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The Global Brief with Bianca Nobilo

Attacker Massacres At Least 36 at Thai Nursery; Ukrainian Nuclear Plant Fears; U.S. Ebola Screenings. Aired 5-5:30p ET

Aired October 06, 2022 - 17:00   ET



CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN HOST: Hello and welcome. I'm Christina Macfarlane in London. This is THE GLOBAL BRIEF.

A massacre at a nursery in Thailand leaves dozens dead.

The atomic energy agency chief rejects Russia's claim to Europe's largest nuclear plant.

And the U.S. will route all air travelers from Uganda through five airports for enhanced screening because of an Ebola outbreak.

Now, the king and queen of Thailand are set to arrive in the coming hours at a scene so horrific it is the stuff of nightmares. Police say a recently

fired officer stormed a nursery in northeast Thailand, shooting and stabbing to death at least 36 people. The victims include at least 24

children, most of whom were murdered as they slept.

People lined the road from the nursery this evening holding their hands in prayer, as a long line of ambulances carried away the victims.

Investigators say that attacker had a history of drug problems.

CNN's Selina Wang has more for us.


SELINA WANG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christina, this is believed to be the deadliest rampage in Thailand's history. A massacre at a daycare center

leaving dozens of people dead, mostly children and the pregnant woman. This is a country in grief and shock.

Authorities had originally described this massacre as a mass shooting. But authorities now say that many of the people died from knife stabbing


(voice-over): A day care center teacher describes the moment a former police officer storms the nursery, pulls a gun from his waist and aims it

at her face. More than 20 children killed during their lunchtime nap. A massacre inside a nursery in a small and peaceful town around 540

kilometers northeast of Bangkok.

I didn't expect he would also kill the kids, she says, describing how he repeatedly used a knife to kill the children and a pregnant teacher who she

says died inside the room. By a roadside, the body of a woman allegedly ran down by the shooter as he drove away in his car.

Officials identifying him as 34-year-old Panya Kamrap, a former police officer who had been fired and was in court earlier Thursday on a drug

charge just hours before the shooting. Police said he went to the childcare center looking for his 2-year-old stepson, discovering the boy was not

there, the man began shooting and stabbing people at the nursery. Later driving home to kill his wife and stepson before taking his own life.

Ambulances and medical workers rushed to the nursery. Family members of the victims were weeping outside the building.

Thailand's Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha in a statement I would like to express my deepest condolences to the families and injured. I've instructed

the national police chief to quickly enforce the law and all concerned parties to get help and rehabilitate those who are affected urgently. The

prime minister has ordered an urgent investigation into what is now the country's deadliest ever massacre carried out by a lone perpetrator. The

country left in shock and horror.


WANG (on camera): In terms of possible motives of the gunmen, authorities are not ruling anything out, including possible hallucination from drugs or

personal stress. Police say they are ordering a blood test. This is a profoundly shocking and devastating moment for Thailand. While the rates of

gun ownership in Thailand are relatively high compared to other countries in the region, mass shootings are rare -- Christina.

MACFARLANE: It really is utterly devastating. Our thanks to Selina for that.

Now, a senior Ukrainian military official says that in the past two weeks, Ukrainian forces have captured 127 settlements around Kharkiv. Ukraine's

leaders are celebrating the rapid progress and they're also preparing for a long, difficult battles ahead. Russian troops in Luhansk and Kherson

regions which Vladimir Putin claims to have annexed are now retreating and regrouping elsewhere. It is in the dead of night.

Early Thursday, they fired missile attack on the city of Zaporizhzhia, hitting residential buildings and people slept killing at least one person.

Our Fred Pleitgen gives us a deeper look at the state of war.



FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Dangerous battles for Ukrainian forces as they continue to press

counteroffensives against the Russian army. This video the authenticity of which CNN cannot independently verify purporting to show an infantry

fighting vehicle hit by an anti-tank mine. The soldiers scrambled and then returned fire.

But Ukrainian military officials say they're making major headway especially in the south of the country in the Kherson region.

We do not name the direction, the spokeswoman says, but more than 400 square kilometers of the Kherson region have already been liberated from

the occupiers.

While the Russian military has retreated from large areas in both southern and eastern Ukraine, the Kremlin still says it plans to achieve all of

Russian President Vladimir Putin's military aim.

Russia's defense ministry saying they've already mobilized around 200,000 men, many now undergoing basic training.

But videos released on social media seem to show major problems with the mobilization. This clip purports to show new recruits having to bed down on

yoga mats for lack of beds.

The narrator claiming some of the new recruits have been heavily drinking.

In rare open criticism, a Kremlin installed official in southern Ukrainian ripping into putin's defense minister.

Yes, indeed, he says. Many say that being the minister of defense will allow the situation to happen, he simply could as an officer shoot himself.

But, you know, the word officer is an unfamiliar word for many.

But while Russia's forces may be on the defensive, they can still wreak havoc, hitting the city of Zaporizhzhia with several missiles overnight

leveling residential buildings leaving one woman dead and several people injured.

At first, I didn't understand what was going on, this resident says. I covered myself with a blanket just in time. Glass splinters from the window

hit me. It was as if I was in the middle of a fog.

But Ukrainians say attacks like the ones in Zaporizhzhia won't stop their forces on the battlefield. Kyiv's troops racing to take back as much

territory as fast as they can.


MACFARLANE: And our Fred Pleitgen joins us now live from Kyiv.

Fred, you are talking just from the end of your piece there about the missile attacks in Zaporizhzhia, which we know they came on the same day

that the IAEA visited Kyiv to discuss the power plant. He is now going straight from there to Moscow to try to prevent a nuclear accident. What

chance does he have for brokering of any agreement for nuclear -- this nuclear safety zone which is of course what they want in the midst of this

ongoing power struggle?

PLEITGEN: Well, he certainly says that he is certainly trying. It does seem to be an uphill battle, Christina. There was a bit of a press event that he

had today with some reporters there where he said he was going to talk with Russian authorities to try to implement that essentially, demilitarized

zone for that power plan to try to make sure that there is no military there to prevent some of the things that have been happening over the past

couple of weeks and months there.

But the big issue that you obviously have is that the Russians had that power plant is essentially theirs. Vladimir Putin has signed a decree that

says it is now part of Russia's nuclear infrastructure. And I asked Rafael Rossi, how is he going to handle that when he meets Russian authorities? Is

he going to tell them straight up that that is something that simply can't happen the annexation of a power plant.

Here's what he had to say.


RAFAEL GROSSI, IAEA DIRECTOR GENERAL: We are an international organization. We are guided by international law. And as you know very well, you know

very well, annexations are not accepted under international law, the United Nations charter and other instruments. So, this is very clear. There are

particular consequences and I'm dealing with that as well.


PLEITGEN: There you have it. He says that he is trying to deal obviously with the realities that are going to be there on the ground. The Ukrainians

obviously say all the things that the Russians are doing there now, essentially saying that the power plant is dealing with absolutely nothing.

The Ukrainian nuclear energy agency, it is still very much in charge of that power plant, that the nuclear -- the head of that agency is also the

head of that power plant.

However, the reality is that right now Russia has a military right there. Russia is in control of that area, and that's certainly something where the

IAEA chief says that's the reality he needs to deal with. And for them, the main priority is preventing some sort of dangerous situation, possibly some

sort of nuclear accident from happening in that very large power plant, Christina.


MACFARLANE: Yeah. And, Fred, that power plant is so close to the front line. It'll be very interesting to see what reception he receives in


Fred for us live in Kyiv, thanks very much.

Well, the war in Ukraine and the energy crisis are urgent issues facing Europe and its neighbors right now. Both are top of the agenda at the new

summit spearheaded by French president, Emmanuel Macron. Thursday, 44 nations attended the first meeting of the European political community in

Prague. But Russian notably was absent, with many calling a united front against Putin.

Here's Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala speaking earlier.


PETR FIALA, CZECH PRIME MINISTER: Many of you have a similar experience in history of your countries. We understand it is tough to face evil, but we

also understand that truth thus been (ph). It can take time, but in the end, we all know in our hearts that Ukraine will win, because the truth is

on their side.


MACFARLANE: And fresh from her first party conference as prime minister and trying to out-run political turmoil back home, British leader Liz Truss met

with the French president. She called Macron a friend, but emphasized that post-Brexit, Britain wouldn't be moving closer to Europe. Truss said

solving the energy crunch is her top priority and she blamed Putin.


LIZ TRUSS, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Well, what we are doing as a government is first of all making sure that people are facing gargantuan energy bills

this winter. People are facing bills about the 6,000 pounds. We are now making sure that the typical household doesn't pay more than 2,500 pounds.

We are also reducing people's taxes, helping grow the economy.

But, of course, these are difficult times. That is why it is important that I'm here in Prague, making sure we're working with our international

partners to deal with these very real issues which ultimately are being caused by Putin's war in Ukraine.


MACFARLANE: Now, the U.S., South Korea and Japan are responding to North Korea's latest ballistic missile test with a show force of their own. The

U.S. Defense Department released these images of American warships taking part in trilateral exercises in the Sea of Japan.

As CNN's Paula Hancocks reports, the drills come after six rounds of North Korea missile tests in less than two weeks.


PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): As North Korea continues to break its own missile launch record, South Korea says

trilateral naval exercises are back in its waters. The U.S. South Korea and Japan are holding drills to track and intercept missiles, a response to the

North's launches.

ANDREI LANKOR, PROFESSOR, KOOKMIN UNIVERSITY: What is the impact of all this, you know, American aircraft carriers cruising around? It's pretty

much nothing. It will probably make some people in the United States and the republic a bit happier. But they will have zero impact on North Korea's

behavior and decision-making.

HANCOCKS: North Korea blamed their recent flurry on the U.S. Thursday, calling them just counteraction measures against last week's U.S.-South

Korean naval drills.

ANTONY BLINKEN, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: It will only increase condemnation, increase the isolation. It will increase the steps that are

taken and response to their actions.

HANCOCKS: But United Nations Security Council hearing this week suggested Pyongyang is not isolated. While the U.S. blamed Russia and China without

naming them for enabling North Korea, Russia and China blame the United States for increasing attention, a schism that benefits Pyongyang.

CARL SCHUSTER, FORMER U.S. NAVY CAPTAIN: Kim Jong-un is doing what he thinks he can get away with. He's not expecting any strong U.S. connection.

He is letting the South Korea government and the U.S. government know that he has significant capability.

HANCOCKS: North Korea is expected to continue capitalizing on geopolitical turmoil, a seventh underground nuclear tests expected at any time. If it

happens, most likely at the Chinese party congress chose not to anger its main benefactor.

Kim Jong-un also released a five year plan two years ago. He appears to be working his way through that list.

This leaves many experts to believe that this cycle of testing will continue, especially as Kim Jong-un knows that he is very unlikely to face

any more U.N. sanctions, while Russia and China are in no mood to side with the United States.

Paula Hancocks, CNN, Seoul.


MACFARLANE: Human Rights Watch says international pressure is needed to stop Iran's use of excessive and lethal force against protesters. In a new

report, it says Iran is crushing dissent with, quote, cruel disregard for life.


The anti-government protests are still ongoing. These pictures show high school students in northern Iran chanting, "death to the dictator" on

Thursday. The protests began several weeks ago when a young woman died in custody of the so-called morality police. The United States has announced

new sanctions on Iran, targeting seven officials for their role in the violent crackdown.

Still to come on THE GLOBAL BRIEF, the United States announces enhanced screenings for travelers from Uganda as the country's Ebola outbreak



MACFARLANE: Welcome back.

Uganda's Ebola outbreak is causing global concern, with the U.S. announcing enhanced screenings for inbound airline procedures traveling from the

country. Forty-four cases have been confirmed in Uganda, including ten health care workers.

CNN's Larry Madowo reports.


LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Even the dead are a risk. Every departure a potential new case, as Ebola continues to spread through


LT. COL. DR. KYOBE HENRY BBOSA, INCIDENT MANAGER, UGANDAN HEALTH MINISTRY: The epidemic appears to have started around the beginning of September when

people started dying in a small village of the sub (INAUDIBLE).

MADOWO: The outbreak was declared much later on September 20th, after a diagnosis in the central district of Mubende.

Two weeks later, it spread significantly. Yet experts fear that there may be dozens of under reported cases.

BBOSA: This is a rapidly evolving picture, very complex.

MADOWO: Uganda is no stranger to Ebola. The last outbreak in 2019 and only ended a year later, as the world was waking up to COVID-19. Experience with

the disease, partly why the government has been downplaying it.

YOWERI MUSEVENI, UGANDAN PRESIDENT: I want to reassure Ugandans and all residents that the government has control of the outbreak, as we have done



MADOWO: Uganda has decided against closing public spaces, but it says the same infrastructure practices used to spread the curb the spread of COVID-

19 will be used to keep Ebola unchecked.

BBOSA: We think using what we've done before should be able to appropriate response to this current outbreak.

MADOWO: And why the variant responsible for the particular outbreak, a Sudan virus, does not currently have a vaccine, trials will start in 4 to 6


DR. SOUMYA SWAMINATHAN, W.H.O. CHIEF SCIENTIST: There are about six candidates, vaccine candidates available for Sudan Ebola virus, which are

in the early stages of development. But three of them have some human data, some immunogenicity and safety data, so they can proceed to be used in the


MADOWO: The idea is to vaccinate health workers and contacts have known positive cases to slow down the spread, a so-called rain vaccination,

similar to what was done in the DRC in 2019.

Among the vaccine candidates could be child is a jab developed by Oxford University, using the same technology employed by the COVID-19 vaccine it

developed with AstraZeneca, fresh hope against a deadly disease that has ravaged African nations for decades.

Larry Madowo, CNN, Accra, Ghana.


MACFARLANE: Well, to further discuss the global concerns, let's bring in CNN health reporter Jacqueline Howard who's joining us here.

And, Jacqueline, 44 cases confirmed in Uganda. We know that Ebola is rare but very deadly. Do we know how contagious this particular strain is? Just

explain why it is necessary for U.S. to start screening arrivals.

JACQUELINE HOWARD, CNN HEALTH REPORTER: Absolutely, we do know that Ebola virus spreads through bodily fluids, so that's why many health officials

say four people in Uganda to be careful when it comes to sir in various practices and taking care of ill people because we know that the virus

spreads through bodily fluids, specifically like the blood for instance.

But here in the U.S., while we have no suspected, probable or confirmed cases, there has been this announcement that passengers coming into the

U.S. who have been in Uganda in the past 21 days prior to their arrival will be routed to these locations. Airports in New York City, Newark, New

Jersey, Atlanta, where I am based, Chicago and Washington, D.C. And that's where passengers will have enhanced screening because here in the United

States, they are taking precautions when it comes to possible risk associated with this outbreak.

But we've have been hearing from many health officials, including a World Health Organization representative in Uganda who said that he feels

positive that the outbreak can be controlled. Have a listen.


DR. YONAS TEGEGN WOLDEMARIAM, W.H.O. REPRESENTATIVE TO UGANDA: More and more assets and systems being input. I am positive that we could control

this in reasonably quick time.


HOWARD: So, we did hear those reassuring words earlier today but overall, Christina, I will tell you, when it comes to the Ebola virus disease, the

symptoms to look for include fever, weakness, sore throat, gastrointestinal symptom, as well as the key symptom of unexplained bleeding. I know I

mentioned that earlier as a mode of transition for this virus.

The unexplained bleeding is a key symptom for Ebola virus disease, and, of course, all eyes are on the current outbreak in Uganda and other countries,

including the U.S. We heard from our CDC that they are taking efforts to assist with the response in Uganda as well -- Christina.

MACFARLANE: Yeah, no one wanting to take any risk. Obviously, this coming so quickly on the back of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Jacqueline, thank you very much.

Now, investigators in California are trying to uncover why four family members were kidnapped and murdered. Their bodies were discovered Wednesday

in a farming area.

Natasha Chen has more.


VERN WARNKE, MERCED COUNTY, CALIFORNIA SHERIFF: Our worst fears were realized tonight.

NATASHA CHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A tragic end in Merced, California, four family members can up from the trucking business were found dead Wednesday

night, according to the Merced County sheriff.

WARNKE: Not a farm worker, but a fellow under contract to clean an orchard, you know, it's harvest time and he was out there helping with the harvest

and came across them. We believe fully that our victims were deceased before we even got notified of the crime.

CHEN: The sheriff expressed his anger after the bodies were found.

WARNKE: It's a special place in for this guy. I'm hoping our district attorney's office goes to the death penalty.


I'm going to tell you that right now. I'm not going to sugarcoat it. I would like to be there when that happens.

That's how pissed I am with this. This is completely and totally senseless. A whole family wiped out and we still don't know why.

CHEN: This brutal discovery comes after authorities released surveillance footage of eight-month-old Aroohi Dheri, along with her parents Jasleen

Kaur and Jasdeep Singh, and her uncle, Amandeep Singh, kidnapped at gun point.

In the video, an unidentified man is seen with a white trash bag, crossing the parking lot Monday morning, and following Jasdeep. He drops the trash

bag and then pulls out what appears to be a firearm.

Jasdeep and Amandeep are then seen with their hands tied behind their backs with the zip ties, forced into a truck by the gunman. The gunman returned

six minutes later, and is seen taking Jasleen and baby Aroohi to the same truck.

A suspect was apprehended on Tuesday after attempting to take his own life. Doctors had to initially sedate him given his condition. However, local

authorities have started talking to the suspect and are trying to figure out a motive.

An ATM card belonging to one of the victims was used in a neighboring town. Authorities there received information that the 48-year-old might be

connected to the case. He is considered the sole suspect at this time and no charges have been filed, but the sheriff says others may have been


The sheriff says the suspect also has a criminal history.

WARNKE: Well, I can tell you right now, in 2005, he was arrested for something very similar. He did seven years in prison, was paroled in 2015

and here we go again.


CHEN (on camera): While the sheriff is still figuring out a potential motive in the case, he did mention that because one of the victims ATM

cards was used in a bank transaction and because of the suspect's history, he said he suspects that money may be part of this equation. Back to you.

MACFARLANE: All right, and finally tonight, the U.S. president taking a first major step towards decriminalizing marijuana. Joe Biden is fulfilling

a campaign pledge to pardon all federal offenses of simple marijuana possession, pointing out it's already legal in several states. Senior

administration officials say the move will affect thousands of Americans charged with a crime.

That is it for this edition of THE GLOBAL BRIEF. Thank you so much for joining us. Do stay tuned.

"World Sport" is up next.