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The Global Brief with Bianca Nobilo

Saudi Arabia: Biden raised Khashoggi Murder With Crown Prince; 4 Injured In Mykolaiv Strikes As Rescue Operations Continue; Sri Lanka Ruling Party To Nominate Wickremesinghe For President; European Cities Set All- Time Temperature Records Amid Unrelenting Heat Wave. Aired 5-5:30p ET

Aired July 15, 2022 - 17:00   ET




ISA SOARES, CNN HOST: Hello and a very warm welcome to the show everyone. I'm Isa Soares in for Bianca Nobilo. This is the Global Brief. And tonight,

Joe Biden fist bumps the leader of a country he wants described as a pariah, then a war against one of the biggest bread baskets in the world.

We look at farmers are being impacted in Ukraine, and an extraordinary amount of deaths are being reported in Spain as well as Portugal due to

Europe's heatwave. We'll be live with CNN chief climate correspondent Bill Weir.

But first, we begin with Joe Biden's defense of a controversial meeting with a critically strategic partner. The U.S. president just spoke to

reporters in Saudi Arabia addressing the question on everyone's minds. He says he did bring up journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in his talks

with a crown prince right off the top. He says he was direct with Mohammed bin Salman. Have a listen.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: He basically said that he was not personally responsible for it. I indicated that I thought he was. He

said he was not personally responsible for it. And he took action against those who were responsible for.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: that, sir, two quick questions. If I may, first, we just heard from Jamal Khashoggi's wife who said, after this visit the blood of

MBS's next victim is on your hands. What do you say to Mrs. Khashoggi?

BIDEN: I'm sorry, she feels that way. I was straightforward back then. I was straightforward today.


SOARES: Well, Mr. Biden also met with King Salman on Friday. He says a number of deals were reached that advanced U.S. interests including

ensuring adequate oil supplies, but this will likely be the defining image from the Strip. That fist bump right there that greeted the alleged

mastermind of Khashoggi is gruesome murder.

Early on Friday, Mr. Biden was in the West Bank, if you remember reaffirming his support for an independent Palestinian state. But in his

talks with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, he didn't mention the fundamental issue that Palestinians say is one of the biggest obstacles

to peace and as Israeli settlements on Palestinian territory.

President Biden suggested the ground isn't ripe. But those were his words for resuming this peace talks. But Mr. Abbas warned the window of

opportunity for a two-state solution may be narrowing and ask for help.


MAHMOUD ABBAS, PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY PRESIDENT (through translator): Mr. President, we look forward to the efforts of your administration to turn

the page on the Israeli occupation of our land, and the acts of racial discrimination, apartheid against our people, and to stop unilateral

actions that undermine the two state solution.


SOARES: An empty seat as you can see their face the podiums displaying a photo of slain Palestinian American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, Mr. Biden

promised the U.S. would keep pushing for a full as well as transparent investigation.

A CNN analysis is found she was killed in a targeted attack by Israeli forces while covering a West Bank raid. Our international diplomatic editor

Nic Robertson is live for us in Jeddah this hour.

Nic, look, what we've just heard is President Biden outlining what he said was accomplished with this meeting. But the main questions we had what an

hour or so ago, from that press conference were about the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, what did you make of what was said and what he said was

accomplished, Nic?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: He said that he had spoken very clearly about Jamal Khashoggi that he did not approve of the

fact that Jamal Khashoggi's murder and those he thought was, were responsible Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. President Biden said that he

wasn't responsible. We know that the intelligence agencies in the United States clearly believed that Mohammed bin Salman authored the operation

that resulted in the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, The Saudis say that they've trade those people who are responsible and they've been convicted

and punished.

But Biden, you know, made it very clear in that press conference that was on the top of his agenda there. That's what he said first. Now, the things

that he went on to talk about they spoke about the opening of the airspace, he spoke about the Tarim (ph) Islands, which really sort of signal a shift

in the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Israel. It's something Saudi Arabia gets from the relationship with Israel, the overflight of Israeli

and other flights in Saudi airspace that something Israel gets out of this sort of warming Saudi-Israel relationship.


President Biden spoke about the 5g, the 6g, you know, cell phone network, cell phone systems that he's working with Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia is

going to invest in us technology. They're significant because the United States believes that Chinese made technology can be infiltrated and

repurposed by the Chinese government. He said that these systems would be better than the Chinese systems and that they would go to developing

nations as well.

And that's sort of super significant, I think, in this -- in the tech sector, if you will, quite simply because, you know, when the United States

is looking at a world that is splitting over those support China and those that support the United States, if you want to have a security relationship

with the United States, so this was something former President Trump's administration made clear to European partners, you need not to have

Chinese 5g and later 6g technology.

So Saudi, taking a step down this path, it appears. We don't know what they'll do with their tech, cell phone tech that they have from China right

now. And then the other issue of sort of forward-looking work on green energy, renewable energies, you know, working together on a greener energy,

future, hydrogen, carbon sequestering all these sorts of things.

SOARES: Yes. Nic Robertson, breaking it all down for us there from Jeddah. Thanks very much, Nic, appreciate it.

I want to go to really Ukraine because Russian missiles rained down again overnight on the southern Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv, injuring at least

four people. A local official says at least 10 explosions hit overnight damaging two universities and other facilities and we've just learned

rocket attacks today in Dnipro have left at least three people dead.

Well, Ukraine's president is demanding the world declare Russia a terrorist state and that comes after multiple strikes in Vinnytsia, Thursday, killed

almost two dozen people, mostly civilians. Russian claims it targeted a meeting of Ukrainian Air Force commanders.

Meantime, the United Kingdom summoned Russia's ambassador after they reported the death of a British man held by separatist in Donetsk. The

rebels say Paul Urey was facing mercenary charges but died from chronic illnesses. Britain says he was an aid worker.

Well, Russia isn't just mounting its war of course in Ukrainian cities and towns and against soldiers, civilians also attacking the countryside. The

vast wheat fields that make Ukraine really have the world's great breadbasket. CNN's Ivan Watson visited a farm in southern Ukraine even

shells fell to show us the challenges that Ukrainian farmers are facing trying to get their wheat out to the world.


IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A war against one of the biggest bread baskets in the world. Ukraine's fertile

farmland now a battleground. Military drone footage exclusively obtained by CNN shows Russian artillery pounding wheat fields, burning the summer

harvest charcoal black. Farmers race to protect their crops until Russia's invasion Ukraine was the world's fifth largest exporter of wheat.

WATSON (on camera): Right, this looks like some kind of munition over here.

WATSON (voice-over): Now Ukrainian farmers are harvesting a deadly crop.

WATSON (on camera): Mikhail says these are pieces of Russian rockets that they gathered out of the fields.

WATSON (voice-over): Mikhail Lyubchenko takes me on a tour of his farm.

WATSON (on camera): He'll show us -- that's another shell striker.

WATSON (voice-over): Acres of wheat waiting to be harvested within earshot of pounding Russian artillery.

WATSON (on camera): This is absolutely surreal. We're amid the wreckage of previous battles, armored personnel carriers, military vehicles. And then

you've got farmers out here that are harvesting wheat right now. The vehicles that have been destroyed here, this could have happened back in

March, February much earlier. But we're also seeing these impact craters from shell strikes that we're told, probably took place within the last

couple of weeks.

WATSON (voice-over): Despite the threats these brave farmers still bring in their harvest will need to face another obstacle.

WATSON (on camera): This is 3,000 tons of wheat from last year's harvest.

He can't sell this wheat because the Russian military has blockaded Ukraine's ports. So there's no way for this to be sold except at an

enormous loss.


(voice-over): Ukrainian ports were ships once carried millions of tons of grain a month to global markets, now blockaded by the Russian Navy. The

logjam, driving up global food prices, triggering warnings of famine in some of the world's poorest countries.

Last month the Ukrainian military forced Russian troops to abandon Ukraine's Snake Island in the Black Sea. The Snake Island victory freed up

channels to the Danube River. Ukraine reactivated Soviet era ports on this waterway as an alternative route for the export of grain. But experts warn

the river can only handle a fraction of Ukraine's pre-war cargo.

This week Ukrainian Russian and UN delegations meeting in Istanbul say they reached a deal in principle to resume shipments of grain by sea. But

Ukrainian farmers continue to face deadly threats on land, making it too risky for many to plant crops for next year.

This frontline farmer vows not to give up. Our soldiers are fighting and dying to get rid of these occupiers, he says. We need to feed our country,

the soldiers and help the whole world with our food. That's why we'll keep working. He calls his farm the second front in this deadly war. Ivan

Watson, CNN in southern Ukraine.


SOARES: Sri Lanka's parliament is scheduled to convene in the coming hours and start the process of formally electing a new president, but that person

is set to be a familiar face. The ruling party is nominating the prime minister who's also the acting president to take up the job. Protesters are

furious saying this isn't the change they've been fighting for. Will Ripley is in Columbia for us.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For a nation in crisis, a badly needed victory dance. As news broke Sri Lanka's

most hated President finally resigned. Thousands defied a nationwide curfew, turning the capital Colombo into a carnival. Few hours of fun

following months of fury.

DISHAN SENEVIRATNE, SRI LANKAN PROTESTER: What they did to this country we were absolutely pissed off because they ruined this country. They robbed

this country. They robbed the innocent people. They robbed the dollars.

RIPLEY: Those so-called robbers he's referring to the Rajapaksa brothers.

RIPLEY (on camera): They managed to hold on to power for decades running Sri Lanka like a family business, running its economy into the ground.

MARIYAN MALKI, SRI LANKAN PROTESTER: The wall was between one family and one nation. So we have conquered finally.

RIPLEY (voice-over): Protesters battled tear gas and water cannons, storming the prime minister's office, occupying the presidential palace,

soaking up the luxurious lifestyle of an exiled leader living large as everyday folks faced hours long lines for food, fuel and medicine.

Sri Lanka's worst financial crisis in 70 years, blamed on bad policies and corruption, leaving an entire nation bankrupt. Muhammad Anita (ph) pushes

his son's wheelchair to dialysis five days a week, a nearly eight-mile round trip, six kilometers each way.

Skyrocketing inflation means public transit costs six times more than it did just months ago. Even though the President is gone, he says, we cannot

celebrate. We're in the same place. Same as before. Our sorrows still remain.

This single dad can barely afford a loaf of bread, as his exiled President Gotabaya Rajapaksa flew in luxury to Singapore, where he tendered his

resignation, appointing his Prime Minister, a family friend as acting president Ranil Wickremesinghe is the ruling party's nominee to serve out

the next two years. He's the same guy whose house was set on fire last week by protesters demanding his resignation.

For now, Sri Lanka's highest court has temporarily blocked some senior officials from fleeing the country, including the two remaining Rajapaksa

brothers, the one who got away. The self-exiled former president could be seeking asylum from potential criminal charges.

MALKI: We are fighting as one nation until he's getting proper punishment for whatever he has done.

RIPLEY: If that doesn't happen, if Sri Lanka's problems don't turn around quickly, the streets could once again be filled with far more than



SOARES: And that was our senior international correspondent Will Ripley reporting now. Coming up on the show, Europe is battling one of the worst

heat waves in decades and it's only going to get hotter. We'll have a live report just ahead.



SOARES: Now scorching temperatures across Europe have prompted authorities to issue health warnings and officials say that the extreme heat will soon

translate into air pollution. Wildfires in France have forced more than 11,000 people to leave their homes. Thousands of hectares are still

burning. High temperatures and winds are expected to continue throughout the weekend.

And Italy's worst drought in 70 years has led the country's longest river to dry up. The poor river is essentially the nation's agricultural

production. Our scientists are clear about one thing extreme weather events can be attributed to human activity. Here's my report.


SOARES (voice-over): With each leaping flame, nature's full wrath on display. A warming planet facing the consequences. Fires raging throughout

southern Europe and into North Africa. Thousands of hectares scorched as firefighters throughout the region struggle against high winds to try and

contain the rapidly spreading danger. The extreme heat and drought fueling what scientists say is a sign of the effects of climate change.

MICHAEL E. MANN, DIRECTOR, EARTH SYSTEM SCIENCE CENTER AT PENN STATE: One of the things that we're seeing increasingly is not only that we get

extreme heat and drought or extreme floods, but they stay in the same location for day after day. So you are subject to that Deadly Heat for

multiple days.

SOARES: In France, President Emmanuel Macron visiting an emergency command center after thousands were evacuated from their homes to escape the blaze.

EMMANUEL MACRON, FRENCH PRESIDENT (through translator): We already have three times more forest burn than in 2020. And we have both a spring that

has been very dry and fires that have spread with force.

SOARES: Temperatures peaking above 45 degrees Celsius in parts of Spain and Portugal on Thursday and dire warnings for the week to come in the UK, the

Met Office issuing its first ever red heat warning for Monday and Tuesday.


Residents flocking to beaches and doing whatever they can to escape the stifling heat that threatens to turn deadly for at risk populations, like

the elderly, and the homeless.

And in Spain, farmers struggling to save their livelihoods. The drought wiping out grain and other crops adding to global food shortages amid

already rising inflation.

JOAN VIDAL, SPANISH FARMER (through translator): Pending on the areas and lands, some have resisted better than others, it will be a loss of 30 to 40

percent. And in some areas of the province of Laida, we are talking about 60 to 70 to 80 percent loss.

SOARES: As the mercury climbs, scientists again warning that without addressing the climate crisis, weather events like this will just grow more

common and more extreme.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We ask ourselves, how is this going to end, either we will see a water shortage or a desert.

UNIDETIFIED FEMALE: It's not so much for us, but for our children and grandchildren.

SOARES: The global population growing evermore aware of just how uncertain the planet's future may be.


SOARES: Let's get more on this story. Let's bring in CNN chief climate correspondent Bill Weir and Bill in the last 40 minutes or so, we have

received word there have been 84 deaths in Spain and 238 excess deaths in Portugal between July 7 and 13, all according to authorities because of

these extreme temperatures. Now this is extremely troubling.

BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: It is. It is especially when consider there's no trend where it goes in the other direction according to



WEIR: -- and NOAA and the United States. June of 2022 is the 450th month above average from the 20th century. So anyone under the age of 37 has not

seen a month of global temperatures that's cooler than average. And the sobering thing is to think that might be the coolest 450 months of the rest

of our lives as this goes up. And you're seeing this play out in so many bizarre ways that are stunning people who study this for a living, who make

these climate predictions for living.

In fact, the Met Office there in the UK a couple years ago in 2020 they said, well, let's just run the numbers. Let's use the models and see what

the forecast might be in June of 2050. Well, they're almost identical to Monday, and Tuesday's forecast, so that is coming true 28 years sooner than

originally thought.

And then it's everywhere. It's from Norway, where records are being sent, to Japan which just had a heatwave in the middle of the rainy season there,

severe flooding in China and what we saw in Pakistan, so there's really no area of the planet we're seeing untouched in some way. And so it begs the

question, when is not only the mitigation efforts going to start from global leadership from corporations in a real way, but also adaptation to

brace for what's already upon us.

SOARES: Yes, it's a question that I know you have been asking for some time that the we have been asking one analyst told me, climate analysts told me

in the last few hours, Bill, that, you know, this could be the coldest summer we see which says everything, doesn't it?

Bill Weir, thank you very much. Appreciated, Bill.

Now, a new start for a community still coming to terms with his tragic loss. Today, Tops Supermarket in Buffalo reopened its doors two months

after a white supremacist gunman shot and killed 10 shoppers in a racist attack. So many incidents like this are a frightening reminder of the deep

racial divisions in American society.

Poet and playwright Claudia Rankine has dedicated her career to examining the damage that racism and white privilege can do to our communities. I sat

down with her at the Soho Theatre in London, listen to this.


CLAUDIA RASKINE, POET AND PLAYWRIGHT: The rise of white supremacy groups in the United States documented gone up. There's a real commitment in the

government for the promotion of white people. I mean, that's blunt, but that's sort of how it falls out. There's an attempt to rewrite history to

erase from the history books, words like slavery, replace them with involuntary migration. What is that, to take away women's rights. So

there's, in that sense, we are moving back to the commitments of this country up until the mid 20th century.

SOARES: The divisions are also very acute.

RASKINE: They're very acute, yes.

SOARES: And that, I mean --

RASKINE: And violent.

SOARES: And violent. As we're talking, I'm thinking of the January 6 hearings that we've seen just this week, where the panel is trying to prove

a link really between then-President Donald Trump and those far-right groups, Proud Boys and so forth. I mean, that is worrying no doubt if

you're American.


RASKINE: I think it's beyond worrying. I think people are terrified. We're terrified of the next election. We're terrified as people of color for our

lives. We have seen white supremacist go down Buffalo, different places gunned down whole congregations of people. It's -- There's a fight for

democracy in the United States right now.

And those who hold the most power are the ones least committed to the democratic principles that we have been grown up in, you know, in terms of

our own ideas. So even if the system failed individual groups like it has black people in this state, it still you have a sense that perhaps the

commitments overall commitment of this government will are towards goodness, and that's no longer the case.


SOARES: Claudia Rankine there. You can watch our full interview on my social media at Isa Soares CNN.

Now, a mother elephant and her baby are recovering after scary incident in central Thailand. It started when the baby fell into a drainage hole and

the mother elephant who was guarding the baby had to be tranquilized. The mother then fell into the hole. Rescuers then were able to use a crane to

lift the tranquilize mother out of the hole.

The baby elephant had a hard time in the drainage ditch and to the rescue is used a hoe to really dig out an exit ramp. The mother remained

unconscious so rescues jumped on her to perform CPR as you can see there. But finally with a nudge from her baby, the mother elephant woke up. The

two were able to head back into the jungle.

And that does it for me for this hour. Thank you very much for watching. Thank you for your company that was the Global Brief. World Sport is up

next. Have a wonderful weekend. Bye-bye.