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Kim Jong-un And Putin Meet In Russia; Manhunt To Catch A Killer; More Than 5,000 Presumed Dead, 10,000 Missing; Police Set Up New Perimeter For Escaped Killer; Apple Unveils New iPhone 15 Lineup, Apple Watch Series 9; Boy Band NSYNC Reunites For First Time In Ten Years. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired September 13, 2023 - 02:00   ET




PAULA NEWTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello and a very warm welcome to all of our viewers watching us here in the United States and all around the world. I am Paula Newton and ahead right here on CNN NEWSROOM. Kim Jong-un and Vladimir Putin meeting at this hour in eastern Russia. The North Korean leader firing off a pair of ballistic missiles just before talks got underway.

The U.S. House Speaker announces a formal impeachment inquiry into President Biden. But even some House Republicans saying they're not convinced the evidence exists.

Plus, after nearly two weeks on the run, the manhunt to catch a convicted killer in Pennsylvania takes a dangerous turn.

And we begin, of course, with our breaking news. Right now, Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un have begun talks at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in eastern Russia. They are meeting face to face for the first time since 2019. Now the two leaders and their delegations have been touring the space complex and examining equipment outside. This is a highly-choreographed affair with cameras following many of their movements.

In fact, a lot of it has been televised live. According to Russian- state media, Kim Jong-un has been asking detailed questions about how the Cosmodrome works and which rockets are launched from the facility. He's also signed a guest book while his sister Kim Yo-jong looked over his shoulder. And for the first time, North Korea fired off two missiles while Kim Jong-un was out of the country.

CNN's Katie Polglase is in London and our Kristie Lu Stout will join us from Hong Kong. Katie, first to you as we've been watching all of these extraordinary pictures, because even Putin himself has not submitted himself to this kind of live coverage really, for this long period. He just had that economic forum in Vladivostok and now this high-level meeting with Kim Jong-un. What's at stake here, especially given the fact that U.S. intelligence officials have been saying that this is really about an arms deal. KATIE POLGLASE, CNN INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER: Well, Paula, clearly, there is one thing that Putin needs and that is ammunition. It is clear that this war in Ukraine has been going on for quite some time, longer perhaps than he really intended it to be. And he's seen recently that Ukraine has just received $1 billion in assistance from the United States. And that is surely alarming and he's looking around, looking at who may be able to assist him with these depleted ammunition on the frontline and North Korea is a suitable option.

They have ammunition, they have quite a lot -- quite strong production capacity back in North Korea. And the ammunition they have some of it will fit directly into Russian weaponry. So, if it was put into Russian weaponry, it would work immediately. Now the issue is going to be transportation, taking this weapon or taking this ammunition from where they currently are. Vladivostok nearby is over 5700 miles from Moscow, let alone the Ukrainian front line.

So, getting this weaponry all the way to the frontline is going to be extremely challenging and probably on old Cold War railway transportation that's really not that suitable, not that stable. Nonetheless, this is key in terms of messaging. If you look at what Putin is projecting here, it is confidence. It is showing he is not isolated or be it alone with one of the most isolated countries in the world.

And it is also showing that while this war is ongoing, he still has confidence. Let's not forget just yesterday, he announced the day of reunification, September 30th. That's going to include several of these new territories, Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson, Zaporizhzhia. Areas that are highly controversial and Ukraine strenuously pushes back and says that they are their own territory. Russia is saying with Putin in head that this is their territory.

This is a war they are still winning. This is while they still have confidence in and this allying, this renewing of stocks such as ammunition with North Korea is a way of achieving that.


NEWTON: Now to you, Kristie. You've been watching this since Kim Jong- un set foot in Russia there. I wonder what you're thinking now when you see this live footage and the fact that Vladimir Putin is talking about this space -- the space technology, things like satellites, and that Kim Jong-un is listening intently. And this is a country that at times cannot feed its own population.

KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. And let's talk to this live footage right now, Paula. You know, Kim and Putin are meeting right now at the Vostochny Cosmodrome. Pardon me, this is footage that was taken earlier. Earlier this day, they shook hands, they greeted one another. They toured the facility and talks are indeed underway. Kim, he signed the guestbook. He was seen on camera writing this "Russia, which gave birth to the first conquerors of space will be immoral."

And his sister who is also a high-level official, Kim Yo-jong, she was seen on camera as he signed that guestbook. Now, according to Russian- state media, Putin was asked the question this, "Will Russia help North Korea build satellites? And Putin responded, that is why we are here at the Vostochny Cosmodrome. Now ahead of the meeting, Putin said that Kim showed great interest in space. Putin also said that the leaders will discuss all issues "without haste."

And this meeting comes just hours after North Korea fire two short range ballistic missiles into the waters off of the east coast of the Korean Peninsula. That's according to South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff. And analysts point out that this is indeed the first time we have seen a missile test without the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in the country that we have to bear in mind. This is a leader who rarely travels abroad.

Now, this meeting that is currently underway between Kim and Putin. It comes as U.S. has been issuing its warning, saying that these two nations are actively advancing their talks over another potential arms deal. We know that Kim arrived in Russia very early on Tuesday, setting foot some 6:00 a.m. local time Tuesday in Hassan, that's the main rail gateway to Russia's far east. And Kim, decked out in his suit smiling as he stepped off the train onto that red carpet.

He was welcomed by the Russian delegation. He left Pyongyang days ago on Sunday to go to Russia by private train that famous green train. Also on board with him and also at this meeting underway, North Korea's leading officials, including its top military leaders, his chief diplomat is present as well. Now this is Kim Jong-un's first overseas trip since 2019 when he traveled by train to Vladivostok for his very first meeting with Vladimir Putin.

The U.S. says it remains concerned that North Korea will provide arms to Russia. And what is North Korea want in exchange? North Korea is seeking advanced technology for -- like nuclear powered submarines satellites. It's also seeking food aid which it desperately needs. Out the Russia, North Korean relationship has been deepening in recent months and it is taking a significant step with this meeting currently underway in Vostochny. Back to you.

NEWTON: Kristie Lu Stout, Katie Polglase, we will continue to watch this live coverage and we will bring you more in the coming minutes. Right now, though, we want to go to Ramon Pacheco Pardo, he is the Korea chair at the Brussels School of Governance. And he is with us now from Brussels. Really good to have you on board. As we continue to see a very extensive live event there from the two leaders, I want to move first to the issue of the fact that two ballistic missiles were fired pretty much as the North Korean leader set foot in Russia. What significance do you place on that?

RAMON PACHECO PARDO, KOREA CHAIR AT THE BRUSSELS SCHOOL OF GOVERNANCE: I think it's quite significant in the sense of it shows that Kim Jong- un is confident that he continued to -- he can continue to test missiles without suffering any consequences. And also, because it is true that this is the first time that we have seen a test with him outside of the country. So, this also shows that he's confident enough for the program to continue without him having to be on top of every single test, every single technological development. NEWTON: What do you make of the choreography of the event that we're seeing now? This has -- at times been broadcast live and they continually are having these cameras that show them interacting. And actually, giving some subsequent answers as to what they hope to accomplish in the summit.

PARDO: I think the shows that Kim also Putin of course feel confident that they can respond to their relations, that they will suffer no consequences. But also, I think they want to show that they're normal leaders.


I mean, Putin is isolated at least by the U.S. the Europe and other western countries. Kim of course has been isolated for a long period of time with the exception of Russia as we see now China. But they want to show that they have friends that in spite of this isolation by the U.S. and its allies and partners, they can meet their countries, they can meet with each other. In the case of Putin, he might be able to meet with other leaders as well.

And that therefore, life continues to go normally post pandemic and post-Russia's invasion of Ukraine, both in Russia and North Korea.

NEWTON: What are the risks of these two really continuing a very durable and fruitful relationship? And what do you think and how do you believe China would interpret that? Mr. Pardo, can you hear me?

PARDO: So, I think for Europe and -- I can hear you. For Europe and NATO, I think there is a direct threat because this means that the North Korea can provide weapons to Russia and Russia can continue its invasion of Ukraine. So, the war there will go on for longer. And if we look at the other direction, I think there is a threat that North Korea will be able to develop these nuclear program, missile program and nuclear submarine program even further.

And this is a direct threat to South Korea, to the U.S., to Japan. So, I think that the so-called Cold War in Northeast Asia that we see American equipped go on for a very long period of time, with Russia being an active participant by supporting North Korea.

NEWTON: OK. We will leave it there for now. We thank you for your expertise as we continue to watch these live events. Thanks so much.

And we will continue to bring you more of that summit from Russia's Far East as we get in more information.

Going now to news here in the United States. U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has ordered a formal impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden. This despite any direct evidence that actually links Biden to corruption or any illegal acts, or any evidence to prove allegations that Biden profited from his son's business deals. The White House responding with a social media post, saying McCarthy "vowed to hold a vote to open impeachment, now he flip flopped because he doesn't have support." Also calling the move extreme politics at its worst. We get more now from CNN Melanie Zanona.


MELANIE ZANONA, CNN CAPITOL HILL REPORTER (voiceover): Kevin McCarthy facing threats to his speakership, giving the green light to an impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden.

REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): Today, I am directing our House Committee to open a formal impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden.

ZANONA (voiceover): A dramatic escalation of the House GOP's investigations into the president.

MCCARTHY: House Republicans have uncovered serious and credible allegations into President Biden's conduct. Taken together, these allegations paint a picture of a culture of corruption.

ZANONA (voiceover): McCarthy today repeated several allegations made by some of his GOP colleagues, including that as Vice President Biden joined meetings with Hunter Biden's business partners that the Treasury Department has flagged suspicious financial activity by the Biden family. And that the President has lied about his knowledge of his family's business deals. But House Republicans have so far not provided evidence that Biden directly profited off his son's business deals or made any decisions as vice president because of them.

REP. GERRY CONNOLLY (D-VA): There is zero evidence of any malfeasance on the part of President Joe Biden.

ZANONA (voiceover): The effort has faced resistance from some in the GOP over the lack of evidence.

REP. KEN BUCK (R-CO): What I wanted to do is look at the evidence. And I said I'll go where the evidence takes me. I'm reluctant to agree with Speaker McCarthy.

ZANONA (voiceover): McCarthy has been facing pressure from the right and former President Donald Trump to move ahead.

REP. MATT GAETZ (R-FL): Moments ago, Speaker McCarthy endorsed an impeachment inquiry. This is a baby step following weeks of pressure from House conservatives to do more. We must move faster.

ZANONA (voiceover): A trio of House committees leading the way the speaker has not put a timeline on the process. Though McCarthy ally Marjorie Taylor Greene said there's no rush.

REP. MARJORIE TAYLOR GREENE (R-GA): I'm interested in going as long as it takes.

ZANONA (voiceover): But marking a McCarthy reversal no formal vote on the launch aimed at protecting his most vulnerable members.

REP. NANCY MACE (R-SC): That puts a lot of seats up at risk, particularly for Republicans who won Biden districts.

ZANONA (voiceover): House Republicans believe the public is on their side. According to a CNN poll, 61 percent of Americans believe Biden was involved in his son's business deals as vice president while 42 percent think he acted illegally. But some GOP senators are uncertain about McCarthy's approach.


SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): The way to make an inquiry legitimate is to have a vote as to whether or not you should have one at all rather than just the leadership deciding.

ZANONA (voiceover): And Democrats not sweating the threat of impeachment.

SEN. JOHN FETTERMAN (D-PA): It's devastating. Oh, don't go. Please don't do it.


ZANONA: And House Republicans have already taken their first official step in this impeachment inquiry. On Tuesday afternoon, a trio of House committees sent a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland requesting all information in all documents about whether Hunter Biden's attorneys encouraged IRS whistleblowers to be retaliated against by the Department of Justice.

These IRS whistleblowers have claimed that the DOJ mishandled and politicize the criminal probe into Hunter Biden. But the DOJ has denied all wrongdoing. Melanie Zanona, CNN, Capitol Hill.

NEWTON: You are watching CNN NEWSROOM live from New York. Just ahead for us. The death toll surges from catastrophic flooding in Libya. We'll get an update on the recovery efforts.


NEWTON: It could be days before we know the true extent of the damage from catastrophic flooding in eastern Libya. So far, authorities say more than 5000 people are presumed dead and another 10,000 still missing. Now in the coastal city of Derna, a government official says many buildings have collapsed and a quarter -- a quarter of the city has literally disappeared.


Now some of the video from this region -- some of the video we're getting in that is extremely graphic. Hospitals are out of service. The morgues are so full. Bodies are lined up on the sidewalks as you can see there. Families now facing the grim task of identifying their loved ones.

Mass burials, in fact are underway as well. But volunteer say there aren't so many victims and not enough people to help with the search and rescue efforts. We go live now to CNN's Eleni Giokos who's been following the extremely extraordinary developments there out of Libya. It's become clear that even Libyan authorities have no idea about the scope of this tragedy. How do they expect to cope especially when so many they're really faced the terror of this storm hitting them full on and now just trying to pick up the pieces?

ELENI GIOKOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, I mean, it's extraordinary what we're seeing. Some of these images that we've been showing are absolutely heartbreaking. The death toll now above 5300. Over 10,000 people that are missing. And again, as you say, the full extent, the human cost, we just don't know yet. Very difficult to verify these numbers. But what we do know is even the Libyan National Army that governs the eastern parts of the country has said that they weren't prepared for the scale of devastation.

It is absolutely catastrophic with bodies lying around the morgue full. You've got hospitals that are not in service, you've got power outages, very difficult to communicate. Roads that are impossible to go to the most affected area. And of course, that is the city of Derna where entire parts of the city just melted away. I mean, literally going into the sea and the two dams that burst also causing muddy waters to flow through the city.

No evacuation orders, no warning systems that were put in place. But the government in the West has also stepped in. This is the rival government to the east. They're sending plans and aid. They're also sending generators to try and get power back up and, of course, communication as well. And we've also just heard from the government emergency and Rapid Response Team saying that what they need right now is surgical supplies and kits.

Other blankets, food, shelter, and they don't need more -- they need more technical help than actual goods. You've got Turkey stepping in, Malta, the UAE, Qatar, Egypt as well. Really important assistance that will be needed at this point of time. The Facebook page of Derna said that they -- the situation is completely out of control. And they're calling for more international assistance.

To give you an understanding of how much rainfall we saw in just one day, 414 millimeters of rain. That is more that is, you know, falls down into the area in eight months. So, it gives you a sense of just the catastrophe and of course, the lack of warning systems because possibly of the political scenarios playing out, remember Libya has been in turmoil for a very long time. Lack of infrastructure maintenance causing the situation to spiral basically out of control.

For now, though, people are desperately trying to find their loved ones. People are searching through the rubble. Rescue teams have this Herculean task of trying to get into the city itself to work through the rubble and what is left. We also know that shelter is required at the stage. Paula, the next few days are going to be absolutely critical for the people in Derna and for the people overall in eastern Libya.

NEWTON: Yes. Eleni Giokos, I want to thank you for the update. And joining me now from Cairo, Egypt is Dr. Elie Abouaou. He is the Libya Country Director for the International Rescue Committee. And we appreciate you being with us. Look, we all are just absolutely horrified at the devastation that we're seeing. Help us understand the infrastructure here. Everything that's been damaged.

I mean, this is a large coastal port when we talk about Derna. It is likely completely destroyed. What are even the survivors dealing with now?

DR. ELIE ABOUAOU, IRC LIBYA COUNTRY DIRECTOR: Yes. Good morning and thank you for having me on the show. Indeed, it is a massive disaster. It's basically, you know, it has been dubbed by some on the social media as being Libya's 9/11. I think the response should be designed accordingly. What happened in that now obviously is the most significant part of what, you know, of the whole -- of the whole emergency situation.

But there are other locations that have been affected by the floods as well. I mean, and then specifically, we've seen the two dams that collapsed, that basically this is the root cause of the massive damage to the city and of the casualties.


But there are other locations in Al Marj, Bayda and Shahat in eastern Libya basically that have been also affected. What we're dealing now with is basically the priority is being given to search and rescue operations, obviously, the window of the 48 to 72 hours, you know, to find survivors closing down very quickly. So, I renew, you know, I'm adding my call to other calls to the international community to support search and rescue operations at this stage.

This is the most critical thing that needs to happen right now, so that we maximize the chances of finding survivors. Otherwise, we're dealing with, you know, thousands of families uprooted from their houses. So, they have to live in displacement, not for a short period of time. We're not talking about weeks, we're talking about long-term displacement, given the status of the infrastructure in the city.

I think that reconstruction we need some time. So, the international community and the aid agencies need to be prepared to deal with long- term displacement.

NEWTON: In terms of that long-term displacement, how difficult will that be given the political structure in Libya? I mean, as you said, even when they try and sort out the rescues to try and help people who likely are now stranded and wondering where their next meal is going to come from, perhaps need medical help. How you -- how do you deal with all of that in the weeks and months to come given, you know, the politics, the complicated political situation in Libya?

ABOUAOU: Well, obviously, there are very good reasons why Libya was included in the Global Fragility Act voted by the U.S. Congress, you know, two years ago, I do think that the political -- the fragility in Libya in general, whether coming from the political context, but also from governance issues, infrastructure issues, the economic model, et cetera. So, you have several elements or buckets to -- how fragility is being defined in Libya. The other thing, why Libya is important to deal with is that there are a lot of subversive actors in Libya at this stage. You know, then that itself was occupied by ISIS for five years, it was liberated only in 2019. And terrorist groups are still around, that now has been liberated. I think a lot of Libyans sacrificed their lives to liberate Derna. But this doesn't mean that the problem is away. Terrorist groups are still active in Libya.

You have Russian mercenaries still in Libya. So, a lot of subversive groups would definitely like to see the response being less than what needs to happen. And therefore, try to, you know, reestablish themselves in that part of Libya. On the political sides, specifically, you know, so far, we didn't see any immediate result of the political division. I think the west-based government has provided support and they're taking -- they're not taking the lead.

So, they -- basically, they let the space for the east base government to take the lead. I think this is a good sign. However, there are some parts of the Libyan administration both the east and the west are still dealing with, you know, petty procedures. I definitely hope that the impediments to access will be lifted by the Libyan authorities as soon as possible. The international organizations have been banned from getting visas for the last year or so.

And this has contributed a lot to the lack of preparedness on the ground. So, I think it helps the Libyan government right now to give us unrestricted access to Libya.

NEWTON: Yes. And that is the point I was getting at it. As you said, one window is already closing in terms of rescues and then there is the enormous help that they will need at some point in time. Given the enormity of the challenge in front of them. Hopefully things will change. Thanks so much for your insights. I really appreciate it.

ABOUAOU: Thank you for having me.

NEWTON: Now in Morocco, the death toll from Friday's powerful earthquake has now climbed past 2900 as hopes of finding more survivors unfortunately fades. State media says the number of people injured is now more than 5500. In his first public appearance since the quake hit, Morocco's King visited a hospital in Marrakesh Tuesday. He met with injured survivors and also donated blood.

Meantime, dozens of residents in one hard-hit rural town have just received long-awaited aide. Help has been slowly trickling into remote villages where roads leading up to them had been damaged or destroyed.

Still to come for us. More on our breaking news. North Korea's Kim Jong-un now in Russia meeting with Vladimir Putin touring a spaceport and talk of a possible arms deal in the works.



NEWTON: The leaders of Russia and North Korea are now getting down to business during a rare meeting in Russia's far east. Kim Jong-Un and Vladimir Putin shook hands and sat down next to each other, you see them there, to begin the official talks at the Vostochny Cosmodrome, a remote Russian space center. President Putin said they, quote, "Have a lot to discuss", and it's believed that those discussions will include a possible weapons deal.


Now earlier, we saw a warm greeting and pleasantries, a tour of the facility, and Kim signing the guest book. He wrote, the glory of Russia, which gave birth to the first conquerors of space, will be immortal. We should say, as well, that his sister was looking on as he was signing that book, which is significant.

CNN's Katie Polglase is tracking all of this for us. You know, we've gotten a lot out of this summit already, and in terms of information they haven't even sat down to have their discussions. And very pointedly, Kim Jong-Un pledged his support in what he called Putin fighting the hegemonic forces, obviously a veiled reference to the war in Ukraine.

KATIE POLGLASE, CNN INVESTIGATIVE PRODUCER: Absolutely, Paula, and that is really the, sort of, elephant in the room here. The war in Ukraine is what is on the table to be discussed. Yes, they are talking about the space program.

Yes they are talking about relations, food security, all these kinds of things, but really the reason why Putin wanted this meeting is because of the war in Ukraine, and his desperate need to secure further ammunition to ensure that he can continue this war.

Because, again, we have been seeing a lot of support from the West for Ukraine. Ukrainian President Zelenskyy has been very capable at home, talking to the West about various ways in which he wants to secure this further weaponry. And he has managed it with this $1 billion assistance from the United States. Now Russia is looking around, trying to find where it can secure this ammunition and North Korea may be the answer.

This is what U.S. officials have been warning about for quite some time, that there may be an arms deal on the table, this is what they may be discussing today. And the reason for this is because North Korean weaponry -- ammunition, would be very suitable for Russian weaponry.

They could put North Korean ammunition into some Russian weaponry directly, and use it on the front lines of Ukraine immediately. But the issue is going to be getting that weaponry to the frontline, because where they are, very near Vladivostok, is thousands of miles away from the front line.

And transporting that weaponry is likely going to be on railways, Cold War era railways that are not very secure, not very stable. And so transporting them is likely going to be quite challenging. But of course, really, the thing here is messaging. Showing the world that Putin has allies, has ways of securing further

support, further ammunition as well, and really in the past couple of days when we look at his recent statements on the war in Ukraine, he's talked yesterday about the Day of Reunification, declaring these regions of Ukraine, Luhansk, Donetsk, Zaporizhzhia, Kherson, all very near the frontlines where Russian forces are very much still fighting and Ukraine has been making some progress recently.

Russia is saying these regions are now going to be unified as part of Russia, they are going to celebrate this with the Day of Reunification on September 30th. All of this is about projecting confidence at a point when maybe the war is not necessarily going Russia's way. This is part of this deal. Showing the world that Russia still has allies and it's still continuing with this war.

NEWTON: Absolutely, Katie, and continuing his own menacing posture, we should know two ballistic missiles were fired from North Korea. We don't know where they landed yet and that was likely the first time that that happened when the North Korean leader was out of the country. We will continue to follow all of this.

Katie Polglase, thank you. Sydney Seiler is the Korea chair senior advisor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and he is former special envoy for the Six-party talks, he joins me now from Washington. All of this adds up to a lot of expertise and we're happy to have you especially given the kind of meetings and intelligence briefings that you've sat in on for the last few decades.

So help us out here, how can you frame this relationship for us in the current context when both Putin and Kim, really, what has happened to them in the last few years is completely different than the last meeting in 2019.

SYDNEY SEILER, KOREA CHAIR SR. ADVISER, CENTER FOR STRATEGIC AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES: Well, first of all, again, Paula, thank you for the invitation. We can see that there are some opportunities in here on both sides and parts, and I think a degree of, not desperation so much on the DPRK side, certainly a degree of desperation on the Russian side. And so this is very much a, for now at least, a marriage of convenience that potentially has some serious strategic impacts going down the road there.

NEWTON: And we want to get to some of those strategic impacts. What are you looking for out of this meaning? What would indicate that this relationship will go beyond, let's say, trade issues?

SEILER: Well, I would imagine that there will be some positive signals on the shared values, the shared view of the need to challenge the U.S.-led Western international liberal order, some ideological bedfellow type of talk, supporting each other, supporting each other's sovereign rights to engage in behaviors.


Beyond that, and one would expect some concrete deals that the Russians would probably get, some type of military assistance they have been seeking, and in exchange, when you look at the delegation that the DPRK has taken, the heavy military presence on it, but yes some from the foreign ministry, some from econ side, so there might be some areas where they are able to secure some type of quid pro quo for whatever military assistance they are going to provide.

I don't think it's going to lead to a major transformation of the relationship. And I hope, and I'm somewhat confident that some of the worst case scenarios that we would see open support to the DPRK nuclear or missile programs being publicly committed, or even tacitly committed, that would be something that would surprise me and tell me that something more serious, and longer term, is evolving here.

NEWTON: And so, if I read you, you're saying that Vladimir Putin does not want to try and advance North Korea's nuclear program in any way, but then that leads me to my other question, China? What do you think it is making of this meeting and perhaps the forging of a new closer bond between Russia and North Korea?

SEILER: China, for all it is in terms of its recent unwillingness to cooperate with the United States and the Security Council to punish -- to respond to North Korea's reported Security Council resolution violations, China prefers a stable status quo. It is part of their talking points. Above all else, they want stability in the region.

And I think there's many ways in which an improved relationship at a personal level between Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-Un, and a closer strategic relationship, that somehow gives Kim Jong-Un a sense he has a greenlight, or at least a flashing yellow to engage in more aggressive behaviors towards South Korea, more dangerous developments and investments of his program.

It seems to me that China cannot be happy with these developments and they want to have -- occurrences early on from the DPRK and probably even from Russia as well that these lines are being crossed.

NEWTON: Okay, and we will leave it there for now. Syd Seiler, our advisor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, we really appreciate your insights there.

SEILER: Thank you very much.

NEWTON: Next for us on CNN NEWSROOM, the man hunt shifts for an escaped murder in Pennsylvania who has now been on the run for two weeks and is believed to be armed. We will have the latest on that search.



NEWTON: Pennsylvania state police have set up a new perimeter in their search for an escaped murder now on the run for the past two weeks. Now they believe he is armed with a rifle, and are urging residents to secure their homes and vehicles. CNN's Brian Todd has the latest now on the manhunt.


BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): New urgency in the Pennsylvania manhunt. Convicted murderer Danelo Cavalcante now armed with a 22 caliber rifle, and shots have been fired.

LT. COL. GEORGE BIVENS, PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE: He has killed two people previously, I would suspect that he's desperate enough to use that weapon.

TODD (voice-over): The escaped convict entered a garage on Monday night and grabbed the rifle from a corner of it. The homeowner was there at the time and shot the intruder several times with a handgun, but he escaped.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With this weapon that is going to increase the risk of carjacking.

TODD (voice-over): The rifle he took also had a scope and a flashlight attached.

DANIEL BRUNER, FORMER FBI SPECIAL AGENT: What is most concerning is, with the rifle and the scope, that he could set up an ambush, or if he sees the officers coming through the woods, he is able to preposition and get ready.

TODD (voice-over): There's no evidence the fugitive was injured by the shots fired at him.

JOHN MILLER, CNN CHIEF LAW ENFORCEMENT AND INTELLIGENCE ANALYST: What the state police has put out to the search team is, if you encounter him, and he does anything other than surrender peacefully, you are -- you have a green light to use deadly force.

TODD (voice-over): He stole the gun just two hours after yet another reported roadside siding. Police responded within minutes but found only matching footprints in the mud, and discarded prison shoes. A pair of boots were stolen from a porch. Locals say many residents know how to use firearms against a trespasser.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: God help him if he tries to, you know, anything like that.

TODD (voice-over): Upwards of five hundred officers are now involved in the search, working shifts as long as 20 hours. The search area, now eight to 10 square miles, 20 miles north of the prison he escaped from. Over the weekend he managed to steal a van from a dairy farm and ring the doorbell of at least two former work associates.

BIVENS: He has spent time in that area in the past, so he is familiar with it.

TODD (voice-over): Residents in the search area receiving this warning by phone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lock all external doors and windows. Secure vehicles and remain indoors. TODD (voice-over): One nearby school district closing on Tuesday, three others keeping kids inside.

JOSH SHAPIRO, PENNSYLVANIA GOVERNOR: We do not have evidence at this time that there is assistance being rendered to this individual. In fact, quite the contrary, we've had wonderful cooperation from the public. If you do anything, anything to try and assist this individual, we will hold you accountable.

TODD (voice-over): Cavalcante was sentenced to life in prison without parole for killing his former girlfriend in 2021. He is also wanted in his native Brazil in a 2017 homicide case.

BIVENS: It's a possibility that he will attack the police to try and get away, it's a possibility that he will attack a civilian, it's a possibility that it would be a suicide by cop.

TODD: One of the possible advantages that Danelo Cavalcante has, police say he has been in this area before and he is familiar with at least some of it. One of his possible disadvantages, he could be moving around shirtless.

Police say he ditched a green hoodie and a white tee shirt at the foot of the driveway of the home where he was fired upon by the homeowner, and, at last word, they had no reason to believe that he had other clothing on him. Brian Todd, CNN, South Coventry Township, Pennsylvania.


NEWTON: Still to come for us, pop music fans got a big surprise when 90s boy band group NSYNC reunited for the MTV Video Music Awards. The reason for their appearance, just ahead.



NEWTON: Apple has unveiled its newest devices, including the latest iPhone lineup with an all new design. The iPhone 15, that's the number we're at folks, features updates to the camera, and a new titanium shell. Now, one of the biggest changes, how consumers will charge these phones.

Apple is getting rid of the lightning port and charger after 11 years, and turning, instead, to U.S.B C chargers. I think that's more universal. That's the way I can say that. Now the MTV Music Video Awards brought out some of music's biggest stars on Tuesday, including a surprise reunion by pop music group NSYNC.

The boy band appeared together for the very first time in 10 years. They last appeared together at the same awards ceremony in 2013, but came together this time to present singer Taylor Swift with the Best Pop Award for her song Anti-Hero.

Swift also won video of the year, of course she did, for the second year in a row. She took home two more awards as well on Tuesday including song of the year and best direction. And I want to thank you for your company. I'm Paula Newton, I will be right back in a few moments with more NEWSROOM.