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Thousands Of Mourners Line Up For Miles To Pay Respects To The Queen; King Charles, Prince William Greet People Waiting In Massive Line; Canadian P.M. Trudeau Visits Queen Lying-In-State As Westminster Hall; China's Xi & India's Modi Pressure Putin On Ukraine War; Biden Meets With Families Of Brittney Griner, Paul Whelan; Ukraine: At Least "440 Unmarked Graves" At Izium Burial Site; FL Gov. DeSantis Vows To Relocate More Migrants To Other States. Aired 1-2p ET

Aired September 17, 2022 - 13:00   ET




FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN HOST: Hello again, everyone. Thank you so much for joining me. I'm Fredricka Whitfield. We begin this hour in London where Queen Elizabeth's eight grandchildren may arrive for a vigil at Westminster Hall. The queen is there lying in state as the country mourns the loss of the monarch and the world remembers and celebrates her remarkable life.

Tens of thousands of mourners are lining up for miles all to say their final goodbyes. Some waiting up to 11 hours in some cases even 24 hours to pay their respects. Earlier today, King Charles III and Prince William greeting some who gathered there to grieve. They're shaking hands with well wishers and they've been speaking with them briefly as well.

World leaders are also arriving to honor the queen. President Joe Biden and the first lady departing the U.S. this morning to attend the queen's funeral which is scheduled for Monday.

Earlier today Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife paying their respects to the queen as she lies in state at Westminster Hall. CNN's Max Foster, Richard Quest and Anna Stewart beginning our coverage right now. So Max to you first. We're getting new details about the royal grandchildren's vigil. And we are looking at I believe live pictures right now of some of the grandchildren coming down the steps there at Westminster Hall.

What do you know about what will be -- what we will be witnessing now?

MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: Where you can see the Prince of Wales there, Prince William followed by Prince Harry. They're going to take either end of the coffin. I think Prince of Wales will be the head of the coffin and Prince Harry will be at the foot of the coffin, then the other grandchildren. The Duke of York's two children usually appear just behind. They'll take their positions and then (INAUDIBLE) Lady Louise who are Edward's children are there behind the Yorks. And then you've got Zara Phillips and Peter Phillips who are Princess Anne's children. And they're going to take their positions around the coffin and we expect them to stand there for approximately 15 minutes. It will be a very powerful moment because they're so young. I mean, Viscount Severn, he's only 14 and the public are there. And they will be pausing as you can see there the queues.

But once the grandchildren of the late monarch in position the queues will go by and they'll be looking at all those grieving grandchildren. I think that'd be a very powerful moment indeed. This is something that they wanted to do, Fredricka. And also in terms of Harry, he wasn't going to wear a uniform initially but the king gave him special dispensation to be able to wear a uniform.

WHITFIELD: Max, let's take a moment and let's just watch and listen. Thank you so much.

What a moment this is. Live pictures right now. Eight grandchildren of the queen. Queen Elizabeth II. They're all standing vigil there as the thousands of mourners who have been waiting in lines, upwards of 24 hours to come pay their respects to the queen. And now seeing right after that Changing of the Guard now the eight grandchildren who descended from the steps and now this moment steeped in tradition in so many ways.


Max Foster back with us now. So Max, tell us again, these eight grandchildren who they are. You mentioned that Prince Harry is wearing a uniform because special dispensation has been extended to him. But you also read earlier a statement coming from two of the grandchildren, which was so poignant if you could revisit that and also tell us the significance of each of the grandchildren there holding vigil.

FOSTER: Well, obviously the two most senior there, even though Prince Harry has left his working role, you've got the Duke of Wessex and the Countess of Wessex they're there. There aren't any other members of family. I think those two are there because they've got the two youngest children. They're 14 and 18. So supporting the children, you can see that Lady Louise on the left, Prince Edward's elder daughter on the right.

You see Beatrice, the Duke of York's -- Prince Andrew's daughter. Beatrice usually, as you say, gave a very powerful tribute, those published just in the last hour. Zara Phillips there, Princess Anne's daughter. Just to read a part of it, we've been able -- we've not been able to put much into words since she left us all. This is from Beatrice and Eugenie, there have been tears and laughter, silences and chatter, hugs and loneliness and a collective loss for you, our beloved queen and our beloved granny.

We like many thought you'd be here forever, and we'll miss you terribly. You are our matriarch, our guide, our loving hands, on our backs leading us through this world. You taught us so much, and we cherish those lessons and memories forever. For now, dear Granny, all we want to say is thank you. Thank you for making us laugh, for including us for picking heather and raspberries for marching soldiers, for our tears, for comfort, for joy.

You being you, we'll never know the impact you've had on our family and so many people around the world. And this was obviously timed for this moment. And I think this very much speaks for all of the grandchildren there. Viscount Severn, they're 14 years old, the son of Prince Edward. I think it speaks for everyone standing there who have very personal relationships with the queen.

I mean, she's very hands on grandmother and mentees. Viscount Severn, for example, lives in Windsor saw her all the time. And this is a very big bold thing of him to do, I think to stand in front of these walking crowds. You remember, Fredricka, when Harry and William walked behind their mother's coffin, all those years ago and they were so affected by that. So they would have been very careful about Viscount Severn, you know, being at such a tender age, which is why his parents are there. But this is something I understand that he really wanted to do.

WHITFIELD: And I cannot help but notice the striking resemblance that Viscount has -- even Prince William. I mean, there's the son of Prince Edward there with just his head bowed. I mean, you can't help but think about again years ago, following Princess Diana but how poignant this is it these grandchildren while this moment is steeped in tradition, it is such a gesture of love as well vigil, the moment of silence that they are carrying out.

Richard Quest also with us now. So, Richard, from your point of view, as you look at these live pictures, these grandchildren standing vigil and the hundreds -- thousands of mourners who were also with their paces coming through to pay their last respects to the queen. Your impressions?

RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: I think the letter that the princesses Beatrice and Eugenie wrote to the granny, I think sums it up. The -- this -- for the -- for the people were watching on hold -- holding the vigil, the grandchildren, this is not a state occasion. This is saying goodbye to their grandmother and I think that letter was so personal, intimate, heartwarming, dare I say so normal for people who live anything but a normal out.

That's Peter Phillips, Princess Anne's son. And of course the -- I think -- I believe that the -- Max will correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe Prince William and Prince Harry are wearing uniforms of the crews and rules or at least the Household Cavalry which we will get confirmation of. I think ultimately, Fedricka, the -- they live different lives to us. So for James, Viscount Severn to be doing this, this will be part of his duty.

What he sees Zara Phillips now Zara Tindall of course, Princess Anne's daughter, they will have been brought up knowing the obligations and expectations at times like this. And then -- and they will want, Fedricka, to rise to the occasion upon -- like this but this is amongst the most powerful of images we've seen so far.


WHITFIELD: It really is. And, Richard, how long will they be standing vigil?

QUEST: Well, the normal visual time is 20 minutes. So, this vigil started just before 6:00 in London. I'm guessing there's probably another four or five minutes to go. What you will hear is the commander of the guards who will -- I'm sure there's an official name for the stick, but he will -- his rod of authority, he will bash it several times. And that will be the indication for the Royal grandchildren to leave.

It's not a Changing of the Guard of the vigil. The vigil there being held, I think, by the household division. I believe it's the Welsh guards who are there today. And that's is Viscount Severn, youngest, 14 --

WHITFIELD: What a remarkable moment. And what a remarkable moment, Max, for these mourners who have been lined up. All they have wanted was to have that moment by passing by the queen's casket and now to also witness this huge gesture of love from the grandchildren. I mean, just simply extraordinary, Max.

FOSTER: Yes, I mean, a truly historic moment for all of those people who've been queuing, some of them more than 20 hours. And they've got extraordinary stories to tell themselves of their time in the queues. I mean, unbelievable stories coming from the queues. I think that'd be one of the abiding stories coming out of all of this, but as you say, to hit this -- just this moment is really quite profound for all of them.

Richard talking about the uniforms. They are indeed Blues and Royals uniforms that the two brothers Harry and William are wearing. And the medals are Jubilee medals. It present -- medals presented to them by the queen for each of her jubilees. So what we're seeing in the middle is the queen's incredible record breaking reign reflected on the chest of both William and Harry, but also their military service as well.

So there's -- on William there's the RAF Pilot Wings, he served sea rescue for the RAF, and also for Prince Harry's who served on the front lines in Afghanistan. He is wearing his Afghanistan operational service medal. And I think it was a big gesture of the king to allow Harry to break protocol going back centuries to be able to wear a uniform. So, he matched up against Prince William, but they are both sons of the monarch.

They are both very senior figures in the line of succession in the United Kingdom, whether or not Harry is a working royal.

WHITFIELD: Also with us, Max and Richard, I want to bring in Julie Montagu. She's a royal commentator who is married to the heir of the Earl of Sandwich. Also CNN contributor Trisha Goddard. Host of The Week with Trisha Goddard. Welcome, ladies to this conversation. And this remarkable viewing right now with the grandchildren standing vigil. And I wonder, Julie, from your point of view, I mean, this seems to be steeped in symbolism as well. Tradition, love and symbolism and, and to hear Max, you know, describe how Harry, you know, wearing these deep blues with, you know, the uniform with the Jubilee medals. I mean, there's so much meaning behind every little detail that we're witnessing here. What's your interpretation of things?

JULIE MONTAGU, ROYAL COMMENTATOR: Well, absolutely. And as an American who has married into this -- a noble family, I understand Harry right now in one sense, he's been living his life as an American in California and all of a sudden being brought back to this, to this tradition, to this ceremony, to the proclamations and being able to wear his uniform today. I think for Harry in particular, it must be quite difficult for him having been, you know, not a part of the senior member of the royal family anymore to have stepped away from that.

And all of a sudden, just a short time later, you know, they've only just exited really a -- just a couple years ago (INAUDIBLE) be brought back to this ceremony, this tradition. It's a real contrast. It really is a contrast. And as an American myself who married into like I said, a family of nobility, it's sometimes you can't get your head around it and you just wonder what's going through Harry's head right now as he -- as he stands there.

WHITFIELD: Trisha, what do you think might be going through Prince Harry's head right now?

TRISHA GODDARD, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: I think it's a really interesting moment because to me, I mean, coming from the point of view of mental health which I'm very involved as all the prince is. Harry's all about being heard, just the pain and feeling excluded being heard.


The fact that the king has given a special dispensation for him to wear a uniform, the fact that he's back with his beloved cousins, the fact that he has been included I think will be a really important step for him. I think he will stop feeling as much of an outsider anymore. I'm just thankful. I mean, I think for me, these are the most powerful images of the past few days and I'm so glad that people can't use mobile phones to take photographs because it would be deeply, intrusive (INAUDIBLE) most beautiful --

WHITFIELD: Let's listen a moment.

Exiting. The royal grandchildren there exiting after holding vigil there at the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II. Richard, you had a term for it. This is not the Changing of the Guard. But you had a term for what we just witnessed.

QUEST: Yes, it's really just -- this wasn't the Changing of the Guard. This was the ending of the vigil. And the ceremony and the -- if you like -- the pomp and majesty, there you see the scepter, the orb and the state imperial crown, more than 3000 precious jewels in that crown. 2-1/2 thousand diamonds including the Cullinan 2 which is heaved from the largest diamond ever mined. So there we have the trappings of -- what you've seen, Fredricka is the trappings of monarchy laid on top of the grief of the family who have to do this in a very public way. And that I think is the exceptional part of the old funeral proceedings that we're seeing for this.

WHITFIELD: This was so particularly poignant. And Trisha, I love the point, I love you to pick it up and elaborate further. You mentioned you know, you are so happy that no one's allowed to have cell phones and take pictures of this very solemn moment. And then that we saw what has really symbolizes a unifying, a moment a -- of cohesion among the grandchildren there, especially with Prince Harry in uniform similar to his brother, Prince William.

So pick up on your thoughts of how unifying this moment is, not just for Harry, for all the grandchildren and perhaps for the entire royal family.

GODDARD: And I think very much for the future. I mean, this is the future of the royal family. It was almost like the handing of the baton. And I think the royal family, I think the monarchy is already changing. We've seen in King Charles, it's, you know, they're getting used to saying that. Evening King Charles we've seen -- we've seen seeing changes and embracing of the future and this is taking it a step further.


I really do think it's going to be very, very interesting as to what happens now, as far as Prince Harry is concerned because you know how it is with families when you've got distance, you know, I always call it the grit in the eye of the oyster, you know, it gets irritating, becomes solid like a pearl. And you forget -- you forget all of those warm connections, well, he's had an opportunity of being included and what have you.

I do think it's going to make a difference, not just on his part, because it takes two parties to have an argument, but also on the side of King Charles as well. Seeing that Harry can step up, that he can make a difference, that he and Meghan were very warmly appreciated and accepted. So, I think it's going to go some way to mending bridges.

WHITFIELD: And then Max, I wonder if you have learned any more detail about the back story of this special dispensation for Prince Harry. Not to focus completely on Prince Harry. But this did just kind of -- this was a cornerstone of what was a remarkable moment that we just saw, and you described, he got the special dispensation to wear the uniform, and you have -- you too have such extraordinary sources.

So I'm wondering if you're learning anything more about how this came to be. Max?

FOSTER: Well, I'm told that it was the king's decision solely. But it does come off the back of knowing that Prince Andrew had been given a dispensation earlier on for the vigil yesterday. We -- a few days ago, we found out that he would be able to wear a uniform and he's obviously not a working role and doesn't have a right to wear ceremonial uniform. So off the back of that, the king decided that Harry should also have the opportunity to wear a ceremonial uniform.

We are being told it's very much a one off. And the rules here are that, you know, in this country, British service men and women don't wear uniforms after they stopped serving. That is the tradition here, unless you're a member of the royal family and get given an honorary title, which is why you see members of the royal family wearing these uniforms. So Harry didn't have an automatic right to wear a uniform because he's left service.

And he's -- doesn't have an honorary title. But this was a special dispensation. And I think there's something that he would have appreciated because he is very proud of his royal background. And you've got to remember that anyone that serves in the military serves the commander of the armed forces, who is the monarch. So he very much put his life on the line in the name of the queen when he was in Afghanistan.

So I think this is something that really tie these things up for everyone in the family. And they can move on from here, having had this moment. I did think was interesting that he did wear a ceremonial uniform. He didn't serve in the Blues and Royals. But he -- and he didn't wear his Afghanistan uniform. But, you know, I'm sure there was lots of debate about what uniform he wore. But if he was still a working member of the royal family, that's the union -- uniform he would have worn.

WHITFIELD: I see. All right. The solemnity and the pageantry here is so appreciated. And I also appreciate all of you, Trisha Goddard, Julie Montagu, Max Foster, Richard Quest, thank you to all of you. We're going to take a short break for now. We'll be right back.



WHITFIELD: The leader of one of Russia's most important trading partners has openly rebuked Vladimir Putin over the war in Ukraine. During a televised meeting in Uzbekistan, India's Prime Minister Modi told Putin that now is not the time for war. It's the latest sign that even nations with strong ties to Moscow are questioning the invasion. Earlier this week, Putin acknowledged that China's leader also had concerns about the war, that admission following a one-on-one meeting with President Xi.


XI JINPING, PRESIDENT OF CHINA (through translator): In the face of changes in the world times and history, China is willing to work with Russia to demonstrate the responsibility of a major country. Play a leading role and inject stability into a turbulent world.

NARENDRA MODI, PRIME MINISTER OF INDIA: It is not an era of war. And I have spoken to you many times over the phone on this issue that democracy, diplomacy and dialogue are all the things that make it clear to the world that in the coming days, how can we move on the path of peace?


WHITFIELD: All right. Let's bring in Gary Locke. He is the former U.S. ambassador to China and the former Secretary of Commerce in the Obama administration. Mr. Ambassador, Mr. Secretary, good to see you.

GARY LOCKE, FORMER U.S. AMBASSADOR TO CHINA: Thank you very much, Fedricka. And by the way, great coverage of the vigil by the grandchildren over the queen's casket lying in state and great discussion about just how poignant and how personal that vigil and the letter from the grandchildren really means.

WHITFIELD: Well, thank you so much. It is really extraordinary to watch. So about Putin, what is the significance of India and China, you know, expressing public concern and caution about Russia's war in Ukraine?

LOCKE: They're doing it for many reasons. First of all, the invasion of Ukraine has really roiled the international markets in terms of prices of energy and supplies and food. That's having an impact on the people of India as well as the people of China. Second of all, Putin really thought and portrayed this as a quick military exercise liberation of Ukraine, it's not going that well. And so, the image of China and India siding with Russia even silently, implicitly is having a toll on the image of both India and China.

So, China very much wants to be seen as a -- as a force of peace, stability, and their association with Putin as this war drags out and especially with the military setbacks that the Russians have recently faced is harmful to that image of China.


WHITFIELD: And the Russian military, I mean, it's facing some pretty embarrassing setbacks, embarrassing for them on the battlefield. And Putin's back is against the wall right now.

President Biden is warning him not to use chemical or nuclear weapons. Just take listen.


UNIDENTIFIED CORRESPONDENT: As Ukraine succeeds on the battlefield, Vladimir Putin is becoming embarrassed and pushed into a corner. And I wonder, Mr. President, what you would say to him if he's considering using chemical or tactical nuclear weapons.

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Don't. Don't. Don't. It would change the face of the world unlike anything since World War II.


WHITFIELD: Do you think it's real possibility, something that Putin would entertain if not carry out? LOCKE: You never can tell when a leader like Putin, who's facing

domestic challenges now and some criticism and, of course, the reeling economy reason Russia, you can never tell what he might do.

Try to retain his political power and position as well as to retake the offensive in Ukraine.

But clearly, he has the capability of, you know, calling out reserves, bringing up veterans to augment the forces, and to really launch an all-out assault using all the types of missiles and artillery that are still at the disposal of the Russian military.

WHITFIELD: Do you think China is in, you know, just a weird juxtaposition that it feels like it has to maintain a relationship with Russia, particularly, you know, if China were to invade Taiwan, for an example, it would want Russia's support? Is that top of mind?

LOCKE: No, I don't think so. What you're seeing is an alliance, an natural alliance between Russia and China.

They are, of course, Communist countries. They have very similar origins in terms of the Communist Party.

Although they have separated for a few decades and there's a bit of a distance between them, they are still very much aligned politically and philosophically.

More than anything, they are united by a resentment of the power of the Western countries, especially the United States.

Where they feel that the United States and the Europeans have really called the shots, have controlled all the world affairs, the financial systems, political systems, and they bristle at that.

WHITFIELD: Let's talk about two prominent Americans being held in Russia. President Biden meeting with the family members of Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan on Friday, and both families -- family members are expressing a real confidence in the White House that it's going to do all that it can.

What is it going to take for Russia to free them?

LOCKE: It's really a bargaining. We hold some people that they want, some Russian individuals that Russia would like back. It's face-saving for Russians. So it's really a matter of negotiations.

To be very crass about it, it's almost like baseball teams and football teams trading players. What will the Russians get out of this? They know how much the Americans want our citizens back.

And how much are we willing to give to the Russians in terms of some of the prisoners that we have or people who have been convicted of heinous crimes here in the United States?

WHITFIELD: Ambassador Gary Locke, glad you could be us. Thank you so much. LOCKE: My pleasure.

WHITFIELD: And now to that very disturbing discovery of a mass burial site in the eastern Ukrainian city of Izyum. Ukrainian authorities say they have found more than 400 graves and that some of the bodies show signs of torture.

CNN's Nick Paton Walsh saw the burial site firsthand.


NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR (voice-over): Here is where the horror gets names and numbers. Russia's unprovoked invasion killed many, but only now in liberated cities like Izyum are we finding out whom and how.


PATON WALSH: Even this rain cannot erase the smell of how death haunts these pines.

(on camera): It's important to point out that this was a military position, these are tank positions around the city, presumably for the Russians when they occupied it.

Burying these bodies where their troops would lay to rest and defend the city.


PATON WALSH (voice-over): Ukrainian officials have said over 400 bodies were buried here, even children, all showing signs of a violent death.


Through the day, they have been exhuming dozens of bodies, most individual graves numbered and orderly, one bearing a number as high as 398.

But this, we are told, and can smell and see, is a mass grave where 17 dead were found, a policeman here told us.

Ukrainian officials said bodies found included the family killed in an airstrike, Ukrainian soldiers shot with their hands bound and bodies showing signs of torture.

(on camera): Some of the graves are marked just by a number and others have some history. This man looks like he died aged 82, buried here.

(voice-over): This investigator tells us what he found in this spot.


PATON WALSH: "Here are civilian bodies and military ones further along," he said. "Over 20 have been examined here and will be sent for further investigation."

It seems to be the hurried extension of the long-term cemetery nearby. Wreathes, coffins, candles. Some people knew who they were burying. Others next to this invaders' campsite likely not.

This man said the Russians first hit the graveyard with an airstrike and then moved in.

NADEZHDA KALINCHENKO, IZYUM RESIDENT (through translation): "We tried not go to out because it was scary where they brought their special machines. They dug some trenches for their vehicles. We only heard how they were destroying the forest.

When they left, I don't know if there was fighting or not. We just heard a lot of heavy trucks a week ago."


PATON WALSH: We saw multiple refrigerated lorries leaving town but were asked not to film the content of this one.

Part of where the history of Russia's brutal occupation will be written and nothing can wash this site clean.

Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, Izyum, Ukraine.




WHITFIELD: Right now in London, tens of thousands of mourners are lined up for miles to pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth II. The wait time now down to 12 and a half hours. That's a small improvement from earlier when people were waiting 13 hours.

Officials are warning they may have to close the line if it reaches capacity.

CNN's Anna Stewart joins us live from one of those massive lines, or at least one corner of that massive line.

Anna, at one point, people were waiting up to 24 hours, you told me?

ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: Mm-hmm, 24 hours. I love that you're tracking this as well. I'm looking at the live tracker from the government, 12 and a half hours at the moment.

And it said, tonight, weather will be cold. I can attest to that because I think it's already pretty chilly.

This is taking people about three to four hours so far. They've got another, I don't know, eight, nine, 10 hours to go. And they're prepared to go through the night to pay their respects to the queen.

People absolutely love, they respect the queen, they want to be here for a moment in history as well.

I have just spoken with this group with a sweet but young baby.

How old is your baby?


STEWART: Three months old. And you are going to be through the night with a 3-month-old.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Well, I'm up at the night anyway so it's no different from doing it at home.

STEWART: The lady makes a really good point.

Tell me why you're doing this, why you're here.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would like to be a part of history. We'd like to give our respects to the queen obviously. And it's a special thing do.

STEWART: Beautiful. I see you've got bare arms so you have something --


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I've got tons of layers and layers and layers, yes.

STEWART: Layers, layers, layers.

We'll see if we can speak with someone else.

Thank you very much. Good luck with your queue.

Oh, hello, sir. How long have you been waiting now?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think about three and a half hours.

STEWART: Three and a half hours. How much longer do you think you've got to go?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would imagine until about 3:00 in the morning.

STEWART: Well, good luck with that.


STEWART: We'll head it back to you. But we will be in this queue for many hours to come, so check in and see how we're getting on.

WHITFIELD: Anna, I love you explained earlier when you get the wristband, that essentially gives you permission to go run to the restroom or get some tea or something like that.

(LAUGHTER) WHITFIELD: But then, OK, what about sleeping? I mean, that's a long way away. I know mama said the baby will be sleeping on her shoulder. But you have to keep moving. Is there a moment to rest?

STEWART: No, there's no rest. It's not just sleeping but not sitting.

Also, I think people have these wristbands, so, yes, they can go to the bathroom and get a coffee but it's hard to get back in line to find where your space was without some getting disgruntled.

But they're being very British about it. The British do love a queue and are quite good at it.


WHITFIELD: All right. And so, people are being fairly gracious. Like all the people you stopped earlier today, they were able to get their spots back in line in the queue?

STEWART: That I don't know. Maybe I should start tracking people who leave the cue and try and get back. I think that would be pretty tricky. I wouldn't like to see that in an airport, certainly.

WHITFIELD: Right. They can get a spot of tea or coffee. We had another couple you talked to earlier had their biscuits kind of in their pockets, et cetera.

Once they get to a certain point, I wonder, Anna, can you not have anything in your pockets, can you not have bags and, you know, bottles of water and all that?

STEWART" This is interesting, yes. You're allowed a small bag. You can check some bags in, I believe, almost like an airport security system. But you can't bring any food and drink.


So actually, a lot of people have loaded up some wonderful treats, tea, biscuits, and they get there and have to lose it.

Scouts have arranged for a food bank to collect unused food, unopened and perishable and that's being kept and distributed to people that need it. So that's a rather beautiful exercise to the story.

But David Beckham talked a lot about it. He had a biscuit, tea, and doughnut.


WHITFIELD: Did he? Did a lot of people recognize him while he was in line? I wonder what it was like for him. And everybody else.

STEWART: This is brilliant. There was a queue for the queue, a queue to see David Beckham in a queue as you can imagine.

WHITFIELD: No, no. STEWART: Everyone wanted to see what he was up to. It was incredible.

When this queue closed down yesterday, it was too long, another queue formed to join this queue and another queue joined that queue. We've had queues and queues and queues.


STEWART: It's been absolutely unreal.

WHITFIELD: Well, he is a standout there. It's not like he's in disguise. He's very well dressed there and ever so handsome, per usual. So, yes, I could see that people spotted him and enjoyed talking to him. That's fun.

All right. Well, all in the name of the queen. I love that everyone is there, you know, because of their affinity for the queen, at the same time trying to make the most of standing in line, moving in line for 13 hours, 24 hours.

Anna Stewart, you're a real sport, too. Thank you so much.


WHITFIELD: Coming up, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis defending using taxpayer dollars to send migrants to Martha's Vineyard and says this is just the beginning of his relocation efforts.



WHITFIELD: All right. The political battle over immigration is heating up with Florida's governor doubling down on his plan to send migrants to northern cities.

Ron DeSantis flew about 50 migrants from Texas unannounced to Martha's Vineyard this week from Texas unannounced, leaving local residents scrambling to health.

CNN's Priscilla Alvarez is following this for us from Miami and CNN's Athena Jones joining us from New York.

Athena, you first.

Two busloads of migrants were also left at the vice president's residence in D.C. What more do we know about where they are, the migrants?

ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fredricka, I don't have an update on where all of those migrants ended up, really just dropped on a lawn outside of the Naval Conservatory just a couple of days ago. I'm not sure where they all ended up.

I can tell that here, in New York, it has seen an influx of almost 12,000 new arrivals just in the last several weeks. They are doing as much as they can to try to house them. They have

opened an emergency shelter, a clearinghouse.

I should say they are sending several to shelters. So 8,500 of them of the, nearly 12,000 of them who arrived in New York, are being sheltered. But this is a city already struggling to house the homeless that are already in New York.

They have also opened a welcome center offering all kinds of services like health screening and mental health screening, vaccines, legal help and that sort of thing.

That is exactly what is going on with the 50 migrants or so who landed in Martha's Vineyard on Wednesday.

They have now been sent to Joint Base Cape Cod voluntarily. It has been designed as an emergency shelter. It has been used in the past as an emergency shelter for people fleeing Hurricane Katrina.

They will be given wraparound services, legal help, nutritional help, clothing, crisis counseling and the like.

But the big complaint of the leaders in New York, in Massachusetts, in Washinton, is the lack of coordination.

They see this as part of the plan, part of the scheme by these governors, Ron DeSantis in Florida, Greg Abbott in Texas, and Doug Ducey in Arizona, sending buses of migrants to these enclaves without any warning.

And in the case of Martha's Vineyard, the attorneys helping the folks said, look, some of them are due in court. They have to appear before immigration -- in immigration proceedings as early as Monday in places as far away as Tacoma, Washington, or San Antonio, which is where the planes originally took off from.

These governors are clearly -- this is a political ploy and they are getting what they want, which is a whole lot of attention -- Ana?

WHITFIELD: And, Priscillia, Florida's governor said this is just the beginning?

PRISCILLA ALVAREZ, CNN REPORTER: He put it quite simply. He also intends to use, quote, "every penny of the state budget" that has been allocated for what he said is the reallocation of migrants.

Take a listen.


GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): There's also going to be buses and there will likely be more flights.

But I'll tell you this, the legislature gave me $12 million. We're going to spend every penny of that to make sure we're protecting the people in the state of Florida. These are just the beginning efforts. We have an infrastructure in

place now. There's going to be a lot more that's happening.


ALVAREZ: Now, this is an escalation of ongoing feud between the governors and the Biden administration over immigration policy. As you heard from Athena, Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Arizona Governor Doug have also been sending migrants out of state. The Biden administration has condemned this as a political stunt.

The Department of Homeland Security has spoken to the lack of coordination between these states and city officials, which has left those officials flat-footed and having to shore up resources in quick turnaround.

I'm also told by a source familiar with discussions that the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice lawyers are discussing litigation options regarding the movement of my grants out of state by Republican governors.

We're still waiting to see where those discussions stand -- Fredricka?


WHITFIELD: All right, Priscilla Alvarez, Athena Jones, thanks to both of you. Appreciate it.

And this quick programming note. Join Jake Tapper as he goes one on one with key witnesses with the January 6th committee's investigation. CNN's new special report, "AMERICAN COUP," begins tomorrow at 9:00 p.m.

Still to come, a hurricane watch is issued for Puerto Rico. Tropical Storm Fiona could strengthen into a hurricane when it moves by the island over the weekend. We'll bring you the latest forecast right after this.



WHITFIELD: All right. A hurricane warning is in place for Puerto Rico as Tropical Storm Fiona barrels towards the region.

CNN's Allison Chinchar is live for us from the Weather Center.

Tell us what's happening.

ALLISON CHINCHAR, AMS METEOROLOGIST: All right. Well, we're starting to see some of the outer bands cross over the U.S. Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. They had their first intense ban make its way through.

The latest update does have Tropical Storm Fiona with sustained winds, which means consistent winds up to about 60 miles per hour gusting up to around 70 miles per hour.

Let's push this forward here and we can give you a better idea of what's taking shape.

Here's the radar around Puerto Rico. You can see some of the first bands starting to slide across the area. We do anticipate the storm is going to strengthen some.

Even though it is still a tropical storm now, because the forecast calls it to strengthen to a category one hurricane, that's why you have the hurricane warnings and even hurricane watches out for a lot of these Caribbean islands.

In fact, the National Hurricane Center forecasting it is expected to get to category one strength south of Puerto Rico and crossing right overland and heading towards Hispaniola.

The biggest concern in the short-term is rainfall, and there's a lot of it. Widespread. You are talking six to 10 inches of rain, on the northern side of the island.

The southern side, where you see this pink, now you're talking 10, 15, as much as 20 inches of rain, forecast across the southern tier of Puerto Rico.

Over towards the Dominican Republic, more widespread, four to six inches. Still a tremendous amount in a short period of time.

Also storm surge will be a factor. One to three feet on the southern edge of Puerto Rico and one to three feet on the northern edge of the Dominican Republic.

From there, we expect the storm to shift, taking more of a right-hand turn off to the north, away from the U.S. mainland.


But I will caution, we are still likely to have rip currents and some very high surf along the eastern edge of Florida in the coming days -- Fred?

WHITFIELD: Fair warning.

Thank you so much, Allison.

All right, and our hearts are broken to have to share this with you.