Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

China Marks 70th Anniversary of Communist Rule; Secretary of State Pompeo Was on Trump's Phone Call with Ukrainian President; Trump Pressed Australian Prime Minister to Help with DOJ Review of Russia Probe. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired October 1, 2019 - 02:00   ET

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


[02:00:00]

(MUSIC PLAYING)

ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Hello and welcome to our viewers all around the world. It's 2:00 pm in Beijing and 7:00 am in London and I'm Rosemary Church at the CNN Headquarters in Atlanta for the next 90 minutes of CNN NEWSROOM. Let's get started.

China is celebrating 70 years of Communist rule with pomp, circumstance and heavy artillery.

In Hong Kong, some protests on National Day have already turned confrontational and demonstrators are planning a mass march that hasn't been approved by police.

And in Washington, the political showdown heats up over the impeachment inquiry into the president. Donald Trump fumes as Democrats demand documents from his personal attorney.

(MUSIC PLAYING)

CHURCH: Good to have you with us.

So Chinese President Xi Jinping says nothing can shake the foundation of his great nation. He kicked off the celebrations in Beijing on the 70th anniversary of the People's Republic of China. Mao Zedong founded the Communist Party on this date back in 1949.

China rolled out its latest military hardware in a tightly choreographed parade for all the world to see and among the items on display is the new DF-41 intercontinental ballistic missile, underwater drones and a giant new submarine missile.

President Xi was heavy on unity in his address to the nation before surveying the troops and he made this reference to Hong Kong.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

XI JINPING, PRESIDENT OF CHINA (through translator): We must remain committed to the strategy of peaceful reunification and one country, two systems. We will maintain long term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and Macau, advance the peaceful development of cross-strait relations, unite the whole country and continue to strive for the complete unification of our country.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHURCH: CNN is covering the celebration in Beijing as protests in Hong Kong and David Culver is along the parade route in Tiananmen Square.

We want to start with Will Ripley who is standing by in Hong Kong.

Good to see you, Will.

What is the scene on the streets of Hong Kong this hour in terms of protests?

And what's being said about the Chinese 70th anniversary celebrations?

WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's remarkable in the contrast that we've seen Beijing's and what's here on Hennessey Road right through the heart of Hong Kong.

And this crowd is easily thousands of people formed almost out of nowhere.. We were over in Causeway Bay and it was dozens of people. Within minutes it was hundreds.

Then throngs more and now people marching past us, we've been stationary for several minutes and the crowds just keeps on coming as far as the eye can see as they head through towards central Hong Kong.

This city has done everything possible to try to minimize this sort of thing from happening today and all the requests to march were denied by Hong Kong police so all these gatherings are technically illegal even though we've not seen any police presence of note.

A few officers are on the side streets but they're keeping a pretty low profile. And these protests right now are overwhelmingly peaceful. Hong Kong called off National Day fireworks that were supposed to happen tonight to try to prevent any sort of gathering from becoming a focal point as the government calls the more radical protesters that tend to emergency from gatherings like this.

We've seen time and time again over these 17 consecutive weeks is things straight out, huge crowds, mostly peaceful, calling for -- stand with Hong Kong, five demands, not one less.

They demand things like universal suffrage and want to be called protesters, not rioters and they want that extradition bill withdrawn. It has been with one demand out of the five.

And so the protests continue here, peaceful for now but we know how this movie has played out, just like it played out this weekend ,Rosemary, in this very location, when there were petrol bombs and bricks being hurled at police and police firing back with tear gas and water cannon.

Certainly Hong Kong trying to prevent that and they don't want scenes of urban combat on China's National Day. And as of now, these are the scenes playing out but it's something you have to watch very closely in the upcoming hours.

CHURCH: Will Ripley there, covering those protests on the streets of Hong Kong.

[02:05:00]

CHURCH: And, of course, we will check back in with Will to watch the progress of those protests. Many thanks to you.

Military analysts say China 's new intercontinental ballistic missile can be armed with multiple warheads. CNN's David Culver has more on what was on display at today's parade.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Just behind me you're looking at 70 years of a nation's history rolling past the military might of China on full display as they celebrate national day, marking seven decades since the founding of communist China.

It's brought thousands of invited guests to Tiananmen Square where we are. This is a heavily credentialed area, a lot of its Chinese residents who live in Beijing are watching from their own home and partaking as a family gathering. But this is where their eyes are. And they are focused on their nation displaying everything that it has to offer.

No matter what you think of China you cannot deny that progress that has been seen here over the past 70 years technologically, as well as militarily. This is a country that has greatly improved and improved the lives of its people and that's something that they stretch as far as the elimination, or in their own words there, anticipated and hope of elimination of poverty.

They say they have reduced the number of people living in percent by some 850 million. And then of course, the technology that we're seeing on display here. This is something that they are trying to show the world to demonstrate that they are indeed a global player.

Now when they show this, one might think you see military mine and it's a threatening move, they say just the opposite.

This is to reassure the world that they are the safe guarders of peace and instability. That is their anticipation in showing off the many, many items behind me that just have been rolling past. And you got to feel for the emotion here for some of the people who are truly taking in this patriotic moment.

It is for them a day to celebrate and that is not necessarily the feeling in other parts of the world. Certainly, China is dealing with a lot globally. The unrest in Hong Kong for one. They're also dealing with continued issues with the U.S. trade war, the tensions and the ongoing problems with trying to figure out how exactly they'll come to a deal there. That has taken a hit on the economy here.

The people have felt it. And that is something President Xi Jinping has tried to push past. In his speech he has assured the people that going forward there will be hard work ethic. Yes, of course, struggle has been something that he's mentioned several times. But ultimately, he sees China continuing on its path of progress -- David Culver, CNN, Beijing.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CHURCH: The U.S. House Democrats have now subpoenaed Donald Trump's personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, as part of their impeachment inquiry into the president. They want documents about Giuliani's dealings with Ukraine.

The former New York mayor denies any wrongdoing but he admits he asked Ukraine to investigate Mr. Trump's political rival, Joe Biden. House Democratic leaders wrote a letter to Giuliani, requesting he comply with the subpoena and they referenced this interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: Did you ask Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden?

RUDY GIULIANI, PRESIDENT TRUMP'S LAWYER: No, actually I didn't. I asked the Ukraine to investigate the allegations that there was interference in the election of 2016 by the Ukrainians for the benefit of Hillary Clinton, for which there already is a corresponding --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: You never asked anything about Hunter Biden?

You never asked anything Joe Biden --

(CROSSTALK)

GIULIANI: The only thing I asked about Joe Biden is to get to the bottom of how it was that Lutsenko who was appointed --

CUOMO: Right.

GIULIANI: -- dismissed the case against --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: So you did ask Ukraine to look into Joe Biden.

GIULIANI: Of course I did.

CUOMO: You just said you didn't.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHURCH: The scandal broke after a whistleblower complaint was filed over Trump's July phone call with the leader of Ukraine. The source of the complaint is still anonymous but is being fiercely attacked by the president and his allies. CNN's Kaitlan Collins has more now on that from the White House.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This whole thing is a disgrace.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): While aides wish he'd focus on an impeachment strategy, President Trump this afternoon is demanding to know the identity of the whistleblower.

TRUMP: We're trying to find out about a whistleblower, when you have a whistleblower that reports things that were incorrect.

COLLINS: He's also raising the idea of arresting the House Intelligence chairman for treason.

TRUMP: He actually took words and made it up.

COLLINS: After Adam Schiff read a fictionalized account of his call with the Ukrainian president.

REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): And, by the way, don't call me again. I will call you when you have done what I asked.

COLLINS: But as Trump fumes, White House aides fear they have squandered an opportunity to shape public opinion.

STEPHEN MILLER, SENIOR ADVISER TO PRESIDENT TRUMP: The president is the whistleblower here!

COLLINS: Trump is resisting calls to create an impeachment response team or hire new attorneys.

RUDY GIULIANI, ATTORNEY FOR PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: This is about proving that Donald Trump was framed by the Democrats.

COLLINS: Sources say Trump thinks doing either will make him look weak.

[02:10:00]

COLLINS (voice-over): But the void has left Republicans scrambling to defend him.

REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): You just added another word. QUESTION: No. It's in the transcript.

MCCARTHY: You said, "I would like you to do a favor, though"?

QUESTION: Yes, it's in -- it's in the White House transcript.

COLLINS: Instead, they're leveling unsubstantiated allegations against Joe Biden and his son.

REP. JIM JORDAN (R-OH): Guess what? Daddy comes running to the rescue, the vice president of United States come running... (CROSSTALK)

JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: That's not what happened.

JORDAN: ... says, fire -- fire that prosecutor.

TAPPER: Sir, sir, that's not what happened.

COLLINS: But not everyone is coming to Trump's defense, including his first homeland security adviser.

TOM BOSSERT, FORMER WHITE HOUSE HOMELAND SECURITY ADVISER: It is a bad day and a bad week for this president and for this country if he is asking for political dirt on an opponent.

COLLINS: Tom Bossert says he told Trump there was no basis to the theory that Ukraine interfered in the election, instead of Russia.

BOSSERT: I am deeply frustrated with what he and the legal team is doing and repeating that debunked theory to the president. It sticks in his mind when he hears it over and over again.

COLLINS: Now of course the law entitles that anonymous whistleblower to remain anonymous if they so wish, something that the attorney for the whistleblower pointed out shortly after the president made those comments in the Oval Office.

The president said they're working on finding out the identity of this person. He didn't say what steps they are taking to do so -- Kaitlan Collins, CNN the White House.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CHURCH: We haven't heard much from the secretary of state in the Ukraine scandal but it sounds like Mike Pompeo definitely heard Mr. Trump's July call with Ukraine's leader.

A source tells CNN Pompeo was in on that call where President Trump asked Ukraine's leader to investigate Biden. Pompeo was already subpoenaed by House Democrats last week to turn over documents relating to Ukraine.

Like Pompeo, top Ukrainian officials have been largely silent about the scandal. U.S. aid is vital for the country and it can't afford to anger Republicans or Democrats. CNN's chief international correspondent Clarissa Ward has more now from Kiev.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CLARISSA WARD, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Ukraine is struggling with the fallout of America's political crisis. Officials here aren't talking, but we tracked down two of those mentioned in the whistleblower's complaint, each with a very different perspective.

Former diplomat Andreii Telizhenko says President Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani approached him in May for a meeting. Telizhenko is known for his claims that Democrats colluded with Ukrainian officials against Trump in 2016. He says the two men spent six hours discussing a range of issues.

ANDREII TELIZHENKO, POLITICAL CONSULTANT: My insights on what's happening in the U.S.-Ukrainian relationship and the DNC-Korean (ph) collusions was also mentioned. Mr. Giuliani also asked me about Vice President Biden, what my thought was, what my insights were on him.

WARD: So you had the sense that this was a priority for Mr. Giuliani?

TELIZHENKO: Yes, that's the -- he doesn't hide it, it's his work, that's what he was hired to do, to represent the president of the United States and his personal interests. And --

WARD: By trying to further conspiracy theories about the president's political opponents?

TELIZHENKO: No. There is no conspiracy theories there (ph), I'll just -- we need to investigate this properly.

WARD (voice-over): Sergeii Leschenko disagrees. He was an advisor to Ukrainian President Zelensky's campaign and says Giuliani began applying pressure to investigate the Bidens shortly after the election.

SERGEII LESCHENKO, FORMER CAMPAIGN AIDE TO PRESIDENT ZELENSKY: I knew it for sure. Because for Giuliani, it was only interesting Ukraine to get this information about Biden and to use this information in the U.S.

WARD: You think that he was focused on it for the president, or --

LESCHENKO: For sure. Not for his private purposes. We know who is Giuliani. We know what is his role, we know that he is acting not just a private person, but on behalf of your -- of his client.

WARD: So this wasn't a secret?

LESCHENKO: It was a clear fact.

WARD: Rudy Giuliani has repeatedly defended his activities here in Ukraine. He has denied any wrongdoing. This despite the fact that both previous and present leaders within the prosecutor's office of Ukraine have said that there is no evidence that either then Vice President Joe Biden or his son, Hunter Biden, did anything that violated Ukrainian law -- Clarissa Ward, CNN, Kiev.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CHURCH: It's not just Ukraine that allegedly got a call for help from Donald Trump. An official tells CNN that he reached out to Australia to help investigate the origins of the Mueller probe.

Specifically, he pressed Australian prime minister Scott Morrison to help U.S. attorney general William Barr with his review of the probe. And just like the Ukraine call, the White House reportedly restricted access to a transcript of this call.

And also worth noting it was Australia's former foreign minister who triggered the Russia probe.

[02:15:00]

CHURCH: He told the FBI that Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos revealed Russia had damaging information about Hillary Clinton.

You've heard the politicians weigh in on the Donald Trump impeachment inquiry. But what do the U.S. citizens think about it?

We'll have the details about a new CNN poll next.

Plus China celebrates National Day with a show of military force. Why the new missile is grabbing so much attention.

(MUSIC PLAYING)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(MUSIC PLAYING)

CHURCH: U.S. President Donald Trump is calling the Ukraine controversy a completely fabricated account out of thin air.

But the House Democrats are digging in their heels in a new court filing. They are asking the information from the secret grand jury used in the Mueller probe to help the impeachment inquiry.

Meanwhile, the president's allies are worried that he doesn't understand the gravity of the situation, despite a new CNN poll showing that more voters now support impeaching Mr. Trump than in May. CNN's Jeff Zeleny has the details.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Americans are now evenly divided on impeachment, with a notable rise among independents and Republicans supporting President Trump's removal from office.

A new CNN poll just released finds 47 percent of Americans believe the president should be impeached, up from 41 percent in May. The change is not fueled by Democrats. Roughly, three-quarters favor impeachment, as they did during our poll four months ago. But the support among independents has grown by 11 points and by eight points among Republicans.

For now, public sentiments is shifting; 45 percent of Americans oppose the historic move, down from 54 percent in May. A week after Speaker Nancy Pelosi opened an impeachment inquiry, she said Democrats would build their case on patriotism, not partisan politics. REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): Let us try not to make it further divisive, but we cannot ignore our oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

ZELENY: The call for impeachment is resonating among younger Americans, the poll found, with 60 percent of those under 35 now in favor of removing Trump from office, compared to 43 percent who felt that way in May.

[02:20:00]

ZELENY (voice-over): The shift comes from within his own party. Among Republicans and GOP- leaning independents under age 50, support for impeachment has climbed from 9 percent in may to 22 percent now.

As the House is set to begin hearings and depositions this week, the poll finds that 48 percent of Americans say the president abused his power to gain political advantage against his rival Joe Biden in his conversations with the Ukrainian president; 39 percent say Trump did not improperly use his office. And 10 percent say they need to learn more.

While the poll shows unmistakable movement, Democrats still have a case to make to the broader American public.

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: He wants to mount a defense, I'm certainly willing to listen to it, but that is the evidence that is in front of us right now.

ZELENY: Convicting the president remains an extraordinarily high bar, needing a vote of two-thirds of the Republican-controlled Senate.

But Majority Leader Mitch McConnell saying today the Senate will consider any impeachment articles.

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY): Well, under the Senate rules, we're required to take it up if the House does go down that path. And we will follow the Senate rules.

ZELENY: So the bottom line is this, one week into the historic impeachment inquiry, it's clear that public sentiment is shifting largely because of independents, Republicans and particularly young voters.

But one thing is clear, Democrats still must make their case to the American people: 45 percent of Americans are now still opposed to impeachment. That, however, is down from 54 percent only four months ago -- Jeff Zeleny, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CHURCH: Mike Purdy is an independent presidential historian and the founder of presidentialhistory.com and joins me now from Seattle.

Good to have you with us.

MIKE PURDY, PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Thank you, Rosemary.

CHURCH: According to a new CNN poll we are now seeing Americans pretty evenly divided on whether Trump should be removed from office and with the call for his impeachment apparently resonating with younger voters and some Republicans and independents.

What do you think is driving that?

Do you expect to see increased support for impeachment in the months ahead?

PURDY: I think what's driving it is the facts that are in front of people very clearly. The transcript and the whistleblower complaint were very, very compelling and clear; whereas the Mueller report, with its 400 pages, was a little bit dense and hard to follow the arguments.

But this is a fairly clear-cut issue and I think Americans are looking at it and saying that this is problematic to have a president engaging in this kind of behavior. So I would suspect that the polls will continue to shift and show that more Americans are in favor of impeachment as more information comes out, as documents are subpoenaed, as people testify before Congress.

CHURCH: Democrats still have to make their case for impeachment to the American public and they say they will do that on the basis of patriotism rather than partisan politics.

But how careful do they have to be with this?

And what role might Mr. Trump's attacks and smears on the whistleblower have on all this too?

PURDY: I think you're right, the, Democrats have to be very cautious and I think this is why Speaker Pelosi for many months resisted the call for an impeachment inquiry because she realized it could backfire on the Democratic Party.

Especially if the president is impeached but then not convicted by the Senate, which could just play into Trump's hands. And I think what we are seeing is the president doing the same kind of things that he typically does when he's under attack and he ends up attacking his attackers.

As you mentioned, the whistleblower, it's a little bit dangerous actually because whistleblowers have anonymity and there is not to be any retaliation against them under the law. And yet the president seems to be pushing very hard against the whistleblower.

CHURCH: Yes, this whistleblower followed all of the correct protocol in order to be protected. So that should stay in place presumably. The poll also shows that 48 percent of Americans thought that President Trump abused his power to gain a political advantage over his rival, Joe Biden, in that call that he made with Ukraine's president. Now we're learning Mr. Trump was following the same pattern with other

allies, apparently applying pressure on the Australian prime minister in relation to the origins of the Mueller investigation.

So will this only convince more voters that Mr. Trump has a tendency to abuse his presidential power?

Is that where you see this all going, that more people would climb on board and support this?

PURDY: I think it's certainly not helpful for the president's case, having the Australian telephone conversation come out.

[02:25:00]

PURDY: And others as well. It appears that the president -- as always called the Mueller probe a witch hunt and even though that's over, he can't seem to let go of it and he wants to attack those who began the investigation.

But it is for political purposes that he's doing it and using the power and the office of the presidency to do it. So I think that when more of this information comes out, that is simply going to be more that Americans look at and say yes this president is looking out for his own personal and political interest and not those of the country.

CHURCH: And as a presidential historian yourself, do you agree with the constant parallels being drawn between the Trump presidency and that of Richard Nixon when it comes to abuse of power, obstruction of justice?

Or do you think what we're seeing during the Trump presidency goes far beyond what we saw during the Nixon years?

PURDY: I think the Watergate scandal with Richard Nixon is starting to look pretty tame when were comparing it to what President Trump is doing. I think you had Nixon doing a campaign break-in to get intelligence and then there was a cover-up. But it's all domestic.

Now you have a president whose allegiance to United States is somewhat in question because he's using the power of the presidency to strong- arm foreign leaders in order to get them to investigate a political rival and he's using his personal attorney as well as the Justice Department for that.

CHURCH: Very quickly, how disturbed have you been by the apparent roles being played in the Ukraine call and maybe beyond that by U.S. secretary of state Mike Pompeo and attorney general Bill Barr and Rudy Giuliani?

What's your reading of their roles in this?

PURDY: I think it's all very problematic and I think especially Rudy Giuliani's role, where you have -- if you want to argue that the president was having a leader to leader conversation, OK. That's fine on one hand. But then say, hey, talk to my personal attorney and we will figure out a way to get the dirt on Joe Biden, that is very problematic.

And I think as more information comes out, especially about Mike Pompeo's involvement with that conversation, just like the Nixon Watergate scandal, you had a cover-up and here in this case we appear to have some cover-up with the transcript being locked up into a secure server so that nobody can see it.

So there are some parallels but I think in terms of order of magnitude what we are seeing now is much worse.

CHURCH: Presidential historian Mike Purdy, we thank you so very much for your analysis and it's good to talk with you.

PURDY: Thank you for having me.

CHURCH: China celebrates its 70th anniversary but the parade's pomp and circumstance are marred by pro democracy protests and the story is coming up.

[02:30:00]

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Welcome back to CNN NEWSROOM, I'm Rosemary Church. I want to check the headlines for you this hour. House Democrats have subpoenaed Donald Trump's personal attorney as part of their Impeachment Inquiry into the U.S. President. Intelligence Committee wants Rudy Giuliani to turn over documents related to his dealings with Ukraine. Giuliani says he will consider the request.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was already subpoenaed last week. A source also tells CNN, Pompeo was in on President Trump's July call with Ukraine's leader, like Giuliani House Democrats want Pompeo to turn over documents related to Ukraine.

A huge military parade for the heart of Beijing has marked the 70th anniversary, the founding of Communist China. Earlier, President Xi Jinping addressed the nation, stressing the need for strength and unity, and specifically mentioned his support for one country, two systems. A reference to Hong Kong status as a semi-Autonomous Region.

Well, China's military stood front and center in Beijing with several new weapons on display. CNN's Kristie Lu Stout is live this hour in the Chinese capital. She joins us now. Always great to see you, Kristie. Of course, a epic day for China, as it marks its 70th anniversary and shows of its military might talk. Talk to us about what we're learning about some of that, specifically the ballistic missile, and also that reference to Hong Kong made by President Xi Jinping, and just how significant that is.

KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: That's right. Before the military parade kicked off, we heard those comments and addressed made by the Chinese President Xi Jinping who emphasized unity, who emphasized strength, and also emphasized the concept of one country. It is addressed he made reference to Hong Kong, as well as another special administrative region of Macau saying that we will maintain long-term stability in Hong Kong after making those comments. That was when the centerpiece of today's National Day celebrations kicked off.

This is National Day in Beijing. They are marking 70 years since the founding of the People's Republic of China. And there was a massive display of military might involving 15,000 military personnel, 160 aircraft, 580 pieces of military equipment, and a number of military analysts all around the world was paying very close attention to what was being unveiled including something called the DF-41, a powerful intercontinental ballistic missile. Another piece of equipment that a lot of attention was the DF-17, a hypersonic glider of some stealth drone technology was unveiled as well.

Now, after the military parade, there was something called the Citizens March, an impressive procession involving some 100,000 people marching up and down Chang an Jie, that is the Avenue of Eternal Peace that cuts through the main part of Beijing as well as Tiananmen Square. At the end of that, 70,000 doves and balloons are released into the air. Of course, all in symbolism, marking 70 years since the founding of the People's Republic of China. But I do also want to make note that this is the first National Day Parade that we saw the military, the Chinese Communist Party and the entire nation under the leadership of one man, one man who has consolidated power ever since he took power in 2012 and increasingly likely to become president for life, Xi Jinping. Rosemary?

CHURCH: Yes, indeed. And of course, as China marks its National Day, Hong Kong protesters took to the streets. What's the latest information you're getting on those protests?

STOUT: Yes, we are hearing that it's starting to really kick off with more violent clashes taking place this day in Hong Kong. You know, what started four months ago as a single issue protest over that controversial extradition bill has morphed into this unprecedented challenge, this crisis for Hong Kong as well as a direct challenge to Beijing.

[02:35:06]

And joining us now from Hong Kong is Emily Lau. She is the former chairwoman of the Democratic Party. She's the modern politician and activist. She joins us now live. Emily, thank you for joining us this day. This is the 75th National Day, Beijing people here have been celebrating, What does this National Day mean for Hong Kong?

EMILY LAU, FORMER CHAIRWOMAN, THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF HONG KONG: Well, for many people, there's nothing to celebrate my colleagues from the Democratic Party, and others and many other Hong Kong people are still marching. I joined them very briefly in Wan Chai and then I rushed to Wong Chuk Hang to the CNN studio. And I hope I can go and join them after this interview. But I'm told that the police are everywhere. And they've started firing tear gas, and also there are protests throughout Hong Kong, not just on Hong Kong Island, but in Kowloon and New Territories, and things look pretty ugly. So, the people are very, very upset. There's very little to celebrate. STOUT: There's very little to celebrate for demands remain on med. But why protests and why protest this day? What do you hope to actually achieve?

LAU: Well, today is big day for Xi Jinping. You saw this huge military parade. And -- but some people are so mad with him saying that he should not have cracked down on Hong Kong. And so, people want to use the occasion to show again to the world community that Hong Kong people, we're not asking for independence, we are just asking for them to set up an independent commission of inquiry to look into this saga. And of course, we are asking for democracy and protection of human rights. So, this is big day for Xi Jinping. And people want to use this day to showcase to the world that Hong Kong people are suffering.

STOUT: That is your message to Xi Jinping. What is your message to Carrie Lam, the embattled chief executive and top leader of Hong Kong who is not in Hong Kong today, but in Beijing to mark the National Day?

LAU: Well, I think many Hong Kong people want to see the back of Carrie Lam and those other officials who are, you know, responsible for this terrible bill. But we want Carrie Lam to find some courage within her and tell President Xi, that she should set up this commission of inquiry, she should respond to the people's demands. And she said she's on an engagement process to talk to the people. She's not talking to the prodemocracy legislators. So, I think she is not getting it right. And why would Carrie Lam and Xi Jinping want to destroy Hong Kong? That's the question I want to ask.

STOUT: And what is the off-ramp here? Because if you talk to Carrie Lam, she would say, I've started a platform for talks, I am engaging with people, we may not agree to a commission of independent inquiry, but we have a separate mechanism in place to investigate police brutality and the actions of the police force. How can we bridge this goal to end what has been months of highly disruptive and damaging protests that have affected Hong Kong's international standing?

LAU: There are many people in Hong Kong. Opinion Post said more than 80 percent of the respondents say they want -- they support an independent inquiry. And this include many people in the pro-Beijing camp. So, I hope those people and the business community should speak out and tell Carrie Lam and also tell President Xi Jinping, that's the right way forward. And of course, to replace some of these officials who have been so incompetent and have caused this crisis. So, it is -- I think things are getting very nasty. We don't want to see our protesters, young people being beaten up by the police. We don't want the economy to just go into the bottom of the Victoria Harbor.

STOUT: And a final question for you, Emily, a question not necessarily about politics, but about identity, as a number of people in Hong Kong identify themselves as Hong Kongers and not Chinese. Do you feel this way? And if so, as a Hong Konger, how do you feel this day on the anniversary of the founding of modern China?

LAU: Well, it is a tragedy for Xi Jinping, isn't it? That more and more people, Chinese people in Hong Kong do not regard themselves as Chinese. And in fact, as you know, many people are trying to immigrate, people who hold the British National overseas passports. They want Britain to give them real citizenship. They want to immigrate to Australia, to America, to Canada, to Malaysia. The people are fleeing.

[02:40:09]

So this is a disgrace. And as I said, we're not fighting for independence. We are fighting what's within this Sino-British Joint Declaration and one country two systems. So, we call on the international community to continue to support us.

STOUT: Emily Lau, we thank you for joining us here on CNN. And Rosemary, as you heard from Emily, just a sampling of the anger, the palpable anger that is very much still there in many parts of Hong Kong. This day may be national day, a day of celebration in Beijing of pomp of patriotism, but it is a day of protest in Hong Kong. Back to you.

CHURCH: Yes, one country, two systems, and two very different stories there. Kristie Lu Stout, many thanks, we'll talk to you again soon. We'll take a short break here. Still to come, grave and growing. That's how former National Security Advisor John Bolton describes the North Korean threat. What he thinks his old boss has wrong about the North. And Britain's Duchess of Sussex puts the focus on South Africa's artisans with an order of custom made jeans. We'll have that in just a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CHURCH: Welcome back, everyone. Well, now here is a story that could come straight out of a spy novel. A U.S. man has been charged with spying for China and it was all caught on tape. This surveillance video shows Edward Peng leaving thousands of dollars in a Georgia hotel room for a U.S. double agent. He then returns later to pick up classified information left by the agent. The FBI says Peng flew to Beijing a couple of days later. They add there were several such exchanges between 2015 and 2018. If Peng is convicted, he faces up to five years in prison. Well, it has only been about three weeks since President Trump fired John Bolton and now the former National Security Advisor is slamming the Trump administration's North Korea policy, publicly. Our Brian toward reports from Washington.

[02:45:00]

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: John Bolton, the top Trump advisor who North Korea once called a Warmonger and a Human Defect is firing back, giving what he calls his own unvarnished view of North Korea's Kim Jong-un, and his relationship with Trump.

JOHN BOLTON, FORMER NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR OF THE UNITED STATES: Under current circumstances, he will never give up the nuclear weapons voluntarily. TODD: In his first public speech since getting axed by the president about three weeks ago, Trump's former national security adviser had no problem contradicting his old boss's optimism about Kim's intentions.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: He wants to denuclearize.

BOLTON: In fact, I think the contrary is true. I think the strategic decision that Kim Jong-un is operating through, is that he will do whatever he can to keep a deliverable nuclear weapons capability.

TODD: In candid comments and stark terms, Bolton made no bones about his belief that North Korea is a rogue regime led by a man who can't be trusted. Something that put him in conflict with the president.

TRUMP: We like each other. Good relationship.

TODD: As for the fact that Trump continues to brag that North Korea has stopped testing nuclear weapons.

TRUMP: There's been no ballistic missile tests and there's been no nuclear tests.

TODD: Bolton suggested that's not a sign of capitulation, its evidence Kim Jong-un believes his program is ready.

BOLTON: North Korea has in its judgment, for well or ill, finished testing and can produce nuclear warheads and long-range ballistic missiles. That's not an encouraging sign. That's a sign to be worried about.

TODD: And Bolton had a warning for the president regarding one of Trump's signature refrains on the pace of nuclear talks.

TRUMP: I'm in no rush. I'm in no rush.

BOLTON: When we say, well, we're in no rush for negotiations, we're in no rush for a resolution of this, we're saying to North Korea and Iran, take your time, keep going, you've got more time to plan, to test, to produce, to deploy, these capable capabilities.

TODD: The White House isn't commenting on Bolton's criticisms. But Bolton is drawing criticism from other quarters. Some North Korea analysts say Bolton is looking at the nuclear talks too much in black and white terms. That he's ignoring a middle ground that President Trump could reach with the young dictator.

PATRICK CRONIN, SENIOR FELLOW, HUDSON INSTITUTE: He's a 30-something- year-old who wants to get his friends rich, and be as rich as the rich people around the world. And he may be willing to sell off some parts of his arsenal to get that.

TODD: Meantime, other analysts say, Bolton went too far by suggesting the U.S. should consider getting rid of Kim Jong-un.

BOLTON: There are things we should look to and have serious discussions about. One is the possibility limited though it may be of regime change in North Korea.

TODD: That's something the president and his top aides say they're not pursuing.

BRUCE KLINGNER, SENIOR RESEARCH FELLOW FOR NORTHEAST ASIA, HERITAGE FOUNDATION: Regime change can open the door to a lot of very disastrous end results. If you fail clearly, the North Korea may lash out at the south and our forces there. And even the continental U.S. Even if we succeed, we could have a quagmire there that is very hard to get out of.

TODD: As if to illustrate himself how difficult regime change would be in North Korea, Bolton, when asked what Kim Jong-un is really like, said, the dictator is thoroughly in charge of his country, makes all the decisions, and is not a puppet of his family, the military, or anyone else.

Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CHURCH: We turn to weather now, and monsoon rains are having an impact across India. Our meteorologist Pedram Javaheri has been following this very closely, and he joins us now live. So, what are you finding Pedram?

PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN INTERNATIONAL METEOROLOGIST: Yes, Rosemary, you know, it was about four months ago, I was standing right up here on June 1st to talking to you about the delayed -- a nature of the monsoons across India.

Well, to October 1st, which means the official monsoon season is over across the Indian subcontinent. But, Mother Nature certainly packing a punch sure on the way out because tremendous rainfall in recent weeks across the Indian subcontinent, and the monsoon season runs from June 1st until the end of September.

So, again, October typically transitions into what is expected to be the dry season. And notice we had a major, major delay in the monsoon. So, it was a big concern across India when it came to the month of June and no rain was coming down across the region.

But July, slight surplus. In August, a more noticeable surplus. And in September, a historic surplus of rainfall came down. So, this is all really led to an incredible amount of rainfall here in recent weeks across India.

In fact, as a subcontinent there, a 10 percent above average surplus of rainfall for the entire nation. When you consider the rarity of that, that is the highest surplus we've had in some five years' time, and the highest are going back to the 1990s, in fact.

Six -- last time, we were even getting any amount of rainfall above average was back in 2013. The last time it was this far above average was back in 1994. So, certainly, quite a bit of rainfall to be had has led to some problems across India, and there's still some rainfall across (INAUDIBLE) around Mumbai, as well.

And we've got to take a look at the transition, the withdrawal period of the monsoons expected to be at the beginning portion of September. This year, the forecast date for the monsoons to exit the picture would be around the 10th of October, which is the most delayed nature of the monsoons exiting India in some 40 years' time.

[02:50:11]

So, yes, it started very late. It looks like it will end late as well. And as a result, leave behind quite a bit of water. So, the officials across this region have had some warnings in place across the eastern states, parts of the western states, and even farther towards the south here.

For some alerts to notice, the coverage drops here come Wednesday afternoon. So, we expect the rainfall to lessen a little bit but an impressive amount of rainfall nonetheless for a lot of people, Rosemary, that has meant great news, unfortunately, as we know, too much of a good thing can become a bad thing, and in parts of India that has been the case.

But for the first time in many years, at least, the surplus and rainfall across the area. Rosemary?

CHURCH: All right. Many thanks to you, Pedram, for keeping such a close eye on that. Appreciated as always.

Well, the royal couple's tour of southern Africa is winding down. Prince Harry is in Malawi, while his wife, Meghan, met artisans in Johannesburg. Max Foster, reports the duchess visited one shop to pick up an order she placed a month ago.

MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Imagine you're a small clothing shop and you get a call four weeks ago from the embassy here in South Africa. And you're asked to create a pair of jeans for the duchess of Sussex.

And then imagine, the duchess of Sussex turning up to a shop to collect her jeans. And that actually happened today in an area of the city called, Victoria Yards, where lots of artisans gather together. And the duchess wanted to promote the way of working there. She describes it as working very well on a holistic level.

So, she went on a private visit there. The media weren't invited, but we did get some pictures from the palace afterwards,, which was showing you now. Meanwhile, her husband was over in Malawi, where he was finding out more about anti-poaching projects.

He was particularly keen to try to do what he could to get rid of this stigma, as he describes it. And many people see people that can that are concerned about the conservation of the world as hippies.

But he thinks that shouldn't be the case, we should all be concerned about it, and he spoke to that very powerfully in Malawi.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRINCE HARRY, DUKE OF SUSSEX: We are literally driving ourselves to extinction. I know, people who said that before and its come seems to be a bit of a narrative that's been coming across the globe at the moment.

But, there are so many problems and a vast majority of them -- not all of them, but a vast majority of them that the root cause of that is what we're doing to the climate.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOSTER: But on Tuesday, Prince Harry comes here to Johannesburg to be reunited with his wife and son. There'll be various engagements here. Everyone looking out for a sighting of Archie, of course. But also, a big highlight coming on Wednesday when they head out to a township here. And then, go on to meet Graca Machel, who is, of course, Nelson Mandela's widow.

Max Foster, CNN, Johannesburg.

CHURCH: Well, you may remember Donald Trump's beautiful letters from Kim Jong-un. Well, he's changing his tune and describing his phone call with Ukraine's president. That's next on CNN NEWSROOM.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CHURCH: Welcome back, everyone. Well, Donald Trump is trying to come up with the perfect defense against Democrats plans to remove him from office. And so far, he seems to have settled on one strategy.

But as CNN's Jeanne Moos reports, one man's perfection is another man's impeachment.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

[02:54:59]

JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: When was the last time you picked up the phone and had --

TRUMP: An absolutely perfect phone call. It was a perfect conversation. Absolutely perfect.

MOOS: So perfect, you called other people, even your foes.

REP. NANCY PELOSI, (D-CA): He told me it was perfect.

MOOS: So, perfect comedians imitated you.

BILL MAHER, HOST, HBO: It was a perfect call. My question is if it was such a perfect call, why are you behaving like a bed-wetter trying to hurry up and wash the sheets?

MOOS: But President Trump wasn't changing his tactics. On Monday, he was at it again -- pleading perfection to describe his call with Ukraine's president.

TRUMP: The call was perfect. It was perfect. Was perfect.

MOOS: "Perfectly incriminating," tweeted one critic. "Perfect, except for the do me a favor part." "Does he not realize that we can read the transcript?"

TREVOR NOAH, HOST, THE DAILY SHOW, COMEDY CENTRAL: If this phone call is so damning, why did Trump even release the transcript? Only an idiot would do that, exactly. And also --

MOOS: But why stop at perfection?

TRUMP: It was a beautiful, warm, nice conversation. It was actually a beautiful conversation.

MOOS: A beautiful phone conversation is sort of an extension of the beautiful letters, President Trump always says he gets.

TRUMP: I got a very beautiful letter from President Xi.

Well, he just wrote me a beautiful letter.

MOOS: From China's president, from North Korea's leader.

TRUMP: He wrote me beautiful letters. We fell in love.

MOOS: But unlike those beautiful letters, we actually got to read the beautiful phone call summary.

PELOSI: He didn't even know that it was wrong. You know, he said it was perfect.

MOOS: How perfect?

TRUMP: Was absolutely a 10, it was perfect.

SETH MEYERS, HOST, LATE NIGHT WITH SETH MEYERS, NBC: A 10? Why are you talking about a phone call like you're creeping on women at the beach?

MOOS: There's nothing like a threat of impeachment to turn a president into a perfectionist.

TRUMP: You take a look at that call, it was perfect.

MOOS: Jeanne Moos.

TRUMP: Was absolutely perfect.

MOOS: CNN.

TRUMP: My call was perfect.

MOOS: New York.

TRUMP: -- president, yesterday of Ukraine.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CHURCH: And before we wrap up this hour, we'd like to show you this crazy video. Take a look at this. An out-of-control catering truck spinning wildly on the tarmac. It almost hit a plane at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport.

It stopped when someone rammed it with another vehicle. American Airlines, says the truck's accelerator was stuck and no employees were hurt. That ended well.

Well, thanks so much for joining us. I'm Rosemary Church. I'll be back with more news in just a moment. You're watching CNN. Do stick around.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)