Return to Transcripts main page


Migrant Children Held In Filthy Conditions; U.S. And Iranian Leaders Trade Insults And Threats; Trump Pushes Democrats For Support On Border. Aired 2-3p ET

Aired June 25, 2019 - 14:00   ET



[14:00:19] HALA GORANI, CNN ANCHOR, HALA GORANI TONIGHT: Hello everyone. Live from CNN London on this Tuesday, I'm Hala Gorani.

TEXT: Donald J. Trump: .... Iran's very ignorant and insulting statement, put out today, only shows that they do not understand reality. Any attack

by Iran on anything American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration. No more John Kerry &


GORANI: Tonight, the threats keep coming as Donald Trump warns Iran it could face obliteration if it attacks anything American.

Just as the president's son-in-law and advisor reveals his economic plan for peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

And the acting head of the U.S. agency that oversees the processing of migrants resigns after CNN learns more than a hundred children are being

returned to a facility described as "filthy and inhumane." We'll look at that story.

And we'll be speaking, by the way, to someone who has visited a facility on the border and says she was shocked by what she saw.

The angry rhetoric between Iran and the U.S. is reaching new levels today. Donald Trump has, just a short time ago, countered an insult about his

mental fitness with a threat of obliteration. That threat came in tweet form.

"Iran's very ignorant and insulting statement, put out today, only shows that they do not understand reality. Any attack by Iran on anything

American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration. No more John Kerry & Obama!"

That tweet is apparently a direct response to biting comments by Iran's president who said the White House is "suffering from mental disability,"

quote-unquote. Fred Pleitgen is in Tehran with more Iranian reactions. Stephen Collinson joins me from Washington.

Fred, what are you hearing where you are, to the president's latest tweet threatening obliteration?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the Iranians have said from the get-go that if there is any sort of military

move by the United States, as they put it, that they would respond in a very heavy and harsh way. But you could see this sort of shaping up today.

And I was quite surprised by the strength of the statement coming from Hassan Rouhani, and some of the words that he was choosing there. Because

he is someone who is known as a moderate, and someone who really uses toned-down language.

It was interesting in his speech today because at the beginning, he said he didn't believe that the new sanctions that the Trump administration, of

course yesterday, put on the supreme leader and other key figures in the Iranian military as well. But those would have any effect on the economy

of Iran, and then also any effect on the people who are actually sanctioned.

He said, look, the supreme leader, he's got a house, he's got a prayer room. He doesn't have anything else, so there's not very much for the U.S.

to sanction.

But then Hassan Rouhani did get in some pretty angry rhetoric, also questioning the mental stability not just of President Trump, but of the

entire White House team. Here's what he had to say.


HASSAN ROUHANI, PRESIDENT OF IRAN (through translator); They had become frustrated and confused. They did not know what to do. They do strange

things that no sane person in the history of world politics has done, or at least I don't remember.

This is because of their total confusion. They have become mentally disabled. The White House is suffering from mental disability.


PLEITGEN: So, there, you have Hassan Rouhani speaking earlier today.

The other thing that the Iranians were saying, Hala, is they say that essentially, these new sanctions block any sort of chance of negotiations

between the U.S. and Iran.

One of the interesting things that he was alluding to is the fact that, of course, Iran's foreign minister is set to be sanctioned later this week by

the Trump administration itself, as well. That was something that was announced yesterday. And Rouhani, also saying, "Look, the U.S. keeps

talking about wanting to go back to diplomacy. But then they go and sanction the top diplomat."

And Javad Zarif actually, just a couple of minutes ago, Hala -- I'm just getting this in right now -- tweeted once again, once again saying that in

his view, people around President Trump, that B-team, as he calls it: John Bolton, Benjamin Netanyahu, of course the prime minister of Israel, they're

saying, "Iran never left the negotiating table. the B-team dragged the U.S. out while plotting for war," is what he's saying.

Of course, also saying right now, negotiations not happening and they believe the U.S. is lying about wanting negotiations.

GORANI: So I'm checking my Twitter because, really, we're getting these statements and all of this exchange of very heated insults from one country

to the other on Twitter.

Stephen Collinson, what is behind this latest outburst by the president? Because, obviously, Rouhani saying that the administration is suffering

from a mental disability, is not something that was going to sit well with the president.

But then the president takes it to a completely different level here, threatening obliteration. That's a huge word.

STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Yes. And I think what we're seeing here, to start with, is the president doesn't want to seem weak.

After all, just last week, he called back that proposed strike on Iranian radars and missile bases to avenge the downing of the drone. Then this

week, he's come on hard by putting in place those new sanctions, and now we have an upping of the rhetoric.

[14:05:05] I think it's also the latest sign of confusion, and it will sow confusion around the rest of the world, as to exactly what the U.S. policy

is on Iran if, as Fred said, the stated policy of the White House is to get Iran into talks, to come up with some kind of better nuclear deal.

All of the steps that the White House is taking seem to be -- run counter to that.

TEXT: U.S. Sanctions on Iran: New sanctions target supreme leader, deny access to financial resources; Previous sanctions targeted nearly 1,000

individuals, banks and other entities; U.S. prohibits buying Iranian iron, steel, aluminum, copper

COLLINSON: And that is why there is some suspicion -- and I think what the Iranians clearly are trying to do is point to that, that some forces inside

the White House aren't that worried about getting talks doing and they want to precipitate some kind of confrontation --

GORANI: But, Stephen --

COLLINSON: -- and blame Iran for it.

GORANI: -- how will this -- how will this resolve itself? Because we're seeing a ramping-up of the heated rhetoric. And understandably, some

people are concerned. Foreign ministers in European countries are saying, "We don't want some sort of accidental conflict because someone mistweets

something or an insult lands in the wrong place or rubs someone the wrong way." How do we avoid conflict here, at this stage?

COLLINSON: There is no sign that the White House has any gamed-out endgame to this confrontation. It -- the position is that if they put sufficient

pressure on Iran, it will get so desperate that it will come back to the table.

That, of course, is based on a U.S. assessment of Iranian national interests and what Iran will do. That is an assessment that seems

completely counter to everything we know about the history of U.S.-Iran relations. The fact, you know, that the Iranians have a great deal of

national pride, that their revolution itself is based on opposition to the United States.

TEXT: Iran-U.S. Tensions: June 13, two tankers attacked in Gulf of Oman; June 17, U.S. to send 1,000 troops to Middle East; June 20, Iran shoots

down U.S. drone; June 21, Trump tweets about calling off military strike on Iran; June 24, U.S. announces new sanctions on Iran

COLLINSON: So often in the U.S. foreign policy -- we saw it with Iraq, we've seen it with North Korea -- politicians in Washington think they know

how the other side will behave, and they behave in a different way. And that's why, as you say, this is so dangerous.

GORANI: Stephen Collinson, thanks very much.

Fred Pleitgen live in Tehran, appreciate it.

Now, speaking of Trump, the Trump administration is unveiling what it calls the opportunity of the century for Palestinians. But it's hard to escape

the irony that the big reveal came at a conference the Palestinians are not attending. They are boycotting, insisting their rights are not for sale.

Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner outlined the first phase of the administration's long-awaited Middle East peace plan in

Bahrain. It doesn't attempt to address the core issues at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian situation. Instead, it focuses on boosting the

Palestinian economy.


JARED KUSHNER, TRUMP SENIOR ADVISOR: The people in this room are not people who shy away from hard problems. And everyone here would like to

see --


-- a bustling commercial and tourist center in Gaza and the West Bank, where international businesses come together and thrive. Imagine the West

Bank as a blossoming economy, full of entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists and business leaders.

Imagine people and goods flowing quickly and securely throughout the region as economics become more integrated and people become more prosperous.


GORANI: Well, Palestinians say the Trump administration just doesn't get it. They say no amount of cash can make them drop their desire for an

independent state where they no longer live under occupation. Let's go to White House reporter Jeremy Diamond. He's at the conference in Manama,


And Jared Kushner was mentioning things like movement of people and goods, property rights for Palestinians. Very far from being realities on the

ground. How is this supposed to work?

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Yes. It is far from being the reality on the ground. And a lot of Jared Kushner's speech was really

about trying to paint a picture of the possibilities. If indeed there is a peace agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians, which, Hala, of

course is a huge "if."

And Jared Kushner did make clear that the economic portion of this and the political portion of his peace plan -- the political portion of which we

have not seen yet, of course -- that these are both intrinsically linked.

He both cast this economic pathway to prosperity for the Palestinians as a necessary precondition for an eventual political agreement between the

Israelis and the Palestinians, while also making clear that an economic plan cannot happen unless there is that peace agreement.

So you kind of had him linking those two ideas. But he was really trying to paint a picture of the possibilities, and appealing directly to the

Palestinian people, who, as you've seen, Hala, the images in the West Bank and Gaza over the last couple of days, really, a string of protests taking

place, expressing anger at this conference here in Manama.

Because many Palestinians view this as an attempt to bribe them with these economic financial incentives, away from their dreams of having a sovereign

Palestinian state --

GORANI: I get there, but --

DIAMOND: -- But Jared Kushner, here, sought to address the Palestinians -- yes, yes.

GORANI: But I was going to say, obviously the political solution is not there. But logistically, what he's proposing can't work. Because here,

we're talking about movement of people and property rights and movement of goods and linking Gaza and the West Bank.

[14:10:11] I mean, even if you, you know, put the political agreement or solution on the back burner, what is being proposed here today is not

realistic. The Palestinian prime minister, by the way, spoke to Christiane Amanpour. He had this to say about the proposal.


MOHAMMAD SHTAYYEH, PALESTINIAN PRIME MINISTER: What will be presented has nothing to do with reality. It has nothing to do with settlements. It has

nothing to do with occupation. It has nothing to do with the Palestinians' not having any access to their land, to their water. Palestinians have no

control of their resources.

So when we speak about investment and improving living conditions without really tackling the roots and the causes of the problem, I think the whole

workshop is totally misleading and it's just simply an intellectual exercise. As I said earlier, the best part of it will be only the coffee



GORANI: So logistically, how is Jared Kushner proposing to implement any of this?

DIAMOND: Well, that is why, Hala, I think he is saying that none of this is possible without that peace agreement. I think that the White House --


DIAMOND: -- has been trying to express -- and maybe not getting the message across completely -- that none of this $50 billion proposal that

they're laying out, providing detail of the various projects that it would include, none of this can actually begin to be implemented, none of these

funds can actually begin to flow to the West Bank or to Gaza until there is some kind of a ceasefire agreement or a broader political resolution to

this conflict. And so that, I think, is maybe the message that is being lost here.

And again, part of that is because he is proposing this without discussing the political portion of this plan, which is so crucial to actually getting

any of this investment into the country.

And you saw Jared Kushner both acknowledge that, but at the same time, saying it's not the time right now to discuss the political plan. The

question is what happens over the next four or five months, while we wait for that political portion of the plan to come out, if indeed it does.

The White House has made very clear that it's going to wait until the next round of Israeli elections, slated for September, to release this plan,

which means we likely won't see it until November at the earliest.

GORANI: All right. And that's if that political portion of the plan gets anywhere, it's been tried many times before. Thanks very much, Jeremy

Diamond in Manama, Bahrain.

Now, I want to bring you a story that seems hard to imagine: children held like criminals, separated from their loved ones with little or no contact.

These kids are said to be living in conditions that are filthy and overcrowded, with no access to basics like soap and toothbrushes, sleeping

on cold, hard floors with no blankets, many of them now sick.

That's what hundreds of migrant children are facing in American border facilities. We highlighted this story yesterday. And after these squalid

conditions were discovered at the Clint Border Patrol Station in Texas, which you can see on the screen now, nearly 250 children were moved to

other facilities.

However, we learned that a short time ago, a hundred of these children have now been taken back to the same place that was considered inadequate and


Meanwhile, amid the crisis, the acting Customs and Border chief, John Sanders, has resigned. He's not saying why. So more chaos there in those

Border Patrol (ph) agencies. CNN's Nick Valencia is outside a Border Patrol station in El Paso, Texas. Lauren Fox has the latest from Capitol

Hill as Congress argues over a funding bill to address this crisis.

And talk to us, Nick Valencia, a little bit about why these kids were moved, these 100 children, were moved back to this facility that was

considered inadequate, unsanitary and unsafe for them.

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, according to Customs and Border Protection, the reason that they were moved back was because there was no

longer concerns about overcrowding. You mentioned those 250 kids that were transferred after we reported, along with the Associated Press, about the

conditions inside this facility here, they were abruptly moved.

And according to Customs and Border Protection, that freed up some space inside. They got some help, some of the kids were transferred into

shelters and Health and Human Services' care, which is why they say they made the decision to move a hundred kids back into this facility.

But as you mentioned, this is the very same facility, Hala, that independent monitors called conditions there "unconscionable." And the

stories that we're learning and hearing about what's going on inside, are really difficult to talk about.

You know, circumstances like kids sleeping on the floor without mattresses, some who haven't showered in three weeks, there's countless interviews

being told to us, through these independent monitors, of children taking care of toddlers, that children are basically left to fend for themselves.

Customs and Border Protection are adamantly denying these allegations. In fact, they're saying that there is access, and customary access, to soap

and water. They're saying that they're doing the best they can with the situation that they've been given.

And earlier in a phone call I was on with Customs and Border Protection, they used the time to tout the progress. They said that earlier, in about

a week, they've gone from having 2,600 children in their custody to less than a thousand. But they do admit, Hala, that this is an overwhelming

crisis that's stretched them really thin -- Hala.

[14:15:12] GORANI: And, Lauren, let's talk a little bit about this funding bill to address the crisis. Where does that stand?

LAUREN FOX, CNN POLITICS CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER: Well, you know, it depends which chamber you're talking about. But in the House of

Representatives, there is a stalemate between House leadership, the Democratic House leadership, and the progressives in their caucus.

Many of those in the caucus, arguing that, you know, they do not want to give the Trump administration more money at the border, given what is

happening there. They say, you know, there's inadequate provisions, there's inadequate help for these children and that they don't want to give

more money to that problem.

Meanwhile, Democratic leaders are arguing that, you know, they have to spend more money in order to fix the problem on the border, that it's a


So all of that, the vote that was supposed to happen today has been on hold. We're not sure if that still will happen this afternoon, or if it

will be moved to a later date this week. But, you know, that's where things stand in the House of Representatives.

Then in the Senate, they have another bill that would fund the border crisis, you know, a supplemental $4.6 billion, $2.88 billion to go to the

Office of Refugees and Resettlement in order to try to stem this crisis.

TEXT: House Border Bill Differences From Senate Bill: HHS must report unaccompanied child death in custody to Congress within 24 hours; $30

million to FEMA to reimburse local jurisdictions for handling migrant crisis

FOX: But their bill also hasn't come to the floor. Their bill passed out of committee in a bipartisan vote, 30 to one last week in the Senate

Appropriations Committee. But the two bills, very different. And assuming that both chambers could pass their respective bills, which hasn't happened

yet, they'd still have to find a way to combine them, to put them together, to find some kind of compromise. And they don't have much time left.

So that's the obstacles that face the House and the Senate and the Congress at this point. Meanwhile, the White House did threaten to veto the House's

version of the bill, so a lot of moving parts up here -- Hala.

GORANI: And the -- we had this big resignation, Nick Valencia. Is it having to do with how this has been mismanaged by border authorities there,

with all these kids crammed into filthy detention centers?

VALENCIA: You would think it would have something to do with that, but officially, that's not the case. John Sanders was the acting commissioner

for just a few short months. It was just about a month or so ago that I saw him here along the border in a different part of Texas, in the Rio

Grande Valley.

TEXT: McAllen, Texas: Please help me. I do not speak English. What bus do I need to take? Thank you for your help!

VALENCIA: He declined to take my questions. But it is just another development in an already stunning day related to the immigration crisis

here in the United States.

And one quick note, Hala. I wanted to talk about these Customs and Border Protection facilities and the influx that is currently happening. These

facilities are meant just to process these migrants. Seventy-two hours is the longest that they're supposed to be held.

A Flores settlement here, back in the late '90s, in 1997, says that migrants should not be held with unnecessary delay. But that's not what

we're seeing. We're seeing cases and hearing cases, children being held for days, weeks if not months -- Hala.

GORANI: Right. But so just quickly, then that means that is a violation of the Flores agreement, which means there are legal grounds to challenge

authorities who are detaining these children for more than three days. Is that happening?

VALENCIA: Yes, but the government is probably going to say that these are extraordinary circumstances and there is legalese and language in that

settlement that gives them that loophole.

Right now, though, we know that counsel for the Flores settlement is considering legal action. But we haven't been given official word, if and

when they'll file any motions in the court of law -- Hala.

GORANI: Lauren Fox, thanks very much.

Nick Valencia in Texas.

Still to come tonight, Boris Johnson hits the campaign trail, the frontrunner to be British prime minister cannot shake off questions about

his private life.

And, trying to beat the heat? Europe braces for record-breaking temperatures. It's hot even in London. We'll be right back.


[14:20:57] GORANI: For a few days, he was nowhere to be seen. And I mean nowhere. Now, Boris Johnson can't stop making public appearances as he

battles to become Britain's next prime minister.

He's made a slew of media appearances. But questions about his private life still follow him around everywhere. Here's one exchange about a photo

of him and his girlfriend that made it to the front pages of the newspapers.


NICK FERRARI, LBC RADIO HOST: When was it taken?

BORIS JOHNSON, UNITED KINGDOM M.P.: Well I don't get -- listen (ph), you - - you are --

FERRARI: So that's a state secret.

JOHNSON: -- you're asking me -- you're asking me --

FERRARI: So that's a state secret, when the picture was taken?

JOHNSON: It's not a state secret.

FERRARI: So when was it taken?

JOHNSON: It's not a state secret. It's just happens to be something that I don't want to get into.


GORANI: Well, they got down to policy. And when they did that, Mr. Johnson was quizzed about his plans for Brexit.


FERRARI: Ultimately you're prepared to walk away, right?

JOHNSON: Yes. And that's of course, the other leg of the -- of the proposal. It is vital as a country that we get ready to come out without

an agreement if we must.


GORANI: Well, it all comes as Boris Johnson is challenging Jeremy Hunt for the leadership of the Conservative Party. And Bianca Nobilo who joins me

here now, there is more and more pressure here on Boris Johnson.

Because if you look even at the polling, I understand, within the Conservative Party, all these questions about his private life and whatever

argument he had with his girlfriend and whether or not that photo was staged a few days later, in the countryside, that's -- it's not helping him

in this race.

BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It isn't helping him. So we've seen in the polls of the Conservative Party, voters in the United Kingdom -- and

this is an important distinction -- that he's 10 points behind what he was prior to this altercation what -- this commotion that happened in his flat,

and all the subsequent events, the avoidance of the media, not addressing it, et cetera.

GORANI: That's why he's coming out now?

NOBILO: That's why he's coming out now. But also, Conservative membership is very different from the Conservative electorate. And that's a key

distinction because it's that 160,000, approximately, of Conservative members that are going to be choosing either Boris Johnson or Jeremy Hunt -


GORANI: How are they different?

NOBILO: Well, broadly speaking in terms of the population, Conservative members tend to be more male, older and white than the average member of

the population.

Boris has a lot of this priced in. He's had a turbulent personal life since he's been in the front and center of politics. So that is understand

-- that's understood, rather, by the Conservative Party members.

TEXT: Johnson v. Hunt: Their Brexit Policies. Johnson: Leave on October 31 with or without deal; Discard unpopular parts of withdrawal deal;

Threatens to withhold 39 billion-pound "divorce bill." Hunt: More flexible on deadline to leave; Opposes no-deal, not willing to rule it

out; Recognizes parliament would try and stop no deal.

NOBILO: But it's whether or not this is now a question of competence in his handling of all of these controversies, that is starting to stick with

the members. Maybe they're starting to think -- and I've spoken to a couple of them -- that his charisma and his political charm isn't enough to

counteract all of these --

GORANI: Right.

NOBILO: -- other issues, especially when he won't give as many details on policy as they're hungry for.

GORANI: Well, he will give details on policy, he won't give details on his private life, he won't give details on who took that picture of him and his

girlfriend --


GORANI: -- he's asked what he does for fun, and then describes painting wine crates --

NOBILO: Possibly one of the most damaging and peculiar things that he's said (ph) so (ph) far (ph).


GORANI: Right. That was a very peculiar answer --


GORANI: -- and people said, "You're lying." Basically, you're just making an occupation up to make yourself sound interesting. It seems as though

he's doing what people said he would do if he were to torpedo his own chances, which is self-destruct.

He's not self-destructing, but he's on that -- he's on that path potentially.

NOBILO: Yes, you're right. And this is why a number of his colleagues in Parliament said the only person who could stop Boris is Boris.


NOBILO: And this is why hi campaign strategist, Lynton Crosby, was applying a submarine strategy of keeping Boris out of the media, making

sure that he said as little as possible. Because when you're the clear frontrunner, especially if you're Boris Johnson who's prone to gaffes, then

you want to try and avoid opportunities for you to misspeak or misstep.

Now, Boris is out in the open. He's done an interview with Laura Kuenssberg, with two radio stations in the U.K. --


NOBILO: -- he's been pounding the pavements where he's comfortable because he's not comfortable being that sedate, you know, media-shy person that

he's been trying to be over the last couple of weeks.

GORANI: Right.

NOBILO: He's back in campaign mode.

[14:25:03] GORANI: He's back in that -- yes. A bit like Donald Trump. Where, when he -- when he was the clear frontrunner in the primary,

Republican primary race, people kept saying he's going to calm down --


GORANI: -- he's going to be more presidential, act more presidential. But his nature, his fundamental nature came back out.

NOBILO: Yes. And you can see all the eccentricity in his nature as well. And that's a good point, people can't fight their nature on that -- under

that much media scrutiny --


NOBILO: -- and attention over a sustained period of time. And you made an important point about his unwillingness to address none (ph) of the issues

in his personal life and peculiar revelations about his pastimes. It's always been his policy, never to comment on anything in his personal life.

And it has been in the papers in the past over the last couple of years, the thinking being that if he answers one question and the dam breaks and

then he'll get a thousand questions about his personal life and he doesn't want that to happen. So that's why he's avoiding it and he says he doesn't

comment on the -- on issues that relate to his loved ones or his family --

GORANI: Right.

NOBILO: -- for that reason, really.

GORANI: Well, I think when the police is called to your flat, maybe that's something that you should make an exception for. But in this case, yes, he

is refusing -- we'll see how that impacts the race. Thanks very much, Bianca.

Bianca is wearing the right outfit for the weather, by the way. I might not be because, frankly, it's hot even in here. European weather

forecasters say you can pretty much throw out the record book when it comes to heat waves because the next week or so is going to rewrite all those


A system is pulling up air from Africa, bringing temperatures never seen before in June. CNN's Melissa Bell has the latest.


MELISSA BELL, CNN PARIS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The European summer is only a few weeks old. But already temperatures are soaring.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I live in Zambia now. And I can say it's cooler in Zambia than it is in France.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We've been walking for about 30 minutes, and it was too hot so we had to rest.

BELL (voice-over): And in the days ahead, it's only going to get hotter. A high-pressure system over Central and Eastern Europe is drawing in very

hot air from Africa, pushing up temperatures in Spain, France and Italy as the massive extreme heat moves north towards Germany.

FRANCOIS GOURAND, METEO FRANCE FORECASTER (through translator): We're expecting an exceptional, even unprecedented heat wave for the month of

June, meaning that we're going to reach temperatures over a period of six or seven days, that have never been observed for the month of June before.

BELL (voice-over): Authorities in France are already drawing comparisons to the deadly 2003 heat wave, which claimed the lives of tens of thousands

of people across the continent.

The country's health minister is urging citizens to take necessary precautions over the coming days.

AGNES BUZYN, FRENCH HEALTH MINISTER (through translator): We give instructions to the various companies, to adapt their schedules, their ways

of working in order to avoid public transport as much as possible. All companies that can telework should be encouraged. And all those who can

adapt their opening and closing times should do so.

BELL (voice-over): The scorching heat is affecting the FIFA Women's World Cup too, where the U.S. team is preparing to take on the French team in

Paris in the quarterfinals on Friday.

KARINA LEBLANC, HEAD OF WOMEN'S FOOTBALL AT CONCACAF: They may play a different style, maybe not press as high, maybe just figure out ways to

adapt to the heat. But you'll see both teams doing that.

BELL (voice-over): In Germany, residents are already doing what they can to cool down.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): It's hot. But when you're in the water, it's nice and cool. So when you're in the water, bit a of both.

BELL (voice-over): Forecasters there are predicting the same weather to peak on Wednesday or Thursday. The earlier and more intense heat wave

conditions are yet another reminder, if it were needed, of what scientists say is a climate crisis.

Melissa Bell, CNN, Paris.


GORANI: Well, unseasonably hot weather across the Atlantic is helping to fuel a huge wildfire in southern Florida. A lightning strike started the

blaze in the Everglades in Florida. Large fires in this area, not uncommon.

No buildings, thankfully, are being threatened. But officials are worried because the fire is moving very quickly. You can almost see it, there in

that video, just that it's advancing pretty quickly. The fire has burned almost 13,000 hectares so far.

Still to come tonight, we'll have more on that heart-wrenching story about the inhumane conditions kids are facing in American border detention

facilities. And I'll be speaking to one of the researchers who saw those conditions firsthand.

[14:29:29] Plus, the anti-vaccination movement is on the rise in Italy. We look at children most at risk of getting ill from other children who have

not been vaccinated. We'll be right back.


[14:30:04] HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: We want to focus a bit more on the story we told you about at the top of the show. The treatment

of migrant children being held in American detention facilities at the border. We've been talking for days about the deplorable conditions in

those facilities, no soap, no toothpaste in some cases, dirty diapers, children sleeping on the floor.

Advocates from Human Rights Watch were able to visit some of these children. And listen to this description. They said, "We spoke with an

11-year-old caring for his toddler brother, both were fending for themselves in a cell with dozens of other children. The little one was

quiet with matted hair. A hocking cough, muddy pants, and eyes that fluttered closed with fatigue. As we interviewed the two brothers, he fell

asleep on two office chairs drawn together, probably the most comfortable bed he'd used in weeks."

One of the authors of that report by Human Rights Watch joins me now. She's Clara Long, the senior researcher who focuses on migration issues in

the United States.

Tell us when you visited this facility, which one and what was, for you, the biggest take away here?

CLARA LONG, SENIOR RESEARCHER, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH: The account that you've just read was from a facility called the Clint Border Patrol Station in

Texas. I also went to two other facilities right in that area near El Paso, the Santa Teresa Border Patrol Station and when they call Station


You know, during a series of interviews, our team did over 30 interviews over the course of several days, they're very long in-depth interviews. We

heard very consistent accounts from children. And they said at Clint Patrol Station where, in particular, they've been massing unaccompanied

children, the day we arrived, there were over 350 kids there.

The kids were staying in sometimes very overcrowded cells that had insufficient access to bathe, to have been able to brush their teeth. They

were wearing dirty clothes, in many cases, clothes that they crossed the border with.

And they were without adult supervision, little ones being taken care of by bigger ones.

GORANI: And who allowed you in? Are these the border authorities who said come in and see for yourselves what's going on in here?

LONG: Not at all. These are really closed facilities and there are very few ways that independent monitors, attorneys, or others can get any access

to them. The reason why we got in is because we went under the auspices of something called the Flores Settlement Agreement

GORANI: Right.

LONG: Which is a decades old agreement between the government and lawyers for migrant kids that gives some access to lawyers for that class of

people, migrant children to speak to the people in their class, the children themselves.

We didn't have access to the facilities. But we could talk to the clients and those were the children.

GORANI: And so they're telling you these stories.

LONG: Right.

GORANI: Let me -- and one of the -- one of the -- sorry, one of the portions of your report I found it heart breaking. A 2nd grader we

interviewed entered the room silently, but burst into tears when we asked who she traveled with to the U.S., my aunt, she said with a keening cry.

[14:35:08] The bracelet on her wrist had the words "U.S. parent" and a phone number written in permanent marker. We called the number on the spot

and found out that no one had informed her desperate parents where she was being held. Some of the most emotional moments of our visit came

witnessing children speak for the first time with their parents on an attorney's telephone. Tell us about that.

LONG: Yes. I mean, normally on these visits, we're not allowed to have telephones. As first, you know, I was feeling a little bit worried about

letting kids use the phone. But then it just got to the point when I realized they were being held incommunicado, that I just didn't care what

the rules were.

And so we started to make phone calls and we started to help kids find their parents. In one case, we had to look up the parents on Facebook and

send a message to get a phone number, because his little boys had -- didn't -- had been separated from an adult relative who had his phone number and

they didn't. So they were concerned they'd never connect with their father again.

GORANI: Yes. And the Trump administration says this was happening before under Obama. But this is factually incorrect, right?

LONG: That is factually incorrect. It is true that under Obama, Human Rights Watch and many other organizations that do monitor have been

concerned, deeply concerned about conditions in border control custody.

But the difference now that I have never seen before are these unprecedented lengths of stay. And to be clear, these conditions can be

harmful when kids are staying in them for two days, or three days, or five days. But we're talking about kids who were in these facilities now for

weeks. And that's a whole other ball game.

GORANI: And this is a violation of what you mentioned there, you referenced, the Flores Agreement that was struck in the late '90s. Kids

are not supposed to be held for more than three days, correct?

LONG: It's actually a part of U.S. law, it's part of something called the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act. The law passed in 2008

that creates that obligation for the U.S. to not hold kids under typical circumstances more than 72 hours.

I also believe that there are many violations in the Flores Agreement in the situation as we see it now, including crucially the fact that the

government did not seem to be making any efforts to reunify these kids with family members and in particular, many have parents here in the United


GORANI: Lastly, what stayed with you the most? What is the most enduring memory do you think, for you, having experienced this and spoken to the


LONG: I think it's the kids who are about the same age as my own, 3-year- olds and sort of having to send them back into the cells alone. And, you know, thinking what if that were my child?

GORANI: Clara Long, thanks very much for joining us. Thanks very much there for that insight look at what's going on in those centers.

Appreciate it.

LONG: Thank you for having me.

GORANI: The latest woman to accuse U.S. president Donald Trump of sexual assault, says the infamous "Access Hollywood" tape reminded her of her own

experiences with the president. E. Jean Carroll says that back in the '90s when Mr. Trump was still a private citizen, that he sexually assaulted her

in the dressing room in a luxury department store in New York.

The president denies not just the new accusations but every allegation of sexual assault or misconduct from those who have come forward.

Julian Zelizer joins me now from New York. He's a professor of history of Princeton University and a CNN political analyst.

So we ask this every time, there's a scandal or an accusation directed at the president. Will this harm the president's popularity in the United

States with his base, this latest accusation? He said, "she's not my type." I think I believe was one of the components of his denial that

anything happened.

JULIAN ZELIZER, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, as shocking and unsettling as it is, the evidence will point to the probability that this won't impact

his support with the base. This isn't the first time we've had an accusation of the sort. It's not the first time he's offered a response

like this. And yet his political support remains about the same. So it's probably not a turning point as unsettling as it is.

GORANI: Now, so this is following this accusation. But I want to ask you a little bit about the breaking news this hour. The Trump threatening Iran

with obliteration, if they attack anything American. It's an escalation in the rhetoric. What do you think is behind it?

ZELIZER: Well, within his administration, you have competing voices, and one of those voices comes from advisers such as John Bolton, who are very

hawkish on Iran and they're trying to press the president into a military confrontation.

The president has been leery about pulling the trigger, so to speak. But he, too, has been on a hawkish path ever since he removed the United States

from the Iran deal that Obama had put together.

[14:40:07] So the situation is escalating, and I think we are very close to the possibility of a military conflict.

GORANI: But his base -- I mean, let's talk about politically domestically, his base doesn't want that. They were promised withdrawal from Middle East

wars, isolationism, protectionism. They support all these -- all these policy moves by the president, whether it hurts them or not. This, though,

is different, though. He's potentially considering involvement in the Middle East that could be much more catastrophic than for instance any Iraq

war, if it goes ahead? How will his base react to that do you think?

ZELIZER: Well, sure, and he thinks of that. He thinks of the possibility of his base being upset in real time if this was implemented. And they

also all have memories of the Iraq war beyond his base and what that costs the United States. It depends what we're talking about. If it's a

military strike that's quick, it's limited. You can imagine his base moves on.

If all of a sudden we're talking about a much bigger kind of conflict, like Iraq, I do think that would be really politically difficult for the

president to get through.

GORANI: And how much influence do the John Boltons, the Mike Pompeo, I mean, those were much more hawkish on Iran than the president. How much

influence do they have on Donald Trump?

ZELIZER: I think they could have a lot of influence. They are very well versed in the politics of this region. They have been working out these

arguments for a long time. And in some ways, they're looking for the right situation or the right moment in which they could push the president

towards that position.

A foreign policy is not an area of great expertise for Donald Trump. So I think the possibility of them achieving their goals is very real and it's a

real situation. It's not manufactured, the threat of Iran. And so that's a potent mix.

GORANI: Right. You mean it's -- the military threat to U.S. assets is not manufactured?

ZELIZER: Just the threat that Iran poses in the region. Which Obama also agreed with, is a real threat and so that question is, how do you contain

it? And how do you avoid a bigger conflict?

GORANI: I've got to leave it there, Julian. But I understand Donald Trump is speaking at the White House. Let's listen.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: -- give us some humanitarian aid, humanitarian money. And that is a very fair question and I appreciate

that question.

But I'm very concerned, it's in much better shape than it ever was. A lot of these young children come from places that you don't even want to know

about. The way they've lived, the way they've been, the way that the poverty that they grew up in.

But with that, we can get this bill signed, we'll be able to do it. The Democrats don't want to sign anything. And now, I think they're going to

probably sign this, from what I understand. I call it humanitarian aid. This isn't even about border.

At the same time, you see the numbers are way, way down. Mexico has been really helping us a lot. They have very strong immigration laws. They are

moving 15,000 people or 16,000 people to our southern border and then move 16,000 troops to their southern border, which is pretty incredible.

And a lot of signs are coming out, where the cartels and all of the bad folks, the coyotes, as they call them and all of the bad people that are

bringing young children and taking advantage horribly, it's a form of slavery. It's horrible what they're doing to young children. You

understand, you've reported on it.

A lot of that is stopping now, because of what we're doing and because of what's happening on the border. So I just want to thank Mexico. They've

really done a great job. We appreciate what they're doing. And hopefully, they can keep it up, because it's very important.

Mexico has very, very powerful immigration laws. They can do things. Our laws are so bad. What we would like to do, and I'll do it right now,

officially, is ask the Democrats to give us help on asylum, help on all of the loopholes, the horrible loop holes that could signed in over a period

of years that don't allow us to do what we should be able to do.

We need the votes of Democrats and I think very importantly, you know, because our economy, you heard Larry Kudlow, because our economy is so

strong, it could be the strongest in the history of our country, people want to flow up to the United States. But you just can't do it that way.

You have to do it legally. You have these massive numbers of people trying to get into the United States because of the economy, because we've done so

good, but that's one of the problems. We're doing well. Everybody wants to come in. Ten years ago, five years ago, four years ago, they didn't

want to come in. Today, they want to come in. But we can't let that happen. So we're doing very, very --

[14:45:58] And as far as the wall is concerned, the wall is heavily under construction. The Army Corps of Engineers is doing a great job. We're

doing a lot of wall right now, and we expect to have 400 miles built by the end of next year. That's a lot, and we're building them in the right

places. We're building -- we're picking areas where we need at the most and it's having a tremendous effect.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you ask your Customs and Border Protection about hedge on Sanders to resign? Do you know why he's leaving --

TRUMP: No, I know there was going to be a change there. I've made changes, very good changes. We have -- we're moving some people around

into different locations. The game has changed a lot because of what Mexico is doing. We're able to do things that we wouldn't have been able

to do before.

The problem with our border patrol, who are phenomenal people, but they're not allowed because the laws are so bad with Catch and Release and all of

the different things, including chain migration, the visa lottery. The laws are so bad and the asylum rules and laws are so bad that our border

patrol people who are so incredible aren't allowed to do their jobs.

Because Mexico is now, for the first time in 50 years, helping us. And we really appreciate it. We're able to make certain changes that we wouldn't

have been able to make before.

UNIDENTIFIEDEMALE: Do you have a back and forth with the leader of Iran this morning via tweet, what message did you want to send to him in your


TRUMP: There is no message. You know, I'll tell you what the message is, when they're ready, they have to let us know. When they are ready, they'll

let us know. Very simple.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ready to negotiate you mean?

TRUMP: Ready to do whatever. It doesn't make any difference. Whatever they want to do, I'm ready. OK.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, on the Middle East, Jared Kushner is in Bahrain right now releasing this economic component of your Middle East

Peace Plan, without the Israelis or Palestinian officials attending? So what's your strategy going forward when there's no buying from the --

TRUMP: Well, we want to get support and we have to get economic support. Because the Palestinians don't have money and we have to help the

Palestinians with some money. Because they don't have it. And one of the groups that you get are some of those countries in the Middle East that do

have money. So they're going to play a role in the peace plan and we'll see what happens. We had a little bit of a setback with the election in

Israel, as you know is I guess the result is somewhat mixed because now they're going to do it again. That's another do-over, unfortunately.

But we'll see what happens. We'll see what happens with that election. But it's an early process. But we expect other people to help out.

Because, again, there's no money and some people don't have money and if they don't have money, it's going to be very hard. We want people to be

able to live and live well.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- because I think you did not ask Sanders to resign.

TRUMP: I didn't speak to him. I don't think I've ever spoken to him, actually. No, we have some very good people running it. I don't know

anything about it. I hear he's a very good man. I hear he's a good person. I don't know him. I don't think I ever spoke to him.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) decision to choose Stephanie Grisham as your new press secretary?

TRUMP: So Stephanie has been with me from the beginning, as most of you know. And then over the last couple years ago, she's worked for the first

lady, done a fantastic job. The first lady loves her, thinks she's been just incredible. She's very talented. And I asked so many people, who do

you like? A lot of people wanted the job. A lot of people wanted to do it.

And I've asked people, who do you like? And so many people said Stephanie. And she's here, she knows everybody. She actually gets along with the

media very well, as you know. A lot of folks in the media like her very much and I think she's going to be fantastic. I think she's going to do a

great job.

So I offered her the job this morning and she accepted. And the first lady is very happy for her. It's a big job. It's a very big job. But we think

Stephanie is going to do a fantastic job. And Hogan is going to be with her. And Hogan was one of the people that recommended -- here's Hogan.

He recommended her very strongly. I said, Hogan, who do you think? He said Stephanie Grisham. So --



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- exit strategy for Iran if war does breaks out? Do you have an exit strategy for Iran if war does breaks out?

TRUMP: You're not going to need an exit strategy. I don't need exit strategies.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, can you tell us about your letter to Chairman Kim?

TRUMP: Just a nice letter back and forth. He wrote me a beautiful letter on my birthday, it's my birthday, as you know last week. He wrote me a

beautiful letter. I thought it was very nice. And just two friendly letters. We get along very well.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No mention of another meeting?

TRUMP: Maybe there was. But we -- you know, at some point, we'll do that. Getting along very well. He's not doing nuclear testing. When I took

over, as you know, when I became president, there were testing previous to that, they were testing so much, they were doing ballistic tests and

nuclear tests, and we didn't have our prisoners back. We had a whole lot of things that were going wrong.

Now, we have our hostages back, our prisoners back. They came back. We've had, as you know, the remains of the heroes, our great heroes from many

years ago. That's coming back and coming back as they find them and as they find the sites and the graves and they're sending them back.

[14:50:02] The relationship is a far different relationship than it was during the Obama years where you would end up with a war. You're going to

end up with a war in North Korea, that I can tell you.

I'll tell that to (INAUDIBLE) you understand. You will end up -- I'll tell you what. You're going to end up in a war in North Korea. And if it kept

going the way it was going, if you had that group continuing onward.

As far as Iran is concerned, the deal was a horrible deal. It was no good. It was no good. It ended in a very short period of time. We're dealing

about countries. It ended in a very short period of time. They would have had a clear path to a nuclear weapon. We're not going to allow that to

happen. We can't do it. And I'm all for Iran. I have so many people, Iranian friends. I come from New York. I have tremendous numbers of

Iranian friends, they're great people. They're from Iran. They are wonderful people. It's too bad this is happening. They're living badly

right now. Their countries is not doing very well economically at all.

That can be changed very quickly, very easily, but they have to get rid of the hostility from the leadership. The leadership, I hope they stay, I

hope they do a great job. But they should talk to us peaceably.

We're all for them. We want it to be done properly. But the deal that was done by President Obama, $150 billion for nothing. He used the money for

terror. They gave the money out to terrorists. If you remember, John Kerry, they asked him that question, do you know that money is going to be

used for terror? He said, yes.

Essentially, he said at least some of it is going to be -- I mean, he knew about it. He actually said that some of the money may be used for terror.

What kind of deal is that? And they gave him $1.8 million in cash, cash, plane loads of cash. What kind of a deal is that?

And the biggest problem is they had bad testing. You weren't able to see many of the sites. You saw that, Tim.


TRUMP: You couldn't go into the most important sites to test, to see. They were probably making this stuff for a long time. But with $150

billion going to them, they were doing very well and 1.8 billion in cash, and you had no real right of testing. You couldn't test properly.

And most importantly, the agreement ends in a very short period of time, so they had a path to nuclear weapons. We cannot allow Iran to have a path to

nuclear weapons.

And by the way, we have tremendous support. Tremendous support. People were very happy with what I did the other day by not doing something. OK.

But we had tremendous and we have tremendous support. Nobody wants to see Iran have nuclear weapons.

Thank you very much, everybody. Thank you.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you very much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you think they understood the message you were sending in last week? You decided not to strike.

TRUMP: I hope they understood the message. I decided not to strike. They shot down unmanned, as you know, an unmanned drone.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But do you think they take your threats seriously now, Mr. President?

TRUMP: I think everybody does, I think you do, too. Goodbye.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you. Vivian, thank you, Vivian. Thanks, everybody.


GORANI: Donald Trump there in the Oval Office discussing the border crisis, the detention of children in border facilities, as well as Iran

saying when they're ready to come to us, they'll let us know. When he was asked, ready to do what? He said to do whatever. He also talked about

walking away from the Iran deal.

Julian Zelizer is still with us. What stood out to you, Julian, there in this Oval Office Q&A with reporters?

ZELIZER: Well, with Iran, what's pretty striking is the lack of a plan from the president, himself. And he conveys this all the time. He sends

mixed messages. He says contradictory things and saying, I don't need an exit plan. That has a lot of bravado. But you need that, in any kind of

military crisis.

So we're dealing with a situation where there is this escalation. But it's not clear if the president has a sense of where he wants this to go.

And with the border, we are, you know, in the same gridlock crisis that we have right now, with no indication of how he plans to move forward.

GORANI: Well, he's talking about a bill there on Capitol Hill that would fund this as an emergency crisis on the border. But then critics of the

president would say, look, this has become a crisis of these incredibly huge proportions, because of the way the Trump administration is

instructing border authorities to handle these migrants as they cross the border and the family separation is being one big components of that.

ZELIZER: And what's happening is some Democrats are not willing to sign on. The party is divided. Some Democrats say we need to get money to the

people at the board to help with this, others just don't trust the president. So you have a kind of credibility gap that is going to hurt

efforts to alleviate a crisis that was unnecessary but now is very real.

[14:55:10] GORANI: Yes. Because you argue also that Iran is a crisis, that is really -- that didn't need to happen after the U.S. walked away

from the Iran deal and continued to put pressure on the country. Whatever you think of the country, it was, basically, abiding by the -- by the Iran

deal, the terms of it. It wasn't enriching uranium, it wasn't on a pathway to a nuclear bomb as the president is saying.

ZELIZER: That's correct. And the president said that the deal ended very quickly. It didn't end very quickly. He left the deal and many people

were critical of that. There was something in place. The Iranians did come to the table as he's saying. And it was pretty effective. It wasn't

perfect. But it was effective.

So now, he's entered us into a situation where this kind of escalation has been much more likely and in some ways predictable. So he's extracting

himself or he's promising to extract us from a situation, you can argue, the administration helped create.

GORANI: And where do we go then from here? Because no exit plan. No exit strategy from this situation with Iran and there are concerns that this

could lead to military conflict and military conflict with a country that is completely militarily differently equipped than Iraq ever was in 2003.

This could be an absolute disaster.

ZELIZER: Look, I think the biggest pushback that's going to happen is political, which we discussed earlier and some of the president's fears

when he hears the Boltons urging him to strike will always be, what will this really look like in practice and how will it affect me when voters are

worried about an escalating war?

And so it's really which of these two things becomes more powerful, the voices of the advisers or those political fears that the president has.

And we can't predict. That's the thing with foreign policy. Crises, incidents happen. And then the story unfolds in ways we didn't think.

GORANI: Julian Zelizer, thanks very much.

ZELIZER: Thank you.

GORANI: Thanks for joining us. I'm Hala Gorani.