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U.S. Warns China about Offering any Lifeline to Russia; Ukrainian PM: The World Finally Realizes Russia's Threat; U.N. Secretary-General gives Public Briefing on War in Ukraine; Russian Shelling Targets Ukraine's Capital; Ukrainian Refugees Cross Over to Enter Romania; The Double Standard in the World's Response to Refugees. Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired March 14, 2022 - 11:00   ET



BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST, CONNECT THE WORLD: Welcome back! Let me get you up to speed on the very latest in Ukraine where major cities are once again

getting pounded. Heavy fighting reported today in Kyiv. One person killed when an apartment building there was shelled.

Russian forces are still on the outskirts of the capital land we will bring you more from the city in a moment. Meanwhile, an apparent missile strike

is believed to have killed as many as 20 people in Donetsk, which is held by pro-Russian separatists. It is not clear who carried out that attack.

The Mayor of Mariupol says people are finally leaving that besieged city through a humanitarian or evacuation corridor, the invasion taken a

horrible toll there. An Adviser to Ukraine's President says the Russians are "Wiping the city out". He says more than 2500 people have been killed.

And today we are learning that a pregnant woman rescued from last week strike on a maternity hospital there died along with her child. Well, all

there as Ukrainian and Russian negotiators sat down for a fourth round of talks. They were held virtually, and have now been put on hold until

tomorrow in what Ukraine calls a "Technical Pause".

Last hour I caught up with Clarissa Ward in Kyiv. She had the latest from there. Let's have a listen.


CLARISSA WARD, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): So Becky, there's been a lot of fighting today. It has been pretty much nonstop it's

actually quiet at this moment. But it's been pretty nonstop for most of the day. A lot of what sound like fierce battles with artillery going back and

forth coming from that direction earlier on. We also heard a few explosions coming from this direction.

We understand that those explosions were the result of Ukrainian air defense missiles being launched intercepting something we don't know what

exactly. But the shrapnel that fell to the ground as a result of that being intercepted has led to some damage here in the capital scenes of a city bus

with a lot of damage and also streets not clear yet if there were civilian casualties.

There were some casualties earlier this morning, when a Russian shell hit a residential apartment building. This is in a district or suburb called

Oblong, which is actually not that far from the city center. It's just five stops or so on the metro underground.

Remarkably, if you're looking at that video, only one person was killed in this attack. Several others were injured and taken to the hospital. Well,

you can imagine how many people could have been killed.

It's important for our viewers to remember though, that a lot of people have already left the city. According to the Mayor, some half of Kyiv

residents has already left the city because of the continued fighting here.

And really also not just because of the fighting Becky, but because of the fear that Russian forces are essentially trying to encircle this city and

to cut it off, cut off all food supplies, all humanitarian aid, medicines, and things of that nature.

The Mayor has also said that Kyiv has enough food supplies to last roughly two weeks, if that were to happen. And so far Russian forces you know are

sort of all-round the top half, if you will, all the way over to the east, but the south is still relatively free in terms of moving in and out. So

that siege may not be imminent, but Ukrainian authorities definitely believe it is the sort of key objective for Russian forces at this point.


ANDERSON: Clarissa Ward is in Kyiv for you. Well, two U.S. officials say that Russia has asked China for drones and military assistance to help

support its war in Ukraine. Now the U.S. says it is closely monitoring the situation and is warning Beijing that it would face consequences if it does

support Russia's war efforts.

Both Russia and China deny a request was made by Moscow. Well, earlier top officials from the U.S. and China wrapped up a meeting in Rome. China

calling on all sides to cool down tensions and to seek diplomatic solutions.

Let's bring our correspondents covering this U.S./China meeting. David Culver live for you in Shanghai in China. Jeremy Diamond is at the White

House. Let me start with you. What kind of consequences is the U.S. talking about here? What sort of consequences are they willing to impose on China

if it were to give Russia a lifeline at this point?

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well listen, what we have from our reporting, according to two U.S. officials is that Russia is

asking China for both military as well as economic support.


DIAMOND: We do know what the U.S.'s response is on the economic front. We know less about what their response would be on the military front. On the

economic front though, just yesterday Jake Sullivan, the National Security Adviser who is going to be meeting with his Chinese counterpart in Rome

today, he warned China against helping Russia evades those economic sanctions listen to this.


JAKE SULLIVAN, U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: We are communicating directly privately to Beijing, that there will absolutely be consequences

for large scale sanctions, evasion efforts or support to Russia to backfill them. We will not allow that to go forward and allow there to be a lifeline

to Russia from these economic sanctions from any country anywhere in the world.


DIAMOND: Now, so far, U.S. officials say that China has not gotten on the wrong side of those sanctions. But clearly we are at an inflection point

where China is considering that apparent requests from Russia, according to those U.S. officials.

We don't know what the response has been. And we also don't know what the response has been on the military front that would also potentially be a

significant action that could draw a U.S. response.

I think what's most interesting is the fact that this information was leaked to reporters just yesterday ahead of Jake Sullivan, meeting in Rome

with his Chinese counterpart. We've seen the U.S. previously used intelligence declassifying intelligence, putting it out publicly to try and

get in the way of what Vladimir Putin is doing. Clearly here they are also trying to use it as leverage in these conversations with China set for


ANDERSON: David, to quote one U.S. expert on the U.S. China relationship, it feels like the U.S. China relationship is moving towards a pretty

significant fork. There will be those watching this show, who will say has already hit that significant fall? I mean, what's the talk there, on how

this is playing out? What's the perspective?

DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It does feel Becky; we're very much in the midst of that significant moment that you referenced there. And this

meeting between these two very high level officials, because you have, of course, Jake Sullivan, National Security Adviser there but then you have

the counterpart in Rome that he met with from China is Yang Jiechi.

Now he is a really top party official. He's a foreign policy expert. And he's really somebody who's got more importantly the ear of President Xi

Jinping. He is a key advisor to the president. So this shows you just how high we're talking about and the fact that these two individuals have met

and nothing has come out of that meeting just yet.

Now, we probably will hear in the coming hours or days, a little bit of what they discussed. But that suggests that perhaps there is something

that's being considered on both sides that now they're moving forward to have these further discussions. We are in the midst of a moment, not only

to see how China's going to react with regards to Russia.

But yes, with reaction to the West as a whole. And that's really what folks are looking at here. Where is China going to go with this because we see

the pushback from Beijing and publicly, they of course, want to side with their northern neighbors President Xi's best friend, as he put it?

President Putin, but at the same time, they're trying to play the neutral court and say, we want peace we want to be mediators between Ukraine and

Russia. Can they really step into that, given what even we've seen from state media here and that is the regurgitation of Russian propaganda

relentlessly put out.

So they're in the midst of this weird balancing act. And this seems to be the moment that they're going to have to take a stance. They're going to

have to in the coming hours or days really decide where they're going to fall on this? And do they fall on the side of pragmatism Becky?

And that they say, we no longer want to push for to an aligning ourselves with Russia and its invasion. And instead, we want to focus on our economic

interests. Because of course, in the midst of COVID here, they're dealing with even more lockdowns, more trouble for the economy, if that continues.

And they look at what they could be alienating themselves from the EU and the U.S. their biggest trade partner, or do they say ideologically, we want

to side with Putin. And that can be something that comes straight from the top.

President Xi, who says, I want to make sure that we continue our allegiance towards Russia. And that, of course, would isolate China and Russia from

the rest of the world.

ANDERSON: And it's interesting, Jeremy, isn't it? As David talk - it's just occurring to me, and I'm sure many of our viewers that the U.S. is in a

position where they hope the Chinese you know, take the position of pragmatism in this hope that they don't take the route of, you know, a

bigger, stronger, wider, more robust relationship with the Russians going forward in all of this.


ANDERSON: Because foreign policy of course is clearly front and center at this point at least for the United States. The question is what sort of

leverage does the U.S. have over China at present this relationship was pretty broken before Ukraine, wasn't it?

DIAMOND: Yes. But despite the fact that that relationship is broken, as David was just saying, I think the trading relationship the economic

consequences for China can still be leveraged not only by the United States, but by the European Union and other Western nations, which have

acted really in lockstep throughout this process of imposing sanction on Russia.

It is interesting that we know that previously, U.S. officials had tried to get China to dissuade Putin from this invasion before it happened. And

those efforts were unsuccessful. There was some intelligence sharing even with China that we had reported on a couple of weeks ago and those efforts


So can Jake Sullivan here and perhaps a follow up conversation between President Biden and President Xi, can there be any movement here? Or does

China perhaps try and find some kind of middle position where they don't put themselves up to the full range of threats of economic sanctions that

the U.S. and the European Union could impose?

Do they find some kind of a middle ground here, but it is certainly an inflection point. And I think, as David was saying, they're going to have

to make a choice here. And the U.S. clearly wants to encourage China to think about the future to think about its position in history and also to

think about its economic interests.

ANDERSON: To both of you, thank you very much indeed. Let me get you to the Ukrainian Prime Minister, who is, as we speak, talking to the Council of

Europe, representatives, let's listen in.

DENYS SHMYHAL, UKRAINIAN PRIME MINISTER: --to hide in bomb shelters. And of course, the voices of our military people who courageously for 18 days now

have been resisting the Russian aggressors.

The voices that for the past three years, not everyone has heard or didn't want to hear, as they wanted to do business as usual with the aggressor, in

spite of numerous violations by them, of the international law, and other human values.

Getting when Russia was brought back the Russian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly back in 2019, where you're gathering now once again

showed a poor understanding by the world of the real threat that Putin's regime is? Then Europe chose the road of pacifying the aggressor, rather

than defending the values democracy, the rule of law and human rights.

For the past 18 days, the world finally opened up the eyes, we never closed our eyes, not for a second. 18 days of this open war thousands of death,

the loss of almost 90 children thousands of Ukrainians, without any food, any water, and any heat.

Destruction of hundreds of schools, hospitals that have been shelled nuclear power plants on the brink of a disaster, and that's at the time

when Russia, according to the convention on human rights and fundamental freedoms vowed that it would promote the right to life and defend any

person from unlawful violence.

They are members of the assembly. The right to life is one of the key fundamental rights. And today at the center of Europe, this right is being

violated every minute and every second. For the leaders of the Russian Federation, there are no values at all.

The Russian Armed Forces behave like terrorists. They bombard schools kindergartens, hospitals, they killed children. They take them hostages.

They kidnap representatives of the local authorities, they torture civilians, and all of that started 18 days ago.

Violation of those fundamental rights and freedoms by Russia since the very beginning of the Russian aggression against Ukraine was discussed by the

assembly dozens of times, and the territory is under Russian control.

For eight years systemic reprisals have continued against anyone who does not agree with the aggressors. And today the Russian government is

mobilizing the residents of Crimea to the Armed Forces of Russia forcing people who are to be protected by the Fourth Geneva Convention to serve in

the armed forces of the enemy state.

Russian military pilot is bombing dropping bombs on his own mother and Poltava region. It's hard to believe that.


SHMYHAL: But even such crazy things become a normal life for the aggressors. Every day, we receive more and more news about violation of the

freedom of speech. The right to live to labor to have medical services, and education all those actions has to be properly assessed by the

international community.

Dear members of the assembly today Russia is saying that there is no war that nobody has declared this word. They're just conducting it. At this

time they're calling it a special military operation.

We have confirmed information that more than 12,000 Russian soldiers have been killed 389 tanks 12,049 APCs 77 fighter jets, 90 helicopters. I'm

convinced that among - the route former military people just ask them whether in history there have ever been such special military operations

that would have such consequences for a country that initiates this kind of military operation.

Those flows of lie and hatred that are disseminated by the Russian media, the Russian propaganda have to be stopped. Russian fakes have to be

stopped, that have to try that are trying to establish those lies in the Russian society.

I can tell you that the Russian President Putin have started the full scale war in the center of Europe, that can become a third world war. Starting

2014 Ukraine has asked not to bring the Russian delegation to the parliamentary, sadly not to bring them back.

Today, the Russian delegation has stopped its work with a Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. And I'm sure that this just reflects

Putin's wish to avoid punishment, and to restrict to put an end to thousands of complaints and applications by Ukrainian citizens for all the

crimes that he and his people have committed against Ukraine for the past eight years.

But we all know that punishment for genocide and terrorism cannot be avoided. And we have to be tough in our response with demand that a

decision is approved to immediately oust Russia from the Council of Europe. The ones who definitely support this non-provoked and unjustified

aggression cannot stay in the single European family, where human life is the highest value.

Dear ladies and gentlemen, Ukraine is on fire. Hundreds of houses have been built to short the water, of life of heat for millions of our people. We

need to join our efforts not only to protect, to defend Ukraine, but to defend all of Europe today. We need to stop the aggression until a nuclear

disaster comes in until all of Europe is on fire.

So of course, we are asking we are demanding to close the skies over Ukraine to close the sky for the sake of millions of people in Ukraine for

the sake of European and World Security. And at the end, I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart to all the neighboring countries

Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Moldova, Lithuania and other countries of Europe for their support that they have given to our women and children.

To all those who, on a temporary basis have to look for shelter in your countries and those who have found shelter who have found warmth,

hospitality, attention, all these values that are joined, that are common European family is rich with thank you for your support. Thank you for your

attention. Thank you for your solidarity, for your position, the solidarity that you are showing us. Glory to Ukraine and glory to free and democratic


ANDERSON: Well, that was Ukrainian Prime Minister addressing the Council of Europe via video link replacing Ukraine's President who was initially

expected to give that address. Russia was until recently a participant in the Council of Europe a body designed to uphold human rights and the rule

of law and democracy and the Prime Minister starting by chastising the body forever taking Russia seriously.


ANDERSON: He said the right to life is one of the key foundations of any human person. At the center of Europe that right is being violated by the

Russian Armed Forces who behave you said like terrorists they kill and kidnap children. And the violation of those rights and freedoms by the

Russians is not new.

He quoted the numbers of those dead and injured over the last 18 days. We can't substantiate those figures that he used but certainly there are many

dead and many, many injured. We're going to take a very short break, back after this.


ANDERSON: Russia's war in Ukraine has put the region where we are here at the Gulf in the Middle East squarely in play. Energy markets have been

very, very volatile. And the U.S. is trying to convince its allies Saudi Arabia and the UAE here to release more oil to shore up these markets and

bring down the price. For its part Qatar could provide more natural gas to Europe.

The Qatari foreign minister met Sunday in Moscow with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in what is a mediating role it's reported. Now on

Tuesday, Iran's foreign minister will also be in the Russian capital.

Now keep in mind, Tehran could also be a source of new oil on the international market. Talk so in Vienna, to revive the Iran nuclear deals

have hit a snag over new Kremlin demands.

While at the same time Iran is flexing its military muscles it five ballistic missiles - what it calls an Israeli strategic center in the Iraqi

city of Erbil. Yes, I know look, it is multi layered. But believe me, this stuff is really important.

It is playing in behind the scenes playing into what is this wider story. So as you work through this prism of the Russia, Ukraine crisis, I want now

to bring in Martin Indyk who is distinguished fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a former U.S. Special Middle East Envoy.

And Ali Vaez, who's Iran, Project Director at the International Crisis Group let me start with you, Ali. Because there was talk just one, let's

say 18 days ago before this Russian - before I get to you guys, I'm just being taught to my ear, we got to get to the U.N.'s Secretary General is

that we were going to, talking at the U.N. let's just listen in.

ANTONIO GUTERRES, UNITED NATIONS SECRETARY-GENERAL: Every step of the way, I will continue to highlight the desperate plight of the people of Ukraine

as I'm doing again today. Yet, there is another dimension of this conflict that gets obscured. This war goes far beyond Ukraine.

It is also an assault on the world's most vulnerable people and countries. While war reigns over Ukraine, a swirl of Damocles hangs over the global

economy especially in the developing worlds.


GUTERRES: Even before the conflict developing countries were struggling to recover from the pandemic with record inflation, rising interest rates and

looming debt burdens. Their ability to respond has been erased by exponential increases in the cost of financing.

Now, their breadbasket is being bombed, Russia and Ukraine represents more than half of the world's supply of sunflower oil and about 30 percent of

the world's wheat. Ukraine alone provides more than half of the world's food programs with supply, food, fuel, and fertilizer - prices are


Supply chains are being disrupted. And the costs and delays of transportation of imported goods when available are at record levels. And

all of these is eating the poorest the hardest and planting the seeds for political instability and unrest around the globe.

Grain prices have already exceeded those at the start of the Arab Spring, and the food riots of 2007, 2008. The FAO's global food prices index is at

the highest level ever. 45 African and least developed countries important least one third of their wheat from Ukraine and Russia.

18 of those countries import at least 50 percent. This includes countries like Burkina Faso, Egypt, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lebanon, Libya,

Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. We must do everything possible to avert of hurricane, a hurricane of hunger and the meltdown of the global food

system. In addition, we are seeing clear evidence of these water draining resources and attention from other travel spots in desperate needs.

I renew my appeal for countries to find creative ways to finance increased humanitarian and development recovery needs worldwide, and to give

generously and to immediately release pledged funds.

My plea to leaders is to resist the temptation of increasing military budget at the expense of official development assistance and climate

action. In a world developing countries are getting pummeled.

They face a cascade of crises beyond Ukraine war; we cannot forget COVID and the impacts of climate change in particular droughts. Against the

backdrop of these immense, interconnected challenges, I'm announcing today the establishing of a global crisis response group on food, energy and

finance in the U.N. Secretariat.

I've also asked the Deputy Secretary General to return integration steering committee with partners to oversee these efforts. And in the coming days,

we will be consulting with member states willing to champion the actions needed to carry forward the global emergency response that will be required

for this looming crisis.

Make no mistake, everyday people, especially women and children will bear the brunt of this unfolding tragedy. The war also shows how the global

addiction to fossil fuels is placing energy security, climate action and the entire global economy at the mercy of geopolitics.

Finally, further escalation of the war, whether by accident or design, threatens all of humanity. Raising the alert of Russian nuclear forces is a

bone chilling developments. The prospect of nuclear conflict once and thinkable is now back within the realm of possibility.

The security and safety of nuclear facilities must also be preserved. It's time to stop the order unleashed on the people of Ukraine and get on the

paths of diplomacy and peace. I've been in close contact with a number of countries including China, France, Germany, India, Israel and Turkey on

mediation efforts to bring an end to this war.

The appeals for peace must be heard. The strategy must stop. It's never too late for diplomacy and dialogue. We need an immediate cessation of

hostilities and serious negotiations based on the principles of UN charter and international law. We need peace, peace for the people of Ukraine,

peace for the world. We need peace now. Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. We have time for a couple of questions. All right, first question --.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you, Secretary General. Do you support Ukraine's calls for a no fly zone?

GUTERRES: Debts is a matter that, as you know, has been analyzed by a number of countries that can see that that's possibility as a risk of

escalation that could create a global conflict. And it is based on that analysis that I think we need to be prudent, even if I understand the

dramatic appeal of Ukrainian government.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you very much, Mr. Secretary General. Donetsk authorities reported today that Ukrainian side heated the heart of the city

of Donetsk by missile --. And the warhead of this missile was filled by the cluster munitions. I was following the Security Council, but I haven't

heard anything about this. Is the U.N. aware of this incident?

GUTERRES: I've seen the news about this incident. And I have to say that our position is very clear. Any attack on civilians or civilian

infrastructure is regrettable, if accidental, and condemnable if done on purpose.

But let's be clear, the overwhelming majority of civilian casualties and the overwhelming majority of civilian infrastructure disrupted was done in

the context of the war by the Russian forces.

PAMELA FALK, CBS NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Thank you, Secretary Generals, Pamela Falk, from CBS News. You talk about mediation, but the talks have adjourned

for the day. Is there anything you have done or will do and have you reached out to Russia's President Putin? Thank you.

GUTERRES: Yes, we are doing our best. I've talked with a number of leaders that are in permanent contact with the President Putin. And of course, we

can see that that is absolutely essential for an effort, an additional effort to make the Russian Federation understand that this war is becoming

an absolute nightmare and to create the conditions for the war to be stopped, and for serious negotiations to be put in place.

FALK: Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thanks very much, everyone.

GUTERRES: Thank you very much.

ANDERSON: The U.N. Secretary General speaking to reporters about the war in Ukraine, he said Ukraine is on fire. The country has been decimated before

the eyes of the world with each passing hour.

He said two things are increasingly clear first, he said it keeps getting worse second, whatever the outcome; the war will have no winners. He talked

about the displaced and we know that is nearly 3 million people now outside of the country of Ukraine, millions inside.

But he also talked about this; he said for predators and human traffickers, war is not a tragedy. It is an opportunity and women and children are

targets and he said the war goes beyond Ukraine. It also is an assault on the world's most vulnerable people and countries.

While war reigns over Ukraine, a sword of Damocles, he described it. A sword of Damocles hangs over the global economy, especially the developing

world. Even before the conflict developing countries was struggling to recover from the pandemic with record inflation, rising interest rates and

looming debt burdens.

Their ability to respond has been raised by exponential increases in the cost of living now, their breadbasket, he said is being bombed. Of course,

Russia and Ukraine represent a significant part of the world's supply of sunflower oil and the world's wheat.

Said a couple of other things which I thought were interesting, he said finally, further escalation of the war, whether by accident or design

threatens all of humanity. And he said raising the alert of Russian nuclear forces is a bone chilling development. He said the prospect of nuclear

conflict once unthinkable is now backing within the realm of possibility. This tragedy he said must stop.

Well, the latest on Russia's invasion of Ukraine now Russian shelling targeting Ukraine's capital at least one person was killed in an attack on

an apartment building in Kyiv. The toll could have been much higher.

Ukraine's mayor saying half of Kyiv's residents have left the city. There's video of an apparent missile strike Donetsk under control of course of pro

Russian separatists, multiple deaths reported there. It is unclear where that missile originated.


ANDERSON: Ukraine is denying Russia's claim that it was responsible. And Russian attacks moving perilously close to NATO borders, missiles hidden a

military base nearly Lviv not far from Poland's border.

Local officials report nearly three dozen dead and more than 130 injured in that attack. Well, as I was saying, before, we started listening to the

U.N. Secretary General; Russia's war in Ukraine has put the region where I am, the Gulf in the Middle East squarely back in play for a whole host of


There's an awful lot going on here. It can feel very bitty, but its nuance that provides us a better look at what is going on and a better

understanding of what is going on here.

So through the prism of Russia and this conflict with Ukraine, I'm joined now by Martin Indyk distinguished fellow at the Council on Foreign

Relations and a former U.S. Special Middle East Envoy and Ali Vaez, Iran Project Director at the international climate crisis.

Chaps, thank you for bearing with us. It was important to hear from the U.N. Secretary General as I'm sure you will agree. I want to talk to you

both about a series of events, which I want you to help us better inform our viewers on.

So let's start with Russia's introduction of new demands to these nuclear talks potentially spoiling these negotiations. It was only two weeks ago

that we were promised that these negotiations were actually coming to an end and a fruitful end and for the parties concerned. Let's have a listen

to what the State Department spokesman had to say.


NED PRICE, U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESPERSON: In response to that we've been very clear, including from this podium yesterday that the new Russia

related sanctions are wholly and entirely unrelated to the JCPOA they shouldn't have any impact on a potential implementation of the JCPOA.

We've also similarly been clear that we have no intention of offering Russia anything new or specific as it relates to these sanctions. Nor is

nor would that be required.


ANDERSON: Russia hasn't until now paid the sort of mediation role in Vienna. So let's start with you, Ali Vaez, what's going on here?

ALI VAEZ, IRAN PROJECT DIRECTOR, INTERNATIONAL CRISIS GROUP: It's good to be with you, Becky. Look, resolving the nuclear standoff with Iran would

have two specific impacts. One is that it would cross off a major security concern for the West in the Middle East.

And second, it will bring down global energy prices because we would have an additional 1.5 million barrels of Iranian oil that will come back to the

market. None of those is in Russia's interest.

Russia wants the west preoccupied, have less bandwidth to focus on Ukraine and Russia. And also wants to keep oil prices high, energy prices high as a

way of punishing the west for sanctioning Russia. So it has now come up with a pretext to take the Iran nuclear deal as hostage and prevent the

west from resolving his one security concern.

ANDERSON: Martin, the Iranian foreign ministry spokesman says Tehran will never accept a new JCPOA to which the Russian ambassador in Vienna said

this, "clear position, no ambiguities, no room for speculations". Iran's foreign minister will be traveling to Moscow on Tuesday and your

perspective here.

MARTIN INDYK, DISTINGUISHED FELLOW, COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS: Well, Iran is broadly aligned with Russia has been for some time. And Russia has

previously before the invasion of Ukraine - a positive role in the nuclear negotiations. But as Ali has explained, all of the interests have changed.

And Iran actually has an interest in the deal has an interest in the sanctions being lifted and its oil flowing back into the market. So we will

have to see now whether that leads to a split between Iran and Russia in a way that that can actually benefit both the effort to prevent Iran from

getting nuclear weapons and allow more oil to come into the market as Ali says.

But if that doesn't happen, and the problem here is that the clock is ticking on the agreement. Iran has advanced its nuclear program to the

point where it's weeks away from breakout. And the United States spokesman have been saying for months now that that time is running out for this

agreement with the Russians throwing this spattering of words.


INDYK: I'm afraid that the United States and Iran will have to look at a different kind of arrangement, perhaps less for less something that freezes

the program and get some oil on the market, but not a total deal.

ANDERSON: So these talks going on in Vienna, at present, you've both given me your perspective on what is going on there. How the Russians fit into

that. I want another, there's another string that I want to discuss with you guys happened over the weekend, a missile attack being blamed on the

Iranians on Erbil in Iraq.

Now, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, condemning that attack. This weekend went on to say and I quote, "we support the Government of Iraq on

in holding Iran accountable. We will support our partners throughout the Middle East, in confronting similar threats from Iran".

The United States of America stands behind the full sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Iraq. He also said he didn't

believe U.S. assets were being targeted here. And some have been pulling apart his position here not wanting to explicitly not wanting to suggest

that Iran had targeted U.S. assets in Iraq again. Ali, what do we have here?

VAEZ: So look, this is unrelated to the nuclear negotiations. This is related to a strike that Israel conducted in Syria a few days ago and

resulted in the killing of two Revolutionary Guards personnel, Iranian Revolutionary Guard personnel in Syria, and Iran had promised that it would


It believes it says that it has targeted now an Israeli listening post in the Kurdish region of Iraq. It is a two-fold message. I think one is to

Israel, to say that the covert operations that Israel has allegedly conducted on Iranian soil being sabotage of Iranian nuclear facilities,

assassination of Iranian nuclear scientists, or killing of Iranian personnel in the region, will have a cost associated with it.

So this is deterrence towards Israel, number one. And number two is a signal to other countries in the region that have started to have better

and closer relations with Israel, via the UAE, via the Bahrainis that, you know if they allow their soil to be used by Israel for operations against

Iran intelligence collection, or covert operation, that Iran would not hesitate to target them.

ANDERSON: Ali, Martin, I apologize. I'm going to have to take a break at this point. And I'm going to have you guys back. It's so important that we

continue to pick apart what is going on in this region and indeed, around the mob, particularly in this region as we continue to cover the Russian

invasion of Ukraine.

So much of this can be lost and it's important that we keep everything in focus, but I'm going to have to take a break today. We had to speak to the

U.N. listen to the UN Secretary General. I'm going to have you guys back is what I'm promising you, folks, back after this.



ANDERSON: 2.8 million people, yep 2.8 million people. And counting have now fled Russia's relentless attacks on Ukraine. My colleague Miguel Marquez is

at the border crossing in Romania where Ukrainian refugees or those leaving Ukraine are entering by ferry, have a look at this.

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: So we're in Isaccea, which is a border crossing by ferry across the Danube, between Ukraine and Romania. And I

want to show you sort of how this process starts here, the people coming up the way here and being met by the person the reflective vest.

Those are people fleeing the war in Ukraine, the people who have reflective vests are basically helping them out, getting them what they need. We've

had hundreds of Ukrainians in just this last ferry come across.

And this is what you typically see some women, babies, sometimes with a dog, a cat, sometimes dogs and cats, it gets very, very difficult for them

to even move the few belongings they can from the ferry to this area.

And then when you get over here, you basically have almost everything you need. Everything from a hotdog stand as immediately as you get off, if

they're hungry, they have all the needs that any family might have for their babies or the dogs or anything else.

There is food on the other side. And then there are buses, there's buses that take you to trains, there's a bus that takes you to Bulgaria, they've

the Romanians have gotten very, very organized in trying to get people from point A to point B.

And while the numbers have moderated say Romanian officials have the number of Ukrainians coming across. What they are concerned about now are those

internally displaced in Ukraine that are near the borders. They fear, if and when the Russians move west and they are going to see another massive

tidal wave of refugees come into Romania, back to you.

ANDERSON: Well, coming up on Russia's invasion of Ukraine has revealed some uncomfortable truths about the world's reaction to refugees. My closer look

is just ahead.


ANDERSON: There is no doubt the Russian invasion of Ukraine has upended global politics, but it's also revealed some uncomfortable truths about

global reactions to conflict, and refugees. Let's take a closer look.

More than 2.8 million people have fled Ukraine since the war began those numbers according to the United Nations and include Ukrainians and non-

Ukrainians alike. You can see on this map where they are going the majority next door to Poland, and those numbers are staggering. To put it in context

for you, it took six months for 1 million refugees to leave Syria in 2013.

That was nearly two years after the civil war there began. Of course no two wars are the same each has its own complicated realities. But there are

some similarities between the wars in Syria and Ukraine, chief amongst them the role of Russian President Vladimir Putin.


ANDERSON: He was a major ally of Syrian President Bashar Al Assad from 2015. Until today, Russian jets rained down bombs on Syrian cities and

Russian shelling turn them into complete wastelands.

Those are the same tactics at play right now in Ukraine. Take a look at these images. The one on the right is Aleppo, Syria's second largest city

after it was devastated by Russian and Syrian attacks. And the one on the left is Kharkiv, Ukraine second largest city last week.

But what isn't so similar is the way the world reacted to Russian action back then compared to now. My colleague, CNN Senior International

Correspondent, Arwa Damon, who covered series were extensively put it simply like this, "Just the thought, but if the West had reacted like this

to Russia's bombings in Syria that displaced millions and killed and wounded hundreds of thousands, maybe Putin would not have been so

emboldened as to invade Ukraine".

Well, Arwa has also been on the ground covering the tragic stories of those who've had to flee Ukraine normal people forced to seek refuge elsewhere.

But unlike the Syrians fleeing conflict, Ukrainians are finding a much warmer welcome in Europe.

Take Denmark as an example. Long known for holding an anti-immigration stance the Danish government is currently welcoming Ukrainian refugees with

open arms. And while Denmark says all refugees were treated the same, it is urging some Syrian refugees living there to return home despite the ongoing

conflict in Syria. And we've seen many examples like this across other European nations, have a listen to this.


ERIC ZEMMOUR, FRENCH PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Everyone has understood that Arab or Muslim immigration is too distant from us. And that is more and

more difficult to acculturate late and assimilate them. So effectively we are closer to European Christians.


ANDERSON: Well, all painful to know that refugees are being selectively embraced. According to a 2021 U.N. report out of the nearly 7 million

Syrians forced to flee their country, about 1 million live in Europe with 70 percent of them being hosted in two countries only.

That's Germany and Sweden. Look, don't get me wrong. Europe, support for Ukraine today should be and is being applauded, absolutely. But it should

also be called out for its double standard. And it's not just the powers that be in the west, which have reacted differently to today's crisis.

We saw remarks like this coming from commentators, journalists and pundits, when talking about Ukraine's refugees, "They seem so like us. That is what

makes it so shocking. War is no longer something visited upon impoverished and remote populations".

"To put it bluntly, these are not refugees from Syria, these are refugees from Ukraine. They're Christian, they're white, they're very similar". And

a day after the invasion, a CBS News Correspondent drew harsh criticism for making these comments.

CHARLIE D'AGATA, CBS NEWS CORRESPONDENT: This isn't a place with all due respect, you know, like Iraq or Afghanistan that has seen conflict raging

for decades. You know, this is a relatively civilized, relatively European; I have to choose those words carefully to city where you wouldn't expect

that or hope that it's going to happen.

ANDERSON: Now, look, he did issue an apology, saying he regretted what he said he was only trying to illustrate the scale of this war, which has not

been seen in Europe in recent years. And that is true.

But what that type of discourse does is reflect the pervasive mentality that countries like Syria, like Afghanistan, the so called uncivilized are

more prone to disaster in conflict and so it shouldn't shock as apparently.

Well, it's as if scenes of death emanating from Ukraine should be all the more appalling because the victims look more western. And look, I get it.

It is absolutely different reckoning to see a conflict hit closer to home, but one does not need to eclipse the other.

The plight of Ukrainians fleeing their homes today is more than legitimate, it is palpable. It does not need to be juxtaposed with the plight of

Syrians or Afghans or anyone else. At the end of the day, war isn't about politics. It's about human beings and their suffering and seeing human

suffering unfold right before our eyes. Wherever it may be is what should inspire global unity.


ANDERSON: This little girl is one of many Ukrainians forced to flee their homes after Russia's invasion. She sets crime in a temporary shelter in

Slovakia, an unfamiliar environment that she is just not used to.

This is a Syrian child fleeing the then embattled city of Aleppo back in 2016. She is evidently scared, shaken. How do you explain to a child that

her life will never be the same again?

And these Palestinian children in Gaza last May petrified as they look out of their school after Israeli raids rocked their city, a site no child

should ever witness, but unfortunately, one all too familiar for so many of them.

The sad part is that these are kids. They're not the only ones there are so many more experience in similar fields in other parts of the world, is

there really any difference between them, between the pains so visible on their faces? Well, this is Arwa Damon again. She writes, and I quote, "each

war is its own its outlines drawn by powers larger than the individual and by the greed and cruelty of geopolitics".

But the pain of humanity caught up in a tug of war remains the same. The agony of realizing that not only is home no longer safe, it may no longer

exist at all, that pain is universal, and the reaction to it should be as well. And that united global response is what it truly means to be

civilized. Thank you for listening. And thank you for joining us. CNN continues after this short break.