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Pence Won't Commit to Supporting Trump's 2024 Campaign; Poland, NATO: Missile Likely Fired in Defense By Ukraine; Chinese President Xi Scolds Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau Alleging Leaks. Aired 4:30-5a ET

Aired November 17, 2022 - 04:30   ET



MAX FOSTER, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back to CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Max Foster. If you are just joining us, let me bring you up to date with our top stories this hour.

North Korea has launched a short range ballistic missile from its east coast. South Korea says the missile ended up in the waters off the Korean Peninsula.

And CNN projects Republicans has secured a slim majority in the U.S. House. They'll be able to lead committee assignments and have decisive power over legislation starting in January.

NOBILO: Donald Trump doesn't have the support so far of his former vice president as he takes another run at the White House. At CNN's Town Hall Mike Pence refused to say whether he'd support his old boss.


MIKE PENCE, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The American people are looking for new leadership. Leadership that will unite our country around our highest ideals. Leadership that will reflect the civility and respect that most Americans have for one another.

You know, once you get out of politics you learn pretty quickly that while our politics is very divided, the American people actually get along pretty well every day. And treat each other with kindness and with decency and with respect. And so, I think in the days ahead, whatever role I and my family play in the Republican party, whether it's as a candidate or simply a part of the cause, I think we'll have better choices.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: Better choices?

PENCE: Than my old running mate. I think America longs to go back to the policies that were working for the American people but I think it's time for new leadership.


NOBILO: Pence left the door open to seeking the Republican nomination himself. I'd say he went a bit further that. There were some heavy events there, basically setting out his stalls.

FOSTER: Yes, and you know, just the premise of him doing a big town hall like that.

NOBILO: Basically, saying reaching across the aisle.

FOSTER: Well, the current U.S. President Biden urged to speak to a claim by Ukraine's leader that Ukrainian forces are not responsible for that deadly missile strike in Poland.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's your reaction to President Zelenskyy saying that the missiles that landed in Poland were not Ukrainian?



FOSTER: Well, NATO and Polish officials now say the missile which killed two people was likely launched by Ukrainian forces defending against Russian attacks. The incident has rattled nerves around the globe as Russia's war in Ukraine now threatens to spill over into NATO territory.

NOBILO: Ukraine's president says he's not convinced that the missile came from his forces. The top U.S. general says he reached out to his Russian counterpart to discuss the incident.


GEN. MARK MILLEY, CHAIRMAN, U.S. JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF: Some attempts were made, no success with the Russian counterpart. Investigations are ongoing. There's professionals there to do the forensics. You know, all the debris that's in and around the impact site and so on and so forth. And very shortly we'll know all the facts. And we just don't know them right at this second.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So, Russia did not take the call?

MILLEY: Right. My staff was unsuccessful in getting me linked up with general Gerasimov, that's correct.


NOBILO: CNN's Nada Bashir is following developments here in London. But we begin with our International diplomatic editor Nic Robertson who's in Kyiv. So, Nic, the allies have made it quite clear, the U.S. and NATO, that they do not blame Ukraine for this. Whatever happened because of Russia initiating this war and invading Ukraine. But Zelenskyy has asked to join the work of the international investigation and get access to all of the data available to our partners. Now is understandable Ukraine would want to verify this. But is it creating any tension that there essentially challenging NATO's understanding of events. NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: It doesn't seem at

the moment as if they are challenging it. I think what we heard was President Biden was him commenting on something that President Zelenskyy had said earlier in the day -- yesterday when he spoke to local reporters here. That he said that it wasn't Ukrainian missile, but he was convinced of that.

So, President Biden after getting off a plane, being asked a question about this. Responded to it.


But of course, time moves on and President Zelenskyy last night made his nightly address and he didn't make those same claims in the nightly address. He said, Ukraine's position is transparent. Ukraine is providing full access to all data. It has and it wants to be part of that investigation.

So, I think position of the Ukrainian president seems to have fallen in line with what we've heard from his Air Force officials who have said that they were in the proximity of where that -- of the Polish border where the two Polish people were killed when the missile came down. That they, the Ukrainian air force or Ukrainian forces, air defense forces were, in fact, trying to take down a Russian missile.

So, I think all the indications from the Ukrainian side now is in line with the -- with the allies and NATO. I think what you get a sense of is the way that the Ukrainian leadership is concerned that Russia may try to spin this against them. And of course, that investigation will undoubtedly try to find out what Russian missile was flying in that area. What was its intended target or was it, indeed, flying close to the border to induce Ukraine to try and shoot it down in an area where that this sort of incident could happen.

Of course, the Kremlin is saying that Ukraine is sort of fabricating this scenario to try to build tensions. So, I think what we're getting a sense of politically and militarily from the Ukrainians is let's wait to see where the evidence leads. We want to have a hand in working to find out what all the details are and our information that we have is all readily available. So, I think the situation has moved on from that moment when President Zelenskyy spoke to journalists late yesterday afternoon and President Biden commented on it.

FOSTER: Nada, thankfully the mood has changed. Because when this first happened, all the reports came through, people were very fearful, weren't they, about this whole thing escalating and affecting NATO and NATO being drawn in. How do you think that sort of de-escalation worked? It seemed effective at least.

NADA BASHIR, CNN REPORTER: Well look, the Polish authorities have from the get-go maintained they are acting with restraint. They want to access all the facts on the ground to verify that is what's saying to lead to this incident. Of course, the preliminary information, evidence suggests that this wasn't a deliberate attack made, and of course, very much led by the Ukrainian air defense system in place. But the Polish authorities have been clear that they are carrying out

the investigation and that this will be an extensive and multi-phased investigation, according to the Polish ambassador to the United Nations. And that this will take some time. They won't issue any final conclusions until that investigation is complete.

But we have heard pretty vehement rhetoric in denial of any allegations for Russian wrongdoings from the Kremlin, from the Russian side, the Russian ambassador to the United Nations also issuing a statement accusing NATO of attempting to launch a proxy war in Ukraine. Take a listen.


VASILY NEBENZYA, Russian ambassador to the U.N. (through translator): To involve NATO, which is conducting the proxy war with Russia, the U.S. military has actively become involved in planning and de facto control over the conduct of military activities.


BASHIR: Well look, the Polish authorities have been clear, they are acting with restraint. They do want to assess the situation overall as it stands. They are still stepping up their combat readiness with the Polish military in response to this incident. We've heard from the NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg saying that he will be stepping up their support for the Ukrainian Armed Forces as well. So, there are still concerns there.

FOSTER: OK, Nada, we'll keep watching it. Thank you.

NOBILO: A cringe worthy moment on the last day of the G20. The awkward exchange between the leaders of China and Canada when we return. You do want to see this.

FOSTER: It's good. Wow.



FOSTER: The public school district in Uvalde, Texas, has hired a new police chief after the predecessor was fired over a botched response to the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School back in May. Police waited over an hour to confront the gunman who killed 19 children and 2 teachers. Meanwhile, the city will hold a special meeting on Saturday to determine the fate of a top officer who was the acting police chief on the day of the massacre. A Uvalde official tells CNN he's expected to be fired at the meeting if he isn't before then.


JUSTIN TRUDEAU, CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER: Everything we discussed has been leaked to the papers and that's not appropriate.

XI JINPING, CHINESE PRESIDENT (through translator): And that is not the way the conversation was conducted.

TRUDEAU: In Canada, we believe in free and open and frank dialogue and we will continue to have and we will continue to work constructive together. But there will be things that we disagree on.

JINPING (through translator): Let's create the conditions first.


NOBILO: Chinese President Xi Jinping there scolding Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau after Xi said that details of an earlier conversation with Trudeau had been leaked to the Canadian media. Trudeau has reportedly raised serious concerns over China's domestic interference including allegations that China meddled in Canada's elections in 2019.

For more on this we are joined by CNN's Will Ripley in Bangkok, Thailand. Will, that is a rather embarrassing sort of entertaining exchange to see. How typical is that of their broader relationship and what we understand to be the dynamic between the two men? And is that public putdown likely to erode trust and worsen their relationship?

WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It certainly was an awkward exchange, wasn't it, Bianca, imagine if you're the translator there having to translate China's most powerful leader since Mao, basically dressing down the Prime Minister of Canada. One of the most important U.S. allies over something that China and particularly Xi have long been unappreciative of, which is the leaky nature of western democracies.

Xi Jinping and China, his government, they don't leak things about conversations. But when he is engaging with the Western world where it's much more common for the press to learn details of discussions. And there was in fact Canadian news cameras that captured that very candid and awkward moment. This is why you see that bit of tension and really kind of a muscular face-to-face diplomatic approach on the part of Xi Jinping. And people in China are not seeing that clip because they're not showing it on Chinese state media. But those who are on the web from China, you know, perhaps some of the diplomatic wolf warriors and whatnot have been praising him for standing up in that situation.


And in terms of Justin Trudeau himself, he dismissed the severity of this incident. He said this is just one of those things that happens when you're getting together and having frank conversations.


TRUDEAU (through translator): Listen, I think that people know that not all the conversations are going to be easy with the other leaders, especially when it comes to issues that are sources of disagreement.

(END VIDEO CLIP) RIPLEY: And beginning on Monday in Bali when Xi Jinping met with the

U.S. President Joe Biden for three hours, a diplomatic reset between the U.S. and China as both of them try to avoid a confrontation, Xi really, you know, pushing back on the narrative of some sort of battle between autocracy and democracy. Saying that the system he has in his country is simply Chinese style democracy. And after that meeting with the U.S. president he met with four U.S. allies on Tuesday in Bali, Australia, France, Netherlands, South Korea.

He also will be meeting today with the Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in the coming hours here in Beijing and also New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. And so certainly a whirlwind of activities, face-to-face interactions to make up for lost time. You know, those three years of self-imposed pandemic isolation.

NOBILO: Will Ripley, thank you so much. Interesting that it's being blocked in China. Because he definitely comes across Xi Jinping as the more dominant, in control party.

FOSTER: Yes, it comes across better there. But the fact it was compounded by conversation about the leak being leaked, it was meant to be a private conversation, you have the Canadian camera there. but yes, it was a moment, wasn't it? And also, effectively accusing Trudeau of misrepresenting the conversation as well in the leaks.

NOBILO: Yes. The dynamic reminded me of going to the headmaster's office.

FOSTER: Yes, and neither of you stepping down so you sort of step away.


The Iranian regime is continuing to crack down on antigovernment protests over the death of a young woman in police custody. State media says that three more protesters have been given death sentences on various charges bringing the total number to five.

FOSTER: Demonstrations also took place across the country on the three-year anniversary of the deadly November 2019 protest. In this video shared online by an activist outlet. You can see Iranian authorities are pointing a weapon at protesters on a subway station in Tehran.

Now meanwhile, tensions between Israel and Iran are high after a drone attack on an oil tanker off the coast of Oman on Wednesday. The Israelis are accusing Iran of launching the drone, which it says is the same kind being used by Russia in Ukraine.

NOBILO: The vessel's operating company says no one was hurt but one Israeli official is calling it a provocation in the Gulf designed to disrupt stability I had of the World Cup in Qatar.

FOSTER: Coming up on CNN NEWSROOM, Qatar can't seem to shake off those controversies just days ahead of the World Cup. The latest involved a confrontation with an international TV crew that was caught on video. You'll see that.



NOBILO: In the NBA it was a marquee match-up between western rivals. Steph Curry dropped a season high 50 points for the Golden State Warriors on the road in Phoenix. It's the 11th time he scored 50 or more in a regular-season game.

FOSTER: For the Sun, Devin Booker answered with scored 27 points and nine assists and Cameron Payne scored a career best of 29 in the Phoenix victory. The Warriors have yet to win any of their eight road games so far this season.

NOBILO: It's quite good basketball there.

FOSTER: I have the height.


FOSTER: But I don't think I'd be good at basketball there. We are three days away from the World Cup in Qatar. The tournament will kick off on Sunday. And the host nation will face off with Ecuador in the opening match but the world's premier football event is mired in controversy off the pitch before it even begins.

NOBILO: In the latest one, organizers are apologizing for an incident involving a Danish TV crew. A Danish reporter shared this footage that you're looking at now. Saying it shows a confrontation between his crew and security staff in in Doha. The reporter says they interrupted his live broadcast and then threatened to break his camera.


RASMUS TANTHOLDT, TV2 REPORTER: Mister, you invited the whole world to the -- you invited the whole world to come here. Why can't we film? It's a public place.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But listen but listen.

TANTHOLDT: You can break the camera. You want to break it. OK, you break the camera.

The so you're threatening us by smashing the camera.


FOSTER: Now the World Cup organizers did issue a statement later on saying --

Upon inspection of the crew's valid tournament accreditations and filming permit, an apology was made to the broadcaster by on-site security before the crew resumed their activity.

And I think that's an interesting test, isn't it, of how the media will be treated over there and the accreditation.

NOBILO: Not a great start.


NOBILO: A glimmer of hope for parts of Uganda suffering from an Ebola outbreak. The World Health Organization says the first doses of three trial vaccines from these Sudan strain of the virus will arrive next week.

FOSTER: They'll be given to about 3,000 people who have come into contact with Ebola patients. For more on this let's go to CNN's Larry Madowo who just returned from the epicenter of the outbreak in Uganda. What did you find, Larry?

LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I found courage but also heartbreak. Ebola has now been reported in 6 out of Uganda's 146 districts. And even though the government says cases are paralyzing, they're not sure they have everybody who is positive under their care because some people are hiding in the community, others prefer to go to witchdoctors or traditional healers.

But this vaccination will be important. It's a trial vaccine -- three different trial vaccines I should mention. And what Uganda aims to do is what is called ring vaccination. It will target the first 3,000 people who came into contact with the Ebola patients and they will be tracked to see how effective this is. Listen to what the Ugandan health minister tells me.

JANE RUTH ACENG OCERO, UGANDAN HEALTH MINISTER: This trial of vaccines have been tested for safety.


So, our further testing is about efficacy and how long it protects. We want to see if within 29 days the contacts can quickly generate antibodies and can protect themselves.


MADOWO: Uganda will reveal the data from the first trial of the ring vaccination to see if it needs to expand it. The country's closing the school year early to make sure there's no outbreak in schools. And the Ugandan health minister also told me it's not likely they can export Ebola internationally. Because contact with those who are positive with Ebola are blocked from leaving the country. So far about 55 people have died since Ebola was reported in late September. About 155 cases right now and just over a dozen are undergoing treatment.

FOSTER: Larry Madowo thank you so much for joining us with that.

NOBILO: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is giving electronic cigarette makers a warning over unauthorized marketing practice. The products that look like toys, food and cartoon characters that are likely to promote use by children. FOSTER: Now some of the products resemble popsicles, glow sticks,

walkie-talkies, even a Nintendo Game Boy, would you believe. The FDA says that legal actions could be taken if the companies don't correct the violations.

And before we go, we want to leave you with this amazing view of earth taken from the Orion spacecraft after Wednesday's launch of the Artemis One moon rocket.

NOBILO: It was about 57,000 miles away when the shot was taken. The unmanned craft is now in day two of its 26 day mission in which NASA hopes to set the stage for sending humans back to the moon and maybe someday Mars.

FOSTER: Yes, they're going to set up camp on the moon. It could be very exciting to do.

Thanks for joining us here on CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Max Foster.

NOBILO: And I'm Bianca Nobilo. "EARLY START" is next right here on CNN.