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Connect the World

Djokovic Wins Appeal but may still be Dropped; U.S.-Russia talks on Ukraine End, Updates Expected Soon; China's Tianjin goes into Partial Lockdown as Omicron Spreads; Briefing After High-Stakes Russia-U.S. Talks on Ukraine; Kazakhstan President Thanks Russia for Help in Crackdown; Fire Kills 19 Including 9 Children in New York City. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired January 10, 2022 - 11:00   ET




ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN, London. This is "Connect the World".

HALA GORANI, CNN HOST, CONNECT THE WORDL: I'm Hala Gorani in London. Hello and welcome to "Connect the World". The top men's tennis player in the

world could still be deported from Australia even though Novak Djokovic won his visa appeal earlier today.

The country's Immigration Minister is reserving the right to intervene in the case. Now you'll remember of course the tennis star was blocked by

border officials last week over COVID vaccination rules ahead of the Australian Open.

Djokovic is the defending champion of the Australian Open tweeted "I want to stay and try to compete in the Australian Open" and this was the seed a

few hours ago Melbourne Police used pepper spray on some fans at a pro- Djokovic rally. CNN's Paula Hancocks is in Melbourne for us, and she joins us now like.

So this doesn't this ruling does not necessarily mean that Djokovic will be able to stay and compete in the Australian Open, correct?

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Hala, what this means is that tonight Djokovic is a free man and his family in a press conference has

already said that he has been on the tennis court practicing so clearly he is moving on and he is focusing his mind now on next week in the Australian


So he believes he will be playing but there is a possible change that could come in the coming hours. And that is the fact the Immigration Minister

could step in and make differences to what the judge has already decided. So let's take a look back at what happened this Monday.


HANCOCKS (voice over): One week ahead from the Australian Open advantage Novak Djokovic, which a winner in the Australian Federal Circuit Court

Monday could allow the defending Grand Slam Champion to play in the tournament. His appeal to have his visa cancellation quashed has been


Within the words of presiding Judge Antony Kelly the stakes have risen rather than receded. Immediately after the decision was read lawyers for

the Australian Government warned the court that the Immigration Minister Alex Hawke reserves the right to step in to exert his own personal power to

remove Djokovic from Australia.

BEN ROTHENBERG, RACQUET MAGAZINE: Scott Morrison's government wants to be seen as being tough on COVID and tough on border safety related to COVID.

HANCOCKS (voice over): So while Djokovic won this round, the showdown is far from over. For now, he remains in Melbourne free of immigration

detention where he has languished for five days.

ROTHENBERG: Foremost, I think Djokovic has dropped the ball a bit by just not getting vaccinated by taking this very hard stance he made life much

tougher for him.

HAMCOCKS (voice over): Separate to where the Djokovic held a valid medical exemption to enter Australia unvaccinated. Judge Kelly ruled the Serbian

was treated unfairly when detained at the airport by federal officers. Djokovic was not given adequate time to speak to his lawyer or get in touch

with Tennis Australia officials when he was served with the intention to cancel his visa.

Few in Australia have much sympathy for Djokovic, who has expressed opposition to vaccine requirements before even entering the country and

vaccinated albeit with an exemption he thought would suffice. Judge Kelly took an opposite tone.

A professor and an eminently qualified physician have produced and provided to the applicant a medical exemption Judge Kelly said later adding what

more could this man have done? Djokovic's medical exemption relies on a recent COVID-19 diagnosis officially recorded on December 16th.

In his affidavit Djokovic says he knew of his infection that day, raising questions about masks plus public events on December 16th and 17th, the

tennis star seen at a panel and the tennis award ceremony. But for now Djokovic has won this battle, all eyes now on the government to see their



HANCOCKS: So questions do remain about the timing of this Hala the facts that he may have been in public when he was infected with COVID-19.

GORANI: Yeah, indeed. And Novak's family has been very vocal throughout we've heard from his parents what his brother have to say this afternoon.

HANCOCKS: Well, just starting on the talking about the dates of when he found out he was positive to when he was in public? They were asked about

that they declined to talk about it and really ended the press conference at that point, the father pointing out that that's for the courts.

But what the main thrust of the press conference was, was thanking the supporters thanking the lawyers for this outcome. And also the brother

pointed out that his brother Novak Djokovic had done nothing wrong and the court had found that he had done nothing wrong.


HANCOCKS: Now his mother also spoke of just how difficult it was for her?


DJORDJE DJOKOVIC, NOVAK DJOKOVIC'S BROTHER: He came to Australia with the best intentions. He has all the documentation that was required of him. He

was given medical exemption. Everything was in order. And we finally, we finally learned this today that Novak did nothing wrong. This is first and

foremost, a celebration of Novak's victory.


HANCOCKS: When the mother did speak, she also pointed out just how difficult it was as a mother to see what her son was going through saying

that they couldn't even get hold of him that his phone had been taken away. And even when they were talking to him, at one point, the phone call was

cut off halfway through; she was worried that he was in fact sick.

So it just shows what the family was going through as well, a pointing out that he wouldn't have got on the plane as we heard from others, if he

didn't think that he had the correct exemption Hala.

GORANI: All right. Paula Hancocks live in Melbourne, Australia, where it is now, five minutes past three in the morning. And as Paula just mentioned

there, Novak Djokovic submitted a positive PCR test to the Melbourne Court dated December 16th. And as we now are seeing on his own Twitter page, he

met with children and attended a public event, the day after -- only a few hours after he himself now says he was -- he had tested positive for the


My next guest is the Author of the book "Novak Djokovic: The Biography" and he says the tennis star in his words, does not always read the room. Chris

Bowers joins me now live. Your book is called the sporting statesman. That is the Novak Biography.

What do you think having studied him having researched him for many years? Is his state of mind right now? Because others might have said after being

told that their visa was revoked, -- I'm just going to turn around and fly back home. But he fought through it. Why do you think?

CHRIS BOWERS, AUTHOR, "NOVAK DJOKOVIC: THE BIOGRAPHY": He's a warrior. I mean, he's always been a warrior Hala. I mean, this is the nature of the

man. In many ways he thrives on adversity. That's not to say he won't have been hurting during his four days in -- in the quarantine hotel.

I suspect, you know, because he's an emotional man, because he's a sensitive man, he will have felt that sense of unfairness that I think we

could probably all still remember from our childhood when the wrong person got the blame after a squabble in our primary school playground.

But I think he's somebody who's always thrived on the challenge. And what was interesting was that the moment he was released, he had a short meeting

with his lawyers, and then we're straight onto the tennis court because he hasn't swung a racket for about what, six, seven days if you count the

flies out from Europe.

So if he's going to make anything like a reasonable, a title defense, assuming he's allowed to take to the court early next week, he's got to get

some court time, if only practice and just running around.

GORANI: What is his -- where does his opposition to vaccines come from?

BOWERS: He is a man from a fairly modest background. At the age of five, he noticed a tennis clinic came to the town up in the mountains on the

Serbian/Kosovo border, where his parents ran a pizzeria. He stuck his face to the fence, the coach noticed how keen he was taught him how to play

tennis, but saw her role is more than that.

She was a remarkable woman called Elaine, again, check who was his character from the ages of five to 12. But she could see your claims, you

could see that he would be a -- an international figure and therefore taught him very much to be a citizen of the world.

And among the problems she had to deal with is a number of allergies that he had, he would often sort of start sneezing because of a wild flower by

the court side. And if you follow the early part of his playing career, he frequently retired hurt from matches.

Now, he's become a searcher looking for alternative ways of doing things. And he's a great believer in the power of the body to heal itself. And

that's why it's not just that he's against the vaccine when he had a serious elbow injury that caused him to sit out the second half of the 2017


He resolutely refused to have an operation on the elbow. Eventually, he came back early 2018. The problem was still there. So he went and had the

procedure. But he was very much it was against his better judgment, even though it actually led to an improvement. So his natural instinct is always

to say, the natural way is the right way for me.

GORANI: Well, the other thing is, of course, you've seen this controversy about the document that he submitted to the court stating that he tested

positive for COVID on December 16th, and the very next day he was out and about mask-less in public, his family, not answering questions about that.

What do you make of that?

BOWERS: Well, I made -- but I'm not within 24 hours a day or even though sometimes feel like it.


BOWERS: You know he -- I find it interesting --

GORANI: I mean, it sounds like either he was reckless, or something else was going on. I mean, basically, that's what we're reading on social media

before either doubting the test or their or -- are they're judging him on his behavior after.

BOWERS: Yeah. And you can't understand why they're doing that. It appears to have not been in the courts remit to actually check whether that's

accurate or not. The courts seem to have said, if you produce a certificate showing you a positive PCR test positive between the 31st of July and the

end of December, then that counted at least that was what the guides that he was given, which the court seems to respect.

I quite agree with your Hala, it is it looks. It leaves questions hanging over it. But you know he has always been his own man. He's always done what

he thinks is right. But as I've said, and you quoted at the beginning of this interview, one of the big criticisms I've had of him is that he does

not always read the room.

He is sometimes turned deaf. And I think his social media posts last week when he got the clearance to travel saying I'm on my way to Australia, that

was also turned off, and that perhaps created the whole climate that's worked against him.

GORANI: And Chris, just one last one on his state of mind you as you've researched him, as I mentioned at the beginning, a lot and his and his, how

he approaches the game, what his strategy is for staying on top. He hasn't swung a racket in about a week, but also this has been a huge distraction.

How do you think this could impact his game?

BOWERS: Well, I came to the conclusion a couple of days ago that even if he plays the Australian Open, he will not now win it. That's because I feel he

could win a couple of first second round matches, because, you know, his ability, people are playing the reputation as well as just the player.

But I think come the third round fourth round quarterfinal, he'll play a player who's playing lights out tennis, and Djokovic will go to the reserve

tank. And because of all this, he'll find that that tank is empty. So I think it may have done for his chances, though he's used to proving us

wrong and might yet do again.

GORANI: All right, well, certainly, whatever happens if he plays everyone will be watching the Australian Open even people who don't normally watch

tennis. Thanks very much. Chris Bowers, Author of "The Novak Djokovic Biography" really appreciate your time today.

And the moments ahead, we are expecting to hear from representatives of both the United States and Russia. Their talks on Ukraine have now ended.

The U.S. was hoping to ease the standoff as roughly 100,000 Russian troops remain poised near the Ukrainian border. Western countries fear another

invasion of that country could be imminent.

CNN's Nic Robertson is in Geneva where the talks took place and our Sam Kiley is in Kiev, where of course this is being watched very closely. Nic,

let's start with you. What was the outcome today of these talks?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Well, they started a few minutes early. They've run pretty much to schedule, a short break for

lunch over seven hours of talks. And then a few minutes when the Head of the Russian Delegation here and Deputy Foreign Ministers Sergey Ryabkov,

gives his thoughts to the press.

I think we're going to get our first impression of whether or not Russia, as the U.S. was seeing these talks, is actually prepared to engage beyond

this cut, you know, the current statement that they want these legally binding guarantees that Ukraine can become a member of NATO and that NATO

is going to roll back it's, you know, troops and installations that are close to the sort of leading edge, if you will, of Eastern Europe.

So you know this will be a test of that position. The Russians have gone into this saying that they don't think they've been hearing the right

noises from Washington, the right noises from Brussels. But it really does come down to this that, you know, the United States has gone into these

talks today saying that bilateral we're not going to talk and make any decisions about anything that includes NATO or Ukraine or anything like

that without them being present.

So this will be -- this is an absolute test to that. And I think, you know, everyone who's close to this, watching it closely is on tenterhooks to see

what Ryabkov actually says, because this is the acid test of whether or not there's a future in this round of diplomacy.

GORANI: Sam Kiley in Kiev. This is all from the U.S. perspective, about lowering the tension at the border and trying to reassure Ukraine that

Russia will not go in once again after its annexation of Crimea in 2014. Is there some level of reassurance today following these talks or not?


SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is a matter as you rightly point out of extreme tenderness for Ukraine; they've already lost a

large chunk of territory known as the Donbas, the East country to Russian back rebels. There are also Russian troops inside Ukrainian territory,

albeit covert operators in large part.

And of course, as you know, they've already annexed the Crimea illegally. So this has happened before as far as the Ukrainians are concerned. They

are very worried indeed, they're also concerned at this effort being made by Russia to make this a bilateral issue between the two superpowers.

It's very clear from the Ukrainian and indeed the international perspective, Hala that in many ways, this is already a victory for Vladimir

Putin, because he's speaking as a superpower leader to the other major superpower that he's most concerned about the United States.

But at the same time, the Ukrainians are meeting have been meeting today with NATO. There'll be part alongside Georgia with a meeting of top

generals with the Military leaders of NATO on Thursday.

This is NATO's effort to reassure those two front latest frontline states, especially Ukraine, that what that they are going to have something of a

level of protection security provided by NATO members. But as the Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister has said in the statement we're about to play, they

are very worried just listen to this.


OLGA STEFANISHYNA, DEP. PM FOR EU AND EURO-ATLANTIC INTEGRATION OF UKRAINE: Still, we would all realize the danger that is the build-up in our country.

Russia will amass enough troops to launch an additional full scale invasion into Ukraine. So we need to do everything possible to prevent that.


KILEY: Now, Ukrainians here Hala are really worried that perhaps as Vladimir Putin returns from these trip talks in a week or two, perhaps

there could be some kind of minor incident that would trigger an excuse for some kind of incursion or an increase in Russian official Military presence

inside Ukrainian territory.

And what the consequences of that would be, are very, very troubling here in Kiev, but also right across the European capitals in particular, Hala.

GORANI: Alright, Sam Kiley in Kiev and Nic Robertson in Geneva. Thanks very much. To COVID now and China has been trying with sometimes some

questionable measures to get a hold of its first cases of Omicron. Will tell you about the new restrictions are being put in place to stop the

virus from spreading to Beijing.

And Italy is rolling out a super green pack as COVID infections rise in Europe, while the Italians are now tightening restrictions for the

unvaccinated. We'll be right back.


GORANI: While there are several nations around the world rolling out new restrictions as they see a sharp rise in COVID cases. For the first time

China is reporting two new Omicron cases in Tianjin.

The entire city with a population of 14 million is under partial lockdown and undergoing mass testing after two cases. And starting today Italy will

require what's being called a super green pass for those who are fully vaccinated or have proof of recovery from Coronavirus.


GORANI: Our team is covering this for us in Asia and Europe. Cyril Vanier is live in Paris. Selina Wang is in Tokyo. And Cyril, I'll start with you.

What is a super green pass exactly?

CYRIL VANIER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, so the super green pass Hala, replaces the system that Italy has had over the last few months, which was

the green pass which the regular green pass, I guess you can now call it. The super green pass no longer allows a negative COVID test to grant access

to money air in many areas of public life.

Whether its sports, whether it's gyms, whether it's cultural life, whether it's the hospitality sector, until now, you could access those parts of

public life with a negative test that is no longer the case.

What that effectively does Hala, it is a quasi-lockdown for the unvaccinated because if you're unvaccinated, there's very little you can do

once you leave your house, you can't take public transport Hala, you can't go to the gym. You can't go to a religious ceremony.

I mean, what can you do, you obviously can't go to the restaurants, bars, the entire cultural scene, none of that. So there are very, very few areas

of public life, you can't even take public transport. So there's very little that you can do.

And that is the super green pass that has come into effect today. That and mandatory vaccination for over 50s are the pillars of the Italian strategy

to fight this wave of the pandemic.

GORANI: And there are some countries in Europe also introducing the notion that a booster is now required to be considered fully vaccinated. Two shots

aren't necessarily enough anymore soon.

VANIER: Right, absolutely. What does it mean to be fully vaccinated, Hala? You know, we heard that where you are in the UK Prime Minister Boris

Johnson, who said a couple of weeks ago already that really we're going to have to, we're going to have to take another hard look at what it means to

be fully vaccinated.

Same thing here in France, which is going to impose something like what Italy has just done only with a booster shot. So in order to have access to

many areas of public life, you're going to need now a booster shot to be considered fully vaccinated.

And there are many countries that are getting on board with the fact that a full vaccination schedule means having your booster shot. Why because from

a scientific point of view, we know that, you know, immunity wanes after it starts waning after four months.

And after six months, if you've only had two shots, the protection levels that you get from severe forms of COVID become very low, and they bounce

right back up it provided you get a booster shot. And that's the logic behind that.

GORANI: Yeah, Selina Wang, you're in Tokyo. Obviously, the Chinese have from the beginning, had a very heavy handed response to this virus closing

off entire cities of millions after only a handful of cases. And they're doing it again, in the case of another city that reported two new cases of


SELINA WANG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, Hala, exactly. And with this latest outbreak, what are particularly concerning to authorities in Beijing are

both the timing and the location of this outbreak. We are just weeks away from the Beijing Winter Olympics.

And this outbreak is happening just 80 miles from host city, Beijing, in the northeastern port city of Tianjin, reporting at least two Omicron

cases, the first case of community transmission of Omicron in China.

Now in response to that China city of Tianjin is mass testing all of its 14 million people. It's locked down put under strict lockdown 29 residential

communities, and overall there have been just around 40 COVID-19 cases overall in this city.

But China here is doubling down on its zero COVID-19 strategy and we are seeing a continuation of its reliance on mask testing, quasi or full

lockdowns as well as extreme quarantine measures. But in addition to this, this outbreak in Tianjin is significant because it is an economic hub. It

is a port city.

This is a place that is just 30 minutes away from Beijing by high speed rail. And Omicron as well has spread far outside Tianjin hundreds of miles

away to the central province in Hunan that was linked to a traveler in Tianjin.

Meanwhile, the city of Xi'an and its 30 million residents have been under strict lockdown since December 23. And harrowing and heartbreaking stories

continue to emerge, including a viral video of a pregnant woman who was turned away from a hospital because she could not provide proof that she

did not have COVID-19.

She later was admitted after waiting outside for hours and bleeding, but ultimately she suffered a miscarriage.

And there has been a continuation of outpouring of people who have also been unable to receive medical care who have been dealing with a shortage

of food and basic necessities which Hala, leads to more questions about whether or not Beijing's zero COVID strategy is sustainable especially as

authorities are under increasing pressure to keep cases low leading it to the Olympics, Hala.


GORANI: Selina Wang, thanks very much and Cyril Vanier in Paris. The U.S. and Russia have wrapped up high stakes talks over Ukraine. Were set to hear

from Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister any minute now after both sides cautioned not to expect any major breakthroughs.

I don't think anyone was really holding their breath for that. Also ahead Russian troops help quash violent protests in Kazakhstan. But when are they

expected to leave. And Myanmar's ousted civilian leader is given four more years in prison. Look at the charges and what is next for Aung San Suu Kyi.

We'll be right back.


GORANI: Welcome back to "Connect the World" I'm Hala Gorani in London. High stakes Russia U.S. talks on Ukraine wrapped up about an hour ago in Geneva


Any moment now Russia's deputy foreign minister will address reporters his American counterpart will hold a phone briefing. They met today after weeks

of building tension in the west over Russia massing some 100,000 troops along its border with Ukraine.

Western countries do not want Russia to make any move against Ukraine detect any more territory. Russia doesn't want Ukraine to become part of

the West's orbit certainly not to join NATO.

This meeting is part of a series of international talks going on this week in Geneva and Brussels, involving Russia, the United States and NATO. The

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken says that any progress must be tied to Russian de-escalation along the Ukrainian border.

Russia calls that a non-starter. My next guest served as Director of Global Engagement at the White House during the Obama Administration. Brett Bruen

says Antony Blinken floating the idea of offering Russia concessions on Ukraine is absolutely the wrong strategy.

He says doing that would only increase Russian threats and attacks against Ukraine. And Brett Bruen is now President of the Global Situation Room and

he joins me now from Virginia. Thanks for being with us.

So you served on the National Security Council under Obama. And this was at the time in 2014 when Russia went ahead and illegally annexed Crimea. You

don't think any concession at this stage is the right strategy toward Russia. Why not?


BRETT BRUEN, PRESIDENT, GLOBAL SITUATION ROOM: No and forgive me, Hala, I if I'm having a bit of a sense of deja vu because I see us falling in to

exactly the same trap that we did before. And we are unfortunately I think playing a game on Russia's rules and Russia is changing the rules


What we have to do is stop with negotiating on their terms. This should not be a question of whether or not Russia invades. They are already in Crimea,

as you noted, as well as Luhansk and Donetsk in eastern Ukraine, not to mention --essentially, in Georgia turns Neisseria in Moldova.

They need to get out of those countries, and they need to stop this policy of trying to promote instability and insecurity along their borders.

GORANI: So what's the right strategy, in your opinion?

BRUEN: Well, I think several folds. One, we've got to send a message to Putin; we're not just going to tinker with economic sanctions any longer.

We will get serious; we will get serious both in terms of Military defense of those countries, as well as executing on some of the information and

intelligence that we have.

Putin is increasingly in a weak position at home with domestic politics. And I think the U.S. needs to deliver a message to him that if he pursues

that path, we will no longer pull punches.

GORANI: Brett, the actual -- actually the deputy foreign minister for Russia is taking questions now. I hope you can stick around. We're just

going to listen a bit and then hopefully get back to you; we'll see what he has to say.

SERGEY RYABKOV, RUSSIAN DEPUTY FOREIGN MINISTER: Russian proposals very seriously and studied them in depth. For our part, we presented to the

Americans our detailed logic and the content of our proposals. We explained why to receive guarantees of non --no expansion for NATO is absolutely

imperative to us.

And why we absolutely need to get legal guarantees for non-deployment of Russian borders of offensive weapons that may hit targets in our territory.

And why we are raising the issue that NATO must renounce logically renounce the material development of the territory of its new members that join that

night after nine to nine to seven that is after the signing of the fundamental Russian NATO ACT.

And we very clearly stated that without progress on these three key areas that are very integral and absolutely necessary for us. We cannot proceed

on or any other aspects however important they are. This progress will be put in questions.

And, of course, it was no surprise to us that the American side in the spirit of well-known statements by the officials of the American

administration in recent days and months putting forward claims about Russia massing its troops near the Ukrainian borders, and certain threats

were put forward or at the very least warnings addressed to us.

We explained to our colleagues that we have no plans or intentions to attack, "Ukraine" and any measures to train our Military forces are taking

place within our national territory. And there is no basis for fearing any escalated scenario in this regard.

Today, we also spoke about how to progress on arms control. And both the Russian and American delegations on security guarantees included high

ranking officials from the Military and other agencies including those who are working in an established format of the strategic stability dialogue.


RYABKOV: We perceive today's and yesterdays last night's events as a special, extraordinary session in this format. But I must tell you that the

issue of security guarantees only some words touches upon the work that we do in the strategic stability dialogue with the USA, therefore, there was

time to discuss what follows.

What follows the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty expiry within four years? What subjects we should pursue and what the working groups that have been

created as part of the strategic stability dialogue. These subjects were touched upon, but they were not central to today's discussions.

We completed our discussions that took a day and a half. And we stated and I would even take the risk to say that this was our joint stating of the

fact that any further steps and prospects of this work will be judged and decided upon.

Depending on the outcome of those actions that lie ahead in the next few days, on the 12th of January in Brussels, where we will meet NATO officials

in a joint format and also at the meeting of the permanent Council of the OSC.

After that it will be clearer whether they raise a basis for proposing our leadership to our leadership, taking a decision to continue this process

and in what format or whether we are facing something else.

And we would have to state with regrets that the NATO group decided that it would be correct to decline our proposal, and then the situation would look

different. We urge the United States of America to take maximum responsibility at this moment; the risks linked to possible confrontation

escalating, cannot be underestimated or overestimated.

The professional discussion, of course makes us more optimistic. But as I already said, the main issues are still hanging events. And we do not see

any understanding on the American side of how imperative they are to us. Thank you and I am ready to answer your questions. Please go ahead. We will

take it in circle.

GORANI: All right. Well, you heard it there from the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov asking for guarantees from the Americans and

Western countries of non-expansion of NATO.

They do not want Ukraine to join NATO. No deployment of weapons that can hit our territories with the deputy foreign ministers said they try to

reassure Ukraine and Western countries saying look, we have no plans to attack Ukraine here not our troops are on our side of the border.

So there's no issue there, but also ended by saying there before taking questions, the risk of a conflict cannot be underestimated which was kind

of an interesting closing remark. Let's get back to Brett Bruen.

You were telling me before we dipped into this news conference, that the U.S. and its partners should play ball more seriously should do more than

just dangle the threat of further economic sanctions. But what would that look like? I mean, are you talking about Military threats here?

BRUEN: No, I think what we need to do is provide a lot more defensive capabilities to these allies to increase the price that Russia would pay,

should it choose to further invade Ukraine or into other countries as well.

I think also we need to understand what is Putin's weakness is and we need to push on those points. And certainly on the domestic front he is weak and

what we can do is shine a bright light of transparency on some of the ways in which Kremlin operates.


BRUEN: And I think that would be a greater cause for concern for Putin than any additional sanctions, because let's not forget those economic sanctions

have been in place since 2014. And Russia has only gotten more aggressive.

GORANI: Yeah. And when you say shine a light on his weaknesses at home, what form does that take like a, an information war -- how do you do that?

I mean, basically, you're saying address Russians in their own country directly.

BRUEN: Yeah, and we developed a lot of these plans when I was on the National Security Council. They include taking some of the intelligence

taking some of the information that we have through our diplomatic channels, and ensuring that it finds its way into the hands of Russian


So they understand how Putin and his cronies operate. What are the corrupt deals that they are engaging in and how they're mismanaging the government

all of that in the spirit of ensuring that the Russian people understand whose governing them, and how they are governing them.

GORANI: And lastly, the Deputy Foreign Minister essentially listed all the things he wants from the U.S. and their NATO and the U.S.'s NATO partners

and called them a proposal.

That if this proposal of ours, not to deploy any more weapons that can hit our territory, this proposal for the U.S. to provide us with guarantees

that they will not expand NATO, to include Ukraine, that then after that, if they cannot come to some sort of agreement with us, then, basically, we

don't know what could happen if you get really bad. I mean, that was kind of the subtext.

BRUEN: It was. And look, there is a very bizarre list of demands that Russia is making right now, particularly because the U.S. and NATO allies

have taken no significant additional steps in recent years, there was no provocation.

This was all a pretext for Russia to be able to extract additional concessions from Washington from Brussels and other European capitals. I

think what you're seeing right now is a strategy by Putin to push the Biden Administration, see how far he can get.

And I think this is a real test for Biden's team. Are they going to hold the line, are they going to give in. And I've been worried with some of the

statements in the last few weeks about what they are willing to give Russia in exchange for not invading. I don't think we should be rewarding these

kinds of threats.

GORANI: Alright, Brett Bruen thanks very much, the President of Global Situation Room. Thanks for joining us today. Speaking of Russian forces

there also still president in Kazakhstan, where they end troops from other countries in the region helped crackdown on deadly protests that began last


Now the lingering question for many, when will Russia actually be leaving the former Soviet state where it helped the autocrat president there with

protests against the regime? Kazakhstan's President says they'll be going home soon.

And he's blasting the protests as an attempted coup. At the same time two more Kazakhstan security officials have been found dead. Fred Pleitgen has

more on the lingering tensions from just over the border in Kyrgyzstan.

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It was a pretty strong language coming from the President of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Jomart

Tokayev he called the protest, of course, happened last week in Kazakhstan, and attempts to coup.

He also said that Kazakhstan was currently going through what he called the toughest times to become independent around 30 years ago. Now Tokayev also

said that he believed that some of those who participated in the protests were trained abroad, as he put it so far the Kazakhstan government has not

provided any evidence to support those claims.

However, it does appear, though, that the crackdown seems to be very much going on in that country. Right now the authorities are saying that they've

detained around 8000 people who participated in those protests and in relation to the protests.

They also say that so far, the death toll stands at 164 killed in and around those protests 100 around 100 of those in the city of Almaty alone.

Now, what happened today is that there was a day of mourning in Kazakhstan, but also a very important call that took place of the Collective Security

Treaty Organization.

Of course, Russia is the lead nation in that. And the Kazakh president on that call, he said that he believes the situation is currently getting

under control. But he also said that a lot of that was thanks to troops that were provided by the member nations of that organization.

Of course the largest contingent of those troops came from Russia. Vladimir Putin also had some very choice words. He said that he believe the

protesters were using what he called my Dawn technology, of course, referring to the protests that happened in Ukraine in 2014.


PLEITGEN: And he also said that there would be no cover color revolution in the former Soviet Union state, so some very strong language coming from the

Russians. The Russians also saying that their troops will remain in place until order is restored. Fred Pleitgen, CNN at the Kyrgyz Kazakh border.

GORANI: Ahead on the show, the investigation is one of the deadliest fires in modern day New York City with a shocking death toll, including many

children, we'll be right back.


GORANI: Myanmar's ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi has just been handed four more years in prison. It was the second round of verdicts

against her and she was detained in a Military coup nearly a year ago. She's still facing a slew of other charges. More details from Anna Coren.

ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A court in Myanmar has sentenced Aung San Suu Kyi to four more years after convicting her of three charges, including

breaching the communications law for the possession of unlicensed walkie- talkies, a source with knowledge of the court proceedings tell CNN.

It comes after the 76 year old Nobel Peace Prize Laureate was sentenced to four years last month for incitement and breaking COVID rules on the

campaign trail during the second wave of the pandemic. The military junta later reduced it to two years, bringing her current sentence to a total of

six years.

But the former civilian de facto leader of Myanmar, who was deposed during a Military coup on the first of February last year, is facing at least half

a dozen other charges, including those slept -- on her last week related to the rental and purchase of a helicopter for the use of natural disasters

emergencies and state affairs.

She has denied all allegations and her supporters say the charges are baseless, and an attempt by the -- to end her political career. Well,

hundreds of people were killed and thousands arrested following the bloody coup and Military crackdown last year.

The Resistance Movement is still operating. There have been reports of explosions in cities, while thousands of protesters have taken up arms. A

U.N. official warns of an alarming possibility of an escalating Civil War. This all playing out as Aung San Suu Kyi languishes away behind bus. Anna

Coren, CNN, Hong Kong.

GORANI: Let's get you up to speed on some other stories that are on our radar right now. A Saudi princess and her daughter are out of jail. After

nearly three years Princess Basma Bint Saud and her adult daughter are vocal rights activists.

They were arrested in March 2019 for publicly questioning government policy. The Iraqi news agency reports the country's new parliament has

opened the presidential nomination window.


GORANI: Parliament is set to elect a new president in 30 days. The winner will then designate a prime minister. Some Shiite Muslim parties have been

protesting the elections. Authorities in Brazil are working to identify the 10 people who were killed.

When a massive rock fell on top of several tourist boats, at least 32 people were injured. Officials say heavy rain over several days caused the

boulder to loosen. Just ahead he was known as a lovable single dad and he showed us some of America's Funniest Moments caught on video. We remember

actor and comedian Bob Saget who died unexpectedly at 65 years old, we'll be right back.


GORANI: An unspeakable tragedies raising major questions about safety in the Bronx borough of New York on Sunday, an apartment building caught fire

killing 19 people.

The mayor says the investigation will include whether the door to the apartment where the fire originally started had closed correctly, and

whether the building's alarm systems were working properly. Brynn Gingras brings us the latest.


BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): The New York City Fire Department and fire marshals are investigating a deadly fire at a 19 storey

apartment building in the Bronx. At least 19 people lost their lives including nine children. Dozens more were injured, including 13 people in

life threatening condition according to Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro.

DANIEL A. NIGRO, NEW YORK CITY FIRE DEPT. COMMISSIONER: I think it certainly is traumatizing when we can't save a life. And our members you

know tried diligently fire and EMS members to bring some of these people back and to bring them out as quickly as they could.

GINGRAS (voice over): The commissioner says the fire started yesterday morning just before 11 when a space heater malfunctioned in an apartment on

the second and third floors of the building. The fire then spread throughout the building when the door to that apartment and at least one

stairwell door were left open.

NIGRO: The smoke spread throughout the building. I think some of them could not escape because of the volume of smoke.

GINGRAS (voice over): Nigro says victims were found in stairways on every floor of the building, many in cardiac arrest. One woman who did escape

described the fear she felt.

DAISY MITCHELL, FIRE SURVIVOR: I was really scared. I was scared. I mean, that's what really hit me. By the time I got to the exit. And I had the --

couldn't even see I thought I went blind, I couldn't even see.

GINGRAS (voice over): The Fire Commissioner said the heat was on in the building and there were working smoke detectors. But one resident said the

fire alarm regularly goes off even when there is not a fire.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How would you suppose to know if the fire is always going off?

GINGRAS (voice over): The building housed a largely Muslim population with many immigrants from Gambia, a small nation on the west coast of Africa.

Mayor Eric Adams reassured the people affected by the fire. They should not be afraid to ask for help.

ERIC ADAMS, NEW YORK MAYOR: If you need assistance or you, your names would not be turned over to ice or any other institution. And we're all feeling

this. And we're going to be here for this community to help them navigate through this.

GINGRAS (voice over): New York's governor announced the state will establish a victim's compensation fund that will help with burial cost

housing or residence other needs.

KATHY HOCHUL, NEW YORK GOVERNOR: We will not forget you, we will not abandon you, and we are here for you.



GORANI: Brynn Gingras bringing us the very latest on that tragedy, American actor and comedian Bob Saget has died. The body of the 65 year old star was

found in a Florida hotel room on Sunday. Authorities don't yet know a cause of death, or at least haven't told us what they think it is.

That will be determined by a medical examiner in the coming days. Saget is perhaps best remembered as the star of television's Full House, it was

shown really all over the world. During an interview last year, he explained how he landed the role.


BOB SAGET, ACTOR AND COMEDIAN: I was doing audience warm up for Bosom Buddies, as a comedian when I lived in LA, trying to gets my career going

and then full house was an accident. I got fired from a job on CBS and was asked to be in full house and wasn't available. And then I got the show.

And it was made by the producers of Happy Days, which was another show it was Tom Miller and Bob Boyett. And they made Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley,

all of these classic sitcoms and so I was kind of the Richie Cunningham on Full House and -- Fonzie and Ralph for Potsie.


GORANI: So sad in a statement his family says he was everything to us, and we want you to know how much he loved his fans performing live and bringing

people from all walks of life together with laughter. He died really just a few hours after performing actually. And the Golden Globe Awards were a

pretty low key event on Sunday, no red carpet no televised ceremony, no speeches.

Organizers said the scale down event was due to the surge in COVID-19. But you'll remember NBC announced last year that it would not broadcast this

year's awards because of a controversy over the lack of diversity.

Among the acting winners announced online Jason Sudeikis for Ted Lasso, Gene Smart for Hacks, Will Smith for King Richard and O Yeong-Su for Squid

Game, the first Golden Globe whenever for a South Korean Actor? I'm Hala Gorani in London, thanks for watching, up next "One World" with Zain Asher.