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Hospital Fire in Iraq Kills at least 70; Cuban President Calls Protesters "Criminals"; South African President Calls for End to Violent Protests; IOC President Says Tokyo "Best Ever Prepared City" for Olympics; Australia's Low Vaccination Rate; Racist Abuse Directed at English Euro 2020 Players. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired July 13, 2021 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST (voice-over): Grief and anger after a hospital fire in Iraq that killed scores of people -- and this is not the first
time. The bereaved families want answers.
"It's all your fault." Cuba's president blames U.S. sanctions for the anti- government protests. But the demonstrators shout "Liberty."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON (voice-over): Spiraling out of control, what began as protests over the imprisonment of a former president has since turned to looting.
We'll have a live report from Johannesburg for you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: It's 10:00 am in Washington. It's 3:00 pm in London and it is 6:00 pm in Abu Dhabi. I'm Becky Anderson. Hello and welcome to CONNECT THE
We begin with flames in the night sky and death on the ground in Iraq. At least 70 people lost their lives Monday night, trapped in a hospital fire
that officials believe erupted after oxygen tanks exploded in a COVID ICU unit.
This was the scene a few hours later, when the light came up in the southeastern city of Nasiriyah. A lot of questions are now being asked. The
prime minister has called an emergency meeting.
And Iraq's president is blaming the tragedy on, quote, "corruption and mismanagement." A tragedy much like this one happened in April in Baghdad.
At the heart of it all, more grief for the people of Iraq. Flames may be out but anger over the tragedy is growing. CNN's Jomana Karadsheh is
covering this story -- Jomana.
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky, as you said, there is so much anger, shock and disbelief as this is happening again in Iraq. What we do
understand is the fire broke out at this hospital south of Baghdad late on Monday night.
The hospital, Becky, was packed at that time. Iraq is dealing with a third wave of the pandemic, the worst so far. So it was packed with patients and
family members. And according, of course, as you mentioned, the prime minister ordered an investigation.
But initial reports we were getting reports from local officials, they believe what started this was an oxygen tank exploding. According to the
interior ministry, they say that the fire started at an isolation area of the hospital, a makeshift area, where they were using these caravans that
are made of highly flammable material that caught fire.
And it spread across the hospital, as you mention there. The Iraqi president blaming this on corruption and mismanagement. Other officials
doing the same. The Iraqi prime minister dispatching a high-level delegation to the province to oversee the investigation.
He has also suspended a number of local officials, including the hospital director, pending this investigation. But Becky, Iraqis have heard that all
before. And that is why you are seeing that anger.
Hundreds of people gathered last night outside the hospital. They want accountability. They are fed up of these tragedies, one after the other.
And every time, it is the Iraqi people who end up paying the price.
ANDERSON: Let's just set some context for this. They are crying out for accountability.
What chance that they will get that?
KARADSHEH: Well, I mean, that is the big question, Becky, right. When you look at Iraq's health sector, you look at the problem, this is a health
sector that is barely standing. It has been decimated by decades of war, sanctions, corruption, mismanagement, you name it.
And then on top of that, you've got the pandemic that has overwhelmed this already overstretched health sector. So you have that one problem.
Then there is the issue again, as you mention, accountability. Perhaps, as we have heard indications from Iraqi officials, they're blaming this on
mismanagement and negligence. They know what the problem is.
What is being done about this?
We have had the very similar incident, almost identical, less than three months ago taking place in Baghdad.
What happened after that?
KARADSHEH: Officials were fired, dismissed.
And then the question is, were there any precautions put in place, any safety measures put in place in other hospitals to prevent a repeat of this
And this is what Iraqis are asking, you know. They responded to Iraqi officials on their tweets, talking about mismanagement and corruption,
asking them, what exactly are you doing?
Have lessons not been learned?
How do you ensure that this doesn't happen again?
As we said earlier, Becky, they have heard this all before. They know what is going to happen now, an investigation; the prime minister is promising
results of this investigation within a week. Officials being suspended and fired.
But how do you ensure this does not happen again?
And tragically again, it is the Iraqis who continue to pay the heaviest price.
ANDERSON: Jomana Karadsheh is on the story for you.
Jomana, thank you.
Well, today the Biden administration confronting two escalating foreign policy issues in the Caribbean, the aftermath of the presidential
assassination in Haiti and unprecedented nationwide protests in Cuba. CNN has reporters standing by for you in both countries.
Let's start with the situation in Cuba. The country blaming Washington for the unrest, accusing it of economic asphyxiation. Harsh sanctions have been
in place for years, of course. Demonstrators directly blame the Cuban government, which has responded by reportedly arresting at least 100
protesters, activists and independent journalists.
That is according to the exiled rights group Cubalex. Protesters are fed up with food and medicine shortages, recent power outages, an economy utterly
crippled by the COVID-19 pandemic. We have heard them shout this, "Liberdad," "Liberty," repeatedly. A U.S. official says it is time the
Cuban regime listen to its people.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTONY BLINKEN, UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF STATE: I think it would be a grievous mistake for the Cuban regime to interpret what is happening in
dozens of towns and cities across the island as the result or product of anything the United States has done.
It would be a grievous mistake because it would show that they simply are not hearing the voices and will of the Cuban people, people deeply, deeply,
deeply tired of the repression that has gone on for far too long.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: CNN's Patrick Oppmann joining me live from the Cuban capital.
How will those words from Washington go down locally?
PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, they've already been rejected quite angrily. The Cuban government feels that these protests have been the
result of U.S. sanctions that have caused or helped cause the economy come to a screeching halt here.
Then they say there's been a social media campaign to stir up dissent. Obviously many of the people that we've spoken to protesting feel quite
differently. And they say that they have taken to the streets out of frustration, out of a sense that their leaders cannot address their issues
or deliver basic services.
And one of those services right now that's interrupted is internet connections. It's very difficult to get online right now. Of course, the
Cuban government controls the internet. According to groups that monitor activity, they say the government currently is blocking access to many
social media apps and sites to keep people from posting the kinds of images of protest that's we saw spark these unprecedented demonstrations over the
OPPMANN (voice-over): The protests that swept across Cuba, the largest in decades, stunned the Communist-run government, and quickly turned violent.
Demonstrators pelted patrol cars with stones and police forcibly arrested scores of people.
The repression, this woman told CNN. All that we have here is repression. Counter protesters organized by the government tried to shut them down.
Some chanting that they are Fidel Castro, but Fidel Castro died in 2016, and his brother, Raul, retired in April.
Now, the job of managing Cuba's worst crisis in a generation falls to their handpicked successor, Miguel Diaz-Canel, who called the protesters
criminals. They stoned the police force, damaged cars, he said. A behavior that is completely vulgar, completely indecent.
OPPMANN (voice-over): Tensions have been building for months in Cuba over increased sanctions first imposed by the Trump administration. The pandemic
has further wounded an already ailing economy. Cubans wait for hours in crowded lines each day to buy what little there is as the number of COVID-
19 cases surge.
OPPMANN: Cuba's food crisis appears to be getting worse and worse as the pandemic goes on longer and longer. The people here say that they don't
want to be waiting hours in these lines, but they feel that the choice they have is run the risk of getting infected or going hungry.
OPPMANN (voice-over): The Biden administration warned the Cuban government not to crack down on the protesters.
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We call on the government, the government of Cuba, to refrain from violence and their attempts to
silence the voice of the people of Cuba.
OPPMANN (voice-over): But after a day of angry clashes, that warning may have already fallen on deaf ears.
OPPMANN: And the Cuban government state media reported today that Raul Castro took part in an emergency meeting about these protests. Of course,
Becky, you and I were talking in April about how he said he is retiring.
It is a sign of the gravity of the situation, the seriousness of the situation that Raul Castro, although he doesn't have any formal titles any
more, apparently has been brought back, certainly to give a sign to many in this country, who are worried about this developing crisis.
ANDERSON: Patrick Oppmann is our man in Havana, thank you.
To Haiti now, where police say a man they arrested on Sunday in the assassination of Haiti's president had designs on becoming president
himself. They say this man, Christian Emmanuel Sanon recruited the mercenaries who killed Jovenel Moise at the presidential residence.
Police allege the suspects were originally tasked with providing security for Sanon before their mission changed. We are learning some of the
suspects worked as informants for U.S. law enforcement.
Matt Rivers connecting us today from the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince with startling details, Matt, of what happened after the assassination that
viewers will only see on CNN. Matt.
MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Becky, the initial questions after this assassination were what happened, how did these
mercenaries get in, how did they get out and how were they engaged by security forces?
And by working with a key source here in Haiti, we have been able to reconstruct the 36 hours, which would be the most crucial 36 hours after
the assassination took place, to give our viewers a more complete picture of how so many of these suspects ended up either killed or captured.
RIVERS (voice-over): Gunfire echoing through Port-au-Prince after the president was assassinated. Then just 36 hours after a group of more than 2
dozen Colombians and two Haitian Americans allegedly killed the president, most would either be detained or declared dead.
This is how that happened, according to a source with knowledge of the operation to track them down.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (from captions): DEA operation. Everybody back up. Stand down.
RIVERS (voice-over): Nighttime video from around the time of the president's death quickly went viral. You could hear a suspect, claiming
there was a DEA operation ongoing.
Later, a convoy of five cars could be seen leaving the area with ease. But down the road, a trap was being set. As the convoy traveled down Kenscough
Row (ph), a roadblock was ready.
Heavily armed security forces would not let them pass without a fight. Arriving and seeing they couldn't go any further, the convoy stops, part of
which you can see here. Our source says the suspects jumped out and saw this building across the road. They raced toward it, immediately taking the
stairs to the second floor.
RIVERS: It's in this building that these alleged mercenaries will begin defending themselves. At the same moment they're coming in here, according
to our source, Haitian security forces are making a crucial decision. They know that these alleged attackers have limited food, water, ammunition and
So they essentially decide to wait them out.
RIVERS (voice-over): About 12 hours later, after baking in 90-plus degree Haitian heat, authorities throw tear gas in front of the building. It's
enough to force negotiations and the Colombians inside eventually send out four people, including this man, one of two Haitian Americans, whom
authorities had detained.
He is joined by the other Haitian American and two Haitian hostages, a pair of police officers who were at the president's house.
RIVERS: According to our source, at some point during the negotiations, a group of the Colombians still here come out of this building and start
heading up this hill on the back side of the building.
RIVERS: And eventually they make their way to a seemingly strange destination.
RIVERS (voice-over): Just about 100 meters up the hill from the building lies the Taiwan embassy. Our source thinks the Colombians went there
because it wasn't an easy place for police to enter, given its diplomatic immunity.
RIVERS: In order to get all the way here to the embassy, though, they had to walk through a pretty residential neighborhood. And according to our
source, someone tipped off authorities that this group of heavily armed men was here.
When they arrived at the embassy, they found a largely empty building except for two security guards, whom they tied up.
RIVERS (voice-over): Security forces quickly surrounded the embassy and then turned their attention back to the building below, where they believed
a few suspects remained, this time to go in.
A small assault team went in on the ground floor and were met with fierce fire that you can hear from the handful of Colombians that were still
inside. The hour-long firefight shattered windows, scarred concrete ceilings and walls and, in the end, the government said at least three
Colombians died in the fighting.
The next day, with Taiwan's permission, authorities went into the embassy. Our source says authorities checked CCTV cameras and found nearly a dozen
Colombians in a room who ended up giving up without more fighting. Nearly a half dozen still haven't been found.
RIVERS: Now, Becky, you and I have been talking for the past few days now, going back into last week.
One of the questions we were talking about was how was this convoy able to get from the presidential residence?
Why were they able to leave so easily?
People were filming them. It was an easy process. According to our source, Haitian security forces had eyes on at that point. They knew that the
convoy was leaving. What they were not sure of at that point was whether the president was dead or not.
There was still the possibility at that point, in their minds, that the president had been kidnapped and so that is why the decision was made to
allow the convoy to leave rather than engage there.
Once they went into the compound after the convoy left, they confirmed the assassination. That was when the trap was set. That's when the operation to
capture and ultimately kill some of these suspects truly kicked off.
ANDERSON: And what of the details of suspected U.S. ties that some of these suspects have?
RIVERS: Yes, so my colleague, Evan Perez, reported last night that there are several suspects of those who have been detained that have direct ties
to U.S. law enforcement as informants, including at least one, who worked as an informant in the past for the Drug Enforcement Administration.
The DEA actually confirming that, saying that one of these suspects worked for the DEA. You saw in that piece, at some point during the assassination,
one of these suspects was saying, "DEA operation." DEA says they are aware of that; however, none of the suspects involved, according to DEA, were
here on the DEA's behalf.
But still, every day that goes by, Becky, it seems like the links between what happened here in Haiti with this assassination to the United States
just keep getting bigger.
ANDERSON: Matt Rivers is in Haiti for you. Matt, thank you.
You can read an awful lot more on this story on Haiti on our website, including the details on the suspects, who have ties to American law
enforcement and why some of them may face charges from the U.S. Justice Department. That is cnn.com on your computer, on your CNN app or on your
Well, coming up, South Africa's president sends in the troops. There is widespread looting and deadly protests continue over the jailing of a
former president. We are live in Johannesburg for you this hour.
Plus, the Olympic Village in Tokyo opens to athletes ahead of what promises to be a most unusual competition. We'll tell you what top Olympic officials
are saying about the city's readiness for the games.
And racism in sport: in the next hour of CONNECT THE WORLD, I'll speak with the executive director of the Football against Racism in Europe. The
abuse of England's Euro team this week, absolutely reprehensible but, sadly, hardly anything new. All that coming up after this.
ANDERSON: Welcome back.
South Africa is seeing some of the worst unrest in years. Soldiers now in the streets trying to calm -- or certainly restore calm after days of
violent protests over the jailing of the former president, Jacob Zuma.
Police have fired rubber bullets into crowds as they tried to stop widespread looting. At least 30 people have been killed and hundreds have
been arrested in the unrest. South African president Cyril Ramaphosa is calling for an end to the chaos, warning it could undermine the country's
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CYRIL RAMAPHOSA, PRESIDENT OF SOUTH AFRICA: The path of violence, of looting and anarchy leads only to more violence and devastation. It is,
therefore, a matter of vital importance that we restore calm and stability to all parts of the country without any delay.
It is vital that we prevent any further loss of life or injury or destruction of valuable infrastructure and property that sustains the lives
of our people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Zuma was jailed for 15 (ph) months on June the 29th after refusing to appear at an anti-corruption inquiry. David McKenzie is in
Johannesburg where that looting has been taking place.
And Cyril Ramaphosa says it is a matter of vital importance that calm is restored.
Are his words being heeded, David?
DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, you can see the evidence of what it's taken, to get some semblance of calm behind me, Becky. This is an
armored personnel carrier. The military is out on the streets here. We've seen military police, special operations military.
If we just keep walking this way, you can see the devastation on these streets. There have been shops, malls, businesses looted; even into today,
even with the presence of the military, though I do want to be fair.
The presence of men in fatigues with live ammunition has certainly calmed the situation in the places they go. But they aren't always there for long.
And there aren't many of them. So the looting has certainly continued in certain parts of the country until now -- Becky.
ANDERSON: David, is there any sense that this is on the wane?
Certainly the president seems extremely concerned.
MCKENZIE: He is concerned and he had that very ironic moment, unfortunately, of that split-screen moment of Ramaphosa, addressing the
nation while looting was ongoing in major cities across the country.
I think it's too early to tell at this point. In our own observations and reporting today, yes, there does seem that there has been some easing up of
the looting in this city. But then the damage was already done.
We went in malls in Soweto and across the south of the city that have been completely gutted. People operating with impunity. No police to be seen.
Then later the military did come in.
MCKENZIE: Here's a shop owner talking about what he's lost.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right now we have -- where we going to stay, what we're going to eat, what we're going to do. We don't know nothing really. We lose
MCKENZIE: How do you feel about what's happening?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is very painful and I don't know what can I say about that. This is not our fault. I don't know what happen (ph) the
government. I don't know. But this is not our fault. We didn't do nothing. We just lose like that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MCKENZIE: So, Becky, you know, this street, normally at this time of day, would be filled with commuters, people coming back to Alexandra, a township
in the city, close to one of the richest parts of the African continent.
And this is part of it, the political dimension, the fact that Jacob Zuma is still in prison. That's how it started and his supporters are doing
nothing to calm the situation. It could be argued they are still inciting it.
Also just the huge inequality of this country of the haves and the have nots. Most of these businesses in this neighborhood at least are locally
owned and many of them are destroyed completely -- Becky.
ANDERSON: You could hear the frustration on that, as we listened to that shop owner from Soweto. David, thank you.
As the Afghan government tries to assure the country there won't be a Taliban takeover, a much different story and brutal story playing out on
the ground. Next hour, see the horrific moment witnesses say Taliban insurgents executed Afghan forces, who had just surrendered.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Also next hour, remember the Live Aid concert in 1985, a concert that raised money for the famine in Ethiopia. Well, 36 years later, we take
a look at the situation in the country right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Welcome back. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD.
The Cuban regime cracking down on demonstrations in the streets. An exiled rights group says at least 100 people have been arrested, including
protesters, activists ad journalists.
Social media and messaging platforms have been blocked as well. Since Sunday, demonstrators across the island have voiced frustration with the
lack of food, medicine supplies and power outages.
They are also demanding freedoms under six decades of Communism. The Cuban government blames U.S. sanctions for crippling its economy. We'll continue
to bring you the very latest on what is this unrest in Cuba.
ANDERSON: Well, just under 10 days before the Tokyo Olympic Games kick off, the city is being called the best-ever prepared for the games.
The head of the International Olympic Committee made the proclamation, despite the challenges caused by COVID and the lack of fans in the
stadiums. Some of the 11,000 athletes began arriving at the Olympic Village, while most spectators will be banned from the events.
The office of U.S. first lady Jill Biden has announced she will attend. CNN's Will Ripley joining us now live from Tokyo, with, Will, the very
latest, if you will, on the preparations.
WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, the venues, they're polishing them up. They're getting them ready for competition. They will, as you just
mentioned, be empty during competition. At least 97 percent of all of the Olympic events will be held without spectators, the first time in Olympics
history we've seen games like this.
And every single event just has this surreal, almost bizarre quality, Becky, like the opening of the Olympic Village. Normally there would be a
ceremony, they would have fanfare, they would have media. None of that today. The media was kept far away. No information about how many athletes
were actually there.
Some national flags were spotted alongside the athletes' housing. It is going to be an equally surreal and bizarre experience and spartan
experience for the athletes inside the village, almost like they're going back to the height of the pandemic in 2020 where masks are mandatory.
You can't high five or even interact with people from other countries. There is a fever clinic and a fitness center and dining hall. There are
strict rules how long they can stay there. In principle, they have to check in five days before they compete and check out two days after their last
ANDERSON: What's the atmosphere like?
RIPLEY: It's a bit gloomy. One, because of the weather. It's been raining almost every day but also just because a lot of Japanese people don't think
these games should be happening.
There are protests outside of the Olympic stadium every day. This multi- billion dollar gorgeous venue that Japan built to showcase to the world is now going to sit empty except for a handful of VIPs.
People just don't understand why this event is happening, why they're going to have 18,000 athletes and officials packed into an Olympic Village,
you're going to have thousands of journalists from all over the world and other thousands more of officials and delegates and sponsors flying in in
the middle of a pandemic at a time that Japan's case numbers every single day for the last three weeks keep going up.
ANDERSON: Yes, let's just remind ourselves. Japan has -- is stuck in what is a particularly grim COVID period.
Is there any, is there any sign things are improving?
RIPLEY: So we've seen the vaccination rate tick up slowly. When we arrived less than a week ago, it was 15 percent. Now it's inching closer to 20
percent. Japan is vaccinating around 1 million people per day. But it took them a long time get to this point.
Critics of this whole process say, yes, as the IOC president Thomas Bach said, Japan is very well prepared for the games in terms of the venues and
whatnot but was woefully under prepared in terms of the speed and efficacy of its vaccine rollout; for example, only allowing doctors and nurses to
give out shots for a long time, which really restricted the number of people who could receive immunizations because of lack of manpower.
There is a lot of bureaucratic red tape they've had to kind of navigate and have had to cut through to get their numbers up to a higher level. So even
though Japan's population is still one of the lowest vaccination rates in the developed world, they're donating vaccines to other countries,
including an additional more than 1 million donated, the announcement made they're going to be donating to Taiwan.
ANDERSON: Will Ripley is in Tokyo. Will, thank you for that.
A COVID advert made for the Australian government to encourage vaccination for young adults is being criticized as overly graphic, insensitive and
contradictory. CNN's Angus Watson has the story -- and a warning, some of the images in his report are disturbing.
ANGUS WATSON, CNN PRODUCER (voice-over): A graphic advertisement meant to scare Australians into protecting themselves against COVID-19, has angered
many in this country who feel that the government has not done enough to help them get vaccinated.
The 30-second advertisement shows a young woman in ICU, gasping for breath, presumably with COVID-19. She glances around for help but there appears to
be no one there to assist her. The advertisement ends with an encouragement to get vaccinated.
Part of the reason this advertisement has caught so much controversy is because as it's first airing, Australians under the age of 40 haven't been
widely eligible to get a COVID-19 vaccine. That is despite young people in ICUs right now in Australia's largest city of Sydney, as the city battles
an outbreak of the Delta variant.
Australia has administered just around 9 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines for its 25 million strong population.
WATSON (voice-over): That is one of the lowest rates in the OECD.
Critics of the government say they did not procure enough Pfizer vaccines. Instead, relying on domestically-produced doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
But as this advertisement is airing, Australians under the age of 60 have been told not to get that AstraZeneca vaccine, because of the very rare
chance of blood clots associated with it.
Instead, they've been told to wait for Pfizer. This, all as the Delta variant moves through Sydney, Australia's largest city on lockdown, until
at least July 16.
But speaking Monday, the premier of New South Wales, Gladys Berejiklian, said it is very unlikely that that lockdown will be able to lift this
Friday -- Angus Watson, CNN, Sydney, Australia.
ANDERSON: Some solidarity in England after a vile racist barrage against Black footballers. Just ahead, there is outrage and solidarity and there
are some claims of hypocrisy over attacks on England players.
And Italy's victorious football team return after defeating England in the Euro championship. The president, prime minister and the thousands of fans
turned out in the streets to greet the European champions.
ANDERSON: Many are condemning the torrent of racial abuse against Black players after the Euro 2020 finals. Lawmakers, sports officials, social
media companies are now expressing outrage at these vile reactions from some fans.
And many wonder where these voices have been through years of grassroots efforts to expose racial inequality. CNN's Salma Abdelaziz takes a look for
SALMA ABDELAZIZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): What began as a joyous night for English football fans ended with a whimper as their team lost the
Euro 2020 final. The match came down to penalties.
Three star players Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka missed the mark. The heartbroken squad braced for impact, anger and grief was
inevitable. And with it came racist backlash from some with bigots blaming the trio for England's loss and using the players' bad fortune yet again as
a license for hatred.
Vile comments flooded the athletes' social media accounts, 19-year-old Saka bearing some of the worst of it.
In Manchester, Rashford's hometown, vandals defaced a mural of him with profane graffiti. It was quickly covered up.
ABDELAZIZ (voice-over): Their teammates quickly took to social media on Monday to make clear they stood as one. Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BORIS JOHNSON, U.K. PRIME MINISTER: And to those who have been directing racist abuse at some of the players, I say shame on you and I hope you will
crawl back under the rock from which you emerged.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABDELAZIZ (voice-over): But many are calling out the hypocrisy. Campaigners say the government has long fueled a defensive backlash against
the Black Lives Matter movement. Earlier in the tournament, the home secretary refused to criticize fans who booed players for taking a knee for
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRITI PATEL, BRITISH HOME SECRETARY: I just don't support, you know, people participating in, you know, that type of gesture politics, to a
certain extent, as well.
QUESTION: Do you think the -- so the England fans are right to boo?
PATEL: Well, that's a choice for them, quite frankly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABDELAZIZ: And a report commissioned by Johnson's government last year claimed there was no evidence of institutional racism in the U.K. That was
condemned by the U.N. as normalizing white supremacy.
England's team manager, Gareth Southgate, and his players entered into this moment of racial reckoning, advocating for a more inclusive and tolerant
form of English nationalism. It drew fire.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GARETH SOUTHGATE, ENGLAND FOOTBALL TEAM MANAGER: For some of them to be abused is unforgiveable, really. I mean, we can't control that. We can only
set the example that we believe we should and represent the country in the way that we feel you should when you're representing England.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ABDELAZIZ: England lost the game, but Southgate and his team will keep fighting for a fairer, more equal England -- Salma Abdelaziz, CNN, London.
ANDERSON: Well, to some images of kindness emerging from this racist ugliness.
This is Manchester, England, hometown of forward Marcus Rashford. And that defaced mural of him is now being covered with hearts and messages of
solidarity, like "Hero and brother." Andy Scholes is with us.
An overdue reckoning on racism in sport is now underway, Andy. We could say too little too late.
But it's never too late when you're talking about trying to keep racism out of this game, is it?
ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORT CORRESPONDENT: Certainly, Becky. Marcus Rashford a hero to many off the pitch for his work in getting school meals for
children all across the U.K.
Rashford even tweeted he was almost brought to tears, seeing this overwhelming support that he has now received after being the victim of
that just disgusting online racial abuse.
And we're actually going to hear from one of the men behind that Rashford mural in Manchester on what Rashford means to the city, coming up here on
ANDERSON: Yes, and kicking racism out of the game is nothing new, is it?
And it's so horrible to see. It's so horrible to see this response that we've seen to some of these Black footballers, England footballers. My
sense is -- and certainly I've been talking to other people about this -- is that, you know, there is clearly so much work to be done, Andy.
But you and our "WORLD SPORT" colleagues have been involved so much in trying to ensure there is always a platform to help keep racism out of this
game. I genuinely believe that there is progress being made.
SCHOLES: You know, you have to hope so, Becky. That's why, at "WORLD SPORT," we've been trying to cover this topic almost on a daily basis,
discussing what's going on and talking about people's feelings and what they think can be done to do better.
That's why we had Dorion Reid (ph) talking about everything that he thinks is going on and how he thinks things can get better. And that's how you
have progress, right, Becky, continuing to discuss what's going on and how things can be better if people decide to make -- to really effect change.
ANDERSON: Yes, well, let's just keep doing it. Thank you. And that is "WORLD SPORT." More on that after this. "WORLD SPORT" is after this break.
I'll be back at the back end of that. CNN.