again, watching the pattern play out here with some 18 million people still at risk here for wintery weather, that would persist through at least early into the morning hours of Monday, and eventually begin to taper off as we go in towards the afternoon hours, but still watching some snow showers in place, the system beginning to move away.
In fact, state of emergency in place for the entire state of North Carolina and school cancelled from the Charlotte Metro area points back towards the west, where significant snow came down and speaking of Charlotte, you can see about 1,800 flights that were cancelled across the United States, over a thousand of them originated out of the Charlotte airport.
And Raleigh Durham comes in, close second as well, and some 3,000 flights delayed, in the past 24 hours across the United States as well, almost all of it having to do with what's been happening here and across the eastern and south eastern corner of the U.S.
But notice this, some 70 plus thousand customers in Virginia, without power, almost 150,000 customers in North Carolina without power, and South Carolina also, a significant number of power outages in place there, with all of the heavy wet snow that has brought down the branches, of course, and power lines with it.
But, moving forward, here's what's in store here, the system begins gradually pulling away from the eastern seaboard of the U.S., heavy snow begins to tapers off on Monday afternoon, behind this.
But look at the totals here, a remarkable amount in some of these observation points, 60 centimeters or two feet of snow, came counsel in western areas of North Carolina in to parts Virginia, in fact, working way into Roanoke, into Richmond Virginia, among the highest snow totals ever seen in the month of December, happened this past weekend, across that region.
So, you bet, for some people, it was a big deal across this region and the areas that are reporting the temperatures at this hour, we're talking about temps well below average, near the freezing mark and a few spots, like Memphis, Little Rock sitting at the freezing mark, Charlotte went above the freezing mark and just enough here to melt some of the snow that came down. And over the next couple of days, cold air in place here, as we ran well below average to refreeze this. So we think, at least, on the road side, Cyril, this is going to be a big-time hazard into the next day or so, with refreezing again.
VANIER: Live from the CNN Weather Center, Pedram Javaheri, bringing us the latest update. Thank you, Pedram.
JAVAHERI: Thank you.
VANIER: Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Cyril Vanier. We've got "WORLD SPORT" up next and I'm back at the top of the hour with more.
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