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Report Blames Saudi Arabia for Khashoggi "Execution"; U.S. Navy Takes CNN to View Damaged Tanker; Four Charged with Shooting Down MH17 Flight; Xi Jinping Arrives In Pyongyang, Marking First Visit By Chinese Leader To North Korea In 14 Years; Authorities: Ortiz Not Target In Shooting; U.S. Congress Examines Training For Boeing 737 MAX. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired June 20, 2019 - 02:00   ET




ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): An independent report into the killing of Jamal Khashoggi reveals his gruesome death.

Chinese President Xi Jinping makes a state visit to North Korea. It is a first by a Chinese leader in 14 years.

And later, new details about the murder for hire plot the former Red Sox player David Ortiz, the target was not Ortiz but someone else who was wearing similar clothes.

Hello and welcome to our viewers joining us from all around the world, I'm Rosemary Church and this is CNN NEWSROOM.


CHURCH: Good to have you with us.

A U.N. investigator's report concludes the killing of Jamal Khashoggi was a deliberate, premeditated execution and Saudi Arabia's crown prince should be investigated for it. The six-month probe into the journalist's killing revealed grisly new details.

And as Alex Marquardt, reports it presents a new challenge for the U.S. president who has resisted laying blame on the crown prince.


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


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.


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


CHURCH: The U.N. special rapporteur listened to secret recordings from inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Based on what she heard, she concluded the killing was no accident.




CALLAMARD: -- highlight are, first, the increasing fear experienced by Mr. Khashoggi from the moment he enters and starts realizing that something very bad is going to happen to him.

So the fear is something that stays with me. Second is the fact that there is no attempt on the part of the individuals in the room to either resuscitate or do anything that will be -- that could demonstrate that this killing was accidental.

As you know, the authorities have said, no, it was an accident. There is nothing in the recording that indicates an accident. If there was an accident, an accidental killing, you would expect people to, you know, say, my gosh, something is happening, what do we do, try to resuscitate him, try to do this, try to do that.

There is nothing of that nature. So what the recording indicates is something fairly planned, not easy but something that goes as probably it was planned and prepared.



CHURCH: Joining us now to discuss this is CNN intelligence and security analyst Robert Baer.

Always good to have you with us.

BOB BAER, CNN INTELLIGENCE AND SECURITY ANALYST: Thanks, Rosemary. CHURCH: Bob, this U.N. investigation uncovers credible evidence that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman was responsible for the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, which is exactly what many people already believed, of course but what's your reaction to the report's findings?

BAER: Well, it's confirmation. The Central Intelligence Agency came out in so many words and said that Mohammad bin Salman was behind this. They base this on intercepts of e-mails and the rest of it and WhatsApp and the rest of it.

And now they've got the tapes from the consulate in Istanbul which confirms that. And I think, you know, you look at this as an independent organization, you look at the CIA and it's pretty certain that Mohammad bin Salman ordered the murder and dismemberment of Khashoggi.

CHURCH: And Khashoggi's fiance, Hatice Cengiz says that Washington hasn't done enough to bring Khashoggi's killers to justice and adds that they are still roaming free. She wrote this in a powerful op-ed.

"Washington has chosen not to use its strong ties and leverage with Riyadh to get the Saudis to reveal the truth about Jamal's murder and to ensure those responsible are held accountable. If people of virtue don't stand up today for a man who defended such values and fought to advance them in his country then who else is going to do it?"

So, Bob, why hasn't Washington done more to get the Saudis to reveal the truth about Khashoggi's murder and those behind it and hold them accountable?

BAER: Well, Rosemary, there's a couple reasons. Frankly, Mohammad bin Salman is not fit for that job but we are not in a position to force him out if we wanted to. But more to the point, this president want Saudi Arabia to buy arms, depend on Saudi oil and more than anything we need Saudi Arabia if we go into a conflict with Iran.

And he has just decided to turn a blind eye to this. And she's absolutely right, the Saudis there's no transparency in the trials. A lot of these people that cut off his head are wandering free. And frankly, it's disturbing because it's a green light for anybody who wants to, to go after journalists.

CHURCH: And you think that's why President Trump has chosen to ignore all of the information that he has been given that pretty much points to the Saudi crown prince being behind this?

BAER: Rosemary, what I've seen what's been leaked out it's almost a smoking gun. It is a smoking gun. I mean, the way Saudi Arabia works is the only person that gives orders in that country is Mohammad bin Salman. He is the de facto king, he is in charge of the security services. He is in charge of the whole country and nobody in that country would dare carry out a rogue operation like this without his approval. The country doesn't work that way.

So, this president has decided to turn a blind eye and he just doesn't care, you know. It doesn't concern him. He looks at Mohammad bin Salman as a good ally. He's close to Jared Kushner. They think they have a deal on Palestine. They think, you know, that Saudi Arabia is going to march into a war with us against Iran.

CHURCH: Right.

BAER: And he just decided it doesn't matter. The human rights are not part of American foreign policy anymore.

CHURCH: Interesting. And Khashoggi, of course it's worth pointing out was a critic of --


CHURCH: -- Saudi Arabia and the royal family and his murder was a clear message to those who dared criticize. Will we see further investigation of the evidence by an independent and impartial international inquiry as the author of the report, Agnes Callamard, has called for?

BAER: I don't think so. I think if we look at the way this administration operates, they'll just try to crush this report, stop it, not carry it on. But of course, the real pressure would have to be put on Riyadh to come clean on this and up until now they have no intention of doing that and there's nobody that's going to tell them to do it except the United States. And the White House isn't interested.

CHURCH: What about the international community? What should they be doing?

BAER: They can't really do much. I mean, I think they have done what they could. I mean, they've taken the Turkish transcript from the consulate, from listening devices and it's very clear this was premeditated murder. And if no one is going to do anything about it, it's sort of like the Russians shooting down an airliner, you know. You can name the culprits but who is going to force these countries, the international court of justice, it's not going to happen.

CHURCH: So, of course, Saudi agents killed Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul back in October but Saudi authorities insist those agents were not acting on the Saudi prince's orders and they reject this latest report.

Instead, the Saudis have put 11 unidentified suspects on trial for his murder and they are seeking the death penalty for five of them. So, what's your response to that effort to look like they are doing something about this.

BAER: It's a complete cover-up, that's all it is. I mean there's absolutely -- the judiciary there is no independent judiciary of Saudi Arabia. Mohammad bin Salman controls that and he'll -- if he has to, he'll execute some scapegoat.

That's the way the country works. They have a clear pattern of this and you know, we -- I know right now I do not see Saudi Arabia ever coming to terms with this in explaining what happened.

And clearly, those people in the diwan that went out there -- Rosemary, we got pictures of them. We know who they are. We know what position they hold in the Royal Diwan. It's -- I mean, it is a smoking gun, in fact.

CHURCH: It's all very disturbing. Robert Baer, thank you very much for shedding more light on this as we take a look at this U.N. investigation and what they found. We appreciate talking with you.

BAER: Thank you, Rosemary.


CHURCH: And we turn now to North Korea and the first visit from a Chinese president in 14 years. Xi Jinping arrived in Pyongyang just a few hours ago for a state visit and for talks with Kim Jong-un.

Analysts say Xi is sending a message to the United States that China and North Korea are not only neighbors but longtime allies. Let's turn to CNN's Paula Hancocks, who joins us live from Seoul in South Korea.

Good to see you Paula.

Why is President Xi Jinping making his first state visit to North Korea at this time, what's the significance of that?

And let's talk about the message he's trying to send to the United States.

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Rosemary there are many that would say that this meeting, this summit is long overdue. It's about 15 months ago that Kim Jong-un first went to China to meet Xi. He invited him back to Pyongyang. And Xi said yes. So this has certainly been anticipated for sometime.

But of course, the timing is interesting. It comes just weeks before the G20 meeting where Xi Jinping is expected to be meeting U.S. president Donald Trump. Now they have a bitter trade dispute that is overhanging that meeting.

At this point, there is the North Korean issue that both want to be central and pivotal to at this point, so the fact that Xi Jinping is in Pyongyang just a week away from that meeting does show that he is central to North Korea.

It shows just how close those two allies are. And of course, from Kim Jong-un's point of view, this is a propaganda coup for. He could show his people that the leader of China has come to his country. And this is the first time a leader has done this in 14 years and you also had the op-ed from Xi, saying that he supports Kim Jong-un's policies.

He also in that op-ed specified how he supports the economic policies as opposed to the nuclear ones.

But it's a real endorsement of Kim Jong-un's North Korea -- Rosemary.

CHURCH: And also China's president will be in North Korea for two days. What all will he be doing in that time and when can we expect to see video evidence of their meetings?


HANCOCKS: It's a good question and it's an answer I don't have at this point. These two countries are remarkably opaque. They are not the kind of countries, China, North Korea, to give an official schedule of what to expect. So we haven't seen any footage yet of Xi Jinping in North Korea.

We do expect -- a summit to have an extensive meeting, potentially there could be Xi Jinping going to the mass games which have been held in North Korea. They. Have been put on hold, we understand from state run media, because Kim Jong-un wasn't happy about the standard of these mass games.

But it is certainly a great show that you would expect he would want to put on for the Chinese leader. We are expecting plenty of pomp and ceremony, as it is an official state visit and potentially the sign in North Korea friendship tower there are a number of things that we have seen Chinese leaders in the past visit that we can expect this time as well.

And, of course, after the visit happens what has historically happened is that there is some kind of significant Chinese economic offering to North Korea. We have seen in the past these economic assistance that could come straight after the summit meeting as well -- Rosemary.

CHURCH: Paula Hancocks joining us live from Seoul in South Korea, where it is 3:15 in the afternoon, we will chat again next hour.

And still to come here on CNN, tensions are rising as the U.S. Navy finds new ways to blame Iran for the tanker ship attacks in the Gulf of Oman.

Plus, investigators say three Russians and a Ukrainian will face murder charges in a plane crash that killed 298 people. We will have the details on that when we return.




CHURCH: Welcome back everyone.

The U.S. Navy now says that a mine allegedly used in last week's attack on a tanker in the Gulf of Oman bears a striking resemblance to ones on display in an Iranian military parade. That word came as CNN got a close-up look at the damage to that tanker, as Sam Kiley reports.


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 --


KILEY (voice-over): -- the damage done to the Kokuka Courageous.

KILEY: 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 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.


CHURCH: In just a few hours from now, Russian president Vladimir Putin will field questions from the public in his annual televised call-in show. This event allows Russian citizens a rare chance to ask Mr. Putin questions and present concerns directly to the president. CNN will be monitoring the program and report on any news that breaks.

Four people are facing charges of murder and causing the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. Five years after the plane was shot down over Eastern Ukraine; 298 passengers and crew were killed, it's not clear whether three Russians -- Igor Girkin, Sergey Dubinsky and Oleg Pulatov -- along with Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko will ever appear in court. Our Nick Paton Walsh has that report.


NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Those police and prosecutors have a long time unveiled slowly this forensic case they have about what brought MH17 out of the sky back in July of 2014.

And they have today named four individuals who they say were essentially part of this murder plot. They don't say these men were in fact involved in pushing the button that brought the plane down but they were the chain of command between Moscow and the Russian Federation, where this quite advanced antiaircraft missile, the Buk, originated from that helped bring it into Eastern Ukraine and ultimately be used in this particular incident.

They named them as Igor Girkin, a well-known separatist figure from the Donetsk People Republic, separatist members, as they like to call themselves. Sergey Dubinsky, Oleg Pulatov and Leonid Kharchenko.

Mr. Kharchenko is the only one of those who's not a Russian, who's thought to be in Russia at the moment. He is a Ukrainian still thought to be in separatist controlled Eastern Ukraine. It's key because Russia doesn't extract its own citizens so it's unlikely these three will find themselves in the secure court facility in March of next year when this trial finally gets underway.

Police and prosecutors were relatively apologetic they couldn't provide all the details as to how they've come to this particular conclusion, saying they will have to be laid out in front of a judge.


WALSH: They did appeal to Russian officials to conduct interviews for them and for further witnesses to come forward and try and give them more details about what precisely happened. In fact, Ukrainian authorities say that they will try and arrest Mr. Kharchenko, who's still thought to be in Eastern Ukraine but interestingly enough, the prosecutor also play a number of tapped phone calls from that time, one between a senior Kremlin aide, talking to a senior member of the separatist movement, promising the military reinforcements were on their way.

They wanted better missiles basically and the Buk antiaircraft missile is exactly that. The Dutch here are trying to lay the blame toward the Russian state itself. But also saying that they still need the evidence to work out who precisely pressed the button on that particularly ugly day in July of 2014 -- Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, London.


CHURCH: We have this just into CNN. A former chief of Interpol has pleaded guilty to bribery. Chinese state media says Meng Hongwei was accused of accepting more than $2 million from his businesses and individuals from 2005 to 2017.

Meng disappeared in late September last year, when he traveled from Interpol headquarters in France to China, the Chinese government later acknowledged that Meng was detained for alleged corruption. He had also been vice minister of public security in China.

Donald Trump claims he and Kim Jong-un fell in love during their Singapore summit.

How worried should he be that China's president just arrived in North Korea?

That's next.

And India endures one of the longest heat waves in its history. We will check the forecast and see if any relief is in sight and that's coming up after a short break.




CHURCH: Welcome back, everyone, I'm Rosemary Church, let's get you caught up now on the main stories we've been following this hour.

[02:30:00] China hopes sanctions on its neighbor can be eased and analyst say Mr. Xi is sending a signal to Washington about Beijing's long standing ties to Pyongyang. Well, North Korean leader Kim Jong- un hopes to get something from the state visit as well. A bargaining chip in his stalled negotiations with the United States. CNN's Brian Todd has our report.


BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: China's president is so enthusiastic about his trip to North Korea and his meeting with Kim Jong-un, that he's taking the time to write an op-ed on it.

PATRICK CRONIN, SENIOR FELLOW, HUDSON INSTITUTE: He's done this big editorial giving Kim a blank check saying you are irreplaceable relationship.

TODD: Xi Jinping's essay in an North Korean State newspaper praises Kim for his diplomatic outrage. Promises a stronger economic ties, an even throws in a little cold war era freezing. Calling the dictator comrade Kim Jong-un. Saying they formed a deep and close friendship supporting each other in socialist revolution. The visit from Xi to Pyongyang puts the 35-year-old North Korean dictator back in the game.

After months of silence between Kim and President Trump and his team, following the disastrous summit in Illinois. It's the latest chess move and a game between Xi and President Trump to influence over the young strongman with nuclear bombs at his fingertips.

CRONIN: Xi and Trump are bargaining for Kim's affections but Xi now has got to apprehend he's going to have the lever that Kim needs to make a deal with Trump. Analyst expect Xi to use that lever next week at the G20 Summit in Japan to pressure Trump intro restarting nuclear talks with North Korea. They say there's little doubt this meeting with Xi in Pyongyang emboldens Kim Jong-un in his personal relationship with Donald Trump.

PATRICIA KIM, SENIOR POLICY ANALYST WITH THE CHINA PROGRAM, U.S. INSTITUTE OF PEACE: I think this summit between Xi and Kim definitely give strength to Kim. It helps them show the world that he has more options than the United States and South Korea that he has the backing of Xi Jinping.

TODD: It's the fifth summit between Kim and Xi since early last year. A far cry from the first six years of Kim's rule. During that period, Kim ordered the killings of two of China's favorite top North Korean figures, Kim's uncle Jang Song-thaek and his half-brother Kim Jong- nam. And he repeatedly tested nuclear weapons, all of which experts say infuriated Xi and his inner circle.

CRONIN: You can see the anger coming out of the Communist Party of China leadership at the highest level not necessarily quote from Xi Jinping but people around him saying that North Korea is a complete troublemaker, a problem, a spoiled brat.

TODD: But now, Kim has turned that dynamic back in his favor, creating tension between trump, Xi and Vladimir Putin as they vie for influence over him

CRONIN: This 35-year-old Kim Jong-un is a master of Machiavellian politics and now he's got the major powers, the major powers of the world at his beckoned call doing his bidding.


TODD: And to add to the personal tension the clock is ticking. Kim Jong-un has given the Trump team until the end of this year to come up with some kind of advancement on a nuclear deal or bust. President Trump is entering his reelection campaign where he may soon have his attention diverted from North Korea and to top it all off, President Trump's top man here at the state department on North Korea, Stephen Biegun has just come out and said that the two sides still don't have a common definition between them of what denuclearization even means. Brian Todd, CNN, Washington

CHURCH: Boris Johnson is a major step closer to becoming Britain's Tory Party leader and moving into number 10 Downing Street. In the third round of voting, the former British Foreign Secretary trampled his opponents winning 143 votes, far ahead of current Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt who had 54 votes. On Thursday the list will be whittled down to two candidates who will begin campaigning in earnest.

Conservative Party members will then vote by mail and the new prime minister will be announced on July 22nd. Of course, October 31st is the last day the U.K. can leave the E.U. without getting another extension of Brexit. So, the new prime minister will need to hit the ground running on that issue and many others, of course. Well, for a former communications director Hope Hicks didn't have much to say.

The longtime aide and confidante to Donald Trump spent the day testifying on Capitol Hill. But when it came to her Trump administration tenure, well, White House lawyers did most of the talking. CNN's Manu Raju has our report.

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hope Hicks came before the House Judiciary Committee to answer questions as part of the committee's investigation into potential obstruction of justice but Democrats came away not satisfied because the White House counsels who were in the room made very clear that she would not be answering any questions about her time in the white house.

[02:35:03] What they cited was absolute immunity, saying she is not -- as a former White House -- high-level White House official she is not obligated to provide these kind of answers to the committee. Democrats now are threatening to take her to court.


REP. JERRY NADLER (D-NY): She answers some of are questions, we learned considerable information, the White House pleaded a nonexistent absolute immunity and that will not stand.


RAJU: Now, she did answer questions about her time during the campaign season, including questions about what she knew about those hush money payments that that came from -- that the President was involved with that came from Michael Cohen's former fixer who is now in jail. When she was asked about her knowledge of, that she denied knowing about the hush money scheme to silence those extramarital affairs.

Those stories that were about to come out in the 2016 election. She said she had no knowledge of that but when it came time to question her about what she knew about those hush money payments, while she was a member of the White House staff she said she would not answer those questions. The White House Counsel objected because of the fact that she was a former official citing that absolute immunity nevertheless, despite not over yet Democrats not satisfied warning that this could very well go to court in the coming days.

And Jerry Nadler says he will "destroy the White House's case in court. Expect that litigation to happen sometime soon. Manu Raju, CNN, Capitol Hill.

CHURCH: India is going through one of the longest heat waves in its history and along with the heat, a severe drought with a parched landscape. 126 people have died across the country and our meteorologist Pedram Javaheri is joining us now from the International Weather Center having looked at these details. So, Pedram, when we keep talking day after day, went is relief going to come, how is that looking and what is going to happen as people wait for that relief?

PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN INTERNATIONAL METEOROLOGIST: Yes. You know, it's going to remain very hot for at least the next seven days and very gradually and we're about eight to nine days behind in the onset of monsoon season. It is officially begun, but -- began about a week or so behind schedule. So we'll see everything that is expected to move forward taking additional week before it arrives where it typically does this time of year.

But as you mentioned here we've seen water levels and reservoirs among the longest on record going back to some seven decades across portions of the India subcontinent. And unfortunately when you break down how this has all played out, we've seen rainfall amounts in recent decades and the wet season which is right now begin to drop just a little bit noticeable amount in the summer season.

And also in the dryer winter season. So essentially, the wet season a little less wet. The dry season a little more dry and that's precisely what has led to the shortages across this particular part of the world and also seeing the rainy season really reduce itself as far as the number of rainy days that we've seen as well. But notice the groundwater depletion rate has been very persistent as well.

In fact, go back to 2002 just about every single year we've have seen water levels in the groundwater supply drop some 10 to 25 millimeters, get lower and lower and this is why studies are coming out mentioning that within the next year, not going to be a surprise here to see some large cities begin to run out of their groundwater supply, again, as early as 2020. This is a particular study issued in the past 12 months.

Here mentioning Delhi, also Hyerabad, as well as Chennai and Bengaluru and some of the cities that can be first impacted by this and then you fast forward to 2030, we know 40 percent of India's population could be at risk of not having access to clean water. Now, you know India's population is pretty significant. This had 1.3 billion people, we expect that number to rise by about 15 percent.

In the next decade that would go up to 1-1/2 billion people. So, increased population, reduction there in groundwater supply and less wet days all going to really be a troublesome area here to approach in the next decade, Rosemary.

CHURCH: Pedram, thank you so much for keeping such close on that. Appreciate it. We'll take a short break here. Still to come a young girl sold into slavery makes a new life. Ahead in our freedom project, how things have changed in the past eight years. And how was former Baseball Star David Ortiz shot by mistake? We will have details on who the real target was after the break.


[02:42:18] CHURCH: Back in 2011, we told you the story of a young girl in Taiwan who had been sold into slavery. She spent 15 years working day and night for a family in Southern California. Her story showed how modern day slavery cross international borders and extends into affluent neighborhoods. But as Martin Savidge reports, her life has changed dramatically in the past eight years


MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's a typical day for Shari Ho. At home, caring for a group of children.


SAVIDGE: Ho runs a licensed day care center in Orange County, California.

HO: That's why I like to play with them and then lie down with them.

SAVIDGE: Play is an important part of the day, perhaps because your own childhood was spent working as a slave.

HO: A person told me your mom will never come back for, your parents sold you, you're going to stay here forever.

SAVIDGE: Ho says desperate poverty in her native Taiwan in 1994 forced her parents to sell her for about $300. She was seven years old. For more than 15 years Ho worked for a wealthy family first in Taiwan then later when her captors moved to the U.S. In that time, she says she was subjected to daily mental and physical abuse. Cleaning, cooking and caring for the family. Sleeping on the floor, eating the families discarded leftovers in a corner of the kitchen.

Ho says once when she was accused of stealing a sip of tea, a woman in the home dragged her by her hair to the bathroom where she put a toilet brush into the child's mouth and twisted. In 2005 at the age of 23 host summon the courage to escape. A woman who worked near the family store noticed something wasn't right. She encouraged how to call her if she ever needed help. Ho did, and they coordinated the time to meet in front of the house where she ran into the waiting car.

Special Agent Mark Speidel of Homeland Security Investigations worked closely with Ho in the days that followed.

MARK SPEIDEL, SPECIAL AGENT, HOMELAND SECURITY INVESTIGATIONS: When I first met Shari, she was very fragile, very frightened and concerned, scared. She has mentioned she wasn't sure who to trust because this had gone on for so many years. I knew that we had to handle her, you know, in a very delicate manner.

SAVIDGE: No criminal charges were brought against the family but Ho has settled a civil lawsuit with them. When the CNN first reported her story in 2011, Ho was just learning how to ride a bike, read, and use money. Everyday skills she'd never been taught living as a slave. Her one wish back then, to find her mother.

Do you want to find her?

[02:45:12] HO: Yes.

SAVIDGE: And what would you say when you found her?

HO: If I find her, I'll say, Mom, I love you so much. I just want to find you.

SAVIDGE: The CNN story sparked a media storm in Taiwan, and its foreign minister helps her locate her family.

This was the moment, mother and daughter waited 20 years for.

HO: I feel hurt, confuse. But first, she told me it was like, I'm sorry and that everything happened to you but I just told her and say, everything is a past. It's more important, I'm free, I'm happy, I can able to see you, and I can visit you and see the family.

MELODIE FOX, CO-AUTHOR, MY NAME IS ALSO FREEDOM: Was there any part of the book that maybe was scariest to talk about?

SAVIDGE: With co-author Melodie Fox, Shari has written a book about her life called, My Name is Also Freedom. She hopes sales of the book will help her reach even higher. Expanding her daycare center to include help for other survivors of human trafficking.

HO: I had a lot of dream for my center. I want to help other survivor too, to become able to go work. I just want to help other people.

SAVIDGE: A dream she works every day for in hopes the next generation won't endure what she had to those many years before.


CHURCH: It is an incredible story there. Well, the U.S. State Department will release its annual trafficking in person's report in the coming day. It's meant to monitor and combat human trafficking. And we will have live coverage starting at 9:00 in the morning, Washington time. That's 9:00 in the evening on Thursday in Hong Kong, only here on CNN.

What looks like it was a case of mistaken identity in the shooting of former major league baseball player David Ortiz. Ortiz was at a bar in his native Dominican Republic on June 9th when a gunman walked in and shot him once in the lower back. Authorities, now say the former Red Sox star was not the intended target. Our Patrick Oppmann has more from Santo, Domingo.

PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dominican prosecutors have now reversed themselves and said that David Big Papi Ortiz was never the target of an alleged hit on his life. And said they say another man, a man who was sitting at his table is not well-known here at all who runs an auto mechanic shop was the person that a team of hitmen actually meant to murder. But somehow, they mistook Big Papi Ortiz for this man and shot him instead.

There are a lot of questions that are raised by this. One, how do you mistake one of Dominican Republic's best-known celebrities for somebody else? Why would they carry out a hit in such a public place? And why do they wait hours until only after Big Papi Ortiz came into the club to strike?

A prosecutor say they are sure, they've got this right now that the alleged target of this hit was somebody who had, had a falling-out years ago with drug traffickers, and ever since apparently, had been marked for death.

Still, though there are inconsistencies. A court document obtained by CNN shows that prosecutors as of Monday said that Ortiz was the one who was being followed by the hitman. Why would he been followed if he was never the target?

We asked prosecutors that at the press conference, and they said that we were mistaken, that we've gotten information wrong. But that is, in fact, what the court documents say.

So, while officials say, they have closed this case that now they will move on to trial which could be a very lengthy process. Perhaps, taking another year or two of investigation. There are still plenty of unanswered questions. Patrick Oppmann, CNN, Santo Domingo.

And we are learning more about the investigation surrounding the deaths of nine Americans at a handful of Dominican Republic resorts. The FBI is now testing samples from, at least, one hotel minibar, part of its investigation with Dominican authorities.

It's also assisting with the toxicology tests of three American tourists who died in the Dominican. A local authorities call the deaths isolated incidents and are trying to reassure travelers the country is safe to travel to.

Well, the U.S. Congress has turned its attention to Boeing 737 MAX, the passenger jet that was involved in two crashes killing 346 people. A famous American pilot appeared and testified, and he had some strong words for the aircraft manufacturer. Our Drew Griffin has the details.

[02:50:01] DREW GRIFFIN, CNN INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: The hearing in the House Transportation Committee is the second one on the 737 MAX, and this focused on the stakeholders. The pilots, the flight attendants, who will have to get in that plane and fly it once it is ungrounded.

And there's a big debate up on Capitol Hill and in the industry of whether or not pilots will need to be retrained simulator training to fly that plane. This is what one of the host pilots that testified, of course, we all know him, Chesley Sully Sullenberger of the -- of the landing on the Hudson, said about what he thinks about simulator training.


CHESLEY SULLENBERGER, FORMER PILOT, UNITED STATES AIRLINES: We should all want pilots to experience these challenging situations for the first time in a simulator and not in flight with passengers and crew on board. And reading about it on an iPad is not even close to sufficient. Pilots must experience it physically, firsthand.


GRIFFIN: Boeing and the FAA have yet to determine what kind of retraining will be necessary. Will it be just the computer type iPad training or will all the pilots need to go back through the simulator training. We're still waiting on that. Also, still waiting on when exactly the certification flight is going to take place, which will be the next step towards on grounding this plane which is still months away. Drew Griffin, CNN, Washington.

CHURCH: And still to come on CNN, why pressure is building on U.S. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell to lower interest rates.

Plus, a very special auction. A very special musical instruments, the guitars of Pink Floyd's David Gilmour. We'll have the details.


CHURCH: Well, the U.S. Federal Reserve is keeping interest rates on hold despite intense pressure from President Trump to lower them. Our Claire Sebastian has more now from New York.

CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: No rate cut just yet, but just six months after they last raised rates, the Fed has for the first time signaled a cut could be coming. As expected, they changed the language of their statement. They no longer promising to be "patient" when determining future adjustments in monetary policy.

Instead, the Fed now sees rising uncertainties and promised to "act as appropriate to sustain the expansion." Now, if that wasn't clear enough about half of the feds policymakers are now projecting, at least, one rate cut this year if not two. And in this press conference, the Fed chair, Jerome Powell said there are two key drivers behind this uncertainty, trade and slowing global growth.

Don't forget, of course, that since the last Fed meeting in early May the U.S. has raised tariffs on China and rocked the markets with the threat of tariffs on Mexico, which, of course, they later walked back. And that's not the only wild card the Fed chair is dealing with. President Trump has ramped up the pressure on Jerome Powell to cut rates ahead of this meeting.

And Powell was asked in the press conference about the report of the president if considered demoting him earlier this year.


JEROME POWELL, CHAIRMAN, FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD: I think the law is clear that I have a four-year term and I fully intend to serve it.


SEBASTIAN: But Powell also said the fed's independence from direct political control has served both the economy and the country well. Clare Sebastian, CNN, New York.

CHURCH: To a musician, a guitar is not just wood and wire, it is a window to the soul. And every guitar is like a child with a personality all its own. On Thursday in New York, 120 special guitars go on the auction block. They belong to one of the most important modern musicians around, Pink Floyd's David Gilmour. Take a look.


[02:55:10] GEMMA SUDLOW, SPECIALIST HEAD OF DEPARTMENT, PRIVATE AND ICONIC COLLECTIONS AT CHRISTIE'S, NEW YORK: It's the most important collection of guitars to come to the market in decades. What you see in the galleries here is over 120 guitars from David Gilmour's collection.

CAITLIN GRAHAM, POP CULTURE CONSULTANT, CHRISTIE'S: He was obviously the lead guitarist of one of the greatest bands of all- time, Pink Floyd. So, it's going to be interesting for Pink Floyd fans, David Gilmour fans, guitar collectors, rock and roll fans, as well as, institutions, and guitar makers, wanting to buy things for their archives. You know, it's going to cost, cost the big stir among the whole rock and roll community.

SUDLOW: I think the two instruments that really speak to me partly this is my favorite song of the Martin D-35, and this is the 12 string instrument the D12-28. Two acoustic guitars that he used to write and record wish you were here. And in one of our galleries, you can actually hear that being played with the guitars themselves.

DAVID GILMOUR, GUITARIST AND VOCALIST, PINK FLOYD: So, so you think you can tell heaven from hell, blue sky from pain.

GRAHAM: The highlight of the sale is really the Black Strat. It's just David Gilmour's 1969 black Fender Stratocaster that he purchased at Manny's Music in Manhattan, in 1970. It quickly became his primary recording and performance guitar, and he used it for every Pink Floyd album from that point onwards until 1984.

SUDLOW: What's incredible is that each of these instruments has their own story with David Gilmour and his iconic career. These are instruments that have played music that has defined the lives of several generations. All the proceeds from the sale, a benefitting charity which is also very exciting. So, there's this incredible iconic name and the philanthropic component which is created a huge interest from archives around the world.


CHURCH: Fantastic and thank you so much for joining us this hour. I'm Rosemarie Church, I'll be back with another hour of news in just a moment. You're watching CNN. Do stay with us.