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U.S. Vice President Pence Won't Enter Self-Quarantine; British Prime Minister Lays Out Plan for Easing Restrictions; Race on to Successfully Produce a Vaccine; Spike in South Korean Cases Linked to Night Clubs; China Reports 17 New Cases, Five in Wuhan; More U.S. States Reopen Despite Warnings; Trump Downplays Need for Increased Testing; Shanghai Disneyland Reopens with Limited Visitors; Georgia A.G. Requests Investigation into Handling of Arbery Murder; Major Sports Leagues Returning Without Fans. Aired 12-1a ET
Aired May 11, 2020 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello and welcome to our viewers here in the United States and all around the world. I'm Michael Holmes. Thanks for your company.
Now, the COVID-19 casualty count keeps on climbing, with the U.S. on track to reach 80,000 deaths very soon.
But that's not stopping nearly all U.S. states from relaxing restrictions in some way, shape or form. In the coming hours, Arizona will allow people to eat inside restaurants. Indiana will let hair and nail salons open. Gyms in Alabama also getting the green light.
This coming as a key coronavirus model cited by the White House now predicts 137,000 deaths in the U.S. by August. That is an uptick of several thousand since just last week. And a top researcher attributes this to, quote, "explosive increases in mobility," meaning more movement equals more infections.
A major easing is also underway in the U.K. The British prime minister changing the message from stay-at-home to, stay alert. He's unveiled "careful steps," his words, the government will take to loosen the lockdown, and allow some people to return to work.
And starting this Monday, more major airlines will require passengers to wear masks. They include Air France, American Spirit, and Southwest.
The CEO of frontier, which made masks mandatory a few days ago, told CNN's Wolf Blitzer how it works.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARRY BIFFLE, PRESIDENT/CEO, FRONTIER AIRLINES: We don't provide the masks but, like, in Colorado, and most communities all over the U.S., you have to have a mask even to get inside the airport and most cases. So it's not really necessary. But if someone pulls it off, if they have a legitimate reason that they need to take some medicine or something, obviously, we would allow that. But if you're just being noncompliant, we're going to deal with it no differently than if you were taking off your clothes. It's just the safety of everybody on this plane is at stake.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: Meanwhile, the virus edging closer than ever to the West Wing, and we are hearing President Trump is concerned that aides contracting COVID will undercut his message that the worst is past, and states should carry on reopening.
This coming as the U.S. vice president makes a questionable decision. Jeremy Diamond explains.
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Well, Vice President Mike Pence's office on Sunday saying that the president will not enter self-quarantine after his press secretary tested positive for coronavirus on Friday.
The vice president's spokesperson, Devin O'Malley, saying in a statement that Vice President Pence will continue to follow the advice of the White House medical unit and is not in quarantine.
Additionally, Vice President Pence has tested negative every single day and plans to be at the White House tomorrow. That is on Monday.
The vice president is expected, indeed, to be at the White House, and certainly not in self-quarantine there. His decision is in contrast to what we're seeing from three of the doctors on the coronavirus task force. Dr. Robert Redfield, the head of the Centers for Disease Control, Dr. Stephen Hahn, the head of the Food and Drug Administration, and Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government's top infectious disease expert. All three of them entering some form of self- quarantine for the next two weeks after they came into contact with a White House official who tested positive for coronavirus.
Their announcements about going into quarantine came within 24 hours of the news that Katie Miller, the vice president's press secretary, who is also a spokeswoman for the task force, had, indeed, tested positive.
So certainly, some differences here in the approach, and that is kind of the thing here that we're seeing from the White House. It's kind of a mismatched, piecemeal approach to what these officials should do if, indeed, they come into contact.
Certainly, the vice president has spent far more time with Katie Miller, the vice president's press secretary, then any of these other officials on the task force, and so far, the White House is declining to see whether any other officials on the task force. And so far, the White House officials is also declining to say whether any other officials on the task force or any other White House officials who would be in frequent meetings with the vice president's press secretary, whether they will also work from home, and enter some kind of quarantine.
What we are also learning, is that those three officials who are going into quarantine, they were set to testify before the Senate Health Committee on Tuesday. Those officials will still go forward with that testimony, but instead, Senator Lamar Alexander, the chairman of that committee, announcing that all three of them will appear via video conference.
Jeremy Diamond, CNN, the White House.
HOLMES: And joining me now from New York, CNN national security analyst Samantha Vinograd.
Great to have you on, Sam. You know, so OK, the president playing down the need for widespread testing, and at the same time, we have this cluster at the White House. The vice president, press secretary, Secret Service agents, presidential valet.
And the vice president goes against CDC recommendations to isolate after contact with a positive person. What -- what do you take from that White House spread and how it is being handled?
SAMANTHA VINOGRAD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, on the first instinct, you kind of expect the president, and the vice president in the White House to lead by example. If they're not following CDC guidelines, it certainly doesn't message to their base, to their followers, to the American people, that the CDC guidelines should be taken seriously.
It's worth remembering that the president, the vice president, and White House staff, our really high-value targets when we think about infection, or any other direct threat to their security or health. That's because personnel at the White House are viewed as what we call essential personnel in the eyes of the federal government. It is essential to the functioning of the U.S. government that they are able to physically come to work and to perform their roles and responsibilities. I was one of those personnel for four years.
That makes protecting their health of paramount importance. And as I sit back here, and I look at the president, the vice president, senior advisers at the White House, and others, being on television, in public, walking into the White House without masks, for example, again, not engaging in basic CDC guidelines, I just have to ask myself, why not?
HOLMES: Yes, and you -- you worked there, of course, for years in the Obama administration. When it comes to the place itself, give us a sense of the physical work environment when it comes to potential spread. As you point out, people don't seem to be using masks very much there. VINOGRAD: Well, social distancing is a luxury that you just don't have
at the White House, whether you're working in the White House in the West Wing, or the East Wing, or in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, EOB, which is where the vice president -- most of the vice president's staff and the NSC work. Space is really cramped.
I literally worked in a converted closet for years, about two feet away from my closest colleague. At the same time, a lot of equipment is shared. You know, we're talking about handwashing and avoiding touching a lot of physical surfaces. There's oftentimes, you know, one classified printer in a shared office space. You have to touch doorknobs to get into secure rooms where most of these offices are held.
So it is very difficult to just engage in basic social distancing. And then, minimum, I would then expect that staff would do things like wear masks, just to be extra cautious.
HOLMES: And to that point, I mean, even if the cases that have been there are largely asymptomatic so far, you know, when you have exposures affecting the bosses of the CDC, infectious diseases, the -- the -- you know, the FDA.
It shows how the heart of government can be threatened, and again, how the administration isn't following CDC guidelines, and in the case of the vice president, quarantining after exposure, which technically, they're meant to do.
How concerning is that in terms of the function of government?
VINOGRAD: Well, the truth is, we need all hands on deck right now to fight this virus, as well as the manifold threats facing the nation more generally.
As officials are forced to self-quarantine, or semi-quarantine, my question is whether people like Anthony -- Dr. Anthony Fauci, or the CDC director and others, are able to fully perform their responsibilities with respect to the coronavirus.
For example, if other staff have to stay at home, because they have been infected, that means they can't get, for example, to the majority of the classified information, because they don't have access to classified servers on a regular basis from their homes.
So, infection spreads like wildfire within the White House, and the inability of staff at all levels to show up to work, whether out of fear of contagion, actual infection, or semi- or self-quarantining, might, in fact, impact the very functioning of our government.
HOLMES: There's a lot we could talk for hours on optics when it comes to this administration overall, but let's talk about this. CNN reporting that President Trump has told people he doesn't want to be near anyone who hasn't been tested. He's bristled when coming into contact with some people at the White House. That is from CNN's Kevin Liptak.
Yet, he expects the ordinary Americans to go back to work without the benefit of testing. There's a lot of chutzpah in that, isn't there?
VINOGRAD: Well, you call it chutzpah. I call it hypocrisy. The president is not wrong, that his staff failed to protect him. A lethal threat likely came within breathing distance of President Trump, as well as Vice President Pence.
So, he is right that the utmost precaution should be taken to protect his health. But he is expecting treatment that he is not, again, advising people to take when it comes to their own health and security.
And the fact is, the White House has shot itself in the foot when it comes to their narrative that it is time to reopen the country and that we have flattened the curve to such an extent that we should just get back to normal, based on the fact that there's new infection at the White House. And the fact that the White House wasn't able to even protect the president, and Vice President Trump [SIC], doesn't instill a whole lot of confidence that they're ready or willing to take necessary steps to protect all of us.
HOLMES: Yes, indeed.
Samantha Vinograd, good to see you. Thanks so much.
VINOGRAD: Thank you.
HOLMES: Well, after more than six weeks of lockdown, and more than 31,000 coronavirus deaths, the British prime minister, Boris Johnson, is trying to advance reopening the United Kingdom this week by getting certain people back to work.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: This is not the time simply to end the lockdown this week. Instead, we're taking the first careful steps to modify our measures.
And the first step is a change of emphasis that we hope people will act on this week. We said that you should work from home if you can and only go to work if you must.
We now need to stress that anyone who can't work from home, for instance, those in construction, or manufacturing, should be actively encouraged to go to work.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: Mr. Johnson proposing three steps towards relaxing restrictions, starting with exercise and outdoor activity.
CNN's Max Foster explains more from London.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Three stages, then, to Boris Johnson's new plan. The first one will come in next week when we see him encouraging manufacturing and construction workers to try to get back to work if they can. And if they can, avoid public transport, preferably.
The next stage would come next month, with schools starting to reopen and shops, as well, potentially.
Then in July, stage three with hospitality and public areas opening up, as well.
But all of this is conditional on the infection rates not rising sharply. If it does, that timetable will be stretched. Lockdown will be locked down even further, Boris Johnson says, because he's fearful of this second spike in the virus.
The government being accused of wooly (ph) and mixed messaging, as well, around moving away from the slogan of "stay at home," to "stay alert." The opposition Labour Party is saying that's puzzling, not particularly clear.
We also learned that Scotland and Wales haven't signed up to it. They're going to stick with stay at home. So some splits in the union, as well, appearing there.
Also, some new rules around quarantine. Boris Johnson saying that people coming into the U.K. would have to go into self-quarantine for 14 days. Quite why that's happening now, and not earlier on in this pandemic isn't clear.
Also, on top of that, France is exempt. So again, some confusion around quarantine rules and when it applies, and to whom.
Max Foster, CNN, Downing Street, London.
HOLMES: One of the surest ways out of the pandemic, of course, is a vaccine, the race on around the world to produce one. But when one is successfully developed, it faces major manufacturing challenges. Plus, there are concerns of vaccine nationalism. Could some countries jump the queue?
CNN's Anna Stewart on that.
ANNA STEWART, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): At least 100 COVID-19 vaccines are in development around the world, from small biotech firms and university research groups, to the big pharmaceutical companies. Eight groups have broken through to the next phase: human trials.
If one succeeds and gets regulatory approval from individual countries, the next challenge begins: producing enough vaccine for the world. THOMAS CUENI, DIRECTOR GENERAL, INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF
PHARMACEUTICAL MANUFACTURERS: When you look at the biggest vaccine manufacturers, it may be five in the industrialized world, able and with the skill set knowhow to manufacture at large scales. And even if you combine their capacity, they don't have excess capacity. They might struggle to come up with the volumes you need right now.
STEWART: Pharmaceutical companies are forming partnerships. Even united, they could face major manufacturing challenges.
CUENI: At the end of the day, you may have a vaccine, but then you find out you don't have enough vials. The bottleneck might be at the end of the supply chain.
KATHERINE O'BRIEN, WHO IMMUNIZATIONS, VACCINES AND BIOLOGICALS DEPARTMENT: The entire world needs this vaccine, but who gets it first, in any product that is -- has inadequate supply to meet all of the demand.
There will always be interests at heart to -- to serve, you know, the primary interests of those who are in control of -- of the product.
STEWART: There are concerns countries could put national interests first.
DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASE: Everybody wants to get a vaccine for their country, for the safety of their country and, if possible, make it available to the world.
STEWART: How a vaccine is shared is a question for politicians, and it needs to be answered soon.
O'BRIEN: If everything went perfectly well, we might be able to see early licensure of those products near the end of 2020. I've never seen a product where everything goes as planned. Maybe we'll get lucky.
STEWART: And if we do, there are further challenges ahead to vaccinate the world.
Anna Stewart, CNN, London.
HOLMES: A spike in cases in South Korea has believed to be linked to one man. Where he went, and how he allegedly spread the virus, that's coming up after the break.
HOLMES: Well, as countries ease restrictions, they are keeping a close eye on what's known as the R-value. That's how many people each sick person infects with the coronavirus.
Now, in Germany, that number has now reached more than 1.1, indicating infections are on the rise again. The federal public health agency says it is too early to draw conclusions just yet, but the number needs to be watched carefully.
Chancellor Angela Merkel has said restrictions there have been relaxed, can be reimposed if the pandemic accelerates again.
Now, over the weekend, South Korea reported its biggest single-day jump in coronavirus cases since early April. The spike in new cases believed to be linked to Seoul's nightclub scene, with the president now warning of a second wave.
CNN's Paula Hancocks in Seoul. South Korea had been so successful, Paula, in handling the virus. How worried are officials about this uptick related to a club?
PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Michael, you just heard from the Seoul city mayor, and he said that the next two to three days is really critical in trying to contain this cluster.
So it happened when there was one 29-year-old man who visited a number of clubs in this Itaewon area of Seoul. He was unaware that he was tested -- that he was positive. He tested positive afterwards.
And then something like 5,500 names that officials now have that may have come into contact with this individual. And they're trying to trace these individuals, trying to make sure that they are all tested.
They say that 3,000 at this point have been tested, but they're still trying to contact some people. Eight-five people have tested positive related to this one incident as of about 10 a.m. this morning.
And one of the complicating factors is, is that some of these clubs within the Itaewon area are gay clubs. And there are concerns by officials that there will be rising homophobia within South Korea. It's not always been the most tolerant country when it comes to gay rights, we've certainly seen.
So what they are worried about is that some people won't want to come forward, because they will be concerned about discrimination.
The Seoul city mayor has also said that some of those who entered the clubs, they had to give their I.D.s. They had to give their names and phone numbers as part of the precautions. Some gave false information, because they simply didn't want to be linked with that club.
So it is of great concern, the Seoul mayor saying that if Seoul falls, the country falls. So the next few days are really critical.
HOLMES: Yes. That certainly complicates the tracing aspects. I mean, as we said, South Korea has done so well, being well praised for how they handled it thus far.
What -- what lessons could be learned by other countries, looking at South Korea as -- as a success story?
HANCOCKS: Well, we heard from the South Korean president, Moon Jae-in, yesterday, and he said that -- that it's not over until it's over, that this really proves that -- that you can't let your guard down when it comes to these infections.
The fact that South Korea has been internationally praised for the way that it's managed to flatten the curve, the fact that there were days when there was zero local transmission cases.
But it just shows just how quickly that it can reemerge. Now, these clubs have been closed down now. They -- they have said that they are suspending all these -- these entertainment areas to try and prevent further outbreaks.
But, of course, the question is why were they open in the first place? And this is a question that many people in Korea are asking. The fact that this strict social distancing that was in South Korea only lifted last Wednesday, but these clubs had thousands of people in before that. So that's obviously one of the questions that -- that officials will be asked.
We heard from the president, saying it will be a long time before the outbreak ends. You can't lower your guard. We need to prepare for the second wave.
So the lessons learned is really don't let the guard down, because even a country that is seemingly as successful as South Korea at combatting this, very quickly, there can be another cluster that emerges.
HOLMES: Yes. Certainly shows how quickly it can flare up again.
Paula Hancocks in Seoul, appreciate it. Thanks, Paula.
Now to mainland China, reporting 17 new cases of the coronavirus, 5 of them in Wuhan, you'll remember, the original epicenter of the outbreak.
New lockdown measures were announced for a city in the northeast, as well.
Steven Jiang is joining us with the details. Tell us more about these cases and the level of concern there.
STEVEN JIANG, CNN SENIOR PRODUCER: Well, Michael, the level of concern in Wuhan officially is moderate, according to the government assessment of that one district in Wuhan where these new cases have emerged.
This obviously is getting a lot of attention, as you said, because Wuhan was where the first outbreak was reported.
Now, the -- all these new cases, six in total since the weekend, actually occurred in one particular residential neighborhood, where the official in charge has now been sacked by the government for failing to prevent this resurgence.
Now, as you know, this country, almost everyone needs to have this health status app on their mobile phones, where they will have a color-coded health status before they can go into most public venues.
So for residents in that one distract in Wuhan, that means their health code is now yellow or orange instead of green. So this will have real-life implications, that their travel will be restricted, their access to a lot of places, including their workplaces, will be limited, as well.
So this is really the last thing residents in Wuhan want to see after going through 76 days of lockdown measures with huge human toll, as well as economic consequences, Michael.
HOLMES: Absolutely. Keep an eye on it for us. Thanks, Steven. Steven Jiang there in Beijing for us.
And after the break, we'll stay in China. That's where Disney is reopening Shanghai Disneyland, their first property to welcome guests since the virus closures. But is it too soon? We'll have a report from David Culver, live.
HOLMES: And welcome back to our viewers here in the United States and all around the world. I'm Michael Holmes. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.
In the United States, a key coronavirus model predicting more deaths in the U.S. as the country sees a rise in mobility. Despite the warnings, a growing numbers of states are still expected to ease their restrictions in the hours ahead. CNN's Polo Sandoval reports.
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Starting Monday, New Hampshire will allow retail stores, barbershops and hair salons to take in some customers.
In the south, Alabama gyms, restaurants and other businesses also will reopen under certain rules. Across the country, states taking a patchwork approach to reopening amid continuing still climbing cases of COVID-19.
Nationwide, more than 1.3 million diagnosed, with more than 79,000 deaths.
Thirteen states have seen an average increase in new cases this past week. Fifteen have remained steady, and 22 states have seen a decline in new cases. Despite a recent uptick in Ohio cases, retailers there will open
Tuesday as part of the state's phased reopening strategy. Governor Mike DeWine describing the process on "FOX News Sunday" as "something we have to do."
GOV. MIKE DEWINE (R-OH): Well, it's really a risk, no matter what we do. It's a risk if we don't do anything. It's a risk if we do this. What we have done is come up with the best practices for businesses to reopen. We put businesspeople together with health people, had them come up with these best practices.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Open up the county!
SANDOVAL: On the West Coast, protesters returned to the streets in Stockton, California, demanding the governor lift the state's stay-at- home order and reopen businesses.
The White House facing challenges of its own, not only with a predicted May unemployment rate of 20 percent, but with news that two people in the West Wing tested positive for the virus, an Oval Office valet and the vice president's press secretary.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the faces of the White House's coronavirus response team, is on modified quarantine out of an abundance of caution, and has not tested positive. And other administration officials taking precautions of their own.
KEVIN HASSETT, CHAIRMAN, WHITE HOUSE COUNCIL OF ECONOMIC ADVISORS: We've all been exposing ourselves to risks, you know, under the best guidance we could possibly have to keep us safe, but we're willing to take that chance because we love our country.
And I think that, you know, there are things that have to happen in that West Wing, even if the building is a little bit old and under- ventilated and so on.
And so yes, I absolutely have a mask in my pocket. I could wave it at you right now. And I practice social distancing.
SANDOVAL: In New York, signs of a new and disturbing COVID-related illness that's already proven deadly for some children. At least 85 kids, mainly toddler and elementary-school-age, have been hospitalized with what doctors are describing as pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome. Three children have died, and authorities investigating if that number is even higher.
MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK CITY: As a father, I am feeling the concern I know other parents are feeling. Our health leadership is deeply concerned.
Doctors are now calling this pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome. And what it does is basically, in a child's body, triggers intensive, almost overwhelming, immune system response. And that actually causes harm to the body. So as the body is fighting, it fights in such a manner that actually starts to cause other problems.
SANDOVAL: New York Mayor Bill de Blasio adding that symptoms of the illness include fever, rashes, abdominal pain and vomiting.
(on camera): The CDC now asking the state of New York to develop a national criteria for the illness. The expectation here is that we could see more of these cases especially outside of New York. And what this does do, it certainly leaves parents concerned, since these cases undercut what they have been told before, which is that younger people may not be as vulnerable.
HOLMES: And Dr. Jorge Rodriguez is a board-certified internist. He joins me live from Los Angeles.
Good to see you again, Doctor.
I want to -- I want to start with you or your take on the spread of the coronavirus into the president's inner circle. I mean, White House infections. You've got the heads of the CDC, the FDA, the National Institutes of Health, all quarantining as a precaution.
What does it show about this virus and its reach?
DR. JORGE RODRIGUEZ, BOARD-CERTIFIED INTERNIST: Well, it shows that the virus has obviously no boundaries. It can attack the mightiest, and it can attack the humblest. It attacked the richest and the poorest, the youngest and the oldest.
So sort of the chickens have come to roost, if you will, because the president and the White House and the people there have almost been acting as if this were something that they would be oblivious to. And unfortunately, what it shows is that you could be completely without symptoms, and you could still carry the virus. And you could spread it to an untold number of people.
So I think that's exactly what this is telling us now.
HOLMES: Yes. And it seems that the president is most upset that it's stepping on his narrative of everybody getting back to work.
We are always talking about testing. In the White House now, it seems there is daily testing. There is contact tracing. They have the resources. Yet, the president still plays down the need for those things in the broader community.
How necessary, still, is it, in order to have a reopening that doesn't backfire in a big way, to have those things everywhere?
RODRIGUEZ: Well, those things are essential. And unfortunately, I think, or fortunately, I think the American people can see the hypocrisy of what's happening in the White House.
And I understand that these people are leaders, and they're vital, and they should, perhaps, have a different level of protection. But in order to open the United States or any country safely, you need to do a few things.
You need to know who is infectious. You need to know who they are coming into contact with, and you need to know if people that have already been infected are immune to it so that they can go work safely.
So testing is of the utmost importance to open safely. And not only that, until you have testing, you need to adhere very closely to social distancing or physical distancing, as I like to say; to wearing masks; and to extreme hygiene. And again, the White House needs to set an example.
HOLMES: I'm wondering if you think -- I mean, I'm seeing on social media just a whole bunch of videos of people going to restaurants and hanging out and all the rest of it. Some disturbing stuff, too.
I mean, do you think there is a risk of there already is public complacency that you have the president saying, Let's reopen. Let's get back to your right out of the sport start-up again. People are still dying in terrible numbers. But do you think people are just trying to get used to that and will drop their guard?
RODRIGUEZ: I don't think people are getting used that. I think the people haven't seen that.
For example, the people in New York, they know what this is about. The people in urban areas, we know what this is about. But perhaps in some of the rural areas, you know, they're taking their lead from the leader. Which is, Hey, this is not a big deal. So I see the same -- you know, the same videos that you're talking about, and they are super disturbing to me.
You see masses of people crammed into stores and restaurants. And I hope I'm wrong. But it really is going to be only a matter of time before those people come infected.
Is it complacency? Is it politics? I don't know. But what I do know is that it is dangerous.
HOLMES: Yes. Yes, some incredible images out today --
HOLMES: -- in the stores and restaurants. I wanted to ask you on an unrelated sort of economic issue, there's sort of growing fears that, you know, without federal money, the economic losses of this -- because of the pandemic will lead to states being forced to cut services. Emergency services, medical funding. It could be anything. Teachers, as well.
How frightening is the cutting, particularly on the medical side, how frightening is that prospect in the middle of a pandemic?
RODRIGUEZ: Well, it's very frightening. Things are hard enough, bad enough as they are right now with not enough protective equipment for the health care professionals. Not enough ventilators. Luckily, because of social distancing, we have slowed that tide. But
if things just go crazy, seriously, the worst-case scenario is that people just die in droves. Physicians and nurses, who are already dying, decide not to go to work. You can't avail people of the most common services, including electricity and gas.
I mean, I don't even want to think about it. We're really talking about, I mean, such destructive things that could occur in our society. Unimaginable.
HOLMES: Yes. I hope they -- Everybody hopes they get the money to keep those services going.
Dr. Jorge Rodriguez, always a pleasure. Thank you, sir.
RODRIGUEZ: Thank you, sir.
HOLMES: Well, in China, Shanghai Disneyland back open after being closed for more than three months because of the pandemic. It's the first of Disney's theme parks to reopen in limited capacity.
Tickets were listed online Friday, sold out in minutes. Visitors have been told they have to wear face masks and follow other strict guidelines before they get in.
David Culver joins me now from Shanghai Disneyland. Yes, iconic image there behind you. Obviously, this is a big relief to Disney. Tell us how it's going to work.
DAVID CULVER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It is a big relief, Michael. And, you know, generally, you consider this to be the happiest place on earth.
I think the way leadership has characterized it here, as they're now in the midst of the reopening, is it's the most cautious place on earth. Because while they are back open, it is a significantly limited capacity. In fact, they posted it at 30 percent, but they're saying it's far below that in the admission that they allow people to come in, the number of guests.
And one of the things they did that was different is they put this online reservation system in place. And they allowed people to reserve a block of time that they could come in, and hence, not all congregate together at the main gate. Because there's a lot of big Disney fans who wanted to be among the first in. Instead, they're doing the social distancing.
And it continues throughout the park. In fact, CNN got rare access over the weekend to get a feel for some of the preparations that were underway.
And it is a bit different. We're not wearing our masks right now, because we're in an elevated position. But you step down on the street, you're required to wear your mask. Even though, in Shanghai, they have eased the restrictions, saying in public places, in open air, you don't need to. Disney is holding onto the mask rule. [00:40:17]
They're also requiring, as you get into line for certain attractions, that you look down, because there are markings and decals on the ground now to say where you can and cannot stay and stand. If you forget about that, they'll come and they'll tell you. They have about 12,000 cast members who are monitoring this social distancing and, as they say, kind of coaching people along. Because they understand it's very different from what folks are normally used to.
We spoke with the senior vice president of operations here at the park. That's Andrew Bolstein. He gave us an idea of some of the other changes.
CULVER: I'm noticing that parade go by, obviously a distance.
ANDREW BOLSTEIN, SVP, OPERATIONS, SHANGHAI DISNEYLAND: Yes.
CULVER: But you can still see the characters.
CULVER: Not the big hug and high fives, right?
BOLSTEIN: Exactly. More a -- more of a selfie moment take the photos. But again, it gives the guests that ability to have that emotional moment and that connection.
Every other table or so has a table card on it, which asks for the guests understanding that, for your health and safety, the table is unavailable. So basically, we're asking the guests not to sit here, sit there. And again, it creates kind of that separation between all the different parties.
CULVER: Michael, Disney is supposed to be a joyous place. And yet, they're trying to balance here what is a celebratory mood and, at the same time, we're expecting where the rest of the world is, and that is very much in the midst of this fight to control the epidemic, the pandemic, the outbreak that is really causing a lot of pain worldwide.
HOLMES: Yes, and a test case, I suppose, for the other Disney parks and China, as well.
David, thanks so much. I'm still getting my head around 12,000 cast members there. Appreciate it. David Culver.
Well, the fatal shooting of a black jogger has sparked outrage in the United States. Well, now state officials are demanding a federal investigation to review how the case was handled. We'll be right back.
HOLMES: Welcome back. In the U.S. state of Georgia, growing outrage over the death of Ahmaud Arbery, the unarmed black man who was shot while out jogging. The mayor of Atlanta now condemning his killing as a lynching.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAYOR KEISHA LANCE BOTTOMS, ATLANTA: This was a lynching of an African-American man. And I think that, you know, my heart goes out to his family, but I think, again, it's a part of this bigger issue that we are having in this country.
With the rhetoric that we hear coming out of the White House in so many ways, I think that many who are prone to being racist, are given permission to do it in an overt way that we otherwise would not see in 2020.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: Well, Georgia's attorney general, the top prosecutor in the state, is now requesting a federal investigation into the handling of Arbery's case.
CNN's Martin Savidge has our report. A warning: his story contains graphic video.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The Georgia attorney general has now asked for the U.S. Department of Justice to formally step in and do a thorough review of the entire case when it comes to the investigation of the death of Ahmaud Arbery.
The reason for that is obvious. It's the fact that it took over two months for local law enforcement to look into this case, and hardly anything happened. And then you have state law enforcement officials coming in. In less than two days, they have made two arrests.
The question that has come up in many people's minds, is one of those under arrest is Gregory McMichael, who for a long time, worked as an investigator in the local district attorney's office.
So the question being asked by many is did local law enforcement give him some sort of favored treatment and to his son, delaying any kind of arrest, because of the work that he used to do in the D.A.'s office? Clearly, that's just one element that's going to be investigated.
Now new video that's come to light. It's not new to investigators. It's new to the public.
What it essentially shows is Ahmaud Arbery on the day died, in the community where he was killed, walking into a home that was under construction. It was captured by security cameras. We know it's Ahmaud Arbery, because his family has also seen this video. And they have positively I.D.ed him in the video.
It's a short clip. He walks around for a little bit. Then he leaves and goes off at a run. He doesn't take anything.
And many of us have walked into a home that's been under construction and sort of, out of curiosity, looked around. The most significant that would be is trespassing. That's a misdemeanor. It is not any kind of serious offense that would warrant George's hot pursuit or citizen's arrest kind of a law being put into effect.
And then lastly, I will point out that there were threats that have been made online. The GBI was investigating, alleging that if there were any future demonstrations in support of Ahmaud Arbery, something bad would happen.
Well, in less than 24 hours, the GBI, with the help of the FBI determined who had made those threats. They were using someone else's online identity to do it. They have now been taken into custody. And it just shows you how even now, emotions continue to run very high.
Martin Savidge, CNN, Glen County, Georgia.
HOLMES: Stay with us. We'll have more news after the break.
HOLMES: Welcome back. Major sports around the world have started a return to society. Baseball leagues in Taiwan and South Korea, well, they've returned, and the top German Bundesliga is gearing up for a return to the pitch in the coming week. The English Premier League in England is meeting Monday to set a return date.
Don Riddell takes a closer look for us.
DON RIDDELL, ANCHOR, CNN SPORT (voice-over): Just a few months ago, this would have seemed ridiculous. Life-sized cut-out football fans attending a top Bundesliga game in Germany. But now, it's really happening. This is the only way that thousands of football supporters can be present for their team, Borussia Monchengladbach.
This weekend, Germany's top league returns after two months on the sidelines, an enforced hiatus because of the deadly coronavirus pandemic.
Some of the leagues in Europe, such as France and the Netherlands, have already been canceled. Ajax Amsterdam were top of the table but now have nothing to show for it. Their CEO and legendary former goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar says he's curious to see how it's going to work across the border in Germany. EDWIN VAN DER SAR, AJAX CEO: I just read also that a couple of days
ago some players, they contracted the coronavirus. And of course, I'm not sure how Germany intends to do it. And both of the big leagues rely a lot of TV revenue, and that's -- that's probably one of the big reasons that those leagues are going ahead.
RIDDELL: England's Premier League is the most lucrative football league in the world. They haven't yet given up on the 2019-20 season. But the so-called Project Restart is still being furiously debated. All 20 clubs are meeting again on Monday to discuss when the season might resume.
Football hasn't disappeared completely during the outbreak. They carried on playing in Belarus and a handful of other countries around the world.
But the most significant development recently can be found in South Korea, where baseball and football have returned this month.
These are encouraging signs for sports fans in the United States when it comes to the likes of basketball, baseball and soccer returning.
(on camera): The timing of the outbreak has so far not interfered with the NFL. A new schedule has just been published. Their top stars can't wait.
RUSSELL WILSON, SEATTLE SEAHAWKS QUARTERBACK: When sports comes back, I know everybody's going to be screaming. They're going to be -- they're going to be ready to roll.
I think it's going to be crazier than ever before. The ratings are going to be higher than ever. And so hopefully, we can bring a little hope to people soon. And hopefully, we can bring a little bit of inspiration, too.
RIDDELL: But these times remain very uncertain. UFC has been one of the most bullish sports throughout the crisis, but they were just reminded that they cannot control the virus.
Just hours before UFC 2:49 in Florida, middle-weight fighter Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza was forced to withdraw from Saturday night's event, because he and two cornermen had tested positive for COVID-19.
UFC President Dana White accepts that there is always going to be an element of risk.
DANA WHITE, UFC PRESIDENT: There are no guarantees in life. There are no guarantees. There's no 100 percent guarantee I'm going to be safe driving home after this interview. There's no guarantees that I'm -- you know, anything can happen. It's part of life. And -- but we're going to take away as much risk as we possibly can to put on this event.
RIDDELL: So that makes the Bundesliga's return this weekend all the more interesting. The league, teams and players say they're taking every possible precaution, but how safe an environment can it really be? There wouldn't be any fans in the stadiums but the rest of the sports world will be paying very close attention.
Don Riddell, CNN.
HOLMES: Thanks for watching CNN NEWSROOM, everyone. I'm Michael Holmes. Don't go away, though. I'll be back with more news in just a moment.
HOLMES: Hello and welcome to our viewers here in the United States and all around the world. I'm Michael Holmes.
Coming up here on CNN NEWSROOM, a majority of U.S. states partially reopening. But an expert warns the numbers of cases and deaths will go up.
Plus, it's not all clear for China.