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CONNECT THE WORLD
Netanyahu Appears on Cusp of Historic Fifth Term; EU Leaders in Brussels for Emergency Summit on Brexit; U.K. Prime Minister to Ask for Brexit Delay to June 30; Ehud Olmert, Former Israeli Prime Minister Interviewed About Israeli Elections; Aida Touma-Suleiman, Israeli-Arab Lawmaker, Interviewed on Low Turnout of Arab-Israeli Voters; Protests Reignited by Political Changes in North Africa; Palestinian Rapper Called for Strong Arab Turnout. Aired 11-12p ET
Aired April 10, 2019 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:00] BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST: Well, you can guess where I am just by look at the glistening glow of the fading day twinkling ancient walls
into new life. Yes, we are, of course, connecting your world live from Jerusalem. As disputed, as it is historic. Now, of course, it takes a lot
to register something as historic here after all of that. But Benjamin Netanyahu appears set in the past to button it all up and do just that.
I am Becky Anderson and this is CONNECT THE WORLD. And just so that we are going to do just that, connecting you here and also to the political mess
that is Brexit. Julia is better placed than anyone to tell you about all of that.
JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Thanks for being so polite, Becky. Yes. I'm Julia Chatterley here outside the Houses of
Parliament for you in London. It used to be famous for things like red phone boxes and tea and crumpets, but it seems only known for the total
Brexit meltdown. It's just two days away from that, apparently, because, surprise, surprise, Theresa May is asking for yet another extension.
Becky, what can I tell you? The chaos continues. We shall see.
ANDERSON: Right, well, first, we'll crack on. We'll be back to you for more on that. With almost all the votes accounted in Israel, it appears
Benjamin Netanyahu has won the toughest fight of his political life, overcoming a cloud of corruption scandals to claim victory at the polls.
Now, it's not a done deal, not yet. The Prime Minister's Likud party is essentially tied with the Blue and White party of former army chief, Benny
Gantz. As it now stands, both are projected to win 35 seats in Parliament.
But as we've been reporting, it's all about building coalitions here. And there, Mr. Netanyahu clearly has the upper hand with the help of right-wing
parties, a Likud-led coalition could secure 65 seats, enough to form a government. While the center left block of Benny Gantz lags ten seats
behind. Both Mr. Netanyahu and Benny Gantz are praising the outcome.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER (through translator): I want to clarify that this will be a right-wing government, but I will be the Prime
Minister of all Israeli citizens, Jewish and non-Jewish, left or right, all citizens. And I will take care of all of them.
BENNY GANTZ, LEADER, BLUE AND WHITE PARTY (through translator): This is an historic achievement. Never was such a big party so significant with so
many good people formed in so little time. The people speak to us. The people ask for a different path and we are going to provide it. So there
is a lot of work ahead of me, a lot of work ahead of us. Nothing is over. We are making our moves. Until now, we surprised, wait and see what will
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Both claiming victory then in the wee hours of the morning. But let's get more from CNN's Oren Liebermann. And Oren, we're on the cusp of
a result here, aren't we? And it looks like Benjamin Netanyahu is set to get a fifth term and by mid-July, be Israel's longest-serving Prime
Minister. How did he pull this off?
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, you could look at the election polls, look at the exit polls and say, wow, this was incredibly surprising.
Or you could look around at Israel today. Domestically and in terms of foreign policy and say, look, this should have been obvious. The economy
is humming along, even if the cost of living is a bit high. Security seems to be quite strong, under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, or at least
that's what's he's portrayed.
And then of course, his foreign policy achievements, he is more than happy to put on display, which he did throughout this entire campaign. Whether
it's President Donald Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and moving the Embassy, recognizing Israeli sovereignty in the Golan
Heights or Netanyahu's relationship with the Russian President, Vladimir Putin or the Brazilian President, or India, China, Japan. Netanyahu is
more than happy to take claim for all of this and his constituency, many Israelis are happy to give him that credit.
And from that perspective, it is Netanyahu's golden age and he has secured a victory during a golden age. During a period where he's surrounded by
those who support him, both domestically and internationally. And from there, it looks like this victory perhaps shouldn't have been all that
unexpected, certainly not from his perspective.
[11:05:00] ANDERSON: Prime Minister Netanyahu turning sharply to the right, then, in the days before the election, and does appear that that
strategy, Oren, has paid off. Here are the percentage of votes as things stand. The two parties with the strongest showing behind Likud and Blue
and White, two ultra-orthodox parties, Shas and United Torah Judaism. What does this tell us?
LIEBERMANN: It's an interesting question. Those two parties actually don't have a position on the Israeli Palestinian conflict. They will
simply support Netanyahu, as long as he doesn't do anything in their minds to offend the Sabbath or offend Judaism, he is very careful not to do so.
Yes, of course, Netanyahu made that promise that he would pursue annexation of the settlements and of the isolated settlements, not only the blocks.
There are many who are skeptical about his actual intents there.
In the right-wing coalition that we are looking at, that he's likely to have, there's only one smaller party that really makes this a central
platform, a far-right party with extremist element which is says, yes, we should annex all of the West Bank or at least parts of the West Bank.
But crucially, Netanyahu's Likud party came out so big here and so much bigger than the other parties in his likely coalition that he has all the
leverage here. He'll do what he wants to do, and I think we know at this point, he'll do it with the approval of President Donald Trump in all
ANDERSON: Oren Liebermann for you with some analysis. We'll have to wait and see how this new Israeli government takes shape. A quick look at what
we do know happens next. Israel's President will begin consulting next with the delegations of all parties that won seats in Parliament. Reuven
Rivlin will ask then who should get the chance to try to form a government, that's a coalition government of course. After that, he'll make his
decision and we are expecting he will extend the offer to Benjamin Netanyahu who would then have up to six weeks to finalize a deal.
Well, joining me now, a former Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert. He once served in the same government with Mr. Netanyahu, but I should say
he's no fan of his. Recently he was reported as saying Mr. Netanyahu is like a spoiled egg that pollutes the entire environment, pollutes our
Sir, thank you for joining us. He's not going anywhere. He'll be part of your public life and Israel's public life for some time. In fact, he will,
by July, be the longest-serving Prime Minister ever. Your perception and analysis of how this election is shaping up.
EHUD OLMERT, FORMER ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: Well, certainly, the outcome at the present time is not final. We still have to wait for the last
counting, which will take perhaps a couple of days.
ANDERSON: But it's looking clear. Isn't it?
OLMERT: Yes, the general orientation is quite clear. But the one thing, which is important to just take notice of is that actually, the number of
mandates that are affiliated with what we call the right-wing has not increased, but rather, decreased. In the last Knesset, they have 67 versus
53 of the rest. In this Knesset, they are likely to have 65 against 55. So there was not a sweep to the right. What happened is that within the
right, Netanyahu has been successful in taking -- in attracting the votes that traditionally went to the center parties and he got vote this times.
ANDERSON: Which means what going forward? How has that negotiation do you think behind the scenes gone? And what has he offered? Are we talking
annexation of settlements in the West Banks going forward? That was certainly and election promise that he made in the closing hours.
OLMERT: Yes. First of all, let's not forget, which is not only important, this he is likely to be facing very dramatic charges and legal proceedings,
which are going to impact his entire -- his framework of flexibility and might also cause a serious difficulty for him in taking over for the next
ANDERSON: Let's talk about that. Because "Ha'aretz" newspaper, editor-in- chief, writing today. The new Netanyahu government will have two main goals. Get rid of the indictments looming in the future and annex the
settlements to Israel, in coordination with the Trump administration. These two goals could be summed up as immunity in exchange for sovereignty.
Do you agree?
OLMERT: No. Well, I agree that this is certainly the, probably the purpose of Netanyahu, but I don't think that he will get rid of the charges
and the indictments.
[11:10:00] And I don't think that he will be able to do anything anyway, as far as annexation is concerned. This will be a terrible move that may
jeopardize the national security of the state of Israel and it is something that will be opposed dramatically. Not just in Israel, but of course, the
world. And I don't think that Bibi Netanyahu will have the power to do it. So I am not sharing the perception that life is going to be simple for him,
and because only the forces that support him are all right-wing, I mean, heavily right-wing, he is going to be facing a very difficult process of
negotiation to establish his government.
ANDERSON: You stood down as Prime Minister to fight a string of bribery charges yourself. You were convicted and spent 16 months in prison.
OLMERT: I spent half of it.
ANDERSON: Right, OK. You were convicted for 16 months, at least. And you spent half of those inside.
You have said of Netanyahu's current charges that whatever he is suspected of is much bigger, much wider, and much more devastating than anything that
you were accused of. Some people will say --
OLMERT: Just for the record, just for the record, OK. I never admitted and I think it was a terrible mistake because of all kinds of
circumstances, but it doesn't matter now. What I was indicted for had nothing to do with the times that I was Prime Minister. There are old
stories, historical stories from years back.
Everything that Netanyahu is indicted for and is charged with took place while he is Prime Minister. And he deals with some very, very important
matters that are related to national security. But I don't want to pass any judgment. I don't want to discuss it. It will be probably tried in
court. And he will have his day in court. And he will have to defend himself.
ANDERSON: He's denied these charges.
OLMERT: And he will not be able -- of course he denies it.
ANDERSON: Let's make it clear.
OLMERT: Yes, yes.
ANDERSON: The Attorney General has paved the way for these indictment charges pend hearings, of course.
OLMERT: Pending a hearing.
OLMERT: But it's -- take my word that he is going to have to face these charges. And he will have his day in court. And of course, he will try to
defend himself, because he denies it. But that will occupy him dramatically, number one. Number two, that make him vulnerable,
politically, to all the parties that are supposed to be partners to his coalition.
ANDERSON: Let me finish with an issue that many people have discussed during this campaign. There were a series of what many called election
gifts from President Trump to Mr. Netanyahu during the campaign. Hosting Mr. Trump in -- hosting Netanyahu in Washington, recognizing Israeli
sovereignty over the Golan Heights, and on election eve, designating Iran's Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization. Has the U.S. President
effectively put his thumb on the scale of this election, sir?
OLMERT: Well, let's put it this way. From the point of view of the President, he certainly thinks that he wanted to help Netanyahu, which is
on the one hand, quite unusual. On the other hand, as Israelis, you know, the fact that the President wants to help Israel, why not. But I think
President Trump is a genius in marketing, a genius in marketing. Because he appears to have supported on matters which are entirely unimportant.
And I think this is a genius. You know, to recognize the annexation of the Golan Heights that took place 38 years ago, that doesn't make any
difference in any aspect of our lives.
ANDERSON: Aside from making Mr. Netanyahu looking like an incredible --
OLMERT: Yes, I mean, OK, so I say, this is great marketing. But if you ask whether this has made any dramatic impact on the life of Israel or has
influenced the national interests of the state of Israel, that's something else. That doesn't mean that Trump is not a friend of Israel. It just
means he's a great in marketing something which is not really very, very significant.
ANDERSON: I'm going to leave it there. Sir, it's a pleasure having you on. Thank you very much, indeed. Your analysis, incredibly important to
us on what is an historic time here in Israel.
CNN's Israeli election coverage continues. Today's vote saw a record turnout among Arabs in Israel. We'll discuss what's behind such record low
numbers, a record low turnout. What's behind those low numbers, coming up.
[11:15:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm devastated. Absolutely devastated. We're surrounded by right-wing radical people, who want to annex more
territories. In this part, we're never going to have peace. I'm terribly upset, terribly saddened, and it's the shock of my life. I was sure that
this time, we would win. Terrible.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm really very happy about it. I'm very pleased about it, because I think that Netanyahu is a great leader. Israel is a strong
country. It's a wealthy country and I think it will be better now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well I've brought my team out here to Jerusalem to get you the inside track on everything connected to the vote that happened here a few
brief hours ago. Benjamin Netanyahu looks set to win a fifth term as Israel's prime minister with 97 percent of the votes counted. Mr.
Netanyahu and his right-wing allies seem to be in line for about 65 seats in the 120-seat Israeli Knesset.
Israel's President will probably wait until next week to ask Mr. Netanyahu to form a new government. So a big day here in Israel. And another
crucial 24 hours in the Brexit process. CNN's Julia Chatterley outside the British Parliaments in London for you -- Julia.
CHATTERLEY: Thank you very much, Becky. Camped out, I think is the appropriate phrase. Theresa May's case for being the busiest world leader
gets stronger by the day, even if her position does not. And the next few days are big ones in the Brexit saga. The U.K. Prime Minister is in
Brussels seeking yet another extension to Brexit, to avoid crashing out of the EU on Friday, the most recently extended deadline. This time, she will
be requesting an extension to June 30th. And one needs the approval of every single European leader to get it.
European Council President, Donald Tusk, is set to propose a flexible extension -- flex-tension -- for up to a year. But French President
Emmanuel Macron is being far from flexible. He wants any extension to come with limits on Britain's influence within the EU, while others seem
inclined to go along with that, with what Mrs. May is asking for.
[11:20:00] Listen in.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEF BLOK, DUTCH FOREIGN MINISTER: It's in the Dutch interests to avoid a hard Brexit. And if we need more time, but we need it. To avoid a hard
Brexit, we should allow for more time.
AMELIE DE MONTCHALIN, FRENCH MINISTER FOR EUROPEAN AFFAIRS: We want to understand what the U.K. needs this extension for. And what is the
political surroundings around Theresa May to have this extension. And then comes the question of the conditions of what role you want the U.K. to play
during this extension time. How does it want to decide, and what -- on what type of decisions he wants to play a role?
SIMON COVENEY, IRISH FOREIGN MINISTER: I think that the EU leaders this week are open to an extension, but they certainly want to see a plan to go
with that extension.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHATTERLEY: Complicated. I think that's the word for it. In a few moments we'll hear from our Bianca Nobilo. But first, Erin McLaughlin has
the latest, of course, from Brussels. And Erin, we know Theresa May is now in there, lots of talks. But she was strident going into that saying,
look, we're still standing by that June 30th extension date. The problem is, no one seemingly wants to have a short extension, given the fact they
can't see a deal coming anytime soon. So what are we looking here at in terms of length of extension and conditions?
ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I think what's interesting when Theresa May arrived here at the summit, Julia, she was pressed by reporters
not once, but twice about what her response would be if the EU ultimately, at the end of this summit, offers her a long extension. And both times,
she declined to answer, deflecting in a way. And that really is one of the many questions kind of hanging over this extraordinary Brexit summit, at
A long flex-tension I'm told, is the direction of travel by diplomats and EU officials I've been speaking to today, but it's not a foregone
conclusion. I was told by one diplomat, don't take it for granted. When the 27 leaders gather around that table, they'll be discussing both short
extension and long extension and the consequences for each prior to taking their decision.
What Theresa May has to say to the leaders will also be critical. They'll be listening to what she has to say in terms of the current negotiations
ongoing there, with the Labour opposition in the U.K., as well as any sort of plan, concrete details she might be able to give going forward, her case
for the extension to June 30th. They'll be listening to all of that before taking the final decision.
We do expect Theresa May to stay here at the council throughout this summit, because at the end of the summit, she's going to have to say yes or
no to what the EU offers and deal with the political ramification back in the U.K. when she leaves.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, make your mind up time there. Bianca, I would have to say that Theresa May knows she's not going to get a June 30th extension,
but she can't go there and seemingly lie down and say, fine, tell me how long you're going to give me here. She has to show some fight here. The
problem is, of course, she reiterated and refused to answer there what would happen if they did offer her June the 30th here. How does she handle
this? No choice or some choice?
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well optics are obviously key here, but it's become apparent increasingly throughout these negotiations, but in
particular since the Brexit deadline was passed on the 29th of March that the power is obviously all in the EU's hands. Theresa May knows that the
will in Parliament is against a no-deal. Chancellor Phillip Hammond even indicated that he thought MPs would force the government to revoke Article
50 instead of face a no-deal on Friday. So she doesn't even have that leverage. After all, Brexiteers might say, is still in British law that
we're leaving on Friday. But Parliament makes the law and this is a minority government that wants to largely remain in certainly not leave
without a deal. So she really doesn't have very much leverage here entering into these discussions.
CHATTERLEY: Nor does she have a deal it seems yet.
NOBILO: No. So, discussion has been focused around whether or not the Prime Minister can present the EU and how is this for bureaucracy with a
process forward to find resolution on Brexit. And that does look like all that she has at this point. Because cross-party talks haven't produced
that white smoke that they potentially could have done. There was some more optimism at the end of last week.
Labour has said that they're constructive and they're hopeful that they will come to some kind of resolution. But as yet, they haven't. So she
can't present them with a compromised softer Brexit deal, as arrived up by Labour. She also said that if Labour and Conservatives couldn't reach an
agreement on a softer Brexit, that she would put forward a series of Brexit scenarios to Parliament, and then whatever Parliament voted for, if there
was a majority, the government would be bound by the result. So the two clear outcomes that she could have presented the EU with, she is not.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, so she goes to Brussels with hands empty, quite frankly. Bianca Nobilo, Erin McLaughlin over in Brussels for us, thank you so much
for that. Becky, I'll hand back to you in Jerusalem. Of course, we're waiting for the white smoke from the Houses of Parliament behind me on some
possible deal. Something tells me not happening tonight.
[11:25:00] I'll hand over to you. I think the political future perhaps is a little bit more certain than here.
ANDERSON: Well, it does seem to be panning out that way, doesn't it? Almost as if it was scripted. But all things aren't equal, some say, as we
hear from Arabs here, who say they need a louder, much, much louder voice in Israeli politics. That coming up after this.
ANDERSON: Well, you're watching CNN. This is a very special edition of CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson. Live from just outside the
magical old city of Jerusalem. Where we are watching the man who'd like you to think of him as the Houdini of Israeli politics, Benjamin Netanyahu
heading for an historic fifth term.
It seems that the new Israeli government will be pretty similar to the old Israeli government. With almost all of the votes counted, Benjamin
Netanyahu and his right-wing allies are on course to have a majority of the seats in the new Knesset. That paves the way for the scandal-plagued
Netanyahu to win a record-setting fifth term, fifth term as Prime Minister.
It was not an easy victory, though. The brand-new Blue and White party is projected to win the same number of seats as Mr. Netanyahu's Likud. Likud
expected, though, to form a coalition with the help of several other parties, including the ultra-religious parties.
[11:30:00] One thing that stood out in these elections is the unprecedented low turnout of Arab-Israeli voters, Arab citizens of Israel. Israel's I-24
news reports that just over 50 percent have cast their ballots. That's down from 64 percent on the last election day in 2015.
Well, Arab lawmaker and journalist Aida Touma-Suleiman joins me now from Haifa. And you must be bitterly disappointed with this turnout. How do
you explain what happened?
AIDA TOUMA-SULEIMAN, ISRAELI-ARAB LAWMAKER AND JOURNALIST: Well, hi, Becky. First, as I mentioned, in one of our -- in our last interview, one
day before the election, the Palestinian population in Israel is feeling that there is a crisis in the relationship with the political arena in
Israel. The political arena in general is neglecting the community, is delegitimizing the community and that was reflected in the election, in the
turnout of the election this time.
I think that the frustration of being able to change anything in the policy led by Mr. Netanyahu, toward the population, the incitement against the
Palestinians citizens of Israel is making people not trusting even if it were to go on to elect.
ANDERSON: Right, Aida, Arab voters I spoke to said they felt hopeless. They said there was no point voting, and many blamed Arab lawmakers, who
they say just don't represent their needs. How do you respond to that criticism?
TOUMA-SULEIMAN: Well, first of all, I understand the frustration because, really, under such a kind of a very ultra-right-wing government, we were
not able to deliver a lot. But after all, we cannot be blamed for the policy made by the government. I understand that our population see in us
as the leadership and that's why they're looking up to us and not to the government itself. They don't see Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu even if he is our
Prime Minister, as a leader or someone to expect anything from. That's why they are turning to us. Their leadership. The people they elected in
order to protect them. And I'm telling you, yes, under this government, under the rule of Mr. Netanyahu, we feel sometimes helpless.
ANDERSON: Yesterday we saw a Likud advert featuring Mr. Netanyahu, warning his supporters there was a secret deal to bring Arab parties into the
government if the left, if the Blue and White party were to win and build a coalition. The Likud is also accused of installing hundreds of cameras at
Arab polling sites across Israel. Mr. Netanyahu defended the filming saying it was needed everywhere to ensure a valid vote. But critics call
it a clear attempt to intimidate Arab citizens and suppress their vote. What's your perspective on this?
TOUMA-SULEIMAN: Well, of course, we saw this election again that Mr. Netanyahu is willing to do everything in order to keep his position. He is
willing to go through all the red lines that are possible. The hidden cameras were used explicitly in the Arab villages and towns. He was
inciting against the population or even looking for a situation where maybe discovering the cameras will lead to a kind of a conflict. And he can use
it in a racist way, saying Arabs are attacking the Jewish participants. He is not the authority to keep the order of the elections. He is one of the
competitors. And doing this, he shows that he thinks himself as the state itself.
ANDERSON: Aida, the U.S. Secretary of State was pressed by lawmakers on the issue of West Bank annexation. Let's just remind ourselves, Benjamin
Netanyahu, in the dying hours of this campaign, vowed that should he be reelected, he would annex the settlements in the West Bank.
[11:35:00] Let's just hear what Mike Pompeo said or at least some of the exchange.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKE POMPEO, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: The polls are closing right now, right now, in Israel. And things could move very quickly. And as you
know, the Prime Minister, as a candidate, said he would annex all or part of the West Bank. He said, settlements, and then he said, including
outposts. And today you cannot tell us what U.S. policy is on this issue.
SEN. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN (D-MD: And again --
POMPEO: I think I've answered the question as I'm going to answer the question.
VAN HOLLEN: If you had a one-state solution, since you haven't affirmed support for a two-state solution, would you agree that in a one-state
solution, Palestinians should have full and equal, political and legal rights with other citizens of that state?
POMPEO: I'm not going to engage in this conversation. Ultimately, the Israelis and the Palestinians will decide.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Aida, do you have any confidence that the U.S. has the best interests of the Palestinians at heart?
TOUMA-SULEIMAN: To tell you the truth, I don't believe in no way that the American administration has the Palestinians in its minds. It looks like
the United States of America presented by its President is taking a one side, and actually not even the Israeli public side. They are -- Trump is
taking the side of Mr. Netanyahu and his policy. And not the people of Israel, in no way.
Because the policy that has led lately, the different gifts given to Bibi Netanyahu by Trump, President Trump, in order to make him stronger and to
win the election is leading to a continuous conflict in the region, continuous occupation. And as long as they are saying, let the
Palestinians and the Israelis decide about this and they know that the balance of power is very much to the side of the Israeli government, it
means clearly, let what Netanyahu want to be, to be.
ANDERSON: And with that, we're going to have to leave it there, but we do thank you for your time. I know that you're extremely busy, things behind
the scenes, I'm sure, very tense. We appreciate your time out of Haifa today. Thank you.
TOUMA-SULEIMAN: Thank you.
ANDERSON: Right, folks, we are just going to move away from the Israeli elections for the moment and get you some other news.
And in Sudan, people there are trying to make their voices heard. The death toll from widespread anti-government protests have risen. Doctors say
at least 22 people have been killed since Saturday during a crackdown by national security forces. That number is expected to grow. The
demonstrators have been demanding the President step down and now protest leaders are urging the military to fight, at least join the fight. CNN's
Farai Sevenzo reports.
FARAI SEVENZO, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's nearly dawn on Tuesday morning in Sudan's capital of Khartoum. Protesters here
have been facing live ammunition since Saturday. Protests that began in December of a rising living cost, now have only one aim. To end the three-
decades rule of Omar al-Bashir, Sudan's long-serving ruler since the military coup in 1989.
[11:40:00] The soldier President imposed a state of emergency in February and has yet to answer charges of possible crimes at the international
criminal court. Sudan's protests were reignited by changing events in North America. A potential new kind of Arab Spring is prompting a change
of guard in this region, unplanned and unexpected.
Algeria's Bouteflika resigned following protests of his intention to run again in elections at the age of 82.
In Libya, a new civil war seems possible, some even say likely. While Sudan has seen protests and deaths since December 2018. Thousands of
Sudanese have been staging a sit-in at the very symbol of their soldier President's power, the military headquarters. Since Saturday, they have
surrounded this massive complex in the heart of the capital, an area housing the state police, army, navy, and al-Bashir's residence close to
The death toll has been rising since Saturday alone, says Sudan's doctor's union. But now the stakes are higher for the beleaguered President.
Eyewitness told CNN that there has been gunfire between the security forces. With many soldiers protecting civilian protesters from police and
national intelligence officers.
[11:40:00] Cracks in the military's unwavering load to al-Bashir are everywhere, as a new camaraderie emerges between soldiers and the people.
The stakes will be high for the men in camouflage, too. If this doesn't go the way the protesters expect, with al-Bashir's departure, then there will
surely be executions for treason.
The President is striving for control, addressing his ruling party and urging the people to wait until the elections. While his officials rush to
declare that the sit-in is over. Conflicting statements from officials cannot hide the growing crowds at Sudan's military headquarters. After
months of protests, the decision on whether he should stay or he should go may no longer be in Omar al-Bashir's hands.
Farai Sevenzo, CNN.
ANDERSON: All right. One image has come to define the uprising in Sudan. This photo of a woman dressed in a traditional white robe and gold moon
earrings rising above crowd of protesters has gone viral since it was posted online. Our team of crack digital reporters have tracked her down.
Her name is Allah Saleh. She's 22 years old and works as a journalist. You can read more about her and her message to protesters online at
We are taking a very short break. I'm Becky Anderson in Jerusalem. Back after this.
CHATTERLEY: You're watching CNN and this is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Julia Chatterley in London for you this hour. Welcome back to the show. This is
the moment. This is the day. Those are the words of a top EU spokesperson as the British Prime Minister asks European leaders for another Brexit
delay. Theresa May in Brussels right now. She wants them to push back the deadline for the U.K. to leave the EU to June 30th. The PM was very clear,
she didn't want a longer extension.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I've been clear that the U.K.'s request is for an extension to the 30th of June. I have been working to
make sure that we can leave the European, indeed, we could have left the European Union by now, but Parliament didn't pass the withdrawal agreement.
So we need that extra time to work to ensure that we can get a deal through Parliament that enables us to leave in a smooth and orderly way. That's in
everybody's interest. I think what matters is that we are able to leave the European Union at the point at which we ratify that withdrawal
agreement. That would enable us to leave by the 22nd of May.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHATTERLEY: But the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, says leaders may give her a much longer period. That will give the Prime Minister even more
time to pass her withdrawal agreement that of course she struck with EU leaders.
Let's get the view now from a British European Parliament member. Seb Dance is a Labour MEP and he joins us live from Brussels. Seb, thank you
so much for joining us.
[11:45:00] Is the likelihood here that EU leaders will hand Theresa May a far-longer extension than she wants, and she has to accept it, because,
quite frankly, she's out of other options.
SEB DANCE, EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT MEMBER, BRITISH LABOUR PARTY: Well, yes, I think that's probably right. I mean, obviously we don't know exactly what
they're going to offer. We've heard nine months, 12 months. We'll have to wait and see. But, yes, it looks very much as though -- and I'm just
looking at the corner of my eye, images of the council and leaders arriving. It's heartbreaking, frankly as a Brit, to see my country
diminished so, because actually we're not in control of our destiny. And that's basically what Brexit is. It's handing control of our destiny
CHATTERLEY: Are Europeans claiming victory here, for having thwarted the U.K.'s efforts to leave the EU? Because there's a sense of that in the
U.K. that, actually, Europeans are happy that they've thwarted the U.K. Is that the sense there?
DANCE: I don't think anyone's happy about any of this. You can't look at Brexit and think, great, this is making me happy. People here were
heartbroken at the decision three -- nearly three years ago, but, you know, they resolved to work through it. I mean, it was a decision of the United
Kingdom. They have to respect that. And that is basically what they've done.
But what we're finding in the U.K., of course, is that as soon as the realities of Brexit are put on paper, as soon as people have to accept the
trade-offs of Brexit, they're not prepared to do it. So that even the proponents of Brexit start saying, well, we can't possibly accept this,
because it would cost us "X" number of jobs. We can't possibly do that, because we would lose, say, over this policy or that policy. That's the
reality of Brexit. So it's not a question of victory or people being happy, it's a question, I'm afraid of real meeting expectations and they
have finally collided.
CHATTERLEY: I mean, you represent the Labour Party. You're a member of European Parliament, but you do come from the Labour Party. The
expectation now, the hope, ultimately, for those that want to see the U.K. leave the EU is that the Conservative Party and the Labour Party can come
together. 60 percent of Labour constituencies voted to leave. Should the Labour Party here be trying harder to reach some kind of deal with the
Conservatives to get the U.K. out of the EU, as fast as possible.
DANCE: Well, 60 percent of Labour constituencies may have voted lead, but of course, 60 percent of Labour voters didn't. The vast majority of Labour
voters voted remain. But yes, it is correct and right that the two main parties do talk together -- to each other on this. It's frankly
astonishing that it's taken the Prime Minister this long to work out that she needs to have the conversation beyond just the Conservative Party.
I mean, we're in this mess because it's an internal Conservative Party discussion. It's been handled as an internal Tory Party matter. Now all
of a sudden, it's deemed necessary to have conversations with the opposition. That's great, but it's a little too late. It's little, too
late. Because ultimately, we now have a situation where the opposition is being asked to save the Prime Minister. And that's not the opposition's
job. And it's certainly not the opposition's job to deliver on a policy that would reduce jobs, reduce investment in our communities, and
ultimately not deliver on the reasons people voted leave.
I think we must be much, much, more intelligent about this and look at the reasons people voted leave and deal with the causes of Brexit. And not
just say that delivering Brexit is the be-all and end-all, if it means the decrease of our country's standing in the world and a reduction in jobs and
CHATTERLEY: We shall see. Seb Dance, a Labour MEP there joining us from Brussels. Thank you so much for joining us.
All right, we'll take a quick break as we await that meeting later on of course in Brussels. We'll be back in Jerusalem with the latest on the
Israeli elections for you after this. Stay with CNN.
[11:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: Just coming into CNN, the Israeli Prime Minister's office says that Donald Trump has called to congratulate Benjamin Netanyahu. The
statement said the U.S. President congratulated Mr. Netanyahu on his apparent victory, as well as the entire nation of Israel. This comes after
Mr. Trump voiced similar sentiments while speaking to reporters earlier.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I would like to congratulate Bibi Netanyahu. It looks like that race has been won by him. It may be a
little early, but I'm hearing that he's won it and won it in good fashion. So he's been a great ally. And he's a friend. I would like to
congratulate him. That was a well-fought-out race, I can tell you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TAMER NAFAR, PALESTINIAN RAPPER (through translated text): The fascist goes, and everything goes. Everything goes his way. Either we vote or end
up outside of the homeland there's no duty, There's no duty free in this place. No Johnnie, Johnnie. These are black days -- Tamer vs Ta Tamer
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, it doesn't make sense for me to give up a tool when I hardly have any tools so I'm going to vote. Some of the rhymes from my
next guest, Palestinian rapper, Tamer Nafar making a strong case for Arab voters to get out to the ballot box yesterday. And he now joins us live.
Well, the U.S. President certainly congratulated Benjamin Netanyahu, who hasn't actually officially won this race yet. And congratulating the
Israeli nation, which I'm sure you are delighted to hear from the U.S. President.
NAFAR: I'm not shocked. I'm not shocked. That's, you know, both partners in crime, I see them, so, you know.
ANDERSON: Tell me, you were rapping about getting people out to vote. The turnout from Arab citizens of Israel was disappointing this time,
roundabout 50 percent, 64 percent of Arab citizens of Israel voted last time. What happened?
NAFAR: The Arab party broke, you know, they were separated. And that was heartbreaking in a way. And you know, we never believed in him the Israeli
democracy. We always believed that it's a democracy for Jews, but it's Zionist for Arabs. And when last time, Bibi said, the Arabs, hurry up, the
Arabs are running our --
ANDERSON: This was in 2015.
NAFAR: Yes, last time. So it did say what we wanted to hear all the time, that OK, so we are in this playground, which is us as natives in this land.
It's OK to stand up, but don't dare to touch our toys. So that's why kind of was hesitating, but at the same time, that's the only thing Israel left
us. So I tried to look at it that the election is like a -- to use this democratic tool in this non-democratic state. So it's just a matter of
strategy and to survive until this storm pasts.
ANDERSON: You don't only just rap about politics, but politics important to you and part of the sort of narrative that you have. Just explain, how
long have you been rapping?
NAFAR: I've been rapping since 2000, with my group DAM. And we'll be dropping our third album on the 7th of June. So politic and society, women
rights, LBGTs, and, you know, also, we are fun. We are fun, you can dance to it.
ANDERSON: Good for you.
NAFAR: Yes, we are fun.
ANDERSON: You can move around to it, as well. So just briefly, then, if politics is part of what you do, part of the -- part of your narrative
within the songs that you write, what will you be saying next about Palestinians here?
[11:55:00] NAFAR: Now after, I'm just -- you know, we just landed from elections. So now we need to conclude. I have a few conclusions. First
of all, you have 90 percent of the Israelis voted for parties who believe in Jewish supremacy. And they believe in apartheid and they don't want me
in this country. So somehow, I don't find any communication in this. And then, somehow, I'm finding hard to find communication to go on.
And then you have the Palestinians, as you said, it's a bit disappointing with all the voting. So we need to sit down and sit down with our leaders
and to understand where we went wrong and to conclude. And at the same time, since it's -- since the whole world is watching. A third thing that
needs to be concluded that, how would the Western world would deal with a country that voted -- that voted -- that 90 percent of the country voted
for people who doesn't want us here.
So it's hard for me to accept that even people who are coming from art like me, like Madonna for example. I'm approaching, of course, Madonna here
that the day after 90 percent of the people decided they don't want me in this country, she just wants to come and perform.
ANDERSON: During the Eurovision song contest.
NAFAR: During the Eurovision. It's OK. You know, I'm not allowed to tell her not to come because it's illegal in this democratic country. But how
would someone feel like this? When the world is petting Israel so they are going to continue and do stuff.
ANDERSON: I'm going to have to leave it there. It's been an absolute pleasure having you on. I know you got out and voted. And I know you made
a difference. Thank you very much, indeed, for joining us.
NAFAR: Thank you.
ANDERSON: After much aplomb, we say shalom. I won't get into rapping, then. Hey, mate. We've connected your world to Israel all this week.
Taking you up and down the country to bring you reports, analysis and insight. It's been gripping. It's been fascinating. Thank you all for
coming along for the ride. Thank you for closing out our coverage, Tamer. I'm Becky Anderson. That was CONNECT THE WORLD. Thank you for watching.