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Trump Debating When to Reopen U.S.; Storms Rip Through Southeastern U.S.; U.K. Prime Minister Thanks Health Service for Saving His Life; OPEC to Slash Production by 9.7 Million Barrels a Day; A Day Inside a New York Hospital; French President Due to Address Nation Monday Night; U.K. Reports Surge in Domestic Abuse Calls During Lockdown. Aired 12-1a ET
Aired April 13, 2020 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello and welcome to our viewers joining us here in the United States and all around the world. I'm Michael Holmes.
Now, we are tracking two fast-moving stories this hour, both of them deadly. Tornadoes like this one in Mississippi have been tearing through the Southeastern U.S., and authorities are reporting, quote, "catastrophic destruction."
Right now, millions of Americans are enduring a long and scary night, including us here in Atlanta, Georgia. We'll have a full report coming up.
Meanwhile, the world now dealing with close to two million confirmed cases of coronavirus, as people pray for the worst to be over. On Easter Sunday, the U.S. reporting another 2,000-plus fatalities, bringing the national death toll to more than 22,000. That's according to Johns Hopkins University. It's the highest in the world.
The head of the American Food and Drug Administration offering a little hope, saying models show the U.S. is, quote, "very close" to its peak, and that he believes the worst may have passed.
But some states are bracing for a later peak, like Texas, which is extending its disaster decoration.
Now, this is all happening as Americans wonder when life can get back to normal, and when they can go back to work; but President Trump offering no clarity. Jeremy Diamond brings us the latest from the White House.
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, President Trump on Friday said that it could be the biggest decision of his presidency. That is the decision on when to reopen the United States economy. It's a question that has been on President Trump's mind this past weekend, this Easter weekend, when President Trump initially said he wanted to see the United States economy back open again.
That, of course, was before the president decided to extend those social distancing guidelines for the entire month of April. But now the president is once again mulling whether or not to extend those guidelines and whether there's a way that, next month, he can already begin to reopen the economy.
But Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the government's top public health experts, he said on Sunday on CNN's "STATE OF THE UNION" that, while he does see the possibility of reopening parts of the economy next month, it can't happen in one fell swoop.
DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: It is not going to be a light switch that we say, OK, it is now June, July, or whatever. Click, the light switch goes back on.
It's going to be depending where you are in the country, the nature of the outbreak that you've already experienced, and the threat of an outbreak that you may not have experienced.
So it's going to be having to look at the situation in different parts of the country. I think it's going to have to be something that is not one-size-fits-all.
DIAMOND: Dr. Fauci, though, will be just one of the aides inside the administration and advisors outside of the White House, who are urging the president to put a date on the calendar for when he can begin to reopen the country. Some of those advisors pushing the president to reopen the economy by May 1. That is something that no public health expert so far is -- is willing to endorse. That's not a date that they are willing to endorse.
One thing is clear, though, from the public health experts' perspective, is that the United States really needs to continue to ramp up testing capacity, not only the test, to be able to detect if individuals have the coronavirus, but also that serology testing that is designed to detect if an individual has the antibodies, meaning that they have had the virus in the past, and they've built up some immunity. So that is the question that the president has been pondering.
Again, we know from his public comments, even as the president faces some of the grimmest realities of this virus, he continues to talk about wanting to get the economy open as soon as possible.
Jeremy Diamond, CNN, the White House.
HOLMES: Now the real power to reopen the country, of course, lies with mayors and governors, who have enacted specific stay-at-home orders. Officials like the governors of New Mexico and New Jersey are speaking out on that life-and-death decision. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. MICHELLE LUJAN GRISHAM (D-NM): We're going to make the decisions that safeguard New Mexicans. All right, the -- everything we do is about protecting lives and first responders, and our healthcare workers.
I think this is the problem with not having a national strategy. If this virus is blind to state borders, and if we had better national strategies and better national data and universal testing, and software (AUDIO GAP) and contact tracing, then we can really figure out when opening makes sense. And we have to actually start to do that in the country.
GOV. PHIL MURPHY (D-NJ): There's a sequence here that we have to abide by, and that is we need a healthcare recovery, a health recovery first, and then the economic recovery. It has to come in that sequencing. And I fear if we open up too early, and we have not sufficiently made that health recovery, and cracked the back of this virus, that we could be pouring gasoline in the fire, even inadvertently.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: And joining me now, emergency medicine physician, Dr. Emily Porter. Good to see you again, Doctor.
DR. EMILY PORTER, EMERGENCY MEDICINE PHYSICIAN: Thank you.
HOLMES: There are some positive signs with a lot of these curves, but it's true, is it not, that those improvements are because of social distancing measures. Speak to the risk of complacency, looking at positive trends, and saying, OK, it's OK. Let's get back to work?
PORTER: I think that can be very dangerous. I think that we are 100 percent mitigating the virus by doing social distancing. If you look at the curves, they are flattening. It is working. It's slow. We haven't overwhelmed our healthcare system capacity.
And the numbers that they estimated, even just a month ago, were way worse than what we've seen, which does lead a lot of people to say, hey, it's not that bad. Hey, why are we shutting down the whole world? Only 22,000 people died.
Well, to which I would say, only 22,000 Americans have died so far because or in spite of all that we have done. So opening the country back up again, I think, is going to depend on a few key things in place that you just alluded to.
HOLMES: Yes. You know, the president says there's no need for nationwide testing, but you know, how -- how can people safely go back to work before there is a massive, widespread testing, just to see who has it, who's had it in the past, who might be vulnerable? Wouldn't that just invite another wave?
PORTER: Absolutely it would. We don't -- until we have a vaccine, we cannot safely go back to work. Go back to work, go back to Easter with our family, go back to the movie theater, go back to a restaurant. We need ubiquitous testing. And by ubiquitous, I don't mean the big cities where there are problems have it. I mean if you live in rural Iowa, or you live in Alaska, you can know, without any question, you can go into this E.R., and get a test that you can get an answer back in an hour or less. It doesn't do any good to wait 10 days to get a test back. It needs to be rapid; it needs to be very sensitive. Which means that it doesn't miss very many people. If it's only -- if it misses half the people, well, that's a crappy test.
So it needs to have probably plus percent sensitivity, we call that, specificity, meaning it's specific for the disease that we're looking for. It doesn't help if it gives -- it detects flu, and thinks it's coronavirus, for example.
And then we need good contact tracing. So that means it's hard to have the contact tracing if you open everything back up at once, and you start people on planes. Because right now I can tell you, right then in the last week. I'm here. I was here all day with my family. I went to -- you know, got takeout last night. And I went to the grocery store once this week.
Otherwise, you know, I know where I've been. But if just everything just opens up and explodes, then we're in trouble, because you can't contact trace if everybody just goes back to normal and becomes complacent.
HOLMES: In the absence of a vaccine, speak to the chances of a revival of the virus, when the northern hemisphere in the winter returns?
PORTER: Well, I think it's really hard to speak to that, until we have -- we know immunity. We need to know how many -- if we can't test how many people have active disease, we need to know how many of us have had it.
For example, if I know that I've already had it, my husband's got night sweats the last few nights. No fever. He doesn't meet criteria for testing. But if he'd had it, and I knew that I had it, and they open things back up, then I'm not as worried about my children, for at least for their risk, given what we know about kids. I'd be OK going back to more, a few more things, back to normal. Maybe not completely back to normal, but until we know immunity, you -- or we have a vaccine. It has to be one or the other.
HOLMES: And just finally, and quickly, I mean, a lot of countries are starting to admit that there has been a pretty large under-reporting of both cases and deaths. Because a lot of people dying at home. A lot of people aren't being tested postmortem. Do you believe that's the case?
PORTER: I'd -- I would rather have us over-report than under-report. I think that we -- I think that we probably do not have as many, hopefully, missed death, because anybody who's dying at home needs a death certificate, unless they're 100 years old. And right now there's so much worry about coronavirus, it's on people's brains. So if they're doing more autopsies than normal, or somebody had a fever, if somebody had a cold and pneumonia, they're assuming that it was coronavirus, and there's testing those people.
I think that what we probably have is we're under-reporting the number of cases that we have, because we simply don't have the ubiquitous testing that we need.
HOLMES: Yes. Yes, good point. Good to see you, Doctor. Dr. Emily Porter, thank you so much.
PORTER: Thank you, Michael.
HOLMES: Well, as if nerves weren't frayed and emergency services weren't stretched enough, the Southeastern U.S. dealing with another threat. More than two dozen tornadoes ripped through the region so far on Sunday, killing at least seven people.
One tornado was on the ground for up to 160 kilometers, tearing apart hundreds of homes.
And here's an image of our time: people practicing social distancing at a shelter from the storm.
And these storms are far from over yet. Let's bring in CNN meteorologist Pedram Javaheri. Pedram, it's still plowing its way through?
PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is, absolutely is. And of course, Michael, you checked your local time across these areas that are being impacted. It is not into the overnight hours. It makes it that much more dangerous.
In fact, statistically speaking, tornadic activity into the overnight hours, two times as deadly as ones that occur during the daytime hours, and this is going to be a dangerous situation here into a densely populated region, not only into portions of Alabama. Birmingham had been impacted, as far as the metro area, but certainly into northern and northwestern Georgia, as the storm system begins migrating off towards the east.
And I want to show you the satellite imagery, the radar imagery across this region. We've had upwards of 10,000 lightning strikes to tell you about in the past several hours across this region. So it really speaks to the intensity and the severity of these storms.
Again, it is about midnight local time, into the Eastern and Southeastern United States. So any of these storms that worked their way across this region could catch people off-guard, and that's what makes these storms that much more dangerous.
And radar imagery shows you the thunderstorms as they're migrating east. And in fact, the National Weather Service across this region has issued tornado watches, meaning conditions are certainly favorable for tornadoes to be produced within this area, that is home to at least 10 million people, includes much of the state of Alabama, and it's certainly much of the higher populations there of the state of Georgia. That includes western Georgia, and then into metro Atlanta.
Here we go: 26 tornado reports in the past 24 or so hours, about one hundred plus reports of severe weather whether it be strong winds or large hail.
A couple of these tornadoes as impressive as we've ever seen them. Michael, you noted the 160 kilometers, or 100 miles one of these tornadoes tracked across portions of the state of Mississippi. There they are. We have two large tornadoes in southern Mississippi. The perspective putting this as among the most long-tracked tornadoes in state history.
And again, we had two of them tracking along the same line just outside of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, which is a town located there in southern Mississippi.
And here's a view of that particular tornado. We've had reports of it being a wedge tornado or a mild in diameter. Certainly, a destructive one, of course. You noted upwards of seven lives lost along the path of these storms in the past several hours.
But here's what we have moving forward. Notice, much of the southern United States, in line here for severe weather. Red is indicative of a level four. That's on a score of one to five. That is a four here for severe weather. It includes almost the entirety of the state of Alabama, and the most populous area there of the state of Georgia into metro Atlanta.
And again, the threat is going to be highest within the next two to three hours across these regions. In fact, the closer perspective does show us a 10 to 15 percent probability of a tornado touching down somewhere within these areas indicated in red and also in orange. So again, upwards of 10 million people in the path of a very dangerous storm that has had the history of producing tornadoes, Michael, over the last couple of hours.
HOLMES: I'm still getting my head around a tornado a mile in diameter. That is -- wow, that's amazing.
HOLMES: Pedram, thank you. Pedram Javaheri there. We'll check in with you later.
HOLMES: As tonight winds on here, now more than 10,000 people in the U.K. have died from coronavirus so far. That's a staggering number. More than 84,000 have tested positive. Experts say the worst is yet to come.
But the British prime minister, Boris Johnson, well, he's out of hospital. He spent a week there with several days in intensive care and is now describing how harrowing it was.
Bianca Nobilo explains. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It could have gone either way was the startling admission from British Prime Minister Boris Johnson about his time in hospital.
He's since been discharged and is now recovering at Checkers, the prime minister's country estate. He expresses his sincere gratitude for the British National Health Service in a message and mentions nurses by name.
BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I hope they won't mind if I mention, in particular, two nurses who stood by my bedside for 48 hours when things could have gone either way. They're Jenny from New Zealand, in the Cargill, on the south island, to be exact; and Louise from Portugal, near Porto.
And the reason, in the end, my body did start to get enough oxygen, was because for every second of the night, they were watching. And they were thinking, and they were caring and making the interventions I needed.
NOBILO (voice-over): The prime minister said that the National Health Service was the beating heart of the country and that it was powered by love. His fiancee, Carrie Symonds, who is expecting their child in early summer, said that the last week had been full of dark days, and that she could never repay her debt to the National Health Service.
(on camera): While that was happy news for the prime minister's family, and for the country, as the leader begins to recover, it was juxtaposed with a somber and wrenching milestone. Over 10,000 deaths that are coronavirus-related have been confirmed in the United Kingdom.
(voice-over): And those are just the deaths that occur in hospital. That doesn't take into account the deaths that occur in care homes, which are so badly affected, with the elderly population being so susceptible to coronavirus. Nor does it take into account deaths in prisons, or in the community at large.
The health secretary, at the press briefing today in Downing Street, was put under pressure over the ongoing issue of the health services access to PPE. There are still reports of doctors and nurses are not having enough. The doctors' association, and nurses' associations, trying to advocate for more protective equipment.
One of the leading advisors to the government, Jeremy Farrar, said that it's possible the United Kingdom could face an even worse death toll than other countries in Europe.
(on camera): He cited Germany as an example of a country that had tested comprehensively, and that might be one of the reasons that it's faring much better than Italy, Spain and Britain.
Bianca Nobilo, CNN, outside London.
HOLMES: One of the hardest-hit countries, Spain, is lifting some restrictions as of Monday. People who cannot work from home, such as construction and factory workers, can now return to their jobs, but nonessential businesses like retailers, bars and entertainment venues, well, they have to say closed.
Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez says the loosening of the restrictions does not mean the country is entering phase two, even though the rate of deaths and new cases is slowing in Spain. He urged people not to be complacent, making it clear the state of alarm continues.
OPEC and other producers have agreed to slash oil production like never before. But some analysts say it may not go far enough. It might not be the end of the cuts. We'll take a look at oil prices when we come back.
HOLMES: Welcome back.
OPEC will slash oil production by almost 10 million barrels a day, starting May 1. A senior OPEC source says the group reached the agreement in an emergency meeting on Sunday.
Oil prices jumped on the news, but analysts worry the cut in production won't be enough to head off over supply. Oil prices have fallen to an 18-year low in recent weeks, and that's due to the price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia, as well as the coronavirus pandemic causing a plunge in demand.
And joining me now is Bob McNally. He's an international energy consultant and the president of Rapidan Group.
Good to have your expertise on this. Asian markets have responded. What are you expecting to happen when the U.S. markets open, given the developments in recent days?
BOB MCNALLY, INTERNATIONAL ENERGY CONSULTANT: Well, we had a historic decision by OPEC plus and G-20 countries to make the biggest production cuts ever.
And the market is treating it pretty well in Asia so far. Crude is up 4 or 5 percent. The next big shoe to drop on Monday will be when Saudi Arabia announces the prices for its sales in May. And those prices are probably going to go up.
So I think the markets may be up a little bit on the -- the news over the weekend of the deal in an anticipation of Saudi Arabia lifting the prices in conjunction with this deal for its exports in May.
HOLMES: Right. Now, it's interesting, because we saw Mexico pushing back against the big boys with some success, I guess. But in the bigger picture, do the smaller producing nations have a say, or is Saudi and Russia making the rules?
MCNALLY: You know, Mexico was quite feisty. And sort of is the exception that proves the rule, that normally it is the big countries. Saudi Arabia and Russia that call the shots, and the smaller producers go along.
In this case, though, Mexico is just determined not to accept a cut. It hedges its productions. So it ensures against the price drops. So unlike its other partners in OPEC Plus, Mexico isn't hurting so badly. And the president of Mexico, AMLO, wishes to increase production.
So Mexico drag things out for three days. It took a lot of President Trump's time. And -- But it's more rare that you see a smaller producer like that slow things down for three days and get a special exception. Quite rare.
HOLMES: Right. Yes. What do you think the impacts are going to be going forward? I mean, does this sort of blow over, or do you think the industry landscape could see lasting changes after all of this?
MCNALLY: Well, near term, although it is by far the biggest production cut we've seen, it is not nearly enough to offset the tremendous demand collapse due to the coronavirus. The cuts would have had to have been three or four times bigger to offset that.
Just in the month of April alone, we expect over -- well over 20 million barrels a day, in a 100-million-barrel-a-day market. So well over 20 percent, maybe as much as 30 percent demand drop. People just aren't driving. They aren't flying.
And that demand drop is is exceeding the supply drop. So we're going to fill up inventories even more.
So near term, unfortunately, I think we're still going to see some weakness in prices. The industry is not out of the woods yet.
Longer term, it really depends how long will this coronavirus require a shutdown of economic activity. The longer it does, the longer this danger period for the industry, the threat of massive shut-ins and employment losses is going to last. So it's really more of a demand side issue and a virus issue than it is an industry issue.
HOLMES: Right. Understood. I'm curious. Because this is a good time to talk about, you know, what this sort of demonstrates about the vulnerabilities of countries that depend on petrodollars to balance the budget, pay the bills. Some are more vulnerable than others, of course.
MCNALLY: It certainly is. You have countries like Russia, which gets about 40 percent of its revenue from oil. It's diversified in other areas but still heavily dependent on oil. Really can't handle very well oil below $42. And here we went down to $20 into the teens and lower for the kind of crude it sells.
And so Mr. Putin was feeling pain. This is the second time Russia has had to learn the hard way in recent years that, if you defy Saudi Arabia, the price collapses, and Russia feels the pain as a producer. And so Russia had to come back to the table.
Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, other Gulf producers, they also depend heavily on oil, more so than even Russia. And they were hurting, as well. Now, they have fixed currency pegs. They have an ability to borrow and tide themselves over and so forth. So they have some flexibility Russia doesn't.
But it's not just these countries. Look at Alberta in Canada. Alberta is suffering grievously. Its producers are among the first to have to shut in. Alberta has some of the highest cost oil in the world and is suffering grievously due to this. So the province depends heavily on revenues and so forth.
Better to be a country like the United States, where although we're a net oil exporter now, recently became one, we'll see how long we remain one. Our economy is much more diversified. And so better to be diversified when it comes to the oil market, that's for sure.
HOLMES: Ten seconds or less, are there going to be more cuts going forward?
MCNALLY: I think there are going to have to be. Voluntary or not.
The demand collapse is much bigger. This will tie us over for a few weeks. But later this summer, voluntarily or not, we think we're going to have more production cuts.
HOLMES: Bob McNally, thanks for breaking it down for us and making it understandable. Thanks so much.
MCNALLY: You're welcome. Thank you.
HOLMES: Hospitals in New York City working at full capacity due to the coronavirus. When we come back, we go behind the scenes of one in Brooklyn to see what it's like for doctors inside. We'll be right back.
HOLMES: As we have seen over the past few weeks, hospitals in New York City are overwhelmed and doctors desperately trying to save the lives of thousands of patients infected with coronavirus.
CNN's Clarissa Ward introduces us to Dr. Melanie Malloy, a physician on the front lines. These women were college roommates and remain close friends.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) DR. MELANIE MALLOY, ATTENDING PHYSICIAN, MOUNT SINAI BROOKLYN HOSPITAL: Hello. My name is Dr. Melanie Malloy. I am an attending physician at Mount Sinai Brooklyn and Mount Sinai Queens. I'm on my way to work.
CLARISSA WARD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): We've asked my old friend to see what life is like on one day in one New York hospital.
MALLOY: So picking up my PPE. I'm going to get some scrubs. I'm going to get mask, face shield, everything that I need to be safe on my shift.
WARD: For Dr. Melanie Malloy, this is the new normal.
MALLOY: I am going to start my shift.
WARD: The emergency room at Mount Sinai Brooklyn Hospital has been overflowing.
MALLOY: I walked in, and they said, everybody is intubated, and it looks like it's true, actually. Most of our beds are taken up intubated patients, meaning patients who can't breathe on their own and who are on the ventilators. Almost everybody is on oxygen. And almost everybody is a COVID patient.
WARD: Since the pandemic began, more than 1,200 corona cases have flooded in, pushing the hospital to 115 percent to its capacity.
MALLOY: So today, there are 43 people in the department. That's pretty much full. But I have to say, it's doing a lot better than a couple weeks ago when we had 86 to 96 in the department, more people boarding. It was really tough. It was really bad. Bad week.
WARD: In the intensive care unit, it's a similar scene.
MALLOY: I just wanted to give you guys a little look at the ICU. So we have a full ICU. We have every patient in here on a ventilator.
As you can see it's not a huge space, but it's quite full. Every bed is full.
Now I'm going to try to go to the tents, because this is our fast- track extension. You know, from -- from the get-go, we -- you know, we have to tell people we can't test them for mild symptoms.
You can get registered here. Good morning.
Here is our fantastic staff, and then we have separate areas for people getting treatment.
WARD: For the doctors working around the clock to save lives, there are occasional perks.
MALLOY: One of my favorite things to do is the free food.
I'm super excited, because we have Shake Shack. What?
WARD: Moments later, it's back to work.
MALLOY: So I'm waiting for my next patient to be placed in a room. This one is different, because opposed to the mostly older patients we've been seeing today, he's in his early twenties. I think one thing we're learning is that we don't really know what somebody is going to come in with and have COVID.
Everybody has coronavirus, but some people also have heart attacks at the same time. This happens, and it makes things even harder.
Well, my day's over. Well, my hospital day is over. It was -- it wasn't the worst day I've had, but it's always pretty draining. It's just -- it's hard. It's hard to think that some of your patients that you diagnosed today might not be here tomorrow when you come back for your shift. Or you know, all of it. I don't know. I'm just tired.
WARD: For Dr. Malloy, the challenges don't end with her shift. A widow, she's raising three children on her own.
MALLOY: So it's almost 10 p.m. at night, and on my way home, I got a Face Time from my youngest child, who's four. And I think that's the hardest part. I think that's, like, just -- just being alone when I come home, knowing that, you know, my childcare is going to go home. My helpers are going home. And -- and it's just me and whatever state my children are in. And I -- I don't really have a lot left in me.
WARD: The next day, Dr. Malloy takes a moment to talk to us.
(on camera): It's crazy what you're seeing and dealing with. Have you ever experienced anything like this?
MALLOY: Never. And -- and you know, like, even the older folks, like, the older doctors are, like, I've never seen this before in my life.
WARD: So one thing that I know you weren't allowed to -- to show us is the morgue.
MALLOY: There are now two large tractor-trailer trucks that are refrigerated. They are full of bodies wrapped in white plastic bags. I was told that they can hold 50 people, and the one that I saw was full.
WARD: Do you not worry about getting sick?
MALLOY: Of course we do. Of -- of course I do. The way that -- that we're working in the E.D., it's so -- it's a hit of coronavirus. It's literally dozens of positive patients. The viral load in that place must be astronomical.
WARD: What do you wish all Americans understood about what you're going through? MALLOY: I really want Americans to take this seriously, to know that,
even if you're in an area that's not a big city, you still are in danger. And we don't know who's going to get really sick. It does not spare anyone, particularly.
HOLMES: Clarissa Ward reporting there. Hard to listen to, isn't it?
Now, the French health ministry says they are, quote, "seeing the start of a very high plateau," unquote, almost a month after President Emmanuel Macron declared a national stay-at-home order.
On Sunday, France recorded its lowest daily increase in coronavirus deaths in days, but it was an increase. And it comes with the president set to address the nation, as CNN's Cyril Vanier reports.
CYRIL VANIER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT/ANCHOR (voice-over): The scene plays out almost endlessly on the news. Patients, unable to breathe. The faces, the names, rarely, if ever, remembered. There are too many.
"We are at war," said President Macron when he addressed the nation mid-March, putting life as we know it on pause. Schools, nonessential businesses, closed. Visiting relatives, forbidden. A nationwide confinement declared indefinitely.
Almost one month on, the epidemic is just beginning to slow down in France, but hundreds still die every day. Macron is set to address the nation again Monday evening, this time two minutes after the traditional 8 p.m. start, a nod to the new evening ritual: celebrating healthcare workers.
For the president, one unavoidable question: What comes next?
THIERRY ARNAUD, BFM-TV JOURNALIST: The longer the crisis is going, the less popular the president is becoming, and that is a problem for him, clearly. And that is certainly one of the reasons why he wants to address the nation.
VANIER: The stay-at-home order will be extended. That much has been can firmed by Elysee Palace. But for how long? The government's scientific counsel advocates several more weeks.
Meanwhile, Emmanuel Macron searching for answers, on the phone with the head of the World Health Organization. In research labs in Paris and Marseilles. But breakthroughs on a possible cure for the virus are still thought to be weeks or even months away.
ARNAUD: He doesn't want to create a false sense that the hard part is over with, that the peak of the crisis is either now or just behind us and that the weeks to come are going to be very easy. Much to the contrary. VANIER: Faced with the biggest challenge of his presidency, Emmanuel
Macron has few, if any, good options. The French press expects him to double down on the stay-at-home order, possibly until mid-May.
Expect a Churchillian speech, warns a member of the government. Blood, sweat and tears.
The fact is, lifting the stay-at-home order without mass testing of the population and some form of tracking of the sick, could spark a second epidemic wave.
Meanwhile, the pressure to reopen the economy builds. The government's rescue package has bloomed to an unprecedented $100 billion and counting. Eight million workers already furloughed. Recession already here.
Cyril Vanier, CNN, outside Paris.
HOLMES: Well, a church in the U.S. state of Kansas held Easter Sunday services, despite a ban on gatherings of 10 or more. I'm going to show you the scene now outside Risen Savior Lutheran Church on Sunday. Well, that's at least 10 people right there, and they don't appear to be socially distancing.
Just Saturday evening, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled the governor was justified in ordering the ban.
Well, the coronavirus lockdown compounding an already tragic and widespread problem. When we come back, we'll show you how it is putting domestic abuse victims in even more danger. We'll be right back.
HOLMES: Welcome back.
The coronavirus lockdown creating an unwelcome consequence, and that is a rise in domestic violence cases.
During a news conference on Saturday, the British home secretary, Priti Patel, announced a new campaign designed to combat the problem. That as Nina Dos Santos reports, isolation measures are keeping some victims in a dangerous situation.
NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For most Britons staying at home as they've been told to do really does mean staying safe. But for victims of domestic violence, the opposite may well be true. Home for them isn't the sanctuary it's assumed to be. The coronavirus isn't the only killer. LISA KING, DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS, REFUGE: Domestic abuse is all
about power control. And one of the tactics of maintaining control is to isolate a woman. A lockdown is essentially isolation in its most extreme form. For someone experiencing domestic abuse, that is very concerning, because there is nowhere to turn to, there is no respite from being, you know, with your perpetrator.
DOS SANTOS: Refuge, which runs the U.K.'s national domestic abuse help line, has seen a surge in web traffic and online inquiries since Britons were told to stay indoors.
KING: Some women are contacting us with concern in relation to child cop-out (ph) maxes. They may have separated from their abusers, and they've still had to undertake child contact. And in a number of cases, the perpetrators have not released the children back to the mothers. They've claimed that the child has symptoms of corona and has then held onto the child.
DOS SANTOS (on camera): It's estimated 1.6 million women and 786,000 men across England and Wales faced some force of domestic abuse last year. For them, the longer the lockdown continues, the less safe their homes can become.
(voice-over): But how to escape when the government's advice is to go out just once a day only for essential shopping or exercise? Family and friends are in isolation, and the streets empty.
David Challen knows the cost of such abuse only too well. His mother, Sally, killed his father, Richard, in 2010 after years of suffering his coercive control. Jailed for life, Sally's sons fought to have her conviction quashed in a landmark ruling delivered last year.
(on camera): How much of a concern does the lockdown present for victims of domestic abuse in this country?
DAVID CHALLEN, DOMESTIC ABUSE ACTIVIST: The longer it goes on, the more fatal it's going to be for those victims. I think people will lose their lives. You know, history's taught us that with domestic abuse. You know, 30 women a week are killed by domestic abuse, and I think it's important to raise awareness of that. And the longer this goes on, the worse it's going to get.
DOS SANTOS (voice-over): No one knows how long the U.K.'s order to stay at home will last, but for those trapped by domestic abuse, it can't end soon enough.
Nina Dos Santos, CNN, London.
HOLMES: The opera singer Andrea Bocelli sings to an empty cathedral on Easter Sunday. It was quite something. The performance had over 20 million people viewing it in a search for hope.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDREA BOCELLI: (SINGING AVE MARIA)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: Italy may still be on lockdown, but world-famous tenor, Andrea Bocelli, sharing the gift of music in a free concert on Sunday from an empty cathedral in Milan.
The free Music of Hope concert, as it was called, was broadcast on YouTube to celebrate Easter Sunday, and according to the mayor of Milan, it warmed the hearts of the world.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
POPE FRANCIS, LEADER OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH: (SPEAKING LATIN)
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HOLMES: And Pope Francis holding Easter mass Sunday inside a nearly deserted St. Peter's Basilica. The service streamed around the world for the many Catholics still under social distancing rules.
Along with traditional Easter blessing, the pope also called for a global ceasefire and an end to weapons manufacturing during the pandemic.
Well, musicians, actors, and other performers have a lot of time on their hands at the moment, and many are coming together to make music and help us all remember we're not alone. Robyn Curnow reports.
(MUSIC: THE POLICE'S "DON'T STAND SO CLOSE TO ME")
ROBYN CURNOW, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): It may be the perfect quarantine song, Sting joined by TV host Jimmy Fallon and his house band, The Roots, sing the hit, "Don't Stand So Close to Me."
And keeping with the theme of social distancing, they performed the song remotely, from their own homes.
With concert venues closed, Broadway shut down, music lovers have had to find clever ways for the show to go on, despite the pandemic.
(MUSIC: "ALEXANDER HAMILTON")
CURNOW: Lin-Manuel Miranda, and the cast of "Hamilton" gave one young fan a virtual front-row seat to the famous musical. As the cast reunited, from different locations, on John Krasinski's YouTube show.
JOHN LEGEND, SINGER: I'm going to do a little concert from my house, on my piano, and who knows what will happen?
(MUSIC: JOHN LEGEND, "I WILL STAY WITH YOU")
CURNOW: Musicians like John Legend, Keith Urban and Pink have been treating fans to many online concerts.
LADY GAGA, SINGER/ACTRESS: We are all so very grateful to all of the healthcare professionals across the country.
CURNOW: And just because you can't go to a music festival, doesn't mean one can't come to you. Next Saturday, Lady Gaga is helping to put on a digital mega concert in connection with the World Health Organization and Global Citizen to raise money for healthcare workers fighting the virus.
(MUSIC: WILLIE NELSON, "ON THE ROAD AGAIN")
CURNOW: And this weekend, a special at-home version of Farm Aid, streamed online, with performance by Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp.
JOHN MELLENCAMP, MUSICIAN: Hopefully, at the end of this, there will be greener pastures.
CURNOW: Just another way that music can help to soothe the soul.
Robyn Curnow, CNN, Atlanta.
HOLMES: Fabulous stuff.
I want to take another look at the severe weather in the southeastern U.S. at the moment. A very tense night for millions of people bracing for bad storms, possible tornadoes. This is one of dozens of tornadoes that hit the region on Sunday. They killed at least seven people.
Let's check back in with meteorologist Pedram Javaheri. How's it moving along there?
JAVAHERI: Michael, it is an incredible storm here. You know, since we last spoke, at least eight additional reports of tornadoes to be had across the southern United States. So it really speaks to the intensity and the nature of these particular storms. In fact, the elements, all in place along the Gulf Coast region of the United States. We do have plenty of moisture coming in. We have quite a bit of instability in place, and these storms certainly producing a number of tornadoes in a short time period and upwards of some 10,000 lightning strikes, as well in a matter of just several hours.
But the energy now exiting the state of Alabama, on into portions of western Georgia. This is the area we watched very carefully, because it is the highest population density in the next couple of hours here, as the storm approaches into northern and western Georgia, and of course, intro metro Atlanta.
This particular storm runs into its highest population so far in its life cycle.
Take a look at the pattern here. We do have tornado watches in place, meaning conditions are favorable for any one of these storms producing tornadoes, through at least the early morning hours across the region. And that includes a population of about 10 million people, again.
And here's the broader perspective: Up to 34 reports of tornadoes, generally all in the last 10 or so hours. But we've seen quite a bit in the last hour, at least 8 of them coming in across that region.
And then you notice 91 reports of severe winds, upwards of about 30 reports of large damaging hail. In some cases, baseball-size in diameter. So again, as vigorous as a storm as you'll see it. In fact, the strongest the storm into the state of Georgia now in about 25 months' time.
But for the state of Mississippi, it was an historic storm, because it brought down two tornadoes that could potentially be rated an EF-4 or potentially, and EF-5. These storms both stayed on the ground upwards of about 100 miles, or 160 kilometers.
Again, the energy migrating off towards the east. Those storms have since tapered off, but the same parent storm that is responsible for spawning the tornadoes, now getting us a level four risk, which on a scale of one to five, a four is there indicated in red. That is for strong tornadoes, damaging winds, large hail, and these could be long track tornadoes, as we've already seen, the history of this storm producing long-track tornadoes.
That gives this area, from Birmingham on into Atlanta, upwards of a 15 percent probability. Again, the highest probability we've seen across this region in quite some time, Michael. So it is a serious situation, especially into the overnight hours.
HOLMES: It certainly is. We're waiting for it to hit right here. Pedram Javaheri, thanks so much. Appreciate that.
And thank you for spending part of your day with us watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Michael Holmes, and I will be back in an hour with the latest on those storms, as well as the coronavirus, which claimed almost 1,500 more lives in the U.S. on Sunday.
For now, though, "FAREED ZAKARIA: GPS" up next.