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White House Braces for More Damaging Testimony; Trump Met with Loud Boos, Some Cheers at UFC Fight in New York; Reports Indicate Mexican Drug Smugglers Sawing through New Portions of Border Wall; Car Bomb Explosion Kills at Least 13 in Northern Syria; Mali Attack Leaves More Than 50 Soldiers Dead; Rainforest Protector Is Ambushed and Killed; Democrats Pitch Iowa; Conditions Worsen for Asylum Seekers along U.S.-Mexico Border; World's Most Profitable Company Goes Public; Washington Nationals Pitcher Declines Invitation to White House. Aired 5-6a ET

Aired November 3, 2019 - 05:00   ET




NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): A rough reception for Donald Trump. He returned to New York and was met with boos and jeers.

Also, new efforts by Democrats hoping to replace him in the White House. How they're working to distinguish themselves from the rest of the pack.

And ISIS claims responsibility for an attack that killed dozens. Details and a look at where the terror group is still operating, coming up here.

Welcome to our viewers here in the United States and all around the world, we are live in Atlanta, GA, I'm Natalie Allen and NEWSROOM starts right now.


ALLEN: Thank you again for joining us.

Our top story here, the Trump White House bracing for another bruising week of administration insiders telling Congress what they know about the Ukraine scandal. The president himself insists he's done nothing wrong yet is indicating once again that he may not cooperate with the impeachment inquiry. We get the latest now from CNN's Jeremy Diamond at the White House.


JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: On his way to New York for a mixed martial arts fight, the president declined on Saturday to say whether or not he would allow White House officials set to testify in the House impeachment inquiry next week. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: You'll have to speak to the lawyers. Nancy Pelosi has become unhinged. There's something wrong with her. If you look at what's happening, if you look at the poll numbers, if you look at the poll numbers in the swing states, they're saying, don't do this, don't do it.

I'm fine with it, we did absolutely nothing wrong, we had a totally appropriate, I even say perfect conversation with the president of Ukraine. Everybody knows it. The Republicans have never been this unified.

I'm at the highest level I've ever been at, but the Republicans have never been this unified. And this whole impeachment scam, that's exactly what it is, it's a scam, it's a hoax. The Democrats are using it for political purposes to try and win an election that they're not going to win.


DIAMOND: We should note there's no evidence to back up the president's allegations about the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. What we do know is that this House impeachment inquiry is moving very fast. And it is getting closer to the heart of the West Wing and closer to the president.

On Monday, House Democrats have already subpoenaed two White House lawyers at the center of this Ukraine matter: John Eisenberg, White House lawyer for the National Security Council, who actually ordered the transcript of President Trump's call with the Ukrainian President Zelensky moved to that highly classified server, he and his deputy, another White House attorney, Michael Ellis have been subpoenaed.

It's not clear if they will comply with that subpoena. Additionally, the president is also facing the prospect of Robert Blair, an assistant to the president, a senior White House official, potentially testifying on Monday as well -- Jeremy Diamond, CNN, the White House.


ALLEN: As Jeremy mentioned, President Trump spent Saturday night in New York at a mixed martial arts championship. When he entered Madison Square Garden he was greeted with a loud chorus of cheers and boos. Mr. Trump is no stranger to this kind of entertainment. One of his advisers tells us the president likes "a good fistfight."

Let's talk about latest developments with Scott Lucas, he teaches international politics at the University of Birmingham in England.

Scott, thanks so much for coming on. Good morning.


All right. Well, as the impeachment inquiry continues to reveal testimony after testimony, there's been eight instances, according to "The Washington Post," that the U.S. president withheld aid, AKA, U.S. taxpayers' money, to a foreign country in exchange for a political investigation.

How does the White House continue to defend this?

LUCAS: Well, they continue to do what they have done for months. It's not that they might not cooperate with the inquiry, this he have refused to cooperate with the inquiry.

For months, Donald Trump has been arguing that the investigation is a hoax, it's a witch hunt and, therefore, he is going to continue to keep up this line of attack, to try to bury the facts.


ALLEN: The president says that -- to that point, that he may do a fireside chat and read the transcript.

But the transcript has been damning to the White House and it was released by the White House, so why would he do that?

Are we missing something here?

LUCAS: Because Donald Trump is trying to tell you that black is white, and that night is day. So, Donald Trump will try to tell you that, in fact, the transcript is a perfect call, a beautiful call.

In fact, we know from the transcript that, immediately after the Ukrainian president talks about military aid and Donald Trump demands the investigations: the investigation of Joe Biden, the investigation of the Democrats. He makes the implicit link.

What has been important is more than a dozen witnesses, current and former U.S. officials, have defied the White House to testify before impeachment hearings, the informal impeachment hearings. And they have confirmed that that link exists.

It was confirmed by Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman of the National Security Council; confirmed by the U.S. top diplomat in Ukraine, William Taylor. So, in fact Donald Trump is trying to fight back against -- as he did in the Trump Russia inquiry -- what is actually factual by saying, look over here, it's not what you're actually seeing.

Now will the American public buy that?

More importantly will American Congress buy it, including those Republicans in the Senate, who ultimately might have to vote on his conviction?

ALLEN: Right. We're seeing just a smidge of pullback from a few there, paying attention to what's going on. Well, there was a new development, Scott, Saturday, reported by CNN, an aide to the chief of staff says he won't cooperate in the investigation. He wants to give testimony on Monday. Robert Blair is his name and he was on the call.

Of course, he is not the only one, as you just mentioned there, refusing to cooperate.

But is there a disconnect here, the president saying he will read the transcript, he will reveal it and someone on that call won't cooperate?

LUCAS: Natalie, the disconnect is between spectacle and reality. The success of Donald Trump for years, from the time that he campaigned, from the time getting into office, is not to deal with reality but to try to cover it up. He tries to cover it up in part by, I'm going to be honest with you, lying. And he tries to cover it up in part by saying it's all about his enemies, it's all about his foes, who are trying to make him a victim.

The fact of the matter is, is that why we are moving to these formal impeachment inquiries is to get public testimony, which is not from Donald Trump, but which is from American officials, current and former, about what occurred.

Now some officials may continue to refuse to testify, we have the questions as to whether former national security adviser John Bolton will appear.

But we know that the amount of evidence in the Trump Ukraine scandal or affair is greater than the threat of Trump Russia because we have, one, a focal event, where Donald Trump made this phone call to the Ukrainian president and, two, we not only have the CIA's official formal complaint that launched the investigation leading to the inquiry, we have corroborating evidence.

In other words, if this was a court of law, Donald Trump is not a victim, he is clearly the defendant but, like most defendants, he is going to say, I'm not guilty. It's all an attempt to make me look like the bad guy.

ALLEN: That is his modus operandi on most matters that have been controversial.

Meantime, Scott, the president stepped out in public eye, we were looking at video there at Madison Square Garden. He was cheered and booed during that outing.

And this after he was booed with chants of even "lock him up" at the World Series a few days ago. So, he's hearing from America here; whereas, he usually only hears from his base at rallies, who wildly cheer him.

What's your reaction to how America is greeting him or not greeting him?

LUCAS: Well, I want to get away from a yay or boo narrative here. The fact is America is a polarized country, it's been very much divided because we have moved away from dialogue, we've moved away from discussion to the area of insult and quite often disinformation.

The Trump people will say listen to those cheers; those who oppose Trump will say listen to the boos. This is an issue bigger than Donald Trump. This is a challenge to the American system, the American Constitution. This is a challenge to accountability.

Can we get beyond yay and boo with how we restore the American system, where it is in good shape, to where it is repaired after Donald Trump gets a second term or after he fails to do so?

ALLEN: All right. We will end on that note. Well said, Scott. We appreciate your input as always. Scott Lucas, thanks.

LUCAS: Thank you very much.

ALLEN: President Trump's signature campaign promise, a border wall, is full of holes -- literally. The Trump administration has been replacing existing barriers along the U.S.-Mexico border with steel slats embedded in concrete.

Remember, he said his wall would be impenetrable.


ALLEN: But "The Washington Post" reports that drug smugglers and human traffickers, using modern power tools, have been able to breach these newer sections with relative ease. The openings are often camouflaged for later use. The president was asked about the apparent flaws in his border wall design and here is what he said.


TRUMP: I haven't heard that. We have a very powerful wall. But no matter how powerful, you can cut through anything in all fairness. But we have a lot of people watching. Cutting is one thing, but it's easily fixed.

One of the reasons we did it the way we did it, it's very easily fixed, you put the chunk back in. We have a very powerful wall, but you can cut through any wall.


ALLEN: It's worth remembering that earlier this year the president shut down the U.S. government for a record 35 days when Congress refused to fund his wall.

We want to turn now to California. Firefighters in that state are finally getting the upper hand; 12 of the wildfires that the state says are still active are more than 70 percent contained, some of them are all but extinguished.

The newest fire named Maria is still going strong, though. But as Athena Jones reports from the scene, things are looking up.


ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, there. We're in Somis, Ventura County, about 50 miles north of Los Angeles. This is where the Maria fire broke out Thursday night. The good news is that favorable conditions overnight and today have

allowed firefighters to make some progress in putting out this fire. But you can see behind me the work involved in making sure that fire stays out. You can see in the distance firefighters are spraying.

That is because in this riverbed, embers from the larger fire flew into this riverbed and caught tree stumps and branches. You can see, as you look around, the trees are either partially burned or at least charred.

We are in the middle of an agricultural area. We are surrounded by avocado orchards on one side, citrus on another. This is the kind of thing firefighters have been working to protect, not just agriculture but also communications equipment, radio towers, petroleum equipment.

We have now nearly 1,300 firefighters who have been out fighting this fire, trying to make sure they get it under control.

We also have news on a possible cause of the Maria fire. Southern California Edison has informed the public utilities regulators that, on Thursday night, there was a high voltage line, 16,000 volts, near where the Maria fire began. They had just begun to re-energize that line about 13 minutes before the fire started.

We don't know for sure if that was the cause of the fire, but these power companies have been shutting off power, de-energizing lines, to keep fires from spreading. They had just begun to re-energize that line when that fire began on Thursday night.

So, we'll wait to hear what the final word is on the cause and watch as we hope to see firefighters make more progress. Back to you.


ALLEN: Some of the firefighters risking their lives in California aren't firefighters at all. They're prison inmates. Officials say around 400 prisoners are helping battle the Kincade fire in northern California.

It's part of a program that gives eligible inmates the opportunity to get advanced firefighting training and possible job opportunities once they're on parole. If they volunteer for the program, they can receive shorter sentences. They're also paid for the dangerous work but it's well below the minimum wage.

Next here, ISIS strikes again, despite losing its long-time leader. We will have more on the attacks and where they happened coming next.

Plus, U.S. Democratic presidential candidates in Iowa to make their pitch to voters. It is a critical state. That's coming up.



[05:15:00] (MUSIC PLAYING)


ALLEN (voice-over): You're looking at the aftermath of what local Syrian officials say was a car bomb attack at a busy market Saturday that occurred in a town along the border with Turkey, killing at least 13 people and wounding many others. The explosion damaged several buildings and left piles of rubble behind.

This is one of the towns that Turkey took control of in its offensive into Syria last month, the operation aimed to clear Kurdish forces from the border and resettle Syrian refugees into a safe zone in the area. Turkey and Kurdish forces are blaming one another for that blast.


ALLEN: ISIS is claiming responsibility for a second and a third attack since naming its new leader, both taking place in the West African nation of Mali. With more on this, we are joined by our senior international correspondent Sam Kiley in Abu Dhabi.

What more are you learning about this attack and their claims of responsibility?

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think that's the keyword there, isn't it, Natalie, is claim, not proof.

They don't have any proof at all, the so-called Islamic State, for any of the attacks that they have announced on social media that they perpetrated, not the killing of a policeman near Baghdad, not the killing of a French soldier in an IED attack in Mali and not even this one, much more atrocious, in which 54 people have died, also in Mali.

In the area around where this attack was perpetrated, Natalie, there are at least seven different violent jihadi groups. And that doesn't include the equally violent, semi-terrorist criminal gangs that also curse that part of the world, right across the Sahel.

There is a lot of overlap between the motivations behind criminal groups and Al Qaeda, whether the one funds the other or they simply claim allegiance to Al Qaeda, which is the dominant Islamic brand there or, indeed, other groups claiming that they are part of the so- called Islamic State.

You will recall, Natalie, Boko Haram in Nigeria has made that claim and pledged obedience to the late ex-caliph, so-called, al-Baghdadi, recently killed by American commandos doesn't make much difference in the grand scheme of things whether they are claimed by Al Qaeda or the so-called Islamic State other than this is a competition for brand image.

And for those of us in the media, I think it's incumbent upon us not to fall for it; just because they lay claim to it doesn't mean they did it. The so-called Islamic State have a long and infamous record for laying claim to atrocities that they would have liked to have committed but can't prove that they did.

ALLEN: And I also want to ask you, as far as ISIS regrouping, though, they sent out notice to the world that, don't celebrate al Baghdadi's death, we are not going anywhere. That is still a major concern for the world.

KILEY: It's not completely unchanged since the death of al Baghdadi, nobody involved in the study of intelligence or the whole nature of something like this so-called Islamic State.


KILEY: Since the collapse of its ability to actually control territory would argue that this is an organization that is pyramidic in structure and if you take off the top of the pyramid, it would unravel. It's an idea in our organization; it does have money. It does have -- did have camps and so on.

In terms of its organizational levels, it's well behind Al Qaeda on the African continent. There are a lot of people also here who have a vested interest. Indeed, in the West, even in the media, for exaggerating the threat posed by something like the so-called Islamic State.

Frequently, for example, said to be powerful in Somalia, I can tell you it's not. Its presence equally in the Congo is rather mythological than real. That is part of the power that it's trying to get hold of, is to create itself as a bogeyman, as a terrorist bogeyman in excess of its actual capabilities.

But of course, those capabilities whether they come from Al Qaeda or people who claim to be followers of the so-called Islamic State, don't really matter when the, relatively speaking, for a low investment, they can do some pretty atrocious acts right around the world and have done, Natalie.

ALLEN: All right. Sam Kiley, thank you for your reporting on this.

Michael Weiss is co-author of "ISIS: Inside the Army of Terror. He spoke with our Michael Holmes about the evolution of ISIS across Africa and the Middle East.


MICHAEL WEISS, AUTHOR: This is an organization that's existed for 16 years and has suffered already major strategic defeats. The last one before the collapse of the so-called caliphate about a year ago was 2010, 2011, when they were essentially just cast out of Iraq.

They had to repair to this sort of bad land region of al Anbar province in sort of the desert, in essence. Then we saw in three years' time they came back with a vengeance and conquered an expansive territory roughly the size of Great Britain.

The caliphate was a rallying cry for jihadists around the world to come join up with this global phenomenon. But it has indeed become a global phenomenon. I call it the jihadist international.

They have a presence in Southeast Asia, a sizable and expanding presence in Africa -- you mentioned Mali, I audience Mozambique, Congo, Nigeria. Don't forget when Boko Haram pledged allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. That gave ISIS a strip of terrain in West Africa that was tens of thousands of square miles of territory. So, this is indeed a worldwide jihadist phenomenon.


ALLEN: Michael Weiss there for us.

In northeast Brazil, an indigenous leader who helped protect the rain forest has been killed in an ambush. Authorities say loggers are behind the attack on the Forest Guardian and this isn't the first death, the first attack on an indigenous person in their homeland. Journalist Shasta Darlington reports from Sao Paulo.


PAULO GUAJAJARA, INDIGENOUS RAIN FOREST PROTECTOR (through translator): We are protecting our land and the life on it, the animals, the birds, many things.

SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Paulo Paulino Guajajara's right to protect his indigenous land was abruptly taken away Friday.

According to authorities in Brazil, the indigenous leader was killed by a group of loggers who ambushed him in the same area he once swore to protect, the Arariboia reserve in the state of Maranhao in Northeast Brazil.

Guajajara was part of one of Brazil's largest indigenous groups known by the same name. In 2012 they formed the Forest Guardians, a community effort dedicated to patrolling the land and protecting the rights of the people that inhabit it.

At the same time of his death he was being accompanied by another Guardian, Lyapsiya Sosa (ph), who according to authorities, is seriously injured. They were both looking for water, not far from home.

Brazil's minister of justice and public security, Sergio Moro, called the incident "a terrible crime" and promised to spare no effort to bring those responsible to justice. Justice, a word many believe arrived too late.

For years Survival International, an organization that works to protect tribal peoples, has warned about the great risk assumed by the so-called Forest Guardians. They claim that while the Arariboia reserve is officially protected by the state, it has been the target of constant attacks and threat by loggers and miners, inspired, they say, by the pro-deforestation policies implemented by Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (from captions): There won't be a single centimeter for indigenous reserves for Quilombola people.

DARLINGTON (voice-over): Last June, Guajajara and other indigenous leaders recorded a video warning about the attacks.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (from captions): Loggers are paying gunmen to kill some of the Guardians of Arariboia. We want the Brazilian authorities to help protect the lives of the Guardians whose lives are being threatened.

DARLINGTON (voice-over): That same month, according to official numbers, deforestation in the Amazon accelerated more than 60 percent, compared to the same period last year.

But with deforestation, other consequences emerge. Several studies affirm that the number of fires each year is highly correlated to deforestation and the severity of the drought during the dry season.

This year alone, the number of fires in the Brazilian Amazon was 25 percent higher than the average number of fires in the same period from 2010 to 2018, facts that president Bolsonaro insists on minimizing.

JAIR BOLSONARO, BRAZILIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): The Amazon is not being devastated nor is it being consumed by fire, as the media is falsely portraying.

DARLINGTON (voice-over): In the midst of the fire and the threats are the indigenous tribes. For them, the message is clear.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I'm scared a little sometimes but we don't let ourselves be dominated by fear. But we have to lift up our heads and make things happen. We are believing and fighting.

DARLINGTON (voice-over): A fight that Guajajara can no longer continue -- Shasta Darlington, CNN, Sao Paulo, Brazil.


ALLEN: Such a heinous act on the indigenous people there in Brazil.

Two Democratic House members voted with Republicans against the resolution formalizing the Trump impeachment inquiry. We hear whether voters think that was the right call -- coming next.

Also, celebrations for the World Series champions, a rare celebration these days in Washington. That celebration will soon move to the White House. But one person will be absent. We will have that story.




ALLEN: Welcome back. To our viewers here in the U.S. and around the world I'm Natalie Allen. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM. Let's catch you up on our top stories.


ALLEN: U.S. House Republicans claim they have bipartisan support against the impeachment inquiry because two Democrats voted this week against the resolution formalizing it. Alison Kosik explains who the two Democrats are and why they voted the way they did.


ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Hey, there. There were two Democrats who broke from party lines and voted no in the first full vote in the House on impeachment, Congressman Jeff Van Drew who represents the 2nd Congressional District of New Jersey, and Congressman Colin Peterson, who represents the 7th District of Minnesota.

They were the only two Democrats to vote against formalizing the procedures for the House impeachment rules.

Why did they side with Republicans against the resolution?

The congressmen issued the following statements, with Van Drew saying this, quote, "Without bipartisan support, I believe this inquiry will further divide the country, tearing it apart at the seams and will ultimately fail in the Senate.

"however, now that the vote has taken place and we are moving forward, I will be making a judgment call based on all the evidence presented by these investigations."

Peterson said this, "This impeachment process continues to be hopelessly partisan. I have been hearing from my constituents on both sides of this matter for months. And the escalation of calls this past week just shows me how divided our country really is right now.

"Without support from Senate Republicans going down this path is a mistake."

Now constituents of Congressman Van Drew are mixed on how they feel about his vote. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it was wrong. I think he should have voted to continue with the inquiry after hearing, you know, parts of what the conversation consisted of. I think it should be investigated for sure.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm behind him 100 percent plus.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He thought his mind and not the party. That's exactly it.


KOSIK: After Thursday's vote Van Drew talked to reporters and we got a little more insight into why he voted no. He said he was sure there would be an impeachment in the House.

But if and when it goes to the Senate, he said it would fail. Van Drew said he didn't know what would be gained from the impeachment process since President Trump will remain in office and he says he will be exonerated.

His concern is that the focus will be on impeachment and not on issues Americans care about, like health care and veterans' issues -- Alison Kosik, CNN, New York.


ALLEN: Meantime, Democratic presidential candidates are in battle mode. Many are focusing on Iowa, a critical early voting state. Bernie Sanders held a town hall there Saturday. He is doing pretty well in Iowa. But some candidates are struggling to keep their campaigns above water. Leyla Santiago reports.


LEYLA SANTIAGO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: 2020 Democratic candidates really focusing on Iowa, given the caucus being less than 100 days away here in the early voting state. We have absolutely seen a bit of a change.


SANTIAGO: Friday night, Congressman Beto O'Rourke announcing he is dropping out of the race, sources telling me that this was a fundraising issue, that the congressman was not able to bring in what he thought he could to run the type of operation that he was running.

As my colleague Dan Merica reported, we are also seeing some news coming out of the Julian Castro campaign, where he is refocusing his campaign not only in Iowa but also in Nevada and Texas and encouraging some of his staffers who want to seek positions with other campaigns.

Now Friday night we also saw 13,000 Democrats gather at the Liberty and Justice celebration to hear the candidates make their pitch, try to distinguish themselves and really show the strength in their campaign.

Here in Cedar Rapids, many of the candidates also showed up for a fish fry. Given that a lot of folks were gathering around a table with fried fish in hand, I took the opportunity to talk to some voters and here is what they told me. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My head is for Biden and my heart is for Amy Klobuchar.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Booker really had an inspiring informative on his platform, which really, you know, I'm really undecided.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm kind of somewhere in between Biden and Warren. I like the moderacy of Biden but I like the thought-out, well planned proposals that Warren talks about.


SANTIAGO: An interesting point with the woman you just heard from, she actually brought up Medicare for all, the timing on that really key here because this week Senator Elizabeth Warren released her plans for funding Medicare for all, something that she was criticized for at her last debate and something that Vice President Joe Biden is now criticizing, saying that she cannot do as she plans to do, fund Medicare for all without raising taxes for the middle class. He calls that mathematic gymnastics -- in Cedar Rapids, I'm Leyla Santiago, CNN.


ALLEN: Thousands of lives are in limbo on the U.S. border with Mexico because they're not allowed into the U.S. until their requests for asylum are processed. We will have a first-hand look at conditions inside one migrant tent -- ahead here.

Plus, the world's most profitable company eyes a record-breaking stock market debut. Ahead why some believe it will be the biggest IPO ever.





ALLEN: The Trump administration's hard line on immigration is being blamed for a growing humanitarian crisis along the U.S. border with Mexico. Thousands of desperate asylum seekers are living in deplorable conditions with little hope of relief. We get a first-hand look from CNN's Nick Valencia.


NICK VALENCIA, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): In this migrant camp in Matamoros, Mexico, the suffering is everywhere.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Speaking foreign language).

VALENCIA: Angela, the mother of this sick 2-year old, says that two months ago they cross into the United States seeking asylum. After three days in U.S. custody, they were put on a bus and driven into Mexico.

It's part of the Trump administration's migrant protection protocols. A policy which now requires migrants, like her, to remain in Mexico for their asylum cases to be called on, if they cross illegally or without proper documentation.

More than 55,000 people are now scattered in camps all throughout the U.S./Mexico border.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Speaking foreign language).

VALENCIA (on camera): He says she's really worried about her kids. They're not getting enough water. They're not living a very healthy life right now.

(voice over): The camps are overseen by the Mexican government, which is publicly committed to protecting the migrants. But their asylum proceedings and, in many ways, their fate is entirely controlled by the United States.

MATTHEW ALBENCE, ACTING ICE DIRECTOR: What we have seen, which is consistent with my experience, as we have seen time and time again, that when individuals cannot come into this country illegally and be released from detention, the numbers of those individuals that try to come to this country decreases.

VALENCIA (on camera): This is as a result of U.S. policy?

ROCHELLE GARZA, STAFF ATTORNEY, ACLU OF TEXAS: Yes. This entire encampment, these conditions, the deaths, these drownings, all of it is a result of U.S. policy.

VALENCIA (voice over): ACLU of Texas staff attorney, Rochelle Garza, says the migrants are being denied due process. She says their fate is being decided in an unprecedented way in makeshift tent courts.

The policy is being challenged in court. But, for now, is being allowed to proceed.

The Department of Homeland Security has credited the program with slowing the flow of migrants at the border.

VALENCIA (on camera): You hear the president say that things have gotten better on the border and then we walk through scenes like this.

GARZA: It's gotten better because they feel like they've gotten rid of the problem, right? It's out of --

VALENCIA: It's just sort of shutting it five feet from our border.

GARZA: -- out of sight out of mind. And it's right at our doorstep of the United States. And this is entirely our fault, this whole thing, how these people are living. VALENCIA (voice over): This is what life has come to for 42-year-old Avelina Makia (ph). Like most mornings for the last three months, the Honduran migrant can be found here on the banks of the Rio Grande, washing her clothes in the same filthy and contaminated water that others are now using to bathe.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Speaking foreign language).

VALENCIA (on camera): She says she knows that the water is dirty, but they themselves can't be dirty. They need to still keep some dignity.

VALENCIA (voice over): But migrants here told us it's hard to keep

their dignity when you're forced into a situation like this. A place where the camp grows every day and the few resources available are used up.

Today, one of the biggest problems, there were only a handful of bathrooms for the more than 2,000 migrants who call this camp home.

VALENCIA (on camera): What can't be translated on camera is the smell. There's not enough bathrooms for all the migrants that are here. And all around us in this encampment, like here, toilet paper and human feces everywhere.

VALENCIA (voice over): For some, like this couple told us, life is worse here than in their home country of Guatemala.

VALENCIA (on camera): So, you're with your wife and your three-year- old and you were all kidnapped together?

VALENCIA (voice over): They don't want their faces seen because they say they were recently kidnapped and extorted by suspected cartels while living in Mexico.

VALENCIA (on camera): This man says he's thinking about going back because it's been a lot of time spent here and they're getting sick.

VALENCIA (voice over): Going back to a country they fled because of violence, only for it to follow them. Now living in questionable conditions, they're scared for their lives.

VALENCIA (on camera): What is your worst fear at this point?

GARZA: I fear for every single human being that I've talked to. I fear for their lives.


VALENCIA: You fear that they won't be able to make it out of here alive?


VALENCIA (voice-over): Nick Valencia, CNN, Matamoros, Mexico.


ALLEN: We are getting word that the U.S. has indefinitely suspended military aid for Lebanese armed forces. A source tells CNN the White House placed a hold on security assistance, including a $105 million package.

Reuters News Service reports that Congress was informed of the decision just days after protests in Lebanon forced the prime minister to resign. A U.S. State Department spokesperson denies that aid has been withheld but did not say if the U.S. will send assistance in the future.

Saudi Aramco, the world's most profitable company, is moving ahead with its initial public offering. They announced they will list shares on the Saudi stock exchange. It's not yet known when the IPO will happen but, when it does, it could be the biggest on record.

For more on this I'm joined by CNN Business emerging markets editor John Defterios.

So, it may be the biggest IPO in history, John, so how much oil does this one company produce?

JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Let's just call it a player, shall we, Natalie. It's a behemoth indeed. It produces 10 million barrels a day, which is a 10th of global demand on a daily basis coming out of one oil company.

This is a group that's often called the crown jewel of the kingdom and I think that's a very fair assessment because they are extremely efficient. They produce oil for about $2 to $4 a barrel, depending on whether it's onshore or offshore.

You said it was the most profitable company. It doubled the profits of Apple in 2018. Let's hear from the CEO of their announcement in Tehran, in the eastern province, here is Amin Nassar.


AMIN NASSER, CEO, SAUDI ARAMCO: We increase our visibility internationally, we are a very strong company by sharing a lot of information as acquired by any listed company there will be a lot of analysts that will review our data and compare it with other listed companies.

And we would like to have that type of comparisons because we are a company that are proud for the results.


DEFTERIOS: They've said that for years, they are proud of their results. A few things to watch out for, Natalie, the timeline, of course, to list in Riyadh, of course. But see if that valuation is above $25 billion. That's probably the target because Alibaba set the record in September 2014, the Chinese e-commerce firm.

Can they get a valuation of over $1.5 trillion?

The crown prince Mohammed bin Salman was gunning for $2 trillion valuation. This will not be an international listing. At the beginning, they were talking about New York or London or a major Asian market.

The chairman of Saudi Aramco said today there are no plans for an international listing. And this is a big climbdown from the original plans for the crown prince Mohammed bin Salman back in 2016.

ALLEN: And also, John, Aramco was attacked in a drone attack recently and that affected its production.

Will the company's vulnerability to possible future attacks be a factor in this IPO?

DEFTERIOS: A fantastic question because Aramco wears that as a badge of honor, Natalie. And I actually interviewed the CEO right after those attacks because they got the production back up 70 percent within days and back to 100 percent within a month. So they say this is not a risk, this shows you how resilient we are.

I think the other key factor is you have to go back to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi in 2018, the arrest of 400 Saudi businessmen, which they captured better than $100 billion in the name of corruption. Those things hung over the IPO like a dark cloud.

Aramco does not like to admit that but right now they're saying, look, we will host a G20 summit in 2020; we will have this IPO out on the market. Let's look forward and not backward, even though many groups like to keep the pressure on the kingdom because of what's transpired over the last three years.

ALLEN: One more final question for you.

With the climate crisis starting to take center stage around the world, citizens demanding we get off fossil fuels, could that be another dark cloud hanging over this IPO?

Will that dissuade perhaps some money coming in?

DEFTERIOS: Let's look at the facts: the S&P 500, the big wide index that's on the New York Stock Exchange, the energy stocks used to make up about 9 percent of the total market capitalization just five years ago. That's been cut in half for this very reason.

There is pressure now from global investors, even private investors, that are saying, we don't want to hold energy stocks. So many are questioning why Saudi Aramco wants to take this company public. It's been an aspiration for the crown prince Mohammed bin Salman to diversify the economy, raise money from this crown jewel.

But it is a challenging market in which to do so. And, again, I think, as a badge of honor, they're saying we are so profitable, we will go and list anyway and raise this money. [05:50:00]

ALLEN: All right. We will be watching to see what happens. John, we always appreciate your expertise. Thanks, John.

DEFTERIOS: Thank you.

ALLEN: Well, the Washington Nationals are celebrating their big World Series win, first with a parade through the capital and then it's on to the White House. But one player says he's not going there. Hear why -- next.





ALLEN: Thousands lining the streets of Washington on Saturday to celebrate their baseball team's first ever World Series title. The Washington Nationals beat the Houston Astros earlier in the week to claim the title of champions. CNN's Natasha Chen has more on the celebrations in the U.S. capital.


NATASHA CHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There was a sea of people in red and white with not an inch to spare on the sidewalks along Constitution Avenue. They watched as buses went by with their favorite players. They watched them raise the championship trophy.

And then people came to this stage behind us to come up to the microphone and thank the fans; the players, the owner, the manager of the team.


CHEN: They gave a specific thank you to the fans who really did not give up on them. Because, at the beginning of the season, the Nationals were actually down 19-31.

The repeated message here was that they actually had a very small chance to get to this point. And so to defeat those odds is a really big deal.

Now, of course, we are in the shadow of Capitol Hill; of course, in Congress, there are political fights happening every day. Instead, on this stage, one of the speakers said, people may think that D.C. cannot be united, but he said the Nationals have united D.C.

There were people in the crowds today who had spent 12 hours waiting there to get a great position. They said they have learned to tune out the politics in this town and just celebrate this moment that's 95 years in the making. The owner said good things come to those who wait and he said this was definitely worth the wait -- Natasha Chen, CNN, Washington.


ALLEN: The team is set to visit the White House on Monday but at least one player says he's not going. Pitcher Sean Doolittle tells "The Washington Post" he's skipping the visit because of Donald Trump.

He referenced some of the U.S. president's policies and divisive rhetoric, telling the paper and here is a quote, "As much as I wanted to be there with my teammates and share that experience with my teammates, I can't do it. I just can't do it."

We have seen boycotts from other athletes, champions, before, not going to the White House as well.

Well, that wraps this hour of CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Natalie Allen. For U.S. viewers "NEW DAY" is ahead. For everyone else, I will be right back with the headlines.