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The Global Brief with Bianca Nobilo

Russia Strikes; U.K. Refugee Scheme, Israeli Abortion Reforms. Aired 5-5:30p ET

Aired June 27, 2022 - 17:00   ET



BIANCA NOBILO, CNN HOST: Hello and welcome. I'm Bianca Nobilo in London. And this is THE GLOBAL BRIEF.

Russian missile strike a shopping center with more than 1,000 people inside. As a U.S. defense official warns, the number of strikes is

increasing once again.

Then, the U.K.'s refugee scheme for Ukrainians has come under fierce criticism. Why some refugees are now struggling with homelessness.

And, Israel announced its progressive reforms to abortion services just days after the U.S. Supreme Court removed abortion as a constitutional


Ukraine says that Russian forces had shelled a shopping mall in the city of Kremenchuk, killing at least 11 civilians. Volodymyr Zelenskyy says that

1,000 people were inside at the time. He called the strike one of the most daring terrorist acts in European history. The French president and the

British prime minister have also condemned the attack, promising that Russia will be held accountable.

In the eastern city of Lysychansk, the regional military chief says at least eight civilians were killed and 42 injured when a Russian rocket hit.

He says that the victims were collecting water from a tanker, and he says that Russian forces are storming the city. Ukrainian troops are outgunned.

The leaders of the G-7, the world's wealthiest democracies, are promising to stand by Ukraine, as long as it takes. Leaders from the U.S., Canada,

France, Italy, Germany, Japan, and the U.K. have met for the second time in the Bavarian Alps.

After speaking virtually to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, they have pledged to continue providing financial, humanitarian, military and

diplomatic support to Ukraine. They also promised to further isolate Russia financially, despite Russian troops gaining ground in eastern Ukraine.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told CNN's Christiane Amanpour that she doesn't believe the Russians will win this war.


URSULA VON DER LEYEN, EUROPEAN COMMISSION PRESIDENT: I would not at all bet on Russia, on the contrary. I think there is one very important point:

Ukrainians know what they are fighting for. They are motivated. And the Russian troops have no clue what they are fighting for because they do not

see any sense in this war. And therefore, there's a big difference between both forces.


NOBILO: CNN's Phil Black is in Kramatorsk, Ukraine. But let's start with correspondent MJ Lee, who is in Austria.

MJ, what meaningful commitments were made at the G7? Ursula von der Leyen and others may say that they believe Ukraine will win this war, but Russia

is making gains in the east. Do you think there's evidence that the West is going to step up support sufficient to help Ukraine win?

MJ LEE, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, of course. And overarching goal of this G7 summit before these leaders to get together and

essentially figure out a way to bring this war to an end and different ways of continuing to help Ukraine and also punish Russia. So, let me just walk

you through a couple of the key headlines from the G7 summit and some of the commitments that these leaders made over these last few days.

One was an announcement on a ban on imports of Russian gold. This is supposed to be a big way in impacting the Russian economy, given that it is

their number two export item. Any other announcement was an agreement to try to cap the price of Russian oil.

Now, these leaders have been saying that that is one way in which the Russians are funding this war. So, one way in which they are trying to sort

of economically squeeze Russia and continuing the efforts to economically hurt Russia and make Vladimir Putin essentially pay a price for his

continued aggression against Ukraine.

Now, we know that when Vladimir Zelenskyy, the Ukrainian president, met virtually with a G-7 leaders, he, of course, had a request of his own.

Importantly, he said that it was important that he get more air defense systems for Ukraine, particularly, the kind that can shoot down Russian

missiles in the sky.

Now, we know and have been reporting for a while that the U.S. is expected to announce in a matter of days having purchased an advanced medium to long

range surface to air missile defense system for Ukraine. So, that is just one more sign that both economically and militarily, the U.S. and its

allies are willing to show Ukraine that they are there to help Ukraine as it continues to grind out in this war.


NOBILO: MJ Lee in Austria, thank you.

And now to Phil Black in Kramatorsk.

Phil, what is the latest that you are hearing about the strike on a shopping mall in Kremenchuk? And are these strikes that we are seeing in

Kyiv and in Kremenchuk a sign that Russia feels emboldened by more gains in the East where you are?

PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is further proof, Bianca, I think that even while Russia is focused militarily on the Donbas region, here in the

east, it still has the will and the capability to hit other targets anywhere across the country, almost any time likes. Dozens of strikes over

the weekend prove that and now this, the shopping center attack.

The latest information suggests that at least 13 people have been killed in that strike. But that number has been growing throughout the day and local

officials say it is too soon to say that that will be the final number. That's in addition to dozens of people who have also been injured.

The video from the side shows that while it was a pretty terrifying scene in the immediate moments afterwards, one man filmed his efforts to escape

the building through really an impenetrable layer of dust and smoke. Visibility was almost zero. You heard panicked screams.

He did manage to get out. In other videos shot by people who saw or lived through this, it shows the fire spread very quickly through the complex. It

is President Zelenskyy who says there were around 1,000 people in the complex at the time. He says this was not a military target. This is just a

place where families go shopping.

And for that reason, he is describing this as a terrorist attack. As you touched on there in your discussions, it does backup an argument that

Zelenskyy was making to his allies including the United States, just hours before this attack took place. And that is, he believes Ukraine needs and

advanced sophisticated anti-missile system. And, yes, there is an expectation of the U.S. is going to make an announcement about providing

that very soon.

But it will be scrutinized very closely, even while it will be welcome here, because questions will be asked about the capability. About how much

of the coverage and how much of the country can be covered and protected from Russian missile strikes, given Russia's willingness and ability to

show that it can use its air power to strike targets, including civilian targets, pretty much at will anywhere in the country, Bianca.

NOBILO: Phil Black in Kramatorsk, Ukraine, thank you.

NATO secretary general says that the threat from Russia is forcing a fundamental shift in the alliances' defenses. Jen Stoltenberg gave a

preview of the NATO summit that will get underway Tuesday in Madrid, calling it transformative.

The meeting will outline more security assistance for Ukraine. As well as the biggest overhaul of NATO's own deterrence and defenses since the Cold



JENS STOLTENBERG, NATO SECRETARY GENERAL: At the summit, we will strengthen our forward defenses. We will enhance our battle groups and the

eastern part of the alliance up to brigade levels. We will transform the NATO (AUDIO GAP) force and increase the number of our high readiness forces

to well over 300,000.


NOBILO: While the U.K. is throwing its support for Ukraine, back at home, its refugee plan is falling short. The U.K. government introduced games to

provide safe homes for those fleeing the conflict, but new data from the government shows that more than 600 of them have asked for homelessness


CNN's Clare Sebastian explains one refugee's difficult ordeal.


CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A new phrase somehow fitting for Natalia Lymar. At the age of 49, she is starting again from

scratch, including a whole new language. Just four months ago, she was running her no own hairdressing business and putting her finishing touches

on her dream house in what was then the affluent Kyiv suburb of Bucha.

She watched from her second floor window as the bombs started falling. A few days later, she says the Russian soldiers came.

NATALIA LYMAR, UKRAINIAN REFUGEE (through translator): I lay on the floor, on the tiled floor, and I was immediately freezing and I heard them

discussing, here's a basement, there's probably an entrance. And I heard the glass break. I start crying and saying, guys don't kill me.

SEBASTIAN: On March 10th, she managed to leave with a neighbor, driving through apocalyptic scenes. She made it to Germany and finally in early

May, to London, under the British government's homes for Ukraine's plan.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The scheme would allow Ukrainians with no family ties - -

SEBASTIAN: The government pays a monthly allowance to hosts, but matching them with refugees is meant to charities, individuals, or even social

media. In Natalia's case, a friend living in London found an older couple willing to host her, an arrangement, she says, lasted just two weeks,

ending a recent minor disagreements.


LYMAR: It was one trivial thing and I didn't even know what they weren't happy with. Then another. And even if they said something, it was done with

such a smile that I thought everything us okay.

It upset me so much that I felt that I was going through more stress right now when I understood I had to pack my bags than I did in my basement in


SEBASTIAN: We couldn't raise Natalia's sponsors to comment for this story. But a friend who knows them, confirmed she was asked to leave.

Her situation is far from isolated. New data from the U.K. government chose 660 Ukrainian households sought homelessness assistance during the first

three months of the war. That's both from the homes of Ukraine scheme, and another scheme that allows Ukrainians to stay with family members in any

day. And the reality is that it is probably worse than that. Almost a quarter of counsels haven't provided any data at all, including here, where

Natalia first lived.

The government denied several interview requests. It says more than 77,000 people have arrived from Ukraine since the war started, and the

overwhelming majority are settling in well. When relationships do breakdown, a government spokesperson told us, the local councils have a

duty to ensure families are not left without a roof over their head.

DENISE SCOTT-MCDONALD, ROYAL GREENWICH BOROUGH COUNCILOR: The whole scheme in my opinion has been very much shambolic from the very beginning.

SEBASTIAN: Greenwich council in southeast London is dealing with 19 such cases.

SCOTT-MCDONALD: We will not turn anyone away. We're not that type of borough. But we do need support in all of this. We have experience cuts

since 2010, over 100 million in cuts to our borough.

SEBASTIAN: They are worried this is just the beginning. Hosts were asked to commit for a minimum of six months. So, September could see a sudden

surge in homelessness cases.

SARAH NATHAN, CO-FOUNDER, REFUGEES AT HOME: On any exercise of the scale, there were going to be failures. There were going to be placements that

don't work and there isn't a coherent re-matching scheme, which we would like to see.

SEBASTIAN: The government says councils to have access to a very matching system. The reality, though, is some refugees are ending up in temporary

accommodation. Like Natalia Lymar, outside the system.

She is now staying with a new host found through a local WhatsApp group and is trying to build a future. A victim not just of war, but of the cracks

appearing in the very systems designed to help those who escaped.

Clare Sebastian, CNN, London.


NOBILO: And this just into CNN. Emergency workers are on the scene of an Amtrak train derailment in the U.S. state of Missouri. Authorities tell CNN

that there are multiple fatalities and at least 50 injuries. Amtrak says that the train was carrying more than 250 people, when it derailed off a

striking a truck that was obstructing a public crossing.

And now, the U.S. Supreme Court is starting the week with more controversial rulings. It's conservative majority is showing its

willingness to rapidly reshape the American social and political landscape, a road the separation of church and state, and tossed out decades of

judicial precedents.

On Monday, we saw more fallout from its explosive decision to overrule Roe versus Wade. U.S. women are marching, refusing to give up their abortion

rights without a fight. A new U.S. CBS News/YouGov poll indicates that a majority of Americans disapprove of the decision.

But conservatives are cheering. Several states have already moved to effectively ban all abortions. Some without exceptions of incest or rape.

But cutting of access to abortion does not stop the demand, we know this. One telehealth company says that demands for medication abortions has more

than doubled since the Supreme Court decision.

Israel's lawmakers are watching the U.S. in are choosing the opposite route. The country has just reformed its regulations, simplifying the

protractive process that women have to go through to get an abortion.

Our Hadas Gold explains.


HADAS GOLD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Israel is making it easier for women to access abortion. For decades, women have been able to get abortions in

Israel, but they had to fill out an application and go in person before an abortion committee at various hospitals. This committee would be made up of

two doctors and a social worker and all abortions, no matter what stage, had to be performed at a hospital or at an equivalent facility.

Now, under these new regulations, women will be able to apply for an abortion online, the health minister also said that invasive questions will

be removed. And there will be no need to appear in person before an abortion committee, although, that committee will still need to approve the

abortion. In addition, women will be able to seek from archaeological abortions just from their regular doctor.

Here is how Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz describes these new regulations.

NITZAN HOROWITZ (through translator): The U.S. Supreme Court's move to deny women a right to her body is a dark move. Oppressing women and

returning the legal (INAUDIBLE) liberal law a hundred year backwards.


Even here, the situation is not ideal, but we are in a different place. And today, we are taking big steps in the right direction.

GOLD: Now, spokespeople for the minister of health did say that these reforms have been in the works for several weeks, if not months. They said

that these regulations had not been changed in decades and it was high time for them to be reformed. But it is hard to not see the connection between

Supreme Court ruling and this announcement made today, many ministers, many members of the Israeli parliament were specifically connecting what

happened in the United States with these reforms that will make it easier for women in Israel choosing access to abortions.

The new regulations will come to full effect in three months.

Hadas Gold, CNN, Jerusalem.


NOBILO: Around the world, some companies are offering greater reproductive rights to women, while others are cracking down. Visit to see how

the U.S. measures up to other countries all across the world.

And still to come on tonight's program, officials in Jordan are warning everyone in a key port city to stay inside after an accident unleashed a

deadly toxic gas cloud.

And we will look at how a comment by a senior Chinese official is causing severe backlash online.


NOBILO: Let's take a look at the other case stories making an international impact today.

Authorities in Aqaba, Jordan, are urging people to close their windows and stay indoors after a deadly gas leak. As you can see in this video, a

shipping container dropped while being transported, releasing a cloud of yellow gas. At least ten people have been killed and more than 250 others


In South Africa, investigators are hoping toxicology tests will help them figure out what caused 22 teens to die during a weekend party at a tavern.

The victims showed no visible signs of injury. And they were found sprawled over tables and chairs. Four of the injured youths are still in hospital.

Officials hope that they will provide some answers.

In Columbia, a tragedy at a bullfight. Officials are investigating what caused a section of the arena to collapse during the event on Sunday. At

least four people were killed and more than 300 others have been treated at hospitals.

Turkish police have released everyone detained in Sunday's LGBTQ pride parade in Istanbul. Parade organizers say almost 400 people were arrested.

Turkey has banned the pride parade since 2014 of that attracted tens of thousands of participants.

China's zero COVID policy may stay in place for the next five years. That is according to a senior official in China's communist party. Comments

brought huge backlash online. And Chinese censors are now scrambling to scrub the Internet.

Last month, China doubled-down on its severe COVID-19 restrictions.

CNN's Selina Wang looks at how politics is trumping science when it comes to country's COVID policy.


SELINA WANG, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's a North Korean public health video censored in China. As Pyongyang battles an explosion in COVID

cases, this state video explains that most Omicron patients will have mild symptoms. Only serious ones need to go to the hospital. That's common


But here in China, the government continues to shut down entire cities over one COVID case. All positive cases and close contacts are sent to

government quarantine. Authorities quickly scrubbed the North Korean video and news of the country lifting its COVID lockdown from China's Internet.

But that's not stopping many in China from praising the hermit kingdom for being more scientific than China. One post said: Suddenly I realized, we

are the most pathetic.

The Chinese city bordering North Korea has been under lockdown for more than a month. Videos online show Chinese CDC workers placing what appeared

to be rows of air monitoring machines along the Yalu River that separates the two countries. Those machine are testing the air from North Korea for


State media even ordered residents to stay away from a river and close their windows on windy days. They fear the wind blowing in from North Korea

might spread the virus, despite no scientific evidence.

Local governments have not responded to CNN's question about the warnings or air monitoring machines.

Just days after Shanghai exited its brutal two month lockdown, many are being sealed back into their homes.

This Shanghai community is protesting the endless cycle.

We are being illegally imprisoned, the man in loudspeaker says.

Police arrest the man and push him into a police car.

As residents shout, why arrest people? Freedom, democracy, equality and the rule of law.

One resident even shows his middle finger to authorities, refusing to back down.

CNN reached out to multiple Shanghai police departments. They all declined to comment.

And for those of us not from here (ph), we are also constantly COVID tested. I need one at least every Sunday two hours to enter any public

venue. That's across all major cities in China. It can be a hassle, often waiting in long lines like these.

And it is not just people that are relentlessly COVID tested. Videos of stray cats, dogs, mail packages, seafood, sewage, and newborn infants being

COVID tested have gone viral. That is despite international health officials saying the risk of transmission from animals and surfaces is

extremely low.

Yet COVID workers continue to disinfect everything in sight. Streets, the open air, even each other.

MICHAEL OSTERHOLM, CENTER FOR INFECTIOUS DISEASE RESEARCH & POLICY: This is more hygiene theater, and it's not based on science. The risk of

transmission from surfaces is at best theoretical, not even measurable. It is useless, meaningless, and distracting from the real source. Zero COVID

policy simply will not work.

WANG: The government claims zero COVID is the only way to save peoples lives, even though many of their policies run contrary to scientific

evidence. That's because China's supreme leader has tied his leadership to zero COVID. So, politics trump science and logic.

Selina Wang, CNN, Beijing.


WANG: The British prime minister says parliament may soon pass a bill, overturning part of the Brexit divorce deal that was agreed in 2020. The

first hurdle was passed tonight. There are fun indications that this might lead to a trade war between the U.K. and the E.U.

The bill was debated in parliament for the first time on Monday and criticized by former Prime Minister Theresa May, who said it will damage

Britain's international reputation.


If it becomes law, it gets rid of certain trade rules for Northern Ireland. Those rules were made because of the land with the Republic of Ireland,

which is part of the E.U.

CNN's Nic Robertson spoke with the island's Taoiseach.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: The rationale of the British government is providing for changing the law and the way that it

saying it's not breaking the law, international law here is that there's a state of necessity. That there's political instability, social instability,

in Northern Ireland.

Are you seeing it?

MICHEAL MARTIN, IRISH TAOISEACH: The British government is contributing its own share of political instability in Northern Ireland, I regret to

say. But I think that the key point that needs to be really reflected on is the fact that the protocol has worked for a lot of Irish industry and

businesses. In northern Ireland, the businesses and industry. (AUDIO GAP) lift the British government, get into discussions with the European Union.

I am and no doubt that those issues can be resolved satisfactorily. But there needs to be a will to resolve this and to get involved in substantive


ROBERTSON: And you're not seeing the will?

MARTIN: No. And I'm not seeing the will and haven't seen it for quite some time.

ROBERTSON: You're talking with President Biden's administration about Brexit as it moves along. What commitments are you getting from them for

supporting Ireland?

MARTIN: The U.S. government has communicated consistently over the last two years to the United Kingdom government, but it wants a resolution on a

negotiated basis. And I think that makes sense, between like-minded democracies. That's how you resolve the issues of this kind. You don't

resolve it by unilaterally breaking an international agreement that we entered into not too long ago.

We're all democracies. We should all be aligned given the enormous geopolitical pressures of the moment and the war in Ukraine. The U.K.

government has done very well and walking with Eastern Europe countries and indeed the Ukraine itself. That has to be acknowledged.

There is an obligation that makes sense that we would work to resolve this issue.


NOBILO: Well, thank you so much for watching this evening. We'll be here again tomorrow and if you want to get in touch with me, I'm on all the

usual social media platforms. Have a nice evening.