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Democratic Senators Mark One Year Since Capitol Insurrection; Tennis World and Others React to Djokovic Exemption; W.H.O. Chief: 109 Countries Set to Miss July Vaccine Target; Police: 13 Officers, Dozens of Protesters Killed; Evidence Grows in Committee's Probe of U.S. Capitol Riot. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired January 06, 2022 - 11:00   ET



SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY), MAJORITY LEADER: We're going to count those votes. We're not going to let the violent insurrectionists stop us.

And count the votes, we did, until, I believe it was, 3:00 am the next morning. That was a good moment amidst lot of bad moments.

So now we ask one year later, how shall our country move forward?

What are we to say and think and do in response to a day, when a sitting American president, rather than step down from office, unleashed his own

supporters to attack the government through mob violence?

How can we help those scarred by that day find solace, find healing?

How can we make clear to the American people, to the world and even to ourselves that our democracy is still whole?

First, we must begin by commemorating our emergency responders who have died, whether through complications from injuries or, sadly, from suicide

in the days and months after the violence: Brian Sicknick of New Jersey; Howard Liebengood of Virginia; Billy Evans of Massachusetts; Jeffrey Smith

of Illinois and Gunther Hashida of Virginia.

Today and every day we remember them. We mourn their loss. We honor their limitless heroism in the face of the unthinkable.

Second, we also thank every single member of the Capitol Police, the D.C. Metro Police and the National Guard, who kept us safe and prevented a

violent riot from turning into something much worse.

That afternoon, our Capitol Police were outnumbered, unprepared and largely left on their own.

Just watching on television the brutal beating of one of them by the mob, another being crushed between a door and a wall, it just rips your heart

apart as you relive that day and you remember how the Capitol Police suffered but persisted and helped preserve our democracy.

When they held the line, our democracy survived. So not only do we thank them but we commit to continue supporting them and fighting for them, as

they fought to defend this building.

Finally, the only way we'll truly move forward from January 6th is by speaking truth to power -- we cannot avoid it -- the truth about what

happened that day, about what led to the violence, about what it means for our democracy moving forward.

I say this because too many often, depending on their allegiances, seem desperate to sweep the memory of January 6th under the rug. Too many are

working to rewrite the history of what happened, to downplay or excuse or even defend the mob, to excuse an insurrection of this very Capitol.

Too many are hoping the American people will just look away and forget that day ever took place.

After all, they say, Donald Trump is no longer president, right?

We can't -- that can't happen. We can't let that happen. We have an obligation not to let that happen because history shows us, when you ignore

or paint over this kind of violent action, it will recur, often in worse form than it had originally. That's what history shows.

We didn't look away after the attack on Pearl Harbor. We didn't look away after the attacks on 9/11. They may have been from foreign powers but we

still, just because it was Americans who did this, we cannot look away after the attack of January 6th.

What we must do instead is stare the truth, however ugly, in the face. The attack of January 6th didn't come out of the blue. It was not an act of

God. It was not something that came from foreign soil. It wasn't even just some mere protest that got out of hand.

No, no, no, no. January 6th was an attempt to reverse, through violent means, the outcome of a free and fair election, an insurrection. Call it

what it is, what it was.


SCHUMER: And it was fundamentally rooted in Donald Trump's Big Lie, that the election of 2020 was illegitimate, in deep offense to the peaceful

transfer of power; indeed, in deep offense to the very notion of truth itself.

And anyone who thinks that the origins of this insurrection are going away should just have listened a few moments ago, when Donald Trump did it

again, lying and lying and lying about the election, a clear reminder that the threat he and his lie remain to our nation.

Alarmingly, alarmingly, many of his supporters quickly embraced the lie in the aftermath of the 2020 election. Many of them truly believed and still

believe that he won the election and the game was rigged -- not a small number, a large number of Americans.

You look at the polls, tens of millions; it didn't matter there was no proof to any of these claims. Donald Trump kept saying it and saying it and

saying it again. And he called his supporters to rally here in Washington in a ditch effort to stay in power.

We all know this. That's what happened. We can't forget it. It was Donald Trump's Big Lie that soaked our political landscape in kerosene. It was

Donald Trump's rally on the mall that struck the match. And then came the fire.

And pouring gasoline on that fire are many. And one branch of our media, who spread the Big Lie then and continue to spread the Big Lie, even though

they know it's false and millions listen to these people and believe it.

Here, too, is another terrible truth. The disease of the Big Lie continues to this day. The attacks on our democracy are ongoing, if not by the force

of baseball bats and pipe bombs, then, certainly, through a quieter and much more organized effort to subvert democracy from the bottom up.

Just as the Big Lie inspired the attack of January 6th, the Big Lie continues like a disease across state legislatures throughout the country,

where we're seeing the most restrictive voter suppression efforts since Jim Crow, since Jim Crow, in 21st century America, turning the clock way back.

Let's be abundantly clear: these new anti-voter laws are on the books today only because their author cited the Big Lie, cited the fictitious

bugaboo of voter fraud and are trying to succeed where the insurrection failed.

Unless we confront the Big Lie, unless we all do our part to fortify and strengthen our democracy, the political violence of January 6th risks

becoming not an aberration but, God forbid, the norm.

And we've seen it, too, in the threats against election workers, teachers, school administrators, health care workers. We cannot put our heads in the

sand. We cannot brush this over.

And what does that mean for the Senate?

I think we have to talk about the realities here today, too. It means we must pass legislation, effective legislation, to defend our democracy, to

protect the right to vote.

We must pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and the Freedom to Vote Act so that our country's destiny is determined by the voice of the

people and not by the violent whims of lies and even mob rule.

We must also guard against the false hopes of solutions that don't deal with the problem and try to cover it up or push it away, because people

don't want to deal with it.

Some say the answer lies in doing the bare minimum, like reforming the Electoral Count Act, that my friend, the Republican leader, has floated in

recent days. Let me take this opportunity to make clear that that plan -- the McConnell plan, that's what it is -- is unacceptable, unacceptably

insufficient and even offensive.

Some scorekeeping matters little if the game is rigged. And as we know too well, state legislatures are working day and night to undermine our

democratic process from the get-go by empowering partisans to potentially say which ballots count and which do not.

What good is it to accurately count a result that's compromised from the start?


SCHUMER: Senator McConnell's plan to reform the Electoral Count Act would do nothing more than codify the vice president's ceremonial role in

counting of the Electoral College votes, effectively guaranteeing that partisan state legislatures could overturn the elections without fear of


Look at what it does. Look at what it does. It's a cynical idea. It's an idea to divert attention from the real issue because they don't want to

confront the real issue.

This cannot be, this should not be about one party versus another. Voting rights has always been bipartisan, supported by Bush, H.W. and W.;

supported by Reagan; passing this chamber with large votes from both sides of the aisle. That's what always used to happen until the Republican Party

was taken over by Donald Trump.

So it's not about one party versus another. It can't be. It's about one terrible lie against democracy itself, the kind of lie that, if let stand,

both verbally and in action, erodes our democracy, erodes our democracy.

If a majority of people -- there's already a substantial minority who don't believe our elections are legitimate -- aided and egged on by Donald Trump

and right-wing media.

What if a majority of this country, because of these pernicious actions, start believing it?

A majority of Americans don't believe that elections are on the level?

Just ask yourself what will happen. I can't predict the details but I can predict that it will diminish the greatness of this country in small and

even large ways. So we cannot and this should not be a partisan issue.

It's about falsehood versus truth. In the history of this country, we have always disagreed on ideology but never on facts until recently and in such

an important area.

If lying about results of an election is acceptable, if instigating a mob against the government is considered permissible, if encouraging political

violence becomes the norm, it will be open season on this grand democracy, this noble experiment and everything will be up for grabs by whoever has

the biggest clubs, the sharpest spears, the most effective lies.

I do not believe that that is the ultimate destiny of our country. The mob may be strong but the counter is stronger.

The roots of democracy, the feelings of the American people and the affection and love for this grand noble experiment in democracy is

stronger, as long as we speak out, as long as we act.

The wellspring of democracy is deep and, even in the most difficult of times, Americans have rallied and risen to the occasion.

Since the early days of our republic, Americans launched mighty movements, fought a bloody Civil War and, yes, passed federal election laws and voting

rights laws to expand the promise of democracy until there were no more boundaries.

We are called on, importuned by the millions who have lost their lives to defend this democracy, to defend it once again. I call on all Americans --

Democrats, Republicans, independents -- to rise to the occasion and assure that the mob, the violence, the lies do not win the day.

Let the anniversary of January 6th forever serve as a reminder that the march to perfect our democracy is never over, that our democracy is a

precious, sometimes fragile gift, purchased by those who struggled before us and that all of us now must do our part to keep the American vision

going in the present and into the future.

Somehow, in ways I can't predict but I know are true, I am certain that God's mysterious hand will guide us and truth and right will prevail.

I yield the floor.




ZAIN ASHER, CNN HOST, CONNECT THE WORLD: A very fervent speech from U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer speaking there on the Senate floor, recollecting the

appalling events that took place in the United States at the U.S. Capitol exactly one year ago January 6 speaking about the dreadful scar left on

this country's national psyche.


ASHER: He talked about seeing the Confederate flag hanging on the U.S. Capitol. He talked about those who had lost their lives, particularly

Police officers who had lost their lives during the riots, or later in the days and weeks later, by suicide.

And he also said that we cannot sweep what happened on that day. Under the rug, there must be accountability for Donald Trump's big lie to ensure that

those events never ever happen again.

You are looking at live pictures of the U.S. Capitol right now certainly a much different scene than last January six when hundreds of rioters storm

that building, the resulting chaos left multiple people dead.

We all remember that day. I mean, the mob incited by then President Donald Trump and his allies tried to stop the certification of the election. They

were convinced cause of the U.S. president at that time that this election was stolen, and they were wrong, of course, and the insurrection failed.

President Joe Biden standing inside the building that was overrun just a year earlier did not mince his words when it came to who was responsible.


JOE BIDEN, U.S. PRESIDENT: For the first time in our history, a president had not just lost an election. He tried to prevent the peaceful transfer of

power as a violent mob breached the Capitol. But they failed. They failed. On this day of remembrance we must make sure that such attack never, never

happens again.


ASHER: And that's been the refrain throughout Congress, really, especially among Democrats in the year following the Insurrection President Donald

Trump was impeached a second time hundreds of rioters have been arrested. And a house investigation continues and democracy still reigns in America.

We'll bring you a lot more coverage of this one yet - throughout the day right here on CNN. But first, some more news for you this hour fresh

gunfire is being reported in Kazakhstan's largest city. The Russian state news agency tasked reporting that witnesses say soldiers fired at

protesters and vehicles.

This comes after Wednesday's chaotic protests against the autocratic government. Police say dozens of demonstrators who've been called attackers

have been killed. They say that 13 officers were also killed in the clashes. I want you to listen to what sounds like gunfire ringing out on

the streets.

Russian that forces are now moving in Kazakhstan used to be a Soviet Republic and it maintains very close ties with Moscow until now it's been

relatively stable. CNN's Nic Robertson looks at how a spike in fuel prices unleashed a whole load of anger.


RIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR (voice over): Earlier protesters clashing with security forces outside Almaty's principal

government building. Angered by rapidly rising fuel prices, smoke billowing from stun grenades, as the country's largest city real's admits to oil rich

nations biggest protests in decades.

One unconfirmed video clip posted to social media appears to show a soldier down being dragged away from the protests by colleagues the soldier's

current condition also unknown.

Another unconfirmed clip appears to show soldiers with protesters on the run one person in black clearly beaten with battens by those in uniform. In

the running battles, protesters often seem to have the upper hand the truth of the larger situation difficult to obtain.

As parts of Almaty in darkness, electricity supplies cut so to the internet. Early Wednesday, officials are saying more than 200 protesters

have been detained 95 security officers injured and 37 of their vehicles damaged.

By late Wednesday, the President had taken charge of national security and vowing not to be forced out describing a worsening situation without

offering evidence blaming outside forces.

KASSYM-JOMART TOKEV, KAZAKH PRESIDENT: These terrorist gangs are essentially international, even the gun serious training abroad. Their

attack on Kazakhstan can and should be considered as an act of aggression.

ROBERTSON (voice over): In the swiftly developing situation, the Prime Minister replaced the government offered its resignation fuel price hikes

rescinded and the country put under a state of emergency. In Moscow the nation's closest ally concern and calls for calm.


ROBERTSON (on camera): Russia's foreign ministry saying they hope for a peaceful solution and a quick return to normal. The Kremlin spokesman say

its important there's no outside interference, a hint of Western interference, saying Russia believes Kazakhstan can solve this alone.

ROBERTSON (voice over): By nightfall chaos in several of Kazakhstan's principal cities, the government calling for help from regional allies,

including Russia. Unclear if the government's moves will be enough to placate the protesters whose anger appears to transcend the rising fuel



ASHER: Nic Robertson joins us live now from Moscow. So Nic, as you pointed out in your piece, it's very hard to know what is happening on the ground.

But I've just been told we've got some new pics, some new video of the army sort of patrolling Almaty.

We know that Russia is sending troops into the country as part of a Military alliance. What do we know about the so called goal of this

peacekeeping mission?

ROBERTSON: Yes, there are 6000 Russian troops going paratroopers, some of their special forces have been the first to go. When they flew out of

Russia today, aboard massive Military cargo aircraft appear to have helicopters on board those aircraft as well. These are big Military

transport planes.

So it's not entirely clear yet how they'll deploy what equipment they're bringing with them. But the stated goal is that they will be peacekeepers.

That's the way it's being framed.

And they'll be in the country for a limited period to help protect government or Military facilities help the local law enforcement in

Kazakhstan to do that. Again, there's another detail that we don't have right now. And that is what their rules of engagement will be.

Will they have the right to return fire? Will they be able to fire protesters who aren't armed with weapons? These are obviously very

important questions that they don't appear to be answers for at the moment.

Belarus is also going to be sending some of its troops to Kazakhstan as well to help out. But the picture that's emerging from Kazakhstan today is

very, very fragmentary. It's very hard to have a complete understanding of what's happening, because the internet is still down.

So precisely where these new troops coming in will go, how they're going to support how their work together with those Kazakh forces on the ground, we

just don't have a clear picture of that yet.

ASHER: It's so hard to know as you point out what's going on, but as and when you get more information next, please do keep us updated. Alright, it

looks like no backdrop of its next battle will not be on the tennis court; the world number one is in limbo in Australia right now.

This is Djokovic at the Melbourne Airport on Wednesday before he was detained and then sent to a quarantine Hotel. His legal team is trying to

keep him from being deported for not being vaccinated against the Coronavirus. The hearing into the matter has been pushed to Monday.

The nine time Australian Open winner got an exemption to play in this year's tournament but when he arrived his visa was cancelled. Prime

Minister says that Djokovic didn't have a valid exemption to the vaccination requirement that all travelers to the country must have.

While Djokovic waits for his court hearing on Monday. His parents say he's being treated like a prisoner. Phil Black explains what led to the



PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): As the world's number one male tennis player, Novak Djokovic has hit more than his fair share of aces.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC, AUSTRALIAN TENNIS PLAYER: Thank you, I appreciate it, thank you guys.

BLACK (voice over): But the Serbian Champs COVID-19 Vaccination status has put his hopes of a 2022 grand slam Outer bridge.

GREG HUNT, AUSTRALIAN HEALTH MINISTER: Mr. Djokovic failed to provide appropriate evidence to meet the entry requirements to Australia and visa

has been subsequently cancelled. So it's a matter for him whether he wishes to appeal that but if a visa is cancelled, somebody will have to leave the


BLACK (voice over): Local authorities had originally granted a medical exemption to Djokovic to compete in the Australian Open. And Djokovic

proudly announced he was traveling down under on social media Tuesday.

His post inspired outrage from Australian citizens who have faced some of the most severe lockdown travel and vaccine protocols of any country since

the pandemic began. And it's created an outcry over what some perceived to be special treatment for the sports icon.

Australia slammed its borders shut for nearly 20 months before beginning to ease those restrictions in November. But only after achieving 80 percent

vaccination, among those 16 and older with some states still requiring mandatory quarantine upon arrival.


BLACK (voice over): Victorian officials insist he received no special treatment, saying a handful of medical exemptions were granted by an

anonymous application process reviewed by two independent panels.

The tennis star travelled to Melbourne Wednesday on a visa that did not allow vaccine exemptions, resulting in his detention in a room by himself

at the airport for several hours, while border authorities considered his case.

Djokovic who already contracted COVID 19, once in 2020 has made no secret of his anti-vaccine stats. During a Facebook Live with fellow Serbian

athletes in April of 2020, Djokovic said personally, I am opposed to vaccination, and I wouldn't want to be forced by someone to take a vaccine

in order to be able to travel.

His father is outraged by his son's airport detention. Telling Russia news agency Sputnik, the winner of 20 Grand Slam tournaments had been held

captive. The incident threatens to create a diplomatic route with Serbian officials demanding answers from the Australian Government.

The Australian PM tweeted a forceful defense of the decision to cancel Djokovic's visa, making clear that no one will receive special treatment,

no matter how famous they are saying rules are rules, especially when it comes to our borders.

No one is above these rules. Our strong border policies have been critical to Australia having one of the lowest death rates in the world from COVID.

We are continuing to be vigilant. Phil Black, CNN, London.


AHSER: So much digest that I want to bring in World Sports Amanda Davies. So Amanda, what is the latest? I understand that Djokovic's mother has been

speaking out as well.

AMANDA DAVIES, CNN WORLD SPORT: Yes, absolutely, Zain. Novak Djokovic as Phil was saying, currently, in that detention facility, the hotel just

outside Melbourne.

And the word coming out of the Djokovic camp is that they feel incredibly hard done by, the suggestion is there was no way he would have got on that

plane to Melbourne with any question mark hanging over whether or not he was going to be allowed in.

As far as he was concerned he had the special exemption. And that was all he needed to be able to enter Australia and defend his title at the

Australian Open.

Now as we were hearing the words that the language that has been used by the Djokovic family, that Djokovic camp has been incredibly emotive, up to

this point, his mother, Diana has been speaking for the first time. As you mentioned, this is what she has had to say.


DIJANA DJOKOVIC, NOVAK DJOKOVIC'S MOTHER: I spoke today with him a couple of hours ago. He was like good, we didn't spoke a lot. But we spoke a few

minutes. And he was trying to sleep but he couldn't. As a mother, what can I say? If you're a mother, you can just imagine how I can feel, I feel


Since yesterday, last 24 hours, they are keeping him as a prisoner. It's just not fair. It's not human. So I just hope that he will be strong, as we

are trying also to be very strong to give him some energy to keep on going. I hope that he will win.


DAVIES: It's being reported in the Serbia media that he had a request to move from the detention to hotel to a rented apartment with his team

denied. Importantly, that was a request to move to a venue with a tennis court.

So he would be able to practice because Zain come Monday, when this hearing is due to take place. That would mean six days in detention for Novak

Djokovic and with just a week to go until the start of the Australian Open.

Even if this appeal was to succeed, we shouldn't underestimate the impact that would have on any chance of him defending this title even as the world

number one.

ASHER: Yes, it's important. However, he does have to practice leading up to the match if he is allowed to go on and play. And one question that a lot

of people have been asking is how on earth was even allowed to board this flight in the first place if you did not have the appropriate visits.

I do want to ask though, what sort of impact this is going to have on Novak's popularity. I understand that some of his fellow players,

particularly Rafi on the DOW, have also been speaking.

DAVIES: Yes, Novak Djokovic is a player who's never been afraid to do things in his own way. And that might have worked out very well for him on

the tennis court, but it hasn't necessarily made him the most popular player on tour. When I spoke to the six time Grand Slam champion is former

coach Boris Becker.


DAVIES: Yesterday, he actually urged Novak to be a little bit more open, a little bit more transparent about his thinking and what he's been going

through in the last couple of days.

But you could argue that it's by being open so honest about his views on being against vaccination, even posting that picture on Instagram saying

that he was traveling with the special exemption that has got him to this position.

The Australia Tennis Australia, who are the body that run the Australian Open have obviously fought very, very hard to get their defending champion

to Melbourne. They were the people who were trying to help facilitate this visa because they know what having him at their tournament can do for their


And whilst you have on the one hand players like Daniil Medvedev saying, well, we don't mind if he's not going to turn up because it helps our

chances of winning the title. Rafael Nadal, his rival has perhaps been a little bit blunter in his assessment of how he sees it.


RAFAEL NADAL, 20 TIME GRAND SLAM WINNER: I think if he wanted, he will be playing here in Australia without a problem. Now, he went through another,

he makes his own decisions and everybody is free to take their own decisions. But then there are some consequences now.

And, of course, of course, I don't like the situation that is happening. In some way, I feel sorry for him. But at the same time, he knew the

conditions since a lot of months ago. So he makes his own decision.


ASHER: Not much sympathy there from Rafael Nadal. Amanda Davies live for us. Thank you so much. All right, the Head of the World Health Organization

has a very pointed message about global Vaccine rollouts. The new numbers he says show, the world is running behind on vaccine equity, that's next.


ASHER: A warning today about vaccine equity from the Head of the World Health Organization who says based on the current rate of COVID vaccine

rollouts, 109 countries will miss the W.H.O's target to get 70 percent of the world fully vaccinated by July.

His comment is coming as the Omicron variant impacts more and more events around the globe similar to what we saw in the first half of 2020. India's

most populous state Uttar Pradesh called off election rallies after COVID cases nearly tripled over the past few days.


ASHER: Here in the United States the music industry's Grammy awards have been postponed indefinitely. And the annual Sundance Film Festival in Utah

has gone virtual. Meantime, the lower house of France's Parliament finally passed a bill that would require vaccinations for most public activities.

Opposition parties managed to stall debate on the bill twice; it now goes to the French Senate. The vote coming after France smashed its daily high

for new COVID-19 infections. More than 330,000 reported on Wednesday.

A public apology in China to a woman who suffered a miscarriage because of strict COVID containment rules, the woman was initially denied entrance to

a hospital in Xi'an due to not having a valid COVID-19 test. Kristie Lu Stout has more on the angry reaction after video of the woman was shared on

social media.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): As the Chinese city of Cheyenne enters a third week of hard lockdown, a harrowing story of loss

and punishment.

STOUT (on camera): As we reported earlier in a graphic video that went viral in China, a pregnant woman was turned away from a hospital in Xi'an

because she didn't have a valid COVID-19 test.

According to the posts from a Weibo user who claims to be her niece, the woman is sitting outside the hospital and bleeding so much there was a pool

of blood at her feet. Hours later, she was finally admitted but ultimately suffered a miscarriage. And we have since learned that hospital officials

have been punished.

STOUT (voice over): The Head of the Xi'an Goshen hospital and its emergency center director had been suspended, the municipal government announced on

Thursday. The Director of Xi'an's CDC was also issued a disciplinary warning by the municipal government.

He apologized and bowed to the patient, but to angry netizens in China, it's not enough. One Weibo user accuses the government of only taking

actions after tragedies happened. Another says there's no need to sacrifice individuals for the group because we should be able to protect people's


A top rated comment adds this just goes to show COVID-19 might not kill you, but bureaucrats can a metropolis of 13 million. Xi'an has been in hard

lockdown since December the 23rd. After more than 200 local COVID-19 cases were detected over two weeks.

Residents are forbidden from leaving their homes unless it's for COVID test. A month before the Beijing Olympic Games, local officials have vowed

to achieve community zero COVID before beginning to ease the lockdown, but zero COVID has come at a cost.

MATTIE BEKINK, CHINA DIRECTOR, ECONOMIST INTELLIGENCE UNIT: Measures in Xi'an are China's toughest on such a scale since really the early ages the

pandemic. There are no signs that China will deviate from the dynamic zero COVID approach or that this current outbreak has been effectively

contained. There are still cases in China every day.

STOUT (voice over): Social media has been flooded with cries for help. Residents say they continue to struggle to get food, basic supplies and

medical attention.

STOUT (on camera): One user on Xiaohongshu, China's Instagram like platform appeal for help after a hospital refused to admit her father who had just

had a heart attack. Why because they lived in a medium risk area of the city.

She later writes that her father was allowed an emergency operation but "the delay was too long and rescue failed. I don't have a father anymore".

STOUT (voice over): CNN cannot independently verify the authenticity of these videos and posts. The video of the bleeding pregnant woman outside

Goshen hospital was widely shared before it was deleted. But the cracks and China zero COVID strategy had been exposed. Kristie Lu Stout, CNN Hong



ASHER: At least 125 passengers from a charter flight from Italy to India had tested positive for COVID upon arrival. 160 passengers were given COVID

tests when the plane landed in the northern Indian state of Punjab.

The tests were mandatory since India considered Italy an at-risk country and state government will manage the passengers quarantine and treatment.

Hong Kong has allowed more than 3000 cruise ship passengers and crew to disembark after they were tested for COVID 19.

Royal Caribbean tells CNN they were stuck on board until the test came back negative. COVID scare had pushed authorities to order the spectrum of the

seas cruise ship to return to port.

The immediate concern in Kazakhstan meanwhile, the crackdown on protesters across the nation, we'll speak with a Cambridge researcher who's in touch

with friends and family inside Kazakhstan. Why she worries about the deafening silence on social media.



AHSER: Alright, returning to one of our top stories this hour, fresh gunfire and explosions are being reported in Kazakhstan's largest city

Almaty. According to Russian state news agency tasked the Military is demanding people leave Republic Square or else it will open fire.

A Russian led Military alliance has sent so called peacekeeping forces into the country. They're meant to quell the violence that erupted during

protests Wednesday reportedly killing dozens and injuring more than 1000 across the nation, those numbers according to a Police official from


The city's Police departments as people try to storm government buildings overnight and "dozens of attackers were liquidated". Unless are taking

authorities account of what's happening there with of course a grain of salt.

My next guest tweeted the Kazakhstan protests is not homogenous. There are different groups, players on the ground. Almaty is a burning hub right now,

very different from Western Kazakhstan.

Now in Almaty, there's an independent coordination hub that has nothing to do with borders. Not everyone protesting is a rioter. That's Diana

Kudaibergenova, Assistant Professor at in Political Sociology at the University of Cambridge. She joins us live now.

Diana, thank you so much for being with us. So before we get to who is protesting on the ground and how it's not a homogenous group, as you point

out, I do want to ask you, you have friends and family right now in Kazakhstan, first of all, are they in Almaty? Second of all what are they

told you? Are they safe?


really worried about my brother who lives very close to the main square. And they heard a lot of gunshots throughout the night. And the kids were

really scared.

And also, they basically, there was a bank building that was on fire. And some of the people came in to get the water hose to try to put the fire


So and it basically shows how there's so much, you know, complexity going on, on the ground, there are people who try to put down fires and then

there are people trying to start the fire. So unfortunately, very, very complex situation right now there.

AHSER: I mean, yes, these are not images we're used to seeing out of Kazakhstan. This is a country that usually tries to project some degree of

political stability. But what we're seeing right now there, especially out of a multi band out government buildings, I mean, we're looking at it right

now, as you're speaking, I know you can't see the screen.

But yes, burnt out cars, et cetera, protesters and clashes between protesters and Police, you talk about this idea that the protests

themselves are not a homogenous group that they're made up of different factions. What do you mean by that?

KUDAIBERGENOVA: Well, it's very important. First of all, the protests are massive all over different cities in the country in different regions;

Kazakhstan is comprised of 14 regions and three Republican major cities on --. And in each of the city of course the process is very different and

different people come out on the speed.


KUDAIBERGENOVA: But what happened in Almaty, - unprecedented. We have never seen that level of violence, and our level of passion in terms of like, you

know, in any city in the past. And I think what I meant also by the fact that it's not a heterogeneous movement.

If we look completely into Almaty, for example, there are all sorts of groups. The workforce is the sort of social movements in Almaty.

Beforehand, there were activists who were going on the streets --. First for example, they were always peaceful. I studied these groups for years,

and they were always peaceful.

They didn't like, you know, resort to violence. What we're seeing with some of the some of the riots and some of the people who attack the Police.

Unfortunately, we see that some of the police and security forces have been killed. This is really, really tragic.

The level of violence we're seeing from this video is completely unprecedented. And we don't know who are these affected? Who are these

rioters? Who is organizing them? And where did they come from because some of them seem to be disoriented as well.

ASHER: So for a lot of people who are watching, you know, they might not be familiar with what's happening on the ground there in Kazakhstan, in

Almaty. Can you explain to our audience why people are protesting? We know that it started off because the government originally had been subsidizing

fuel subsidizing LNG.

And they just said, listen, this is this is not sustainable. We can't afford to do this anymore. So fuel prices, as of this week, I believe,

basically doubled almost overnight, people were very angry about that. But it's turned into something much deeper than that. They're angry about a

whole host of issues happening on the country, walk us through that.

KUDAIBERGENOVA: Well, basically, we need to look into it. And in the larger perspective, and the more structural issues and problems have been ongoing

for a decade, at least since the first protests erupted in 2011, and - led to a lot of casualties as well.

And since then, the waves of force in Kazakhstan in 2014, that was related to economic issues because of the devaluation of local currency. Then in

2016, I'm sorry, in 2016, with the land process, that was also quite widespread and invest in Kazakhstan.

And then in 2019, that bore the protest for the political reforms and for the democratization and open and contested elections as soon as President

Nazarbayev resigns in March of 2019.

So that's, that's the type of complexity and that's type of forces I'm talking about. But also on another level is that in the past decade, the

word these like grievances in social inequalities bottling up and also regions of Kazakhstan, and also socio economic groups of Kazakhstan


And the government was, you know, promising all of these things, but a lot of the programs that the government provided for short term or short term

oriented and for a lot of the protesters, they will not be answers to the problems and the issues that they still have in hand with you know,

impoverishing situation and worsening economic situation. That's the deeper cause of it. And obviously, the corruption also plays out into that as


ASHER: Yes, I mean, you talked about President Nazarbayev, who resigned in 29, stepped down as president in 2019, but still has an outsized role in

Kazakh politics. Diana, we have to leave it there. Thank you so much for being on the program.


ASHER: And I'm glad that your family is safe and that they're OK.


ASHER: And do keep us updated as and when you hear more information because it's been so, so hard for us and our journalists to get information out of

the country. So thank you so much for being with us.

All right, before winter is over the U.S. House committee investigating last year's attack on the U.S. Capitol wants public hearings. Just ahead

the latest evidence and who the committee is targeting, that's next.


ASHER: Today, January 6 marks the anniversary of the attack on Capitol Hill in Washington. And while the House Select Committee investigates the

attempted coup, it's certainly not an easy undertaking with multiple players from rioter's people behind the planning and intelligence failures

they face many hurdles before the Justice Department even gets involved. Here's Ryan Nobles with more.



RYAN NOBLES, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It is the most sweeping investigation yet into January six. One year since the deadly

Insurrection that came dangerously close to preventing the peaceful transfer of power in America, the House Select Committee is still figuring

out what went wrong and who is responsible.

REP. BENNIE THOMPSON (D-MS): There are a lot of things that should have occurred in a more orderly and streamlined fashion. That didn't. And I'm

convinced that that was, in my opinion, by design.

NOBLES (voice over): On paper, the committee's mission is straightforward. They want to write the definitive narrative as to what led to January 6,

and what happened on that day, they plan to offer up a series of recommendations to prevent it from happening again.

And if they discover criminal activity in the course of their investigation, they plan to refer that to the Department of Justice. It's

that potential for finding criminal activity and holding certain individuals accountable, like former President Donald Trump that is getting

the most attention.

REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): I think that there are a number of as the Chairman said potential criminal statutes at issue here.

NOBLES (voice over): But finding hard evidence of wrongdoing that would rise to the level of the Department of Justice filing charges is no easy


The committee made up of seven Democrats and two Republicans facing a number of obstacles from fighting legal challenges, including Trump asking

the Supreme Court to block them from accessing his White House Records to putting to rest the big lie of a stolen election and accusations yet again,

of a political witch hunt.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's very clear to the American public. This is a sham.

NOBLES (voice over): Many of the committee's targets are either current or former Republican elected leaders tied to Trump. As a result, the GOP is

questioned the committee's work from the start. For committee members like Representative Elaine Luria, a Democrat who represents a swing district in

Virginia. That means investigating people she works with every day.

REP. ELAINE LURIA (D-VA): No one in this investigation is going to be treated differently because of their current position, or their former


NOBLES (voice over): With a staff of more than 40 people, the committee has conducted more than 300 interviews. They've collected more than 35,000

documents and issued more than 50 subpoenas, seeking phone records and even bank records as they follow the money behind the insurrectionists. Their

work is done largely behind closed doors and office buildings off the beaten path.

LURIA: The goal of this is not to go after a person or a group of people but rather to understand all of the contributing factors that lead to the

events and provide recommendations moving forward.

NOBLES (voice over): And they claim that they are constantly uncovering new evidence including a timeline of Trump's conduct on that day, a body of

evidence they say will show Trump willfully chose not to quell the violence, despite pleas from his allies and his own children.

CHENEY: President Trump was sitting in the dining room next to the Oval Office watching on television as the Capitol was assaulted as the violence

occurred. We know that that is clearly a supreme dereliction of duty.

NOBLES (voice over): By late winter, the group hopes to hold primetime public hearings. They could issue an interim report by summer with a goal

of wrapping up their work with a final report in the fall just before the midterm elections.

A necessary deadline because if Republicans take back the house as expected, this committee will likely be shut down. But the committee

believes their work rises above partisan politics. They hope that their investigation will provide a clearer and sober view of what happened on

January 6.

THOMPSON: In this great country of ours, I'm convinced that sunlight and truth is the best disinfectant when you're dealing with the lat. Hopefully

we will provide the proper disinfected for what's happened on January 6, so that people will understand it.

NOBLES (voice over): With the goal of ensuring an attempted coup never happens again.

LURIA: Like if someone tried to do this in the future, are there ways they could still succeed and we need to safeguard against that.

NOBLES (voice over): Ryan Nobles, CNN on Capitol Hill.


ASHER: Thanks for joining us today. I'm Zain Asher. That was "Connect the World". You're watching CNN.