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Chinese President to Make Rare Trip to North Korea This Week; Report Blames Saudi Arabia for Khashoggi "Execution"; U.S. Navy Takes CNN to View Damaged Tanker; The Plight of Millions Forced to Flee. Aired 12-1a ET

Aired June 20, 2019 - 00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


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JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Hello and welcome to our viewers all around the world, I'm John Vause, you're watching CNN NEWSROOM.

Ahead this hour, an unspoken message from Pyongyang. Two leaders, both rebuffed by the U.S. president, together they might just have leverage. One in trade talks, the other in nuclear negotiations.

Plus new evidence supporting an old allegation. U.N. investigation into the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi finds Saudi Arabia's crown prince might be intimately involved in what was a hit job.

And staggering numbers show war and conflict is forcing more people from their homes than ever, before. And increasingly, they have fewer places to go.

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VAUSE: The last time a Chinese president set foot in North Korea was 14 years ago. Xi Jinping made history arriving in Pyongyang for talks with Kim Jong-un. The meeting will send a message to the United States that China and North Korea are not only neighbors but longtime allies. CNN's Paula Hancocks, live in Seoul with all of this.

Paula, this is a meeting which, I guess, is not exactly surprising but the timing, of course, is very important here. The G20 meeting and a possible third nuclear summit between Trump and Kim Jong-un.

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, that's right, John. There's many that say that this meeting is actually long overdue. Xi Jinping has been leader now for more than six years.

And it was about 15 months ago that Kim Jong-un went to China and invited him back to Pyongyang. He did say that he would come but it's, as far as many people are concerned, this is a meeting that is long overdue.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) HANCOCKS (voice-over): 2005 was the last time a Chinese leader visited North Korea. Former president Hu Jintao visiting the late Kim Jong-il, this was before Pyongyang started its nuclear testing and before China signed on to stronger U.N. sanctions against its ally.

Fourteen years later, Xi Jinping will travel to Pyongyang on an official state visit. He has already met Kim Jong-un four times, all in China and all within the past 15 months.

JOHN DELURY, YONSEI UNIVERSITY: I think that Xi Jinping and the Chinese are worried about losing North Korea. If you think about all the diplomacy that took place over the last year, it slowed down after that meeting in Hanoi.

But we had a good year where the two Koreas were working quite intensively together. And also you have this extraordinary dialogue that will probably resume with the president of the United States.

And what does that represent?

That is North Korea moving out of China's orbit and fundamentally changing its relationships with its adversaries.

HANCOCKS (voice-over): Images of an official state visit and the pomp that surrounds it will be a propaganda coup for Kim Jong-un. And a reminder to Washington that China is essential to the North Korean issue.

His visit comes a week before he is expected to meet Donald Trump at the G20 meeting in Japan. With the backdrop of a bitter trade war between the two superpowers. North Korean newspaper wrote a rare op- ed on its front page, from President Xi on Wednesday.

WILL LAM, CHINESE UNIVERSITY OF HONG KONG: In this extraordinary letter in the North Korean press, Xi has tried to persuade Kim to focus just on economic development, not so much on nuclear weapons.

It is also significant that Xi does not mention the traditional relationship. He just mentions the strong revolutionary partnerships, short of calling the DPRK China's strategic partner.

HANCOCKS (voice-over): Besides the North Korean relationship, 70 years old, has had ups and downs. Notably when Kim Jong-un ordered the execution of his uncle Jang Song-thaek on charges of treason in 2013. Jang Song-thaek was considered to be close to China.

Xi's visit now will be seen by many as an official endorsement of the Kim regime.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HANCOCKS: So Xi Jinping is in North Korea. We know, at this point. John, we haven't had any images out yet. Clearly, China and North Korea are --

[00:05:00] HANCOCKS: -- among the least transparent countries in the world. So there is no official schedule. We don't even know exactly what they will be doing and we will see those images when they decide to show the world -- John.

VAUSE: Yes, when they decide, I guess. And we will have them on CNN when we get them. Just really quick, Paula, some reporting it seems that Chinese President Xi Jinping isn't exactly thrilled with the time he is spending in North Korea.

HANCOCKS: Well, the relationship between these two leaders has been problematic. The fact that for many years at the beginning of Kim Jong-un's rule he didn't have any contact, as far as we know, with Xi Jinping. He didn't go to the country, which is the main benefactor, the main trade ally, and some would, argue the country that is keeping North Korea afloat.

China has made no secret of the fact that they are not happy about the previous nuclear testing, about the missile testing. They had said publicly that they didn't want Kim Jong-un to do that. We have in this op-ed, Xi saying that he does support the economic policies that Kim Jong-un is now focusing on, hoping he is moving away from the nuclear.

VAUSE: Paula, we appreciate you being with us. Thank you. Paula Hancocks, live for us in Seoul with the very latest on that. Meanwhile, Xi Jinping and Kim Jong-un.

A Dutch led investigation into the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 has named four suspects, including three Russian nationals with ties to Moscow intelligence community.

Five years ago the commercial airliner was shot down over Eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 passengers and crew. Russians Igor Girkin, Sergey Dubinsky and Oleg Pulatov are facing murder charges. Soviet Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WESTERBEKE (through translator): The following suspects are prosecuted for causing the crash of MH17 leading to the death of all the people on board, punishable under Section 168 of the Dutch criminal code and, second, murdering 298 passengers of Flight MH17, punishable under Section 289 of the Dutch criminal code.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: With Russia and Ukraine imposing a constitutional ban on extradition, there is little chance any of the suspects will appear in a courtroom in the Netherlands. The Kremlin has also rejected the investigation's findings that the plane was shot down by a Russian made missile in territory controlled by pro Russian separatists in Eastern Ukraine.

An investigation by the United Nations has recommended Saudi Arabia crown prince actually be investigated for his role in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. This report was six months in the making and accuses the kingdom of premeditated execution of the journalist.

Alex Marquardt reports the conclusion presents a new challenge for the U.S. president who has long defended the crown prince.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): With gruesome new detail, a report by a top U.N. official lays out how there is credible evidence that Saudi Arabia's crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, is responsible for the horrific murder of Jamal Khashoggi.

AGNES CALLAMARD, U.N. EXTRAJUDICIAL EXECUTIONS INVESTIGATOR: The execution of Mr. Khashoggi was the responsibility of the state of Saudi Arabia.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): The investigative team got access to hours of secret recordings from inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. It was there on October 2nd last year, Khashoggi entered and never came out.

From the tapes, it's clear that the team of executioners always intended to kill Khashoggi. A senior adviser to the crown prince can be heard asking if "the sacrificial animal" had arrived.

"Will it be possible to put the trunk in a bag?" the adviser asked.

"No," the forensics doctor on the team responded, "Too heavy. Joints will be separated," he continued, "first time I cut on the ground. If we take plastic bags and cut it into pieces, it will be finished. We will wrap each of them."

"The Washington Post" journalist was told he was being taken back to Saudi Arabia. Minutes later, Khashoggi is heard saying, "There is a towel here. Are you going to give me drugs?"

A struggle is heard, followed by voices saying, "Did he sleep?"

"He raises his head."

"Keep pushing."

"Push here; don't remove your hand, push it."

Despite overwhelming evidence that this was an execution that could only have been ordered at the highest levels of the Saudi government, the Trump administration has refused to back down in its support for the Saudi kingdom.

The-Trump Saudi relationship runs deep. Saudi Arabia was the first foreign country the president visited. "The Washington Post" reported that the Saudis have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars at his Washington hotel and Trump's son in law, Jared Kushner, and the crown prince are close and communicate directly on WhatsApp

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I hate the crime I hate what's done I hate the cover up and I will tell you this, the crown prince hates it more than I do and they have vehemently denied it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MARQUARDT (voice-over): The president has ignored his own intelligence community --

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MARQUARDT (voice-over): -- which assessed that this could only have happened with the blessing of the crown prince.

Weapons sales, oil prices, the alliance against Iran all more important than the killing, the administration has argued. Even as foreign allies as well as both Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill turned against Saudi Arabia and the crown prince, known as MBS.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): There is not a smoking gun, there's a smoking saw. You have to be willfully blind not to come to the conclusion that this was orchestrated and organized by people under the command of MBS.

MARQUARDT: There is now a bipartisan effort in Congress to try to block the latest effort by the Trump administration to go around Congress by declaring an emergency to sell billions of dollars worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia.

There are three resolutions that a group of bipartisan senators is working on. They will be voted on Thursday morning. But they are not expected to get the 67 votes to override the veto expected from the president -- Alex Marquardt, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAUSE: And so this is where we are in 2019. A U.N. investigation all but accuses the Saudi crown prince of ordering a barbaric hit job on a high-profile critic living in self imposed exile. And three former Russian officials and a Ukrainian acting on orders from Moscow during Russia's proxy war with Ukraine are charged with a mass murder of almost 300 innocent people.

All of this brings new weight to old allegations and what will be the consequences for these two high-fiving pals?

How will MBS and Putin keep major account for their crimes which are as brazen as they are egregious?

When it comes to international bad behavior there is no greater serial offender than North Korea. The rogue regime violates U.S. sanctions daily and according to one think tank, over the past year its nuclear stockpile has increased from as many as 20 warheads to 30.

And the price paid for such defiance?

A state visit to North Korea from the president of China, promising a grand plan and closer relations than ever. To help us understand how all of this is happening we are joined now

by CNN national security analyst and "Washington Post" columnist Josh Rogin.

Hey, Josh, good to have you with us.

JOSH ROGIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Great to be here.

VAUSE: To be fair, it's never been easy to hold autocrats and dictators accountable for crimes against humanity. It seems in the past there was at least an effort or at least a common held belief of what is right and what is wrong.

There is this growing mountain of evidence and regardless of who the violator may be, it's like they are hit with a wet piece of lettuce.

ROGIN: Well, I think there was one really good reason why this attempt, these attempts to enforce international law, customs and norms have fallen off in recent years and that's because of the change of government, the change of administration here in Washington where I sit.

The Trump administration and President Trump himself have repeatedly insisted that the United States is not going to get out of the human rights enforcement business. They have preached sovereignty and they have cozied up to dictators and defended monarchies, especially the Saudi monarchy, and also made outreach to the Russian government. This is part of a calculation, not only by President Trump but also many of the senior officials that advocacy on behalf of human rights, enforcement of international law, international norms and international customs is no longer the business of the United States government.

So while you have all these international bodies who have been training for decades on the idea, the originally American idea, I would argue, that the international system can hold international crimes accountable, right now the biggest enforcer of that, the United States, is asleep at the wheel.

VAUSE: Yes. I want you to listen to the chief prosecutor in the MH17 investigation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FRED WESTERBEKE, DUTCH PROSECUTOR: We now have the information, have the proof that the Russian Federation is involved in this tragedy and this crime.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Here is the response from Moscow, the foreign ministry issuing a statement which claims absolutely unfounded accusations are being made against the Russian side aimed at discrediting the Russian Federation in the eyes of the international community.

And here is Donald Trump when he was a presidential candidate in 2015. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I think it's despicable, it's horrible but they deny it, totally. And they don't even say what wasn't, where it came from. Nobody really knows. And I'm sure reports are going to be done. Maybe someday, we will find out, for right now Russia is totally denying it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: You, know the pattern, it's pretty clear. Credible accusation with evidence, unsubstantiated denial with a little bit of whataboutism. And Donald Trump comes in to muddy the waters at the end.

ROGIN: It's very clear that President Trump is either uninformed or uninterested in holding Russia accountable for this crime or Saudi Arabia accountable for the killing of Jamal Khashoggi. Or any number of things that traditionally the U.S. president would want to have a say on and would want to weigh in on.

There's also something else going on. Russia and Saudi and Chinese and other authoritarian regimes have stepped up their information --

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ROGIN: -- campaigns and stepped up their propaganda campaigns and stepped up their interference campaigns in the media environments of free and open societies and the point of that is not to convince us that their line is true.

Of course, we know Russia has troops in Eastern Ukraine. We know that they are linked to this crime and we have always known that. The idea is to muddy the waters and the fact that the president of the United States is helping them muddy the waters is unfortunate, at the very least.

VAUSE: OK. And again, the other big story here is the U.N. investigation into the hit job on Jamal Khashoggi. Here is the U.N. official who oversaw that. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CALLAMARD: The killing of Mr. Khashoggi was a state killing, that the killing and the circumstances of the killing meant that a number of other violations took place, including violations of international law, for which the state of Saudi Arabia is responsible.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: And here is the pushback from the Saudis, tweeting, the report of the rapporteur contains clear contradictions and baseless allegations challenging her credibility.

Again, here is the U.S. president to run interference. In this statement from November last year he says, "We may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder of Mr. Jamal Khashoggi. In any case, our relationship is with the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and they have been a great ally in our very important fight against Iran."

And this pattern repeat itself over and over again.

Ultimately, what is the price here?

For the president of the United States, for the United States and I guess, for the world community when you have the most powerful country in the world covering for murderous dictators?

ROGIN: Well, Jamal Khashoggi, as you know, was a colleague of mine at "The Washington Post" and ever since he was brutally murdered in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, we have all been trying to get to the bottom of exactly what happened.

Today, we learned a lot of new facts about that. We learned, according to this report, that the murder was premeditated. It wasn't decided on the spot, that it was planned. That it was authorized. That there was an extensive cover-up and extensive destruction of evidence.

And all of this reinforces the idea, although not the proof but the strong contention that the Saudi regime led by crown prince Mohammed bin Salman was actively involved in that, in fact Mohammed bin Salman was aware and approved of this murder.

And the fact of the Trump administration has no intention of following those facts where they lead, standing up for the principle of, let's just figure out what happened and hold those who are responsible accountable, sent a chilling effect.

All dissidents, all human rights leaders, all journalists, frankly, were working in oppressive, risky, dangerous conditions to bring true information to speak truth to power and to comfort the afflicted.

That has a cascading effect around the world. It undermines America's credibility. When it does seek to wag a finger on human rights in places like Iran, Venezuela and North Korea. Overall, it's a tragedy for Jamal Khashoggi's family, for journalists and for the reputation of the United States abroad.

VAUSE: Let's finish up with North Korea, because we have heard about this illusionary diplomacy breakthroughs that Donald Trump keeps talking about, which is essentially for domestic legal consumption. In reality, he has produced nothing of substance.

But what was it now -- his visit to Pyongyang, Xi Jinping, once the U.S. president engaged with the North, he talks about this great progress being made in denuclearization. That gave license to China and to others to back off of those international sanctions, the maximum pressure campaign, having some success.

And now, that's gone. It really seems to be game, set, match: North Korea. ROGIN: I would say it's not over yet. My sources tell me the fact

that President Xi and Kim Jong-un are meeting is seen as an indication inside the U.S. government that Kim may be preparing to return to talks.

That's not to say that those talks are going to be fruitful. Also, there's an understanding inside the U.S. government that maximum pressure is not happening due to Chinese and Russian lacks enforcement. They are enforcing somewhat and it could always get worse but there's a lot of things at play right now.

Most of, all we are waiting for Kim Jong-un is going to come back to the table and if he is he will have a different offer and then he had at the failed summit in Hanoi. If that doesn't happen or a third failed summit happens, I'm sure we can say with the game is over and the United States will have to consider other options.

And all of those options have severe risks including the risk of a war with North Korea.

VAUSE: Yes. The world has changed so much in the last couple years, it's hard to keep up with where we are at the moment. In many cases, it's not good. Thank you very much.

ROGIN: Any time.

VAUSE: Still to come on CNN, were the Iranian commanders who removed a mine from a Japanese --

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VAUSE: -- oil tanker just a little bit too familiar with the device, almost like they trained on it?

Plus an escalating crisis between Tehran and Washington.

Also, she's been described as the Forrest Gump of the Trump administration. Hope Hicks either participated in or was present for every controversial event of the Trump campaign. But whatever she may know, she's not sharing it with Congress.

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VAUSE: Welcome back.

Boris Johnson has come closer to becoming the next leader of the Conservative Party and moving into Number 10 Downing Street. The third round of voting the, foreign British secretary 133 votes. Far ahead from Jeremy Hunt who received 54. On Thursday, the list will be down to just two cabinets and Conservative Party members. The rank and file will vote by mail and the new prime minister will be announced July 22nd. Another notable date here is October 31st, the last day the U.K. can

leave the E.U. without getting another extension. On Brexit or crashing out with no deal. That, on course, is owing.

U.S. House Democrats are threatening to take the former White House communications director Hope Hicks to court. She testified, sort of, on Wednesday before the Judiciary Committee which is investigating potential obstruction of justice by President Trump.

Administration lawyers kept her from answering any questions about her time at the White House. Claiming she is covered by absolute immunity. Hicks denied knowing about hush money payments during the campaign to allegations of extramarital affairs by Donald Trump.

The U.S. Navy now says a mine allegedly used in last week's attack on a tanker in the Gulf of Oman bears a striking resemblance to mines displayed at Iranian military parades. That word came as CNN received a closer look at the damage to that tanker. Here is CNN's Sam Kiley.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): An American naval craft fast approaches a Japanese ship, allegedly attacked with an Iranian mine. Gunboat diplomacy. The U.S. taking the media to see the damage done to the Kokuka Courageous.

KILEY (voice-over): This hole just over my shoulder, the Americans say, was caused with an Iranian built limpet mine. They can't say with any total certainty that it was put there by the Iranians.

Nonetheless, it blew through both the outer hull and the inner hull of the ship, penetrating --

[00:25:00]

KILEY: -- the fuel tank area. Some experts say that is deliberate. It was designed that whoever planted this mine knew they what were doing, that they wanted to send a signal but not cause a disaster.

KILEY (voice-over): The signal is hands off Iran. The disaster would be all-out war. U.S. Naval experts strongly believe that the mine here and the one removed by Iranian commanders from the same ship were Iranian. The U.S. Navy recovered a magnet from one limpet mine and fragments of another, which has led them to this.

COMMANDER SEAN KIDO, U.S. NAVY: What I can tell you is that the limpet mine that was used in the attack is distinguishable. And it is also strikingly bearing a resemblance to Iranian mines that have already been publicly displayed in Iranian military parades.

KILEY (voice-over): Since the U.S. withdrew from the deal intended to reduce sanctions against Iran, in return for it suspending its nuclear program and imposed heavier sanctions, tensions have steadily increased, especially at sea.

The U.S. sent a carrier group to the region to signal power and discourage Iranian retaliation. In May though, four ships were mysteriously damaged in Emirati waters by explosions. The Kokuka Courageous and the Front Altair, a Norwegian owned tanker, were both attacked last week. There have been more mysterious attacks on land, most recently in Basra. There, a building housing foreign companies, including ExxonMobil, were hit by a rocket.

The U.S. has blamed similar attacks on Iran but Iran denies all allegations of using violence to signal anger over the U.S. sanctions. It does, though, back many militias capable of launching such assaults.

The commander of this Revolutionary Guard corps has warned that Iran has missiles that could destroy an aircraft carrier. The U.S. secretary of state insisting that the U.S. can't pursue diplomacy...

MIKE POMPEO, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: We can't do that without making sure that we have the capability to respond, if Iran makes a bad decision, if it makes a decision to go after an American or an American interest or to continue to proliferate its nuclear weapons program.

KILEY (voice-over): So far Iran has done neither. But it does want U.S. sanctions lifted. America is saying, no, leaving the gunboats to circle amid spiraling tensions -- Sam Kiley, CNN, Fujairah, the Emirates.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

van Next up on CNN, the numbers are staggering, the stories are heartbreaking. The response from the world's wealthiest nations (INAUDIBLE). Those least able to afford it are bearing the burden of a growing number of people fleeing their homes.

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VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.

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Every minute of every day, 20 people leave behind almost everything they own, everything they've known to escape war, persecution or conflict. And according to the latest numbers from the United Nations, at the end of last year, more than 70 million people were considered to have been forcibly displaced, the highest number on record. More than half of them are children.

As we mark World Refugee Day this Thursday. About 1 percent of the entire global population is displaced.

Sarah Leah Whitson is executive director of the Middle East and North African Commission for Human Rights. Well, she joins us now from New York.

Sarah, thank you for taking the time to talk to us.

SARAH LEAH WHITSON, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICAN COMMISSION FOR HUMAN RIGHTS: Thank you for having me.

VAUSE: There's essentially three groups of people here that we're talking about. There are, you know, the refugees, those who are forced to actually leave their home country, often because of war or violence or conflict.

At the end of last year, they numbered a total of 26 million worldwide. And then there are those who have been internally displaced, just over 41 million by year's end. And that's in places like Syria, where they leave their homes but not their countries for a variety of reasons. And three and a half million people who are asylum seekers.

The bottom line, in 2018, an average of 37,000 people are leaving their homes every day. And in the 70 years of keeping records, U.N. has never seen numbers like this. Every year it's getting worse, it seems. Is there one factor, maybe two factors which are primarily behind this?

WHITSON: Well, there are a variety of factors, but the biggest factor, of course, are the manmade conflicts that are driving people away from their homes. The escalation of violence, the escalation of fighting, and the widescale availability of weapons that make living just far more dangerous than it used to be and make wars far more dangerous than they used to be.

VAUSE: You know, there are the numbers, you know, which are kind of hard to grapple with. You know, Stalin said, was it one death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic.

So with that in mind, we have to remember that, you know, when we're talking about these -- these millions of people who are displaced, we're talking about millions of moms and dads and kids. And PBS had a documentary. It's called "Children of Syria," and they followed one family for a couple of years.

And here is a clip as they make that decision to leave their home in Aleppo and head to the border with Turkey to try to get across that border. Because the father, who was a rebel fighter, has been kidnapped. Have a look at this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): Hana (ph) has hired a driver to take her and the children to the Turkish border. The only way out of the city is a treacherous road through areas controlled by ISIS or the regime. After a three-hour drive, the family arrives at a refugee camp on the border.

By January 2015, more than one and a half million Syrians have fled to camps like this. And there's hardly any room for newcomers. (END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: You know, this is an hour-long documentary, and it's well worth watching, because what it shows is that this decision to leave everything behind, to apply to become a refugee, it's so incredibly difficult. It comes with an emotional toll. It's an option of last resort and often comes down to a decision between life or death.

Sarah?

WHITSON: Yes. (CROSSTALK)

VAUSE: I'm just saying about the emotional -- so talk to us a little bit more -- that's OK.

WHITSON: Sorry. I can't see you, so I didn't realize you're asking me a question.

VAUSE: Just talk to us a little bit more about exactly what that means for these families when they make this decision. How difficult is it, and what basically comes next with it?

WHITSON: Yes. So, no, absolutely, you put your finger on it. I think the point to emphasize is that refugees are not leaving their country, because they seek a different opportunity or somehow a happier future. They are fleeing their countries, because they have no choice and they have to give it up.

[00:35:04] And I think the other point is, of course, that what refugees want more than anything else is to return to the peace and security and stability of their homes and their communities; and they can't do that. So they are, indeed, making the most difficult choice to give up their homes, to give up their safety and everything they've known and to leave to a strange land to live in tents, to live at the mercy of those who will accept them and feed them and shelter them.

And it is, of course, a pain and a suffering that is being endured by bigger and bigger numbers this year, bigger than we've ever seen before.

VAUSE: And the burden of showing that mercy and of carrying this humanitarian crisis is falling on those who can afford it the least. Here's the U.N. high commissioner for refugees. Look at this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FILIPPO GRANDI, U.N. HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES: Between 80 and 90 percent of this 70 million are not in rich countries. They are in poor countries. They are in what we call middle-income countries. In other words, they are in countries that have less resources to address this crisis.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: So, Turkey is home to the largest number of refugees in the world. That's followed by, you know, Pakistan and Uganda. Part of the reason for that is just simply geography, right? Because refugees settle in countries near to their home country. So that's one reason why, you know, these countries are bearing such a high burden.

WHITSON: Absolutely. Eighty to 90 percent of refugees are refugees in neighboring countries. And in fact, while Turkey has the largest number of refugees per capita, Lebanon has the largest numbers of refugees. One in six people in Lebanon today is a refugee. And right behind them, of course, is Jordan.

And, you know, it's a little, really, rich when we hear rich countries complaining about the tiny, tiny numbers of refugees they're hosting when countries like Syria -- rather, Lebanon and Jordan and Turkey have taken in millions. And done so, actually, with a great deal of patience and compassion and generosity.

VAUSE: Yes. And here's what seems to be another reason why wealthy countries are doing less. Listen to the president.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Mass illegal migration reduces living standards and strains public resources. If Democrat officials had to send their children to those overcrowded, overburdened schools, they would not tolerate it for one minute. What's happening with their policies are horrible. Our immigration laws are a disgrace.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: So, with that in mind, here's part of an op-ed written by actress Angelina Jolie, who's a special envoy to the U.N. high commissioner for refugees.

"Today, the distinction between refugees and migrants has been overblown and politicized. Refugees have been forced to flee their country because of persecution, war, or violence. Migrants have chosen to move, many to improve their lives. Some leaders deliberately used the term refugee and migrant interchangeably, using hostile rhetoric that whips up fear against all outsiders."

To make the point, it's not an option to help refugees. It's an obligation, you know, which is the responsibility many out there are just simply not aware of, that there is international law which says refugees have to be helped.

Sarah?

WHITSON: I'm sorry. I thought you were introducing a clip from Angelina Jolie. It's very hard for me to understand that it's a cue. Excuse me for that.

VAUSE: That's OK.

WHITSON: Yes, I mean, absolutely. The situation of refugees is different, and I would note that it's also different for a very big reason, as well, in that a lot of refugees are caught up in wars and conflicts not of their making.

And a lot of refugees are caught up in wars and conflicts that are actually armed and fueled by rich countries like the United States and the United Kingdom that are the largest weapons suppliers in the entire world. That are caught up in regional wars that, again, are not of their making.

And so we also have to look and see what the root is of a lot of these refugee crises. And that is wars and conflicts that many western countries are actually making a great deal of profit from.

VAUSE: Yes. Sarah, thank you so much for being with us. We appreciate you speaking through it all, and it's an important topic and an important subject which, you know, doesn't get enough attention at the moment, but it should. So, thank you.

WHITSON: Thank you.

VAUSE: Well, the U.S. State Department will release its annual trafficking in persons report in the coming days. It's meant to monitor and combat human trafficking. We'll have live coverage starting at 9 in the morning, Washington time. That's 9 in the evening on Thursday in Hong Kong. You'll see it right here on CNN.

Next up on CNN NEWSROOM, a self-help guru found guilty on all counts for a lurid series of crimes. Disturbing details when we come back.

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[00:41:50] VAUSE: The head of a self-help company, Nxivm, has been found guilty of sex trafficking, racketeering and a lot of other crimes. Prosecutors say Ken Raniere pressured women to have sex, blackmailed them, branded him with their initials.

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RICHARD P. DONOGHUE, U.S. ATTORNEY FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT: Over the last seven weeks, this trial has revealed that Raniere, who portrayed himself as a savant and a genius was, in fact, a master manipulator, a con man, and the crime boss of a cult-like organization involved in sex trafficking, child pornography, extortion, compelled abortions, branding, degradation and humiliation.

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VAUSE: At one point, Nxivm had 17,000 members, including prominent figures like TV actress Allison Mack and Seagram's liquor heiress Clare Bronfman. Both pleaded guilty in April to a number of charges to avoid trial.

Raniere has maintained his innocence and plans to appeal.

And it looks like it was a case of mistaken identity in the shooting a former Major League Baseball great David Ortiz. He was at a bar in his native Dominican Republic back in June 9 when the gunman walked in, shot him once in the lower back. Authorities say the former Red Sox star was not the intended target.

They believe a men allegedly tied to a drug cartel put out a hit on Ortiz's friend. That friend was sitting with Ortiz at the bar, and the two were wearing similar clothes.

Ortiz is currently hospitalized in Boston. His condition was upgraded to good on Tuesday.

Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause. WORLD SPORT starts right now.

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[00:45:21] (WORLD SPORT)

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[01:00:02] VAUSE: Hello. Great to have you with us. I'm John Vause. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.

Ahead this hour, new gruesome details of how journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed, his body cut into pieces.