Return to Transcripts main page


Anger Over Income Inequality Brings Nation To Brink; Eight Days Of Anti-Government Protests, No End In Sight; Judge Approves House Request To See Unredacted Mueller Report; Indonesia Blames Boeing, FAA, Pilots For Lion Air Crash; Satellite Captures Images Of Atmospheric Gravity Waves. Aired 5-5:30p ET

Aired October 25, 2019 - 17:00   ET




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: --and the top Republican on the House Armed Services Committee Congressman Mac Thornberry you can see that at 9 and noon

eastern. Our coverage on CNN continues right now. Have a fantastic and meaningful weekend. I'll see you Sunday morning.

ROBYN CURNOW, CNN HOST, THE BRIEF: A season of discontent protesters from Beirut to Santiago step up demands for change. New arrests in the

investigation of dozens of people found dead in a truck in Southeastern England and Boeing under pressure Indonesian investigators say design flaws

in the plane contributed to the deadly Lion Air crash.

Welcome all of you to CNN Newsroom. I'm Robyn Curnow. Great to have you with us this hour. Our top story police in the UK have arrested a fourth

person in connection with the deaths of 39 people found in a shipping container on Wednesday. Some Vietnamese families are saying they're

concerned their loves ones are among the dead.

Vietnam's Embassy in London is working with British police to determine the victim's nationalities. Police don't know whether they are Chinese or

Vietnamese. Well, our Scott McLean is in Northern Ireland where the truck involved in this incident began its journey. Scott?

SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Essex police had said yesterday they believed that all 39 victims were of Chinese origin. They now say that it's

a developing picture with respect to nationality. We know that officials from Vietnamese Embassy in London are working with local authorities after

getting word from concerned relatives back in Vietnam.

One of those is a father concerned about his daughter, and that she may be amongst the dead. That daughter's brother shared text messages on Facebook

that she had sent her family on Tuesday "They read, I'm sorry, mom, my path to abroad doesn't succeed". Mom, I love you so much. I'm dying because I

can't breathe. She then says where she's from in Vietnam, presumably to help investigators identify her and then she says, I am sorry, mom.

Autopsies began today. Police warns, though, that could be a very lengthy process. Police also announced they arrested three people in the case, two

in Northern England one at a metro London area airport. All three of them were picked up on suspicion of conspiracy to traffic people and

manslaughter. Meanwhile, the 25-year-old driver of that truck is still in police custody.

He's from here in Northern Ireland. We went by his parent's house today. Some of his neighbors stressed to us that he is innocent until proven

guilty. We also tracked down the company that owns the container or the trailer today. No one on that property wanted to speak with us, but they

did refer us to a lawyer who would not say who rented it out at the time that those bodies were found.

But that lawyer did say that it's equipped with a GPS tracking system and that data has been turned over the police. Scott McLean, CNN, Armagh,

Northern Ireland.

CURNOW: Thanks to Scott for that. We'll have a guest in just a moment on that issue. Meanwhile we are also watching the waves of global protests

that have rocked nations all over the world this week showing no sign of letting up. Demonstrations in Iraq became deadly violent on Friday where

now at least 30 people were killed dead, 2300 injured, it happened when police tried to break up protests demanding government action on

unemployment and corruption.

In Santiago Chile has been brought to a complete stand still. These are live pictures you're looking at as anger over income inequality has brought

thousands of people into the streets. You can certainly see the numbers there. 19 people, though, have died so far. The UN says it's sending a

special mission to investigate allegations of human rights abuses. And the UN Secretary General is calling for all protesters and governments to find

peaceful solution.


ANTONIO GUTERRES, U.N. SECRETARY-GENERAL: And I call on protesters to follow the examples of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. and other

champions of nonviolent change. There can be no excuse for violence from any quarter. Above all, I urge readers everywhere to listen to the real

problems of real people.


CURNOW: CNN is covering this from all angles. Ben Wedeman is - has been covering for a week anti-government protests in Beirut but first we go to

Matt Rivers in Santiago, Chile. Matt?

MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Robyn, yes it's been a fascinating week here in Chile and also a tragic week given the fact that 19 people have

lost their lives as a result of these protests. We are seeing yet another day of protests here in Santiago with hundreds of thousands of people

currently out on the streets.

I'm on the phone right now because we can't actually get enough band width to get a live shot. That shows you just how many people are packed into the

street in a very tight area, hundreds of thousands at this point.


RIVERS: And right now it is largely people. Witnessing a lot of people peacefully marching, chanting, singing, however these have gotten violent

before over the past seven days and we did see that sporadically earlier today. We were rolling now when one protester threw a brick at some

military police officers that were there.

And they responded and could be escalating with rubber bullets being fired into crowds a people who are definitely not prepared for it. Some of the

protesters didn't know that other protesters were throwing bricks that I got quite chaotic there and this shows you how quickly these things can

escalate here on the ground.

We saw several people get hit by rubber bullets we saw some police officers get hit by bricks. So it is violent here in Chile in certain places but it

doesn't take away from what they are all upset about here, they are upset over what they say in rich getting rich in Chile. Decades of policies that

have benefitted the wealthy and have left the middle and lower classes behind.

So the argument goes. They would like reform - things like lower health care cost, things like funding further public education programs. That's

what people are out on the streets here for. They do expect more violence throughout the night sporadically but the message overall from protesters

is that despite the government saying they want to fix things and make economic reforms and having announced a few measures to that end,

protesters are still not ready to back down.

CURNOW: As we say, there have been protests a number of them across the world this week often on these pocketbook issues that affect ordinary

people. They just basically crack. But what about the people who are there right now? Give me some sense of the demographics. I know a lot of youth

have been angry. Who are you seeing on the streets?

RIVERS: I think the further you get towards the center of these protests, it's generally has been younger the protesters get. The protests clearly

have been driven - the energy comes from students and younger people the underemployed if not the unemployed and students. However I'm standing on

the street right now and I see right in front of me two toddlers with their parents also walking past in a much calmer area of the protest.

So I think overall you do see younger people here, without question, but there is definitely representation from people who are older and also

younger than students. There is clear frustration amongst a broad section of Chilean society with governmental policies.

Even if there's not an even demographic split on the streets here, I think the fact that you are seeing middle aged people bringing their kids out

here trying to state what the peaceful side of things it shows you even if students make up the majority of the protesters there's sympathy among

those who aren't ready to face-off against police with batons and tear gas.

CURNOW: Yes. And when you say these folks have fed up and we can certainly see from the images there are a lot of them. And we'll continue to monitor

these live pictures that we are getting from Santiago in Chile throughout the coming hours. Matt Rivers on the ground, great to have you there thanks

so much, Matt.

I want to take you now to Lebanon, another of the nations grip by days of clashes between anti-government demonstrators and police. But today there

was a new twist as Hezbollah and its supporters opened a new front in this battle for the streets. CNN's Ben Wedeman was there and he found this


BEN WEDEMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: With Lebanese National Anthem in the back Hezbollah supporters clashed with anti-government protesters the police

caught in the middle. All of us for the nation go the anthem as refrain, for glory and the flag.

Tensions have been mounting since the protests broke out. The protesters' denunciations of the entire political class included sometimes explicitly

the Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. We are against the entire corrupt system this Hezbollah supporter tells me - except for Syed Hassan


No one should come near him. He's not a thief. Moments later, Nasrllah warned on national television that the current crisis threatens to open up

a political vacuum that could lead to chaos and eventually civil war. He told his supporters to leave the protests, which they did, immediately,

chased by anti-government demonstrators and the police.

These clashes show they're not all Lebanese are united in their demands of the government and that this protest movement, which started peacefully,

may not remain so. People blocked the highway north of Beirut as part of the ongoing general strike, frustrated with leaders deaf to their demands.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're sitting on another planet, maybe mars or the moon he says.

After eight days of people protesting in the streets day and night, they say, come, tell us your demands. After eight days they haven't already

heard our demands, then bye-bye.

WEDEMAN: Some are trying to find a way forward. Hundreds gather in a cinema that was under construction when the Lebanese Civil War broke out in 1975

and has been an empty shell ever since. They're listening to Charbel Nahas a Former Government Minister with a reputation for integrity and

effectiveness, explaining the need for an immediate transfer of power to an emergency transitional government. The ruling class, he later explains, has

utterly failed.

CHARBEL NAHAS, "CITIZENS IN A STATE" PARTY: The system has fallen not because of the protests. The protests came after the system failed. The

system meaning the structure that can deal with realities.

WEDEMAN: And the realities of Lebanon are becoming ever more complicated and dangerous. Ben Wedeman, CNN, Beirut.

CURNOW: Great report there. Thanks to Ben and his team. So let's return now to our top story, the investigation into the deaths of 39 people found in a

truck in the UK. Now the tragedy is certainly shedding light on the risks undocumented migrants face when they're traveling.

For some prospective let's got to Natalia Banulescu-Bogdan she joins me now, she is the Associate Director of Migration Policy Institute

International Program. Great to have you on the show. There are still a lot of details we do not know about this particular incident. From what we do

know, what do you make of it?


really shows the tragic consequences of the fact that there is such an enormous desire around the world, really, for people to seek out better

circumstances for themselves and their families. And there just aren't that many legal routes to take them there. That creates a large market for human


CURNOW: My question is, do we know yes, if this is human smuggling or human trafficking? And what is the difference?

BOGDAN: It's a great question. We often treat those two categories as though there's a very bright line between them, but actually I think we

need to think about a vast gray area between the two. Human smuggling is generally thought of as a transactional relationship entered into


Basically people are paying a smuggler to get them from point "A," to point "B." Human trafficking is a coerced relationship with slave like

conditions. But even if somebody engaged the services of a smuggler willingly that relationship could turn coercive along the route. Generally

these routes involve multiple segments.

You have people traveling by air, land, and sea. They could be switching from smuggler to smuggler. It's very likely that at some point, the

relationship resembled more human trafficking.

CURNOW: That's interesting. Also, what do you make of the 39 people who died? I know the UK police have pulled back from their initial statement

saying they were all Chinese. We know that there have been concerns from the Vietnamese government, concerns that there are some Vietnamese citizens


What do you make about these smuggling or trading routes, illegal migration routes in term of Asia and the UK?

BOGDAN: Sure. I mean, it does seem surprising to a lot of people that migrants from Asia, China, would travel this very long distance, but

actually there are thousands of Chinese migrants that are smuggled into the EU every year. I think the EU an estimated almost 36,000 per year.

People are generally seeking better economic opportunities and they're willing to, you know, put they in harm's way to make that happen,


CURNOW: Great to have you on the show. Appreciate your perspective and your expertise. Natalia thanks so much.

BOGDAN: Thank you.

CURNOW: Now, EU members are holding off on voting on a Brexit delay until next week, although they agreed in principle to an extension on Friday. It

comes as Britain's Prime Minster Boris Johnson pushes for a general election. That vote is set for Monday, but he needs the opposition Labour

Party Jeremy Corbyn to agree.


BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: What I'm saying to the Labour Party, to Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party, is that they have the opportunity

now to get this thing done. Time for Corbyn, man up. Let's have an election on December 12th.


CURNOW: Well, Corbyn says he may agree to an election only if a no-deal Brexit is off the table. If the vote takes place before Mr. Johnson's

proposed election date.


CURNOW: Well, still to come here on CNN, Boeing is under pressure. Investigators say design flows in Boeing's 737 Max planes contributed to

the deadly Lion Air crash. We'll talk about that and then a big legal victory for U.S. lawmakers investigating President Donald Trump. We'll tell

you about a court ruling that has just been handed down. It might be a game changer. That's what some folks are saying. That is ahead.


CURNOW: Welcome back, I'm Robyn Curnow. I want to take you through big development in the impeachment inquiry of U.S. President Donald Trump. A

judge has just ruled that all material that was blacked out of the Mueller report must be turned over to congressional investigators by next week.

She not only determined that the impeachment inquiry is valid but that whole - withholding this information could lead to "Possible injustice".

Well, let's bring in our Senior Congressional Correspondent Manu Raju for more on all of this. Manu, I'm glad you are here to unpack this. What is

this decision and how important is it?

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's very significant. Not just the fact that we'll get the un-redacted portions of the Mueller

report that many seems to be the less significant part of this decision. What is very significant is the fact that the judge firmly sided that the

impeachment inquiry that is being conducted by the House Democrats is legal.

Now, that is opposite of what the White House has been arguing, what the U.S. Justice Department had been arguing that it's invalid illegitimate

inquiry in part because the U.S. House has not voted to authorize that probe. The Democrats have said there's no need to have a vote in the House

to make it a formal impeachment inquiry.

There's nothing that requires them to do so, but that's been part of the argument. The White House has cited the lack of vote, what they're calling

an invalid inquiry to not comply with the range of requests that Democrats have issued in recent weeks. And what the judge does in this ruling says

clearly that this is a legitimate impeachment inquiry that is legal and that the Congress essentially has broad latitude to determine how best to

carry out its impeachment probe.

Now, what this lawsuit initially was to get information related to the Mueller report, information about episodes of obstruction of justice and

allegedly the President of the United States was involved with thwarting that investigation into him and his campaign.

But since they launched this lawsuit, the impeachment inquiry here in the U.S. has shifted and set focus now on the Ukraine matter and the efforts by

the President to withhold Ukraine aid, hundreds of millions of dollars, in exchange for a push for Ukraine to investigate matters that could help his

re-election chances.


RAJU: So nevertheless, this judge doesn't really seem to care what they're looking into. Just saying they're conducting an impeachment inquiry, so

they deserve this information. Robyn.

CURNOW: Now it's 20 past 5:00 here in the U.S. and based on your experience of reporting particularly during the Mueller report days, news often drops

around this time on a Friday night. But as we look toward the week, we've got this now, new information in the last hour or so. What is going to be

the highlight? What should people look out for next week? Is the name John Bolton going to be said a lot?

RAJU: Well, he is not expected to come next week, but there are talks for John Bolton the Former National Security Adviser for the President to come

before this Committee. Of course he could be a key witness because according to sworn testimony from other witnesses he raised significant

concerns about the withholding of Ukrainian aid.

It was critical of the role that Rudy Giuliani the President's Personal Attorney played in trying to push Ukraine to open those investigations into

the Bidens and the President himself - those investigations as well. In addition to this next week look for a key witness to come on Thursday.

That's Tim Morrison who is a Senior White House Official on the National Security Council.

Someone who was referenced throughout testimony earlier this week of the President's top diplomat from Ukraine Bill Taylor. In Taylor's testimony he

cites Morrison about 15 times and in Taylor's testimony he said that he was told that the President wanted to Ukrainian aid withheld for those

political investigations and we are told from multiple sources that he'll corroborate key elements of Taylor's testimony so that could also add more

fuel to the impeachment push.

CURNOW: Fascinating. Thanks so much. Manu Raju, appreciate it. So Boeing is promising to address safety recommendations as Indonesia makes its final

report on last year's fatal crash of a Lion Air flight. We know that Indonesian investigators are blaming the crash on Boeing, U.S. Aviation

Authorities as well as areas by flight crews.

The lead investigator is calling this new type of accident due to computerized aircraft. All 189 people on board died when the Lion Air

flight plunged into the Java Sea roughly a year ago. The Lion Air crash and an incident with Ethiopian Airlines let the grounding of all Boeing 737 Max

jets worldwide, still in effect today. I spoke with Richard Quest about Boeing and the Lion Air crash a short time ago.

CURNOW: A lot of people, Richard, have been called out in this report. What do you make of it?

RICHARD QUEST, CNN EDITOR-AT-LARGE: I think what it shows is the complexity of today's aviation. When something goes wrong its way too simple to say,

they are at fault. This happened. Those people are to blame. The report though does get some general strands which we can take.

Firstly, Boeing and the regulator, the FAA, they failed miserably in their duty in the way they designed MCAS, this piece of software designed to

prevent a plane from stalling by pushing down the nose. They made it too powerful they made it too difficult for pilots to use. They didn't even

tell pilots it was there in the first place and the consequences, when it actually activated.

So Boeing and the FAA take a larger part of the blame, but the airline too because of the way they bought spare parts, the way they trained their

crew. The crew itself, I don't blame them as such, never would, but they do bear responsibility. The first officer flying that plane was legally and

technically qualified but he did not have the airmanship skills to handle that plane in those circumstances.

CURNOW: So what next? How seriously is this report going to be taken? And will Boeing take it seriously as well more importantly?

QUEST: Yes, I think there are two aspects in which it gets taken very seriously. The first is the most immediate, getting Boeing 737 back in the

air. And Boeing has put forward three or four software changes to MCAS which will do the trick. It will remedy the problem. No longer will a pilot

never physically be able to have the strength to pull back to counter these forces.

So they've sorted that out. The other very thing that they have been - that is too big in many ways for the industry to get hold of, but everybody

knows they must - are planes becoming too complicated for the average pilot to fly? Have they now reached such a level of sophistication of systems

management and computerization that the average pilot simply gets overwhelmed?

Now, if that is the case, then the industry needs to determine what can be taken off the plate. What can be automated, what should never be put in

there in the first place?

CURNOW: Richard Quest there. So just ahead on CNN Newsroom, wildfire emergencies are declared across California, and residents brace for a

weekend of dangerous fire conditions. We have that and these stunning images next.



CURNOW: Fast moving wildfires have forced thousands of people from their homes in California. The Governor has declared emergencies in both the Los

Angeles area and in parts of Wine Country North of San Francisco. Residents are also coping with intermittent blackouts. Nearly 850,000 people could be

without power this weekend. The state's largest utility intentionally shut off power in some areas to prevent equipment from sparking wildfires. We

know that millions under a fire weather watch for the weekend.

And before we go, want to take a look at this natural phenomenon that really gets captured on camera. Take a look at this. They are called

atmospheric gravity waves. You can see the waves spreading out from the coast of Western Australia. The clouds then ripple out across the Indian

Ocean. It was all triggered by thunderstorms cold air that got pushed out created this effect.

Scientists say it's the same mechanism as when you throw a rock into a pool of water. Thank you for watching CNN Newsroom. I'm Robyn Curnow. "World

Sport" is next. I'll be back with more news in half an hour.