Return to Transcripts main page

CNN This Morning

Biden, Zelenskyy Meet As Annual Summit Winds Down; Biden Teases Involving 14th Amendment Again On Debt Ceiling; Ukrainian Military: Battles For The City Of Bakhmut Continue; Russia, Wagner Group Claim To Have Control Of Bakhmut; Adult Use Of Recreational Marijuana Expected To Become Legal In Minnesota; To Address Healthcare Diversity, HBCUs Are Calling For Additional Resources; According To A Volunteer Group, NYC No Longer Enable Them To Welcome Migrants Arriving At Port Authority Bus Terminal; Largest Underwater Scanning Project In History Give Previously Unseen View Of Titanic. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired May 21, 2023 - 07:00   ET




AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome everyone to CNN THIS MORNING. President Biden is headed back to Washington after wrapping up a consequential G7 summit.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: The President says he has a call scheduled with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy once his meetings conclude in Japan. Debt ceiling talks appear to stall with negotiators on both sides saying they were unsure when they would meet again. Republicans have called for deep spending cuts in exchange for their support to raise the nation's borrowing limit. The President this morning said that many of Republicans demands are unacceptable.

Also today, President Biden held his first face to face with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy since they met in Kyiv in February. During the sit down, President Biden announced a new $370 million -- $75 million security assistance package to Ukraine.

WALKER: We are bringing you team coverage from around the globe. CNN's Sam Kiley is live in Ukraine, but we're going to begin with Phil Mattingly in Hiroshima. Phil, we just heard President Biden speak a big chunk of it about the latest on the debt ceiling and it doesn't seem like there's been much progress at all, Phil.

PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes. In fact, it seems that they've gone backwards. I don't think there's any question about that in terms of where things were when the President left for this trip, for this very high stakes summit, appointing his negotiating team to meet with the House Republican negotiating team. The first couple of meetings seemingly productive.

The President throughout the course of the G7 summit, whenever he was asked about the debt limit or the debt ceiling negotiation seemed to strike a relatively positive tone, or at least a tone that seemed to understand that this was kind of a negotiation that was eventually going to get there. That was a very different tone than we heard from earlier -- sorry. It was a very different tone than we heard today.

And I think what that underscores is the fact that things are just very far apart right now. You mentioned that call with Speaker McCarthy, the President saying perhaps that the Speaker wanted to wait to actually negotiate directly with the President. I can tell you, the Speaker would very much like to negotiate directly with the President. We'll see how that kind of construct plays out after that phone call.

But I think the reality here, and I think foreign leaders were aware of it throughout the course of this summit, a very high stakes and a very substantive and consequential summit in terms of what came away from it, that this was hanging over everything. And there was not a lot of time to figure this out.

And at this point, there are no new meetings scheduled outside of the call between the President and the Speaker. And I think perhaps most interestingly, the President was asked about the 14th Amendment, this idea of using unilateral action to address this if no deal is made.

And he made clear what he's made clear in the past, that they have looked into this deeply. They have considered it. They think it might even work, but they know it would face legal challenges and probably would end up having the same effect given the short time frame.

So I asked at the very end, does that mean that there are no unilateral options, there are no fallback plans, there is no executive action you can take? The President said yes, essentially. Said, this is up to lawmakers. He said, it's up to lawmakers. So that's the reality.

Eleven days until a potential default, there is no fallback plan. Lawmakers have to reach a deal, and they are very far from one right now, guys.

BLACKWELL: All right, Phil Mattingly, for us there in Hiroshima.

Let's go now to CNN's Sam Kiley live in Kyiv -- in Ukraine, I'm sorry. Sam, the Wagner group says it has captured Bakhmut. Zelenskyy denies that the city is in Russian hands, but also said that there's not much left. It's in our hearts, President Zelenskyy says. What do we know?

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: So the latest from the Ukrainian side is that they say that in the southwest corner of the city, in the urban area, if you like, there still are Ukrainian troops fighting, even though the Kremlin and the Wagner mercenary group have claimed that they've captured the town itself.

Now, it is also being flanked. And we know this independently of what the Ukrainians may claim to the north and the south by the Ukrainian troops. They have been advancing. There has been some very bitter fighting there, but they have been able to push around the city.

So this is not over it. It should be seen really as part of the ebb and flow of combat in general. Strategically, Bakhmut doesn't matter. It has been a killing ground for Ukrainians and for the Russians for many months now.


More Russians have perished there than Ukrainians. I don't think there's any doubt about that. But it has been a bloody and brutal battle that, in all probability, is simply not over. So this is a temporary stunt, if you like, coming from the Wagner mercenary group that's also saying that they want to pull out by Thursday and hand over to the Russian regular army. That would certainly provide an opportunity for a localized counterattack, at the very least by the Ukrainians, who now, of course, have Bakhmut as a free fire zone.

They could kill everything inside that city in a sense, with a clear conscience, if you like. There are no civilians really left in that city. There are only Russians, according to the Russians. And therefore, it could be argued really that this is a Pyrrhic victory for Wagner. They now find themselves encircled potentially by the Ukrainians and in a free fire kill zone for Ukrainian artillery.

But at the same time, of course, President Zelenskyy greatly encouraged by, I think, he will be by the statements coming from the U.S. President on his commitment to supply training on and possibly the aircraft themselves in terms of F-16 for Ukraine, not in the short term, not likely to be coming online for the summer offensive that is anticipated here, but will be part of the longer term offensive capabilities for Ukraine.

And if they succeed in pushing the Russians out, then the longer-term defensive capabilities are preserving their territorial integrity.

BLACKWELL: All right, Sam, I wonder -- I want to talk to you about specifically one conversation, one meeting that President Zelenskyy had and that's with Narendra Modi of India, who's still a customer of Russia, buying Russian oil. The cruciality of that meeting, considering that President Zelenskyy has met with the other leaders that he spoke with at the G7, what were you watching for out of that discussion?

KILEY: I think it's very important. The BRICS have been -- some of the countries like Brazil didn't meet with President Zelenskyy somewhat sitting on the fence when it comes to -- which side should they kind of come down behind India, importing a lot of Russian oil, a lot of criticism for India over that in the past.

But Modi signaling that he is starting to think that he maybe should be doing something else in terms of offering, at the very least, more diplomatic support for Ukraine, a step forward in terms of diplomacy for Ukraine there.

BLACKWELL: Sam, thank you.

Let's bring in now Kim Dozier, CNN Global Affairs Analyst and Senior Managing Editor at the Military Times. Kim, to you. I want to put that question to you because I understand you told one of our producers that the Indian element, the prime minister there, his involvement, his approach to this Russian invasion, that was what you were focusing on. Explain why.

KIMBERLY DOZIER, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Well, India had a good relationship with Ukraine before the 2021 Russian invasion. They had a number of Indian students studying in medical schools in Ukraine. They also had business deals, contracts for Ukrainian manufacture of spare parts for these Soviet era weapons because each country was using those kind of weapons.

So this was a chance to revive that relationship and also for Modi to explain to Zelenskyy behind closed doors why he's keeping the doors open with Moscow and possibly how they could help negotiate some sort of peace deal in the future. But from India's position, post-pandemic, they need cheap fuel. Their economy got shattered by COVID, and they also have always felt the need to keep Moscow onside to offset the threat of China.

You know, China has had some military incursions on the Indian border, and they've always felt, from the Delhi point of view, that Moscow has been their ally long term and is a way to keep Beijing at bay.

BLACKWELL: Before we focus on what's happening in Ukraine, one more on the G7. You were just back from Estonia, and the previous president had a pretty obvious aversion to these multilateral organizations G7, G20, NATO. He's been critical in this campaign of how much the Biden administration is spending to support Ukraine.

How much are world leaders paying attention to the domestic fight here looking forward to 2024? And is that causing them a degree of angst? What did you hear in Estonia?

DOZIER: I was at the Lennart Meri conference with a number of NATO and Baltic officials, and they've said that the Biden administration has done fantastic leading this coalition to support Ukraine.


But they're watching Ron DeSantis's interviews. They are watching Donald Trump on the CNN town hall and they're hearing from the GOP less support for Ukraine, possibly even a future cut off of aid. So there's this anxiety and feeling that they've got to front load as much aid as possible to help Ukraine make gains on the battlefield, to win back as much as possible in this upcoming counteroffensive ahead of the winter and then a U.S. election year that could really freeze U.S. attention and aid and freeze the conflict in place.

BLACKWELL: On Bakhmut, and Yevgeny Prigozhin's claim that now they have -- Russians have now taken control of Bakhmut, what's that worth now?

DOZIER: Well, our reporter who is in touch with people on the ground in Bakhmut, Ukrainian units around, say, they're still very much fighting. This has become a symbolic city. It is not strategically important, but for Russia, it has become a point on the map that they had to win in order to show Vladimir Putin that they're making gains on the battlefield. From the Ukrainian perspective, they took Russia's stubborn persistence in Bakhmut, they took advantage of it because estimates are that it's cost Moscow five to one soldiers, many, many casualties to take that ground. So -- because it's always harder to take ground than to hold it.

So now they've gotten what is essentially a shattered city, the majority of it, but the Ukrainians have been trying to sort of draw them in. It'll be interesting to see what the Ukrainian next step is. There's been talk even of encircling the Russian troops and then attacking them. At the very least, what they've done is a holding action to buy time for a new surge of trained Ukrainian troops, new weaponry for that counteroffensive across all fronts.

BLACKWELL: All right. Kimberly Dozier, thank you.

WALKER: All right, now that President Biden is heading back home, his top priority is the debt ceiling stalemate. And he did mention in that news conference that he will be getting on the phone with the House Speaker Kevin McCarthy shortly.

CNN White House Reporter Jasmine Wright joining us now from Washington with the very latest on these negotiations. Let's call it a stalemate and as we heard from Phil Mattingly earlier, it's more than a stalemate. It looks like talks have taken a step back.

JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Yes, I mean it's very clear from President Biden's comments this morning that these talks are not in a good place and that there is no clear pathway to a deal. Even beyond that, President Biden said that he could not guarantee that the nation doesn't default in just 12 days.

Remember, June 1 is that X date where the Treasury Department identified could be the first date that the U.S. defaults on its debt for the first time in the nation's history. So there will be a lot writing on this high stakes call with President Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy that the President takes on his way back to the U.S. from Japan on Air Force One. It's a call that the President asked his aides to put together so that they could try to write the ship.

Now, in terms of the President's overall message, we heard him say very clearly that they are willing to talk, that they are willing to accept spending cuts, but they are not willing to accept all of the, quote, unreasonable and unacceptable things that Republicans have offered and put on the table, saying that ultimately it's going to be Republicans that have to move. Take a listen.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Now it's time for the other side to move from their extreme positions because much of what they've already proposed is simply, quite frankly, unacceptable. And so let me be clear, I'm not going to agree to a deal that protects, for example, $30 billion tax break for the oil industry, which made $200 billion last year. They don't need an incentive of another $30 billion while putting health care of 21 million Americans at risk by going after Medicaid.


WRIGHT: Now, President Biden made it clear in questioning during this press conference that there were significant disagreements between Republican negotiators and Democratic negotiators, specifically when it comes to revenue. He said that Republicans wanted to take revenue off the table, but from where he's coming from, revenue is on the table, especially when it comes to tax structure and trying to make some more income for the U.S.

Now, he also spoke in depth about invoking the 14th Amendment. We've been reporting on that for a while. We know that they've had conversations in the background. But Phil Mattingly asked President Biden very clearly if that is a tangible option going forward. Again, only about 11 days until that X date potentially.

And President Biden made it clear that, you know, although they're thinking about it, he didn't feel like it would be able to happen in time because of course it's going to be open to litigation, they feel.


So, of course, President Biden said very clearly that the only option is for these bipartisan leaders to really come to a decision to avoid default. Amara?

WALKER: All right. Jasmine Wright, thank you.

Coming up, Ukrainian President Zelenskyy just wrapped up a press conference at the G7 conference denying that Russia has -- denying Russia's claim that it has control of Bakhmut.


WALKER: Well President Volodymyr Zelenskyy just wrapped up a news conference at the G7 conference in Hiroshima. It comes as the Wagner Group says it has captured Bakhmut

BLACKWELL: Now, Zelenskyy denies that the city is in Russian hands. He just added that and addressed it. Let's take a listen.


VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translation): We don't have simple questions anymore, as well as we don't have simple answers. Because we have a very complicated neighbor who is a criminal, a terrorist, a complicated enemy.


But we are keeping on. We are fighting, thanks to the courage of our people, our warriors, and thanks to our cleverness. We are not throwing people to die. For us, the people are the treasure. This is the most important thing that we have, and there are no misunderstandings. I clearly understand what is taking place in Bakhmut and we all clearly understand why all of that is taking place. I cannot share with you the tactical views of our military, of our warriors, but as of today, we can see that the country which dozens times is bigger than we are, cannot occupy us, cannot win in this war.

And we understand that a bit more. And then we will be prevailing. And that is why we are acting how we are acting, valuing lives of the people. The hardest is when if Bakhmut had some military tactical mistake, for instance, and people could be surrounded, then all the military know what could happen, how we could create the situation for people not to be captured.

Now our people are accomplishing a very important mission. They are now in Bakhmut. I will not share where exactly, but it witnesses that Bakhmut is not occupied by Russian Federation as of today. There are no two or three interpretations of those words.


BLACKWELL: Sam Kiley and Kim Dozier are back with us now. Sam, let me start with you. Wagner's claim to have control of Bakhmut before, is there any reason, certainly in the context of what we just heard from President Zelenskyy, to believe that that's any more believable now than it was several months ago?

KILEY: Well, I mean, the leader of the Wagner group, Yevgeny Prigozhin is likely to be identified as the leader of a terrorist organization. He's already been identified as the leader of a transnational criminal organization. His people have bludgeoned their own people to death with sledgehammers when they have been returned as prisoners of war to their care.

So I think the simple answer is no. I don't think anybody should say any store whatsoever by statements coming from Wagner leader Prigozhin, because he likes to make these dramatic statements on an almost daily basis, garnering a huge amount of unwarranted media attention, quite frankly.

And the battle for Bakhmut is going to ebb and flow. They may or may not be dominant in the urbanized area. They are certainly under pressure on the flanks. The Ukrainians are insisting that they still have people in the urban area and claiming short-term victories simply illustrates a failure to understand that battles are dynamic rather than static occasions.

They don't end like a soccer match. They continue indefinitely until there is an absolute result. Arguably, indeed, the Ukrainians could be in the process of encircling what remains of the Wagner mercenary group in the urban area, which is a free fire zone. Now, if it is completely clear of Ukrainian troops and they're likely to be sitting in a trap rather than victorious.

WALKER: Kim Dozier, to you now, and let's take a step back and talk about the big picture in regards to, you know, the results of this G7 summit. There was one picture that I saw of Zelenskyy having that family photo with all the G7 leaders flanked by them, obviously, hugely symbolic to show the solidarity and support behind Ukraine.

And of course, you heard about the military aid package, the $375 million that President Biden just announced. But more consequentially, are the F-16 jets that are now going to be exported? And of course the pilots will be trained on that. And of course ,that'll take some time for the Ukrainians to see those jets in use. What was your biggest takeaway in terms of measuring success for Zelenskyy regarding the G7?

DOZIER: The fact that European leaders now see this war as existential for them. When you go to Europe and talk to whether it's someone in the Baltic nations or a BRIT, they have a very different perception of Russia now. They think Russia is unhinged and they feel like if they don't stop Russian forces in Ukraine, Russia will attack somewhere else, possibly a NATO nation next time.

So I think even if Washington's resolve somewhat ebbs after this, European resolve will not and you saw that in that photo. Also, the push among European nations to, despite the threat of nuclear war by Russia, give the Ukrainians F-16s means that they are seeing this in terms of we need to help Ukraine win as soon as possible and we also need to help Ukraine supplant or prevent any future Russian invasion that could threaten Kyiv again.

And sophisticated technology like those jets does that, even though it's going to take a minimum of roughly four to five months to train the Ukrainian pilots. And you also have to build the whole technical tale on the ground. The support system, the contractors, the trained technicians that know how to maintenance those F-16s keep to them in the air.

Kim Dozier and Sam Kiley, we'll leave it there. Thank you both.

And still ahead, it is a view of the Titanic that you've never seen before. What's being called the largest underwater scanning project in history. It is now providing some fascinating information about what really happened the night it sank.


WALKER: All right, time now to take a look at some of the other top stories this hour. The state of Minnesota is on track to legalize recreation on marijuana after the state's legislature passed the bill and sent it to the governor's desk.


Democratic Governor, Tim Walz, has said he plans to sign the bill which would allow Minnesota residents, 21 and older, to possess up to two ounces of marijuana flower in public and two pounds at home starting August 1st. This would make Minnesota the 23rd state to legalize cannabis use for adults. The measure would also automatically expunge low-level marijuana convictions and create a board to review higher-level offenses.

BLACKWELL: A teenager in Arizona is facing serious felony charges after police say he brought an AR-15 style firearm to school, Friday, with extra ammunition in his backpack and lunchbox. Phoenix police officers say that they acted quickly to arrest the teenager after receiving a call from the school about a gun on campus.

Now, authorities are not revealing the student's name and age because he is a minor, and no information has been released yet on where the semiautomatic rifle came from and why the student allegedly brought the weapon to school.

WALKER: The NAACP has issued a travel advisory for Florida and it's urging the black community to avoid visiting or moving to the Sunshine State. According to the statement, the advisory comes in direct response to Republican Governor Ron DeSantis', "Aggressive attempts to erase black history". And it calls Florida openly hostile toward African Americans, people of color and the LGBTQ individuals. CNN has reached out to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for comment but didn't receive a response.

BLACKWELL: The Colombian military has deployed survival kits to help four children, aged 11 months to 13 years old, who have been missing in the Amazon for more than two weeks after the plane they were aboard crashed in the jungle. Now, authorities there believe that those kids may still be alive and officials hope that if the missing children find the survival kits, which have been dropped in various locations and contains items like water, flour and fire starters, they can use them to sustain themselves until help arrives. Now, the military has vowed to find the children as the incident has become a national concern in Colombia.

WALKER: Lawmakers are sounding the alarm as they work to address the health-care worker shortage that is growing across the nation. Right now, the U.S. needs more than 17,000 additional primary care doctors and that shortage is even more severe in black and brown communities. While the black community makes up 13 percent of the U.S. population, only about five percent of U.S. physicians are black.

So, to address this issue, Senator Bernie Sanders met with leaders of historically black medical schools with the goal of finding ways to increase diversity in the healthcare sector. Dr. Hugh Mighty was one of those leaders at Senator Sanders' roundtable. He is a senior vice president for health affairs at Howard University.

Dr. Mighty, thank you so much for your time this morning. So, tell me more about this conversation you had with Senator Sanders. What did you tell him?

DR. HUGH MIGHTY, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT FOR HEALTH AFFAIRS, HOWARD UNIVERSITY: So, I did -- what we told him was that, you know, when you look at the rate of physicians in the country where we have a shortage of physicians, that is deemed exacerbated though when you look at minority and underserved communities. We have fewer black doctors available to serve those communities. So, we need to have more physicians, more black physicians, and the historically black medical colleges that are here can get more, but there are some bottlenecks to doing so.

WALKER: Well, tell me about those bottlenecks and the barriers, you know, that people, the black people who want to go into the medical field are facing and discourages them from getting into the medical field.

DR. MIGHTY: Well, there are two in particular. One is just the high cost for medical education, all right. So, an average graduate today is going to graduate with between $200,000 and $300,000 worth of debt. That's exacerbated among our black medical students because many of them enter medical school with a lot of premedical school college debt to follow them. So, there's a very high cost to go into a medical school. So, that's one.

The second one, and just as importantly, as we try to increase the number of doctors that we can produce, their second step is to go through residency training. That's when you really become a doctor, all right. That's when people talk about internists or surgeons or OB- GYNs. The number of slots available in country are not enough to accommodate the increase in graduates.

So, each year several, several -- actually, over 1,000 graduates will go without slots. So, we can't increase the number of doctors, especially the number of black doctors, without some way of opening up these slots.

WALKER: So, did you guys talk about some tangible solutions in terms of how more slots can be opened up, and, obviously, cost is a huge barrier to so many people, especially people who come from, you know, underserved communities. I mean, I think the number was $250,000 is the average medical school graduate debt.


DR. MIGHTY: Correct. So, there are some things that, you know, we could do. One is we could find ways to improve support and funding for people who want to enter medical school, all right, so that we can train more physicians. The other is through the Congress, if you will, the CMS, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services can also be helpful because they control the number of slots available for residency training. So, I know there are bills that are trying to work their way through the Congress to get more slots in play so that we can increase the number of doctors.

WALKER: Dr. Hugh Mighty, appreciate the conversation this morning. Thank you very much.

BLACKWELL: It's been almost one year since a man started shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. He killed 19 students and two teachers. One of those students was 10-year-old Lexi Rubio. The 10- year-old who made honor roll earlier that day. Now, CNN's Shimon Prokupecz spoke to her parents in a new episode of "The Whole Story with Anderson Cooper." Here's a look.


SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: I don't know if all of you want to watch this video or not. I don't know where folks that-- UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want to watch it.

PROKUPECZ: I know if Cassandra (ph) does. I don't know how rest of you feel but --


PROKUPECZ: You do or you don't?


PROKUPECZ: You do? OK. We don't normally do stuff like this. So, that's why a part of it. So, like, in this process, of course, like, we kind of need to explain to you guys why we're doing it, why do you want to do it, and then kind of like why we agreed do it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think the reason we want to watch it is because when we -- explained it to us, we want to put, you know, the story together, and see what -- when she tells us things like what it is and how it happened.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For me, I just want to see the big picture of it, exactly what she went through, where she was at, you know. I just -- that's --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And how they suffered.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. I want to see -- that's my thing. How they suffered and why they suffered so long, you know what I mean? The truth is going to finally come out one day, but I mean, what can you do? You've got to wait patiently until the truth comes out.


BLACKWELL: Watch an all-new episode of "The Whole Story with Anderson Cooper", one whole story, one whole hour. It airs tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern and Pacific only on CNN. And we'll be right back.



BLACKWELL: A volunteer group that greets migrants surviving in New York says the city will no longer allow them to assist those coming to the Port Authority Bus Terminal. New York City has now converted the Roosevelt Hotel into its new arrival center as asylum seekers continue to pour into the city since the end of Title 42.

WALKER: Mayor Eric Adams' office says, the hotel which has been closed for nearly three years is providing migrants shelter and humanitarian relief. CNN's Gloria Pazmino has more. Gloria.

GLORIA PAZMINO, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Victor, Amara, I want to tell you a little bit about what we have been seeing here. A lot of migrants, young families, young children arriving at the Roosevelt Hotel here behind me. This is the place that the city has set up, meant to operate as a welcome center.

And I want to show you what it looks like inside. We have some video and some photographs that the City of New York has provided in order to give us a look at what they have set up inside the hotel. This is meant to help connect migrants with the resources that are available. When they arrive here at the welcome center, they are provided food, water, medical care if needed.

And then they try to help migrants get on their way. Many of the migrants have no intention of staying here in New York City. They certainly may not have a long-term plan to do so. Some of them are trying to travel to other places in the country to connect with friends or family members, and the city is trying to step in and help them do that.

But then, there's also another big challenge when it comes to connecting migrants with resources, and that is the question of shelter. New York City has been really at capacity. The mayor of New York, Eric Adams, has talked about this over and over, over the past several weeks as migrants continue to arrive here in the city. Now, we saw about three buses arrive throughout the day and we are expecting that number to increase throughout the weekend and we are averaging, here in the City of New York, about 600 migrant arrivals per day.

So, shelter, as I mentioned, continues to be one of the key issues. Now, I wanted to speak to one of the advocates that has been working with the migrant community over the past several months about the issues and the challenges that they are having when it comes to sheltering people. And the conversation around this community, some places outside of New York City have filed lawsuits to stop New York from busing migrants to their suburbs. Listen to what he had to say.


MURAD AWAWDEH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NEW YORK IMMIGRATION COALITION: New York has welcomed people for centuries from across the world, from Europe, from Asia, from Africa, the middle east, and beyond. Immigrants and refugees have built the city, have -- really are part and parcel of the social fabric and cultural fabric of what we call New York, not just here in the city, but across the state. And immigrant communities and refugees have actually brought back communities and have been the backbone of local economies.


PAZMINO: Now, as you heard there, despite New York City's reputation as being a welcoming place for migrants.


There are parts of the city, especially the suburbs, that have tried to stop New York City from sending migrants their suburbs, to their cities. Part of this is that the suburbs say that they have much fewer resources and that they don't have the capacity to deal with the influx of migrants. The mayor has said that he basically has no other option but to send people out of the city because the shelter capacity here in New York is simply running out.

So, there's a much larger question here of what the city is going to do in terms of providing people a more permanent solution in addition to just temporary shelter, especially for people who do want to stay in New York City. In the meantime, the hotel behind me, the Roosevelt, has 175 rooms. They are hoping to scale up to 850 rooms and this place is designed for children and families. As I said, the intention here is to connect them with the available services as the migrants arrive and continue to be on their way. Reporting in New York, Gloria Pazmino, back to you.

WALKER: All right. Gloria, thank you.

Still ahead this morning, a remarkable and never-before-seen view of the Titanic. We're going to talk to the filmmaker behind the new underwater scanning project that may give answers to some of the mysteries still surrounding the ship's sinking. That's next.



BLACKWELL: It's a new way to look at the world's most famous shipwreck. Experts have created a 3D digital twin of the Titanic using deep sea mapping to reconstruct the wreckage from the 700,000 images they've created.

WALKER: Those are really fascinating images we're seeing. And they believe the large-scale underwater scanning project is a game changer and it may solve the mystery of what exactly caused the luxury passenger liner to sink in the Atlantic in 1912.

Here with us now is Anthony Geffen. He is the CEO and executive producer of the Atlantic Productions, one of the firms behind this production. Welcome to you, Anthony. So, tell us, why might this be a game changer?

ANTHONY GEFFEN, CEO AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCER, ATLANTIC PRODUCTIONS: Well, this goes back very briefly to five years ago when I went on an expedition to the Titanic, the first time, actually, I dive happened for 14 years before that. And we filmed in 4k, incredible images of the Titanic and it was deteriorating which worried us.

So, two things worried us. One, it was deteriorating. Two, to really tell the Titanic story, we had to develop new technology to actually be able to capture this on a one-to-one resolution. And I found a company, who -- Magellan, who were specialists in this in the development technology to do it. No one else in the world could do it, and that's how the expedition happened.

And it's hard to describe, but you can literally -- you are probably seeing some of the images, you can literally look at a single bolt on the side of this massive boat and move around it. And we're finding the most extraordinary human stories already. It took us seven months to consolidate all those images and data together but we now have an exact replica that we can walk around in, virtual reality or in any other way, and we're finding really extraordinary human stories.

BLACKWELL: 715,000 images, 16 terabytes of data, 10 times larger than any underwater 3D model ever attempted. You talked about some of the human stories, they're obviously outstanding questions. What are the questions? What is the applicability a century later of this shipwreck?

GEFFEN: Yes. Well, let me just tell you about some of the human stories because they're the beginning of the human stories. People say, well, what can you tell from a digital twin of a wreck? Well, some of the experts have found already that one of the questions when the Titanic sank is, how could the lights have remained on? I mean, who was keeping the lights on?

And what -- in the debris field, which is around the Titanic, the experts have found what's called boiler room one. And boiler room one, we now realize, was a light because it's fractured when it went in the water. So, we now know the very people, exact people who were in boiler room one who are keeping it going. That's on story.

Let me give you another story. The other side of the boat. There's a guy called Officer Murdoch, there's always been a villain in the story and indeed so was in the Cameron film was a villain, because he wouldn't launch the last lifeboat. We went to the area where that lifeboat is, and it's extraordinary, there is a pin or davit still there. And the reason he couldn't launch the lifeboat is because the lifeboat couldn't launch because there was a pin in the way of launching. So, we're -- that completely rewrites it.

Go to the debris field, which is a three-mile by three-mile radius, is where when the boat was sinking, it put out all the belongings of the people on the ship. And there you have hats and you have necklaces and watches. The most incredible things on the bottom of the ocean. But we realized, how could you humanize that? So, we got every photograph that existed of everybody on the Titanic and we're use A.I. to link those particular belongings to individuals.

So, certainly, the bottom of the ocean is coming alive with the passengers and people who were on that boat. This is just the beginning, however. Many things are going to be found out. And we are now working on putting the model as it were back together. And for the first time, we'll really understand how this ship sank.

WALKER: That's remarkable that you make that connection with the passengers that were on the ship. For the people who are super interested in this, and we've to get going but quickly, how and when could they see the results of your project?

GEFFEN: OK. I think next year, there will be a documentary but one of the things that's really exciting is the digital quality is so extraordinary, new technology is, you know, steadily coming for AR and VR. People at home and in museums and exhibitions will actually be able to walk around the Titanic, walk around the debris field ford themselves.

[07:55:00] But the real results will come probably in about six months' time when the work has been done. Because you imagine, the experts are actually walking into the Titanic every day and finding clues to what happened in this extraordinary thing. But I like the fact that the digital twin is allowing us to go back and really look at one of the great events in history.

WALKER: Thank you so much, Anthony Geffen. Fascinating stuff. Appreciate it.

All right. Still ahead on "CNN THIS MORNING," President Biden is wrapping up the G7 Summit, has wrapped it up in Japan and heading back to Washington as debt ceiling negotiations remain stalled here at home. The very latest next.