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EARLY START

President Trump, China Wants To Make A Deal; Iranian Foreign Minister's Surprise Appearance At G-7 Summit; Amazon Fires, 85 Percent Fires Burning This Year In Brazil; NFL Stunning Decision; 79th Day Of Mass Protests In Hong Kong; Iran Conflict, Iran Denies Any Of The IDF Targets Were Hit; America's Choice 2020; Triumph Of An Endurance Athlete; Sheriff's Deputy Fabricates Sniper Shooting; Joe Arpaio Runs Again For Sheriff; Breaking Bad Movie Gets Netflix Release Date. Aired 4-4:30a ET

Aired August 26, 2019 - 04:00   ET

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


[04:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

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DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: China called last night, our top trade people, and said let's get back to the table.

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JESSICA DEAN, CNN ANCHOR: President Trump moments ago talked about positive signals coming from China on trade.

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: President Trump also just moments ago denies he was blindsided by the Iranian foreign minister's surprise appearance at the G-7.

DEAN: Brazil's government under pressure to deal with the wildfires in the Amazon rain forest as CNN's cameras capture the view there from above.

BRIGGS: Plus, NFL star Andrew Luck's stunning decision to walk away from football and from tens, perhaps even millions, of dollars. Still a stunner Monday morning. Welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. This is "Early Start." I'm Dave Briggs. It is a big news Monday.

DEAN: Yes, there's a lot going on this Monday. I'm Jessica Dean in for Christine Romans today. It's Monday August 26th, 4:00 a.m. here in New York, 10:00 a.m. in France, the scene of the G-7 summit and 11:00 a.m. in the Middle East. And breaking overnight just moments ago, President Trump telling reporters, China has told the administration it wants to return to trade negotiations. With markets slumping worldwide in confusion over a trade war with China, the president told reporters at an impromptu news conference at the G-7, quote, China called wanting to make a deal.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: China called last night, our top trade people, and said let's

get back to the table. So we'll be getting back to the table, and I think they want to do something. They've been hurt very badly, but they understand this is the right thing to do, and I have great respect for them. I have great respect for them. This is a very positive development for the world.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DEAN: The president also addressing a trade deal with Japan and the surprise appearance of Iran's foreign minister at the G-7. And for the very latest now we bring in senior diplomatic editor, Nic Robertson at the G-7 in Southern France. Nic, so much going on this morning where you are.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It is, and quite a surprise from the president this morning to hear that he's had these calls from China saying that they are ready to get back to the table. Of course this is a validation, an apparent validation. We haven't heard from the Chinese yet. But the president will feel that he is, what he's been telling the other leaders here that you may have to go through some pain, some economic pain with this trade war with China, but his way is the right way to deal with it.

He -- if China matches the president's sentiment here we'll feel validated in this -- that it has been his message to other leaders here, but of course, he has been hearing about their concern. Boris Johnson, the British Prime Minister in his first meeting with President Trump said there had been a sheep like note from the other leaders and from him himself saying that they preferred a trade peace rather than a trade war with China.

So the president has faced a little pushback here over the escalating tensions with China, but it's on Iran perhaps the biggest surprise here, the foreign minister Javad Zarif arriving yesterday. Initially President Trump said he'd not authorized the French to do this. He has not been part of the plan to bring in the Iranian foreign minister with discussions with French officials.

The French had actually said that they were doing this as a national issue. They were taking the lead on it. But we heard from the president earlier today now again saying something slightly different, saying that he'd actually given approval to the French president. This is what he said.

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TRUMP: Macron, he spoke to me, he asked me. I said if you want to do that that is OK. I don't consider that disrespectful at all, especially when he asked me for approval.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROBERTSON: So the president saying that the United States holds all the economic cards here, that Iran is hurting economically. That is why they're coming back around for these talks. The French not saying what's going on in these discussions. They are saying that these talks are continuing, that this is a dialogue between the French president and the Iranian president.

President Trump interestingly and we don't know what this means at the moment said, there will be big news to come later today, and of course in about six hours' time he'll be holding a joint press conference with the French president, perhaps more on Iran, more on China, more on the Japanese trade deal then.

DEAN: All right. We look forward to that. Nic Robertson, thanks so much.

BRIGGS: Trade tensions are not going away anytime soon. Asian markets fell amid confusing signals about the U.S./China trade war. And on Wall Street futures are pointing to a recovery after President Trump said that China wants to get back to talks. Trump's comments come after China unveiled a new round of retaliatory tariffs on about $75 billion worth of U.S. goods Friday.

[04:05:04] President Trump responded that he, quote, hereby ordered U.S. companies that do business in China immediately start looking for an alternative. Beijing already has tariffs on about $110 billion of U.S. exports, which included things like almonds, toys, and machinery. The new tariffs will target over 5,000 products including soybeans, coffee, whiskey, seafood, and crude oil.

Some of the new Chinese tariffs will go into effect on September 1st. The rest are effective December 15th mirroring Trump's latest tariff threat, the back and forth on tariffs has been going on for more than a year. And no one clearly is winning. Businesses and therefore consumers in both countries feeling the pinch.

DEAN: The G-7 nations putting pressure on Brazil to deal with the huge number of fires blazing in the Amazon rain forest. The summit host French President Emmanuel Macron tweeting our house is burning, literally. The Amazon rain forest, the lungs of our planet which produces 20 percent of our oxygen is on fire. It is an international crisis.

Brazil's space agency says there are 85 percent more fires burning in the country this year than last and more than half of those are in the Amazon. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is pushing back. Calling Macron's comment sensationalist, but with some G-7 countries threatening trade sanctions, Bolsonaro has ordered troops into the Amazon and authorized hundreds of temporary firefighters. CNN's Nick Paton Walsh has more now from Brazil.

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NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dave, Jessica. Extraordinary scenes, we saw in three hours above the Amazon forest really at times unable to get low enough towards the forest canopy, because of the sheer amount of smoke making it very hard for our pilots to fly, even at times turning off the air vents inside the aircraft for our own safety. But when we did see the fire, it's extraordinary exactly how much of

the forest they have devastated and how they rage uncontrolled often moving in lines, simply across the Savanah. During our three-hour flight we did not see one instance of the Brazilian army. The president here saying 43,000 of them had been deployed to fight the fires. And we occasionally see them in the skies over the city of Port of Viejo (ph) flying in cargo planes to drop water. We saw none on the ground though. Little signs of human life at all frankly. Only one bird making it around that I saw in the smoke over that forest.

A lot of cattle, sometimes they're the reason why the forest is cleared for agricultural land so they can grow soy to feed the cattle or the cattle can graze and then be made for beef for our diets. This is really many say why the Amazon is being cleared at such an extraordinary rate at 1.5 football fields per minute. Three will elapse during the time in which I'm talking here. The destruction though was quite startling. It's moving at a remarkable rate. The fires we saw were new mostly today, and they do appear, some of them according to how clean the lines of the burn are, to perhaps have been started deliberately.

That is what we're hearing from many police and also activists here as well. But the scale of the challenge is utterly enormous. Simply what we saw will be difficult for one army to put out in one day, and Brazil has accepted the help of Israel that has been offered, but will it accept the help of the G-7 nations that say that this is an urgent concern. But they've been very critical of Brazil's attitude towards the environment and the Amazon, but could potentially offer help. That is up to President Jair Bolsonaro. Whether he takes it or not would depends on how this crisis grows in the days ahead. Dave, Jessica?

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BRIGGS: Our Nick Paton Walsh there, thanks. A brief period of calm in Hong Kong ending over the weekend as police fired a warning shot in the air during renewed violent protests with the protests entering their 12th consecutive week. Police also fired tear gas and brought out water cannon trucks for the first time. Officers were responding to the protesters efforts to tear down controversial lamp posts. They post house environmental monitoring units that have sparked privacy concerns. Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam writing on her Facebook page on Sunday, everyone is tired. Can we just sit down and talk about it.

DEAN: Israel claiming responsibility for air strikes near Damascus saying those strikes foiled an imminent large scale attacks by Iranian forces in Shiite Militia in Northern Israel. Iran denies any of the targets were hit. CNN's Ben Wedeman is live in Beirut with the latest on this. Ben.

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Jessica that appears to be just one of a variety of Israeli air strikes that were launched on targets not just in Syria, but here in Lebanon yesterday very early in the morning you had what appeared to be two Israeli drones that were brought down somehow over southern Beirut, and in the early hours of today, Monday, there appears to have been three Israel air strikes on a Palestinian group base near the Syrian border.

[04:10:02] And in addition to that, yesterday it appears there was an Israeli air strike on an Iranian backed militia group near the Syrian border in Iraq. This does appear to be a dramatic escalation by the Israelis striking any group in any way affiliated with Iran in three countries in less than 48 hours.

As far as that strike on alleged Iranian targets near Damascus, the Israelis say that Iran was about to launch what they're calling killer drones on targets in Israel. The Iranians deny that any Iranian targets were hit in Syria, and yesterday we heard the secretary general of Hezbollah Hassan Nasrallah saying in a speech that the target of that Israeli strike was a building that was housing members of Hezbollah, two of whom he said were killed, and he vowed that those attacks would not go unanswered, Jessica.

DEAN: Ben Wedeman, live for us in Beirut this morning, thanks so much.

BRIGGS: Conservative radio host Joe Walsh announcing he's running against President Trump for the Republican nomination. The former Illinois Congressman telling ABC news he's running because Mr. Trump is, quote, unfit for office.

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JOE WALSH (R-IL), 2020 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The country is sick of this guy's tantrum. He is a child. Again, the litany, he lies every time he opens his mouth. Look at what's happened this week. He is -- the president of the United States is tweeting us into a recession.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: Walsh says his former colleagues on Capitol Hill all think the president will lose in 2020 and they want him to lose. He also says they are too afraid to say it. Walsh was elected to the house in the Tea Party wave of 2010 and has a long history of controversy himself. He once said Obama was elected only because he was a quote, black man who was articulate and pushed the false conspiracy theory Obama was a Muslim who hated Israel.

And he added the beauty of what President Trump has done, he's made to reflect on some of the things I've said in the past. He admits he in part helped create Trump, so it's an interesting test ahead for the Republican Party.

DEAN: And dynamic, no doubt.

From California to Hawaii on a paddle board. One man's remarkable triumph of endurance. That is next.

[04:15:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK) BRIGGS: Law enforcement in Los Angeles County lighting up social

media to express extreme disappointment that a rookie sheriff's deputy fabricated the story about a sniper shooting in Lancaster, California. The shots fired call triggered a huge response and SWAT Team investigation, but after four days of investigation, the sheriff's department found the Deputy's Angel Reinosa's (ph) claims did not hold up. That led to a rare late night news conference on Saturday.

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CAPTAIN KENT WEGENER, LOS ANGELES COUNTY SHERIFF 'S HOMICIDE BUREAU: There was no sniper. No shots fired, and no gunshot injury sustained to his shoulder. Completely fabricated.

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BRIGGS: Reinosa admitted to cutting holes in his uniform with a knife to back up his false claims about the sniper. He faces criminal charges, potentially including filing a false report. Investigators say they still don't have a motive. The L.A. sheriff's among others making it clear the actions of one person do not define the rest of his deputies at the Lancaster station.

DEAN: Joe Arpaio who dubbed himself America's toughest sheriff wants his old job back. The 87-year-old announcing he is again running for sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona. This comes two years after he was pardoned by President Trump. He had been convicted on charges of criminal contempt related to the hard line tactics he used to crack down on undocumented immigrants. Arpaio in a statement promised to reinstate the extreme measures that made him famous during his 24th- year tenure as sheriff.

BRIGGS: An incredible feat of endurance, Antonio De La Rosa making the trip from San Francisco to Honolulu with nothing, but this 24 foot, pretty hardcore, but still standup paddle board. The 42-year- old ultra-endurance athlete from Spain becoming the first ever to cross the Pacific as a stand-up paddle border.

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ANTONIO DE LA ROSA, ENDURANCE ATHLETE: For me and for everybody, no, no, no motor, only the motor is -- this is the motor.

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BRIGGS: He made the record crossing in 76 days. Go pro cameras documented the trip. There was no escort vessel so he was all alone out there. De La Rosa says the voyage of just over 2,900 miles was designed to raise awareness about protecting the ocean from manmade pollution, which is a massive problem when you look at all the plastic out there in our seas, just despicable.

DEAN: Oh, this grows out there. Also, where was his food, sunscreen?

BRIGGS: Bold. It wasn't the paddle board we expected to see, but that is how you get across. DEAN: Impressive.

Well, breaking news on "breaking bad," the latest on the movie sequel to the hit TV series. That is next.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No way I'm helping you people.

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DEAN: The football world is still reeling from news this weekend Andrew Luck, the Indianapolis Colts star quarterback is retiring at the age of 29. ESPN reporting that Colts will not try to recoup nearly $25 million in bonus money paid to Luck, though the team is entitled to it. We get more now on Luck's stunning announcement and the aftermath from CNN's Coy Wire.

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COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Andrew Luck was one of the brightest stars in the game. Probably could have played another decade. He was last season's comeback player of the year, and here he is walking away from 10's of millions of dollars. His plan was to tell teammates and make a public statement Sunday, but a reporter broke the news unbeknownst to him while he was on the sideline during a preseason game on Saturday. Fans on the stage clearly devastated. One man even taking off the Luck jersey he was wearing. As the game ended walking off the field, this is what Luck heard.

Boos from fans and the team he worked so hard for, suffering injuries like a lacerated kidney, a torn abdomen, torn cartilage and concussion. Here he was after the game.

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[04:25:03] ANDREW LUCK, INDIANAPOLIS COLTS STAR QUARTERBACK: I'd be lying if I didn't say I heard the reaction. Yes, it hurt, I'll be honest. It hurt. I'm in pain. I'm still in pain. I've been in this cycle, which feels like, I mean, it's been four years of this injury pain rehab cycle, and for me to move forward in my life the way I want to, it doesn't involve football. Mom, Dad, Mayor, Uncle Will, all my friends, thank you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WIRE: Praise and shock pouring in from around the league. Luck was one of the most talented, nicest and well-respected men in the sport. He has an engineering degree from Stanford University. So hopefully a bright future ahead of him. Dallas Cowboys team owner Jerry Jones said he hopes Luck will run for president one day.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRIGGS: Luck 2020 anyone? Thank you, Coy.

Golfer Rory McIlroy winning the PGA tour championship for the second time in four years and taking home $15 million, the largest cash payout in golf history. McIlroy surged past the world's top player Brooks Koepka to win Sunday. He joins Tiger Woods as the only player to win the FedEx cup twice since it began in 2007. With the win, McIlroy will become the number two ranked golfer in the world behind only Koepka.

DEAN: There's been a lot of speculation about a possible "Breaking Bad" movie and now it's a reality. El Camino will pick up shortly after this smash hit series finale which aired six years ago. Netflix dropped the trailer this weekend on Twitter.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm so sorry. I don't know what to tell you, no way I'm helping you people put Jesse Pinkman back inside a cage.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DEAN: Aaron Paul will reprice his Emmy winning role as Jesse Pinkman, drug dealer turned meth cook. He was last seen in the Breaking Bad finale speeding away in an El Camino. Feature film will be available for streaming on Netflix beginning October 11.

BRIGGS: Were you a "Breaking Bad" viewer?

DEAN: I feel like every time there's a show it's like the one show I didn't watch. No.

BRIGGS: Well, me neither, never seen an episode. So we're united on that.

DEAN: I know it's good.

BRIGGS: We'll catch the movie maybe.

All right, ahead. President Trump says China called last night and wants to make a deal, the latest from the president at the G-7 summit in France next.

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