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Russia Intentionally Denied Responsibility Before Claiming it hit "Military Infrastructure"; Ukraine: Grain Exports from Odessa Should Begin this Week; Pope in Canada to Apologize to Indigenous Groups; Fast-Moving Fire Threatens 3,200 Plus Structures in California; Myanmar Junta Executes Pro-Democracy Figures; Al Gore Compares Climate Deniers to Passive Police in Texas. Aired 11a-12p ET
Aired July 25, 2022 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST: This hour outrage as Russian missiles strike Odessa Port one day after grain export deal was agreed, a move that
Ukraine's Foreign Ministry denounced as a split in the face. Welcome back to the show!
Beyond countless dead and maimed beyond obliterated buildings and towns Russia's war on Ukraine has also pushed many people around the world closer
to starvation. Now, however, Ukraine says it could be just days away from moving out millions of tons of grain that's been blocked and it's poured
under a deal with Russia. Ships loaded with grain would travel through a "Safe Corridor in the Black Sea then through Turkey's Bosphorus Strait and
on to global markets".
The agreement though seemed in doubt after Russian strikes on that key port city of Odessa over the weekend. CNN's Nic Robertson is in Kyiv in Ukraine
with more what's going on behind the scenes with this deal? What do we know at this point?
NIC ROBERTSON,CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Well, the next step in this deal is really the implementation. There's a Joint Coordination Center
to be established in Istanbul that will oversee how this UN brokered deal works, make sure that the inspections happen in the right places that the
word of the deal is held to.
And I spoke with Ukraine's Infrastructure Minister a short time ago, who was the person who signed the deal for Ukraine and Istanbul on Friday. And
he told me they've sent a team today to be at that joint center.
So that's underway. They're making the preparations in their ports to get the grain out, they hope to be in a position and had the whole system in
place in the next few days, by the end of the week, he said, to actually get the grain exported.
But on these issues of the Russian missile strike, and actually the words of the Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, following that saying Russia
actually has the right to target military infrastructure in Odessa.
That there's nothing in this UN brokered deal that will stop them doing that, despite this kind of language, you know, despite the missiles
actually being fired. He feels that it can work, although there are, again, points that Russia is contesting.
Sergei Lavrov is saying that Russian ships will escort these cargo vessels through the Black Sea. Ukraine's Infrastructure Minister is saying that's
not part of the deal and it's not going to happen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OLEKSANDR KUBRAKOV, UKRAINIAN INFRASTRUCTURE MINISTER: So we won't allow doing this, our territorial waters and our sea ports only Ukraine and
Ukrainian Navy will be up there. So if you're talking about like inspections and all these issues that will be in near Turkey, it will be
near Bosphorus, and they will be leaded by Turkey and by United Nation.
ROBERTSON: So no Russian ships, escorting the convoys, anywhere along the convoy hips?
KUBRAKOV: --at all, in this process.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: So these very real tensions exist. But from Ukraine's perspective, the most important thing is to try to push through to try to
get this grain out to try to get it to the needy in the world. Also, it means revenue income for them as much as a billion dollars a month
ANDERSON: Yes, Nic Robinson's on the story for you, Nic thank you! Well, it's important to note that in the immediate aftermath of Russia's weekend
attack on a desert and that is a key principle poured in was this UN brokered deal.
Russia told Turkey's Defense Minister it wasn't responsible the Kremlin later retracting that denial claiming it was targeting military
infrastructures you just heard Nic reporting there. And today Russia's Foreign Minister said the Grain Deal would not prohibit military strikes on
Odessa this latest posturing again, bringing up the point can Russia be trusted?
Well, I'll talk about that. And Turkey's very important role in the ongoing diplomacy in all of this this with Ibrahim Kalin Spokesperson for the
Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, he joins me from Ankara, it's good to have you Ibrahim!
Less than 24 hours after the grain corridor agreement signed in Turkey, Russia missiles hit the Black Sea Port of Odessa, Russia now admitting
those missiles were theirs earlier insisting to Turkey they weren't? How can Russia be trusted at this point sir?
IBRAHIM KALIN, TURKISH PRESIDENTIAL SPOKESPERSON: Well, first of all, of course, we urge all sides to stick to the agreement that we all sign on
Saturday. And that, of course, includes the provision not to conduct any kind of military attacks and not to prevent the flow of grain exports, both
from Ukraine and from Russia. So we raised this issue with the Russia we have spoken to the Ukrainians.
KALIN: And I want to actually thank the Ukrainian leadership, President Zelenskyy, his aide Andriy Yermak, and others who were very responsible
and, and positive and constructive in their approach. Of course, you know, this kind of attacks must be avoided. And we will be monitoring this very
closely we will be raising this issue with the Russians.
But also it shows how difficult it is to have any kind of agreement under the current circumstances? At least we have this agreement, which will be
of course, good, as we have pointed out for global food security.
But every step of the way, we will be very careful monitoring and watching the whole situation. And we'll remain in very close contact with both
Russian and Ukrainian officials.
ANDERSON: Ibrahim Kalin U.S. officials have said they are deeply concerned by the Odessa attack. I hear what you've just said. But I must press you on
this can the Russians be trusted to your mind at this point, after all, the initial response to those attacks was a lie from the Russians?
KALIN: They made some conflicting reports and statements at the beginning. That is true when we received the news of the attack, we immediately
contacted them. And to be honest with you, our Defense Minister spoke to Minister Shoigu, and he really did not get a full kind of a detailed
response or explanation from I think they were trying to figure out what exactly happened there because it will have been strange I mean, for
Defense Minister Shoigu right?
I mean, to sign this agreement, and then in less than 24 hours later, you know, having this kind of attack, I mean, that will shatter what he
achieved, also the point of Russia. So, I mean, issue of trust, of course, is very important, as you pointed out.
I think that is, you know, one of the most difficult issues at the moment, not only in regards to the grain issue, but say on any ceasefire, prison
exchange or any other peace negotiations the main issue is lack of trust.
There is a war going on Ukraine is under occupation. And we fully understand Ukraine's frustration and suspicion vis-a-vis you know the
Russian intentions and actions and that of the international community as well.
But the only way to overcome those is this, you know, constant repeated effort, as we've tried to do over the last 5, 6, 7 weeks to reach this
agreement, implementation phase will not be any different, it will be difficult, and it will be very meticulous work.
It will be, you know, challenging on many different fronts. So, I mean, it's not a given, of course, you know, if we - if we can just make a
general statement, whether this side that's I can trust or not, we just have to go step by step.
ANDERSON: I interviewed Antonio Guterres immediately after the deal was signed on Friday. It was Antonio Guterres, the Head of the UN, sitting side
by side with your President, as that deal was signed. And look you know, he talks about the fact that this had been months in the making, and much of
this going on behind closed doors away from the media, and rightly so.
And the Turkish involvement at this point, of course, has been absolutely admirable. But I asked Antonio Guterres on Friday, if there were clear
mechanisms in place to hold Russia accountable if it were to violate what is this incredibly important deal to get foodstuffs out to the parts of the
world that need them so much? Have a listen to what he told me?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTONIO GUTERRES, UNITED NATION SECERETARY-GENERAL: I believe it is in the mutual interest of the parties, because this will represent not only an
important solution for Ukraine that has all the silos fall and the new arrives the being made. So it's vital to export Ukrainian grains.
But we are working also as it is known with the U.S. and with EU. The U.S. has already issued a statement in relation to this. There are no sanctions
on food and fertilizers. And so Russian food and fertilizers will also be able to be in access to the world markets and these two combined operations
will mean a huge injection that I believe will bring prices down will stabilize the markets.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: And he makes a really important point Ibrahim Kalin doesn't he? He says it's in the interest of both parties to ensure that this deal is
implemented efficiently and effectively. From your conversation with the Russians and you keep an open dialogue with the Russians new aren't that -
you and I have talked about this now for what six months since this war began? Do you believe that that's reason enough for them to not put this
agreement this deal in jeopardy?
KALIN: Well, given the fact that it's Russia's self-interest that has brought them to this agreement of course with a lot of diplomacy behind the
closed doors as you pointed out. We've been working on these four months really without you know much media attention because there were so many
different aspects of to it.
KALIN: And it required a lot of, you know, discreet diplomacy and negotiations and talks and meetings, et cetera. But at the end of the day,
it's also in Russia's interest, because even though there is no embargo, or sanctions on Russian agricultural products. They were not able to get their
grain out, because, number one, international companies were not insuring Russian ships.
Number two, you know, they did not have any assurances from the international community, or other countries that impose sanctions on Russia
that your shoes will not be stopped or confiscated. And now there is an assurance as part of this agreement.
So it's also in their interest. By the way, getting a Russian agricultural product, fertilizers and other things, is also in the interest of the
global markets in terms of food security. So it's not only the Ukrainian grain, but also the Russian in which actually is higher in quantity than
that of Ukraine.
KALIN: So both are needed, actually, for the international markets and, and food prices. So it's in their interest as well. And we believe they will
from now on implement this is at least what we hear from their side, that they will implement the agreement, there will not be any intervention, in
terms of the export of grain ships.
You know, traveling and monitoring, et cetera, will be conducted from the Joint Cooperation Center in Istanbul, and that center will have
representatives from both countries as well as from Turkey and the UN.
And I believe once we set this up, in fact, its being set up as we speak. And we are hoping that the first ships will start sailing in the next
couple of weeks sooner, the better, of course, but it really depends on how quickly Russia and the Ukrainian sides will be ready to start sending
theirs their ships?
Well, I think once we have this in traffic moving, things will be I think, in order, hopefully, this attack on Saturday was just, you know, one
isolated incident, we hope. But of course, you know, we do not base our actions only on hope we can continue our meticulous diplomacy engagement
with the Russian and Ukrainian sides. I'm positive despite that hiccup that OK it's quite an attack on call for. I'm hopeful for the future.
ANDERSON: And I hear your response to that. Look, you were just talking about ensuring this traffic is on the move and in the next couple of days.
Let's just talk about the sort of, you know how that's going to work?
Who and how is that traffic from Ukrainian ports going to be secured in what we are reporting will be a, "Safe Corridor" through the Black Sea,
through the Bosphorus Strait and then on to global markets?
You've talked about the center in Istanbul. Can you provide us a little bit more detail about what you understand to be the process because Ukrainians
have certainly told Nic Robertson and our viewers heard that a little bit early on, they do not expect those that traffic to be secured by Russian
KALIN: No, certainly, the control of Ukrainian ships going in going out will be under Ukrainian control. Ships going into ports in Odessa will be
inspected in Istanbul by this joint committee, not by just Russians, or by us, but by this committee that will have as I said Ukrainian, Russian,
Turkish and UN officials there.
When they come out the same process, and it will be controlled as far as the chips are concerned coming from Odessa Port, it will be controlled by
the Ukrainians themselves. That's kind of you know, part of their, you know, national sovereignty, of course.
And it is very clearly stated in the agreement that the Russian ships, warships or others will not come near Ukrainian shores during this
operation. And the Russians have signed up to respect that, you know, that rule. And so that will, how it will be - how it will be implemented?
In terms of the safe corridors those were actually set determined and conveyed to us by the Ukrainians themselves. As you know, they mined Odessa
Port, it's actually a big area, and it's their main access to the Black Sea because after they lost their access to City of Mariupol they lost their
access to the City of Azov.
Therefore they were only access to the sea is through the Odessa Port and so they mined or the support for security reasons. And demining will have
been too complicated, too difficult.
But also I understand that they don't they don't want to de mine the entire Odessa area, you know, fearing that the Russians may try to go in--
KALIN: --they actually specified these corridors. There are three main corridors with all the coordinates that have been communicated to us to the
UN and to those ships that will be sailing.
And they will actually guide them through those corridors.
KALIN: If there is any need for demining, then that will be done by the Ukrainian side. If they need any help from us, say from Turkey or from any
other country, we'll be ready to help them with a clearing these corridors but so far, it looks like they will be able to manage it themselves.
ANDERSON: Your explanation really flushes out just how complicated and fragile this is? And we can only hope, as you have rightly suggested that
this holds and the behavior of the Russians over the weekend is a one off.
Just before you and I though began speaking news that Russia's Gazprom will hold one more turbine or what is this strategically important Nord Stream I
Pipeline, the result would be a reduction in gas flows into Europe.
And it's that sort of behavior that makes people skeptical of Russia's promises. I don't know whether you heard that news before you and I started
talking. I wonder whether you can just get me a response to that and speak to that kind of wider skepticism of Russia's promises at this point.
KALIN: Well, I mean, right now we are in this cycle of action, reaction, response counter response. And I think everybody is playing with the
instruments that they have whatever weapons them think they can use against other side using.
So the Russia is using the gas weapon energy weapon against European countries that impose sanctions on it. And so vise versa, I mean, European
stopped, you know - they run - they sanctioned a lot of Russian entities, companies and products, et cetera.
They said they will no longer buy gas from Russia and Russia and response said, OK, let's see how far they can go with this. And then they cut it.
And I think we will see this play out in the months to come as long as this conflict continues.
That's why you're calling on all sides to come to the negotiating table. I don't want to sound too optimistic here. But this grain agreement, actually
may lay the foundations for the kind of trust that we were talking about earlier, that may lead to a resumption of ceasefire talks, prisoner
exchange, and perhaps eventually to a peace agreement.
I know it's too early to say this at this point. But if we can build on this agreement, the grain agreement, and given the fact that this war is
destructive on all accounts, it's bad for Ukraine.
It's bad for Russia, it's bad for the world for energy markets, for global food markets for everybody, and we really have to find a way to bring an
end to this fighting to this conflict.
How we do it requires, of course, a lot of careful diplomacy, patient diplomacy and I'm hoping and in fact, I want to call out an international
community, not just simply congratulate the agreement that was signed in Istanbul two days ago, but try to build on it through positive action by
trying to reach out to all possible ways to not only implement the grain agreement.
But also bring an end to this conflict so that Ukrainian lands are no longer occupied. They no longer lose people. The Russians also stop their
attacks - we somehow find a way to bring this conflict to an end.
ANDERSON: Understood. I hear what you're saying. I'm sure that many people share your optimism, although and I you know - you're a caveat in this by
saying this may be slightly too early to suggest that we are close to any sort of peace agreement here. But you're making a very good point. Look,
I've just got a couple of other questions and I need to get these in briefly.
Last week, President Erdogan renewed his threat to freeze the process of NATO membership for Sweden and Finland after conditionally agreeing to
green light their bid. Do those two countries have Turkey's support for NATO membership? Can we be quite clear about this?
KALIN: Our agreement is very clear. It really is dependent on how much or what kind of action they will be taking during this ratification process,
because we have said yes and approved their application to become a member in NATO. There is a process still there is a national certification process
for other countries, but more specifically vis-a-vis Turkey and for us.
There are specific conditions that we laid out and those involve taking steps to address Turkey's security concerns.
KALIN: And as Sweden has promised both publicly and also in the agreement, but also public statements have been made about this that we are still
expecting the extradition or expulsion of PKK related pod YPG related people--
ANDERSON: Were those conditional sirs, in that agreement in agreeing to support membership? Were those conditional?
KALIN: Yes of course, we made it very clear from the very beginning that these are conditional.
KALIN: And they have to these conditions to be met before you know their full membership is --by us.
ANDERSON: All right. Ibrahim Kalin, thank you for your time. Your time today is extremely important. Your analysis and insight into what is going
on is crucial for our wider understanding of the situation which of course has got massive global implications. Thank you, sir.
Well just ahead the leader of the Catholic Church wants the indigenous people of Canada to know that he is sorry, the Pope's pilgrimage of
eminence is next. And the condemnation is poor enough to Myanmar's military government executes prominent pro-democracy activists, that after this.
ANDERSON: Well, a journey of penance to try to make peace with the past, Pope Francis has traveled to Edmonton in Canada, where he is set to meet
with indigenous leaders and give an address in the next hour all in the name of forgiveness.
His trip comes as the Catholic Church tries to atone for decades of abuse against indigenous children in Canada. CNN's Paula Newton joining us now
live from Edmonton, Paula.
PAULA NEWTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky great anticipation for this visit. And remember, as you were just indicating this has a singular purpose it is
unlike any other papal visit. And as you were saying the pope will atone for what happened here.
And the issue Becky is not just the individual stories that are horrific enough of abuse at the hands of priests, nuns and other Catholic staff at
these institutions. But the fact that a commission here in Canada in 2015 determined that what the Catholic Church did amounted to cultural genocide.
Take a listen.
NEWTON (voice over): It is a people trip like no other one that we'll see Pope Francis humbled himself on behalf of the Catholic Church and
apologized to Canada's indigenous peoples for years of abuse and harm.
Only months ago if you could imagine his journey here when the Pope is calling a journey of penance for what a Canadian National Commission says
was cultural genocide.
At least 150,000 indigenous children separated from their families and forced to attend residential institutions where thousands injured physical,
sexual and emotional abuse from priests, nuns and school staff.
VICTORIA MCINTOSH, RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL SURVIVOR: Kneel down the way you made us kneel down as little kids and asked for that forgiveness.
NEWTON (voice over): Victoria McIntosh was taken from her family at the age of four.
MCINTOSH: My grants made this for me.
NEWTON (voice over): This was the coat she says she wore when her mom dropped her off at a Catholic institution in Manitoba in the 1960s.
MCINTOSH: That Nan took her off a man threw it up my mom.
NEWTON (voice over): McIntosh said the nun then called her mother a savage, an incident she said foreshadowed years of abuse. She says her mother never
MCINTOSH: And I told her, I said, it's not your fault, wasn't your fault or choice, the job?
NEWTON (voice over): McIntosh says she was sexually assaulted by a priest for years when she was only a child.
NEWTON (voice over): He violated me. And ways that no child should I ever go through. And I would break down and I would cry, thinking about it what
he done. And I wonder why. What did I do to you?
NEWTON (voice over): McIntosh says that priest was 92 year old Arthur - it was only in June when he was charged with indecent assault. He has not
entered a plea. And it is the impunity of the Catholic Church's actions that hangs over this visit.
Even as dozens of indigenous communities now search the grounds of these institutions, where hundreds of unmarked graves have already been
NEWTON (on camera): As indigenous communities work to recover their lost children, there is still much ambivalence about the Pope's visit and his
apology. The Pope was blunt, he called it a journey of penance.
CHIEF DERRICK HENDERSON, SAGKEENG FIRST NATION: I don't know that's interesting interpretation of it, right. You know, for me, it's not a
journey, right. It was more than a journey for our people, I think. And the journey will never end, right. That's going to be there forever.
NEWTON (voice over): Pope Francis says he acknowledges that, that hopes this historic gesture of atonement will bring some measure of relief and
NEWTON: You know, Becky you heard Chief Henderson there say that it was going to be here forever. And I want to introduce to you the concept of
intergenerational trauma. It is something we have heard for decades here in Canada.
The fact that these elders who with such grace speak to us about the really torturous conditions in which they lived, the way they were taken away from
families, the way they were not taught to love and even have affection, or give affection that has affected so many generations of indigenous peoples
in this country.
And that is why they will be parsing the words of the Pope to come in the next hour. We're looking for a whole apology, a whole of the Catholic
Church of apology, not just for the actions of individuals.
ANDERSON: Yes. Paula, thank you very much indeed, important story. Well, next on "Connect the World" extreme heat feeds rampaging wildfires were on
the scene of a blaze, threatening thousands of homes in California.
And lots of anxiety across the globe after the World Health Organization declared Monkey pox, a public health emergency, we'll have what you need to
know about the virus, after this.
ANDERSON: As Russia's war on Ukraine enters its sixth month, Ukraine reporting progress, at least in its counter offensive in the southern
Kherson region. A military adviser they're saying resistance forces damaged bridges that Russia has been using to supply troops making the movement of
heavy equipment and vehicles very complicated is his quote for the Russians.
Ukraine's President calling it step by step advanced. Our Senior International Correspondent Ivan Watson is on the ground for us. He's in
Mykolaiv in southern Ukraine, clearly in other parts of the country, not as much success for the Ukrainians. But what are you learning at this point
about this counter offensive?
IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's a very long front line, it is a grinding conflict. And the Ukrainians do claim to be making
some progress. They have to fight for every inch of land that they're retaking.
They say that they have seen a change in the behavior and in the weaponry of the Russians, since these long range western supplied rocket and missile
systems have been given the famous American high Mars that have been able to hit suspected ammunition dumps and command points deep behind enemy
I was just meeting with a senior lieutenant to commands about 100 men, just 10 kilometers from the Russian front line. And he says that in the last two
to three weeks, the amount of artillery that the Russians were able to throw at his positions has dropped substantially.
And remember, the Russians have always vastly outnumbered the Ukrainians when it comes to heavy weaponry long range artillery, and armored vehicles
as well. So in his words, this was helping save lives.
Another clear part of the Ukrainian strategy right now is to hit supply lines. What does that mean bridges, basically, that they're using some of
this long range weaponry to hit the bridges that connect Crimea to Russian occupied Kherson region of southern Ukraine, in hopes of making it harder
to bring more armored vehicles into this area, to bring in more of this weaponry?
That said, the Russians continue to hurl these cruise missiles at Ukrainian cities. They continue to fire the repurposed S300 surface to air missiles
at the southern frontline city of Mykolaiv day and night.
The Ukrainians claim that they destroyed one of these missile launching systems and even published images of that. So are we about to see massive
gains taking place from what I'm hearing from frontline commanders? No, but they do seem confident they are moving forward.
And I've seen all across this long front line signs of Western weaponry coming into the hands of the Ukrainian troops be it British land rovers
that I saw one regiment driving around further to the east of here.
Or the shoulder launched anti-tank rockets that I've seen just in the hands, just today of other fighters or the American high Mars the high
mobility rocket systems, which I've seen traversing roads here in southern Ukraine.
It is clear that the Ukrainians have better weaponry now and it's just now starting to get in the hands of some of these frontline units, Becky.
ANDERSON: Ivan Watson's on the ground with the very latest, Ivan, thank you. Well, firefighters in California are battling a huge blaze as you see
here that exploded in size over the weekend.
It is now threatening more than 3000 homes and businesses near Yosemite National Park, so called Oak fire is being fueled by a record breaking heat
wave that has gripped much of the United States today.
60 million people remain across the United States under heat alerts. But for some of them there may be a little relief on the way.
ANDERSON: Temperatures dropping closer to normal this week in cities like Boston, New York and Philadelphia. Well, Polo Sandoval is covering the heat
wave in the north eastern United States.
Camila Bernal is on the other side of the country near that huge fire in California and Camilla, let's start with you those images from Yosemite, so
dramatic. How are people around the area coping?
CAMILA BERNAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, it's not easy, because the flames are spreading very quickly. And authorities here are saying that
they're spreading so quickly, because of the drought. Because everything around this area is really dry, you can see it here on the ground.
And you can see exactly where that fire crossed into this property. It was also probably very dry. Authorities say that the fire continues to grow, it
was about 14,000 acres burned on Saturday, then 15 on Sunday, and now we're close to 17,000 acres burned thousands also being forced to evacuate.
And unfortunately, there are some that are going to come back to properties that look just like this. You see, there's still some hotspots here you can
see the cars really there's not a lot left behind in this property.
And authorities say that a lot of people in this area live in, say five acre lots. So it's really hard to get to these areas, it's really hard to
come back and help people if they choose to stay.
Unfortunately, I have to talk to some people who say, look, we don't want to leave, they like to stay near their properties. And so it has been
somewhat difficult for authorities to try to get everyone out.
Thankfully, though, they have made some progress. Containment is now at 10 percent. And it doesn't sound like a lot. But over the last couple of days,
it's been at zero. So it is some progress. It's the first progress that we've seen since this fire started, Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes, thank you. You can really see the devastation on the ground there. Paula, let me bring you in. The much anticipated heat wave now has
arrived in the Northeast. What's the latest where you are and what's the forecast more importantly, going forward?
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky with that weekend now coming down, there is a sense here throughout the Northeast that the worst of those
temperatures, it is behind us. That's because roughly 30,31 degrees Celsius is fairly refreshing today, compared to what we experienced yesterday.
Just consider the records that were reached in major cities like not just here in New York, but in Boston, in the nearby city of Philadelphia as well
in Newark, New Jersey yesterday seeing a high of close to 38 and a half degrees Celsius.
That was for five days straight, experiencing that level of high heat. So that is why authorities all weekend long were concerned encouraging people
who live in some of these cities to stay indoors in the air conditioning, or to go places like this and find a way to keep cool and that's precisely
what we saw.
New Yorkers of all ages trying to get find out the different creative ways of staying cool in terms of what we expect in the next 24 hours or so, the
concern now will be more about severe weather.
Now that it seems that the worst of those temperatures is over. A big part of the focus of the United States will now be for States like Washington,
Oregon, cities like Seattle and Portland expected to see record breaking heat right now.
But really this all goes back to what we've heard from Geosciences and weather experts now saying that the level of severe weather like what we
experienced here, the last couple of days, it speaks to the climate change impact. It goes beyond this heat wave that appears to be subsiding.
But nonetheless did turn deadly for some throughout the United States and places like Arizona and here in New York City, where we saw just one
related heat related or rather just one heat related death over the weekend. Becky?
ANDERSON: Yes, Polo, thank you. The story, stateside few folks up next on "Connect the World" Myanmar executes pro-democracy activists in what one
country calls a new low point. I'm going to speak next with a documentary filmmaker who investigated three mass killings in Myanmar. We look at the
forgotten revolution there, that's next.
ANDERSON: Well international outrage building often Myanmar's junta executed four people accused by them or at least of terrorism. Two of them
were pro-democracy leaders.
These were Myanmar's First Judicial executions and decades and human rights groups fear there will be more as the military government cracks down on
dissent the U.S. France and Germany condemning the actions in the United Nations calls in deeply troubling.
Well, the UK's channel four has commissioned a documentary on the brutality in Myanmar. The program investigates three mass killings and shows how the
army might have committed war crimes by targeting peaceful protesters. Here's just a sample of Myanmar, The Forgotten Revolution.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For 50 years Myanmar has been run by its army. After a brief experiment with democracy, they've again seized power. This time in a
coup led by senior General - since the coup, almost 20,000 people have reportedly been killed as the military cracks down on dissent. For over a
year, we've worked with a network of local journalists who have risked their lives to secretly document the army's brutal repression.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, Katie Arnold is the Director of that documentary. She used to live in Myanmar, and is now a filmmaker and investigative journalist.
And it's good to have you here. It's a terrific documentary. Before we talk about the film, what do you make of these horrific executions that we have
learned off today?
KATIE ARNOLD, DIRECTOR, "MYANMAR: THE FORGOTTEN REVOLUTION": Well, it's a very worrying development, because the four activists that were executed
over the weekend, they were tried in a closed military court, they did not have legal representation. So it is a major breach of their human rights.
But I think that the reason why and so another worrying thing is that 117 other activists currently have been sentenced to the death penalty. So I
don't think that this will be the last execution that we see.
But I think the reason why the Myanmar military has reintroduced the death penalty after 30 years or more than 30 years, is that they want to instill
fear in those that are continuing to resist the military regime.
And you know, our film, which you've just seen a little sort of clip of has shown that they are there's already many tactics that they are using to try
and instill fear in the people of Myanmar.
ANDERSON: We've yet to see a public statement from Aung San Suu Kyi, the leader of the National League for Democracy, and there will be those out
there who said that she sort of you know, she failed the people of Myanmar.
I mean, I want to get on the ground. You spent considerable amount of time there, living there, and you've made this film. What were the key takeaways
ARNOLD: On the ground?
ARNOLD: Well, with regards to Aung San Suu Kyi, I think that the debate has in some ways has moved on from her now. The years that she was campaigning
for democracy in Myanmar, she always pursued a sort of nonviolent approach.
But I think the people of Myanmar now have seen such horrors and experienced so many atrocities from the Myanmar military that they've
decided that the only way that they can try and restore democracy is to fight back.
And I think that she has dominated the political debate for so long. But actually now, there are a lot of like young activists coming through with
sort of new ideas which are actually you know, different to the one that she pursued. And so I actually think that you know the country the
political debate is sort of move forward.
ARNOLD: But the people that we have filmed with, we filmed with a lot of these peaceful protesters who started off calling for democracy, they saw
these mass shootings of protesters of unarmed protesters, and then have fled to the jungles. And they are determined to eradicate the military
institution once and for all through war, through guerrilla warfare.
I mean, there are thousands of these young people who have fled to the ethnic areas along the Myanmar's border where they've received military
training, and they're now trying to fight back.
But obviously, there's a huge discrepancy between the weapons that they have and the weapons that the Myanmar military are using. But despite that,
they are actually achieving a number of successes, they are inflicting losses on the Myanmar military.
I mean, it's difficult to get accurate numbers, but hundreds, if not thousands, of losses on the Myanmar military side. The groups that are
aligned with these ethnic armed groups, they are making territorial gains.
And perhaps most interestingly, these groups, they're called PDF or People's Defense Forces, they're across the entire country, they're all
fighting back, the military is spread very thin as they're trying to suppress all of these groups.
But they're really strong in central Myanmar, which doesn't have a history of resistance at all. And there some of these groups have actually managed
to wrest control away from the military, and to set up their own sort of forms of governance and own sort of schools.
And so the military is spread very thin, and they're under pressure. And I think that is why you see them try and use even more brutal tactics to try
and suppress the people for example, the executions that we saw over the weekend.
ANDERSON: If our viewers are watching this in the UK, they can see the documentary, which as I say is terrific. At 11.05 tonight as understand is
what you - what's the future for the country?
ARNOLD: Well, it's a good question. So the military and not so long ago, they actually said that they hinted that they would entertain the idea of
negotiations with Aung San Suu Kyi.
And a number of international bodies, institutions have been pushing for negotiations. But some of those same institutions, and interestingly sort
of Cambodia, who's the Head of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, they've been wanting dialogue.
They've wanted negotiations. But they also said that they shouldn't execute these prisoners. And I think that the fact that the military went ahead and
did it anyway, shows that that sort of the door for negotiations are firmly closed, and that they're not interested in it.
And I mean, there's the possibility of an internal military coup to try and get rid of men online and say that we're different now. But I'm not sure
that will happen. And most importantly, these young people who have fled to the jungles and who are fighting back and fighting this guerrilla war, they
are not going to give up until the military is fully eradicated.
And so even if the negotiations even if, you know, Aung San Suu Kyi was released, and she pushed for, you know, return to the status quo, I don't
think that they are going to agree to that. And I think that it's going to be a long, a long war, potentially a war of attrition.
ANDERSON: Thank you.
ARNOLD: Thank you very much.
ANDERSON: Good to have you on. We will be right back.
ANDERSON: In the United States, the White House is still deciding whether to declare Monkeypox, a public health emergency. Now this comes a day after
the World Health Organization did just that calling the outbreak, a global health emergency.
More than 16,000 Monkeypox cases have been reported in more than 70 countries, including around 2900 in the U.S., according to the W.H.O. Well,
our Senior Medical Correspondent, Elizabeth Cohen here to walk us through this.
And this, of course, is hard news, it will be hard news for many people to take following three years in a pandemic. Let's just remind ourselves what
Monkeypox is, and how concerned those watching this show should be.
ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: So Becky, I want to start by saying what Monkeypox is not it is not COVID, it does not spread
nearly as easily as COVID. I mean, think about a Monkeypox that's been around, it's been several months now.
When we were several months into the COVID pandemic, it was, you know, huge amounts all over the place. While there are many, many Monkeypox cases, it
is not spread the same way that COVID spread in those past few months.
And nearly all of them, at least in the United States have been among a very specific group among men who have sex with men. That is not to say
that this isn't important. Of course, that's not what we're saying.
But just to make the point that this is not sort of growing like wildfire, the way that COVID did. So let's take a look at some of those numbers that
you were just talking about.
When you look at COVID worldwide, you're seeing it in about 75 countries, nearly 17,000 cases, in the U.S. nearly 3000 cases in the U.S. at least 99
percent have reported male to male sexual contact.
So a couple notes there one, those two numbers, you see the 16,000, the 2000, the numbers are almost certainly much, much higher than that. Another
note is that while I say it 99 percent in the U.S. have reported male to male sexual contact, that doesn't mean that you need to actually have sex
to have intercourse in order to get Monkeypox, it can be spread by prolonged skin to skin contact.
But no, not the word prolonged you don't get up by brushing up next to somebody, you're very extremely unlikely to get it from say giving someone
a hug. It is more from prolonged skin to skin contact, Becky.
ANDERSON: What are the next steps in the United States and indeed, globally? Do we know?
COHEN: So the next steps are really this is going to sound familiar, because it was the same with COVID is get as much testing as you can out
there so that those who want to be tested will get tested and also get a vaccine out there.
So let's take a look at the progress with vaccines in the United States. Because I think this shows you that we're not anywhere near where we want
to be anywhere in the world. So in the U.S. 300,000 doses have been distributed.
But 1.5 million people are eligible meaning for example, that they have had multiple partners, multiple male to male partners, in places where monkey
pox is spreading.
So 1.5 million people only 300,000 doses distributed and each person needs two doses. So you can easily do the math there and see that we do not have
what we need. And while we haven't looked into each of the 75 countries, I am imagining that is the same situation in all of those as well.
In the U.S they're really trying to ramp it up. But they're sort of doing this from nothing. So it's going to take a little while until they get the
numbers where they need to be.
ANDERSON: Yes, we're talking about this being dealt with by ensuring that there are enough vaccines around for those who need them. Correct?
COHEN: Right, exactly. And in the United States, at least, the community, the gay community has actually been very smart and very receptive towards
vaccination on the whole. So that's a good thing.
You're not trying to convince huge numbers of people who don't want to get vaccinated to get vaccinated. It's the opposite. They want this vaccine.
And it's not there. The numbers are ramping up and testing which is also so important.
Those numbers have ramped up hugely as well. So that there's you know, there's much less trouble getting a test than say in the early days of
ANDERSON: Always a pleasure. Thank you very much indeed.
COHEN: Thanks Becky.
ANDERSON: Elizabeth Cohen in the house for you. Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore one of the earliest well known people to sound the alarm on climate
change is blasting climate deniers.
He compared them to the police officers who failed to take action during the horrific school shooting in Uvalde in Texas, have a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AL GORE, FORMER U.S. VICE PRESIDENT: You know, the climate deniers are really in some way similar to all of those almost 400 law enforcement
officers in Uvalde, Texas, who were waiting outside an unlocked door while the children were being massacred.
They heard the screams they heard the gunshots and nobody has stepped forward. And God bless those families who've suffered so much. And law
enforcement officials tell that's not typical of what law enforcement usually does.
And confronted with this global emergency what we're doing with our inaction and failing to walk through the door and stop the killing is not
typical of what we are capable of as human beings.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: And he also said President Biden could take more executive action to fight climate change without waiting for congress. Well, your parting
shots tonight. Serious Damascus Citadel nights festivals returned after a two year hiatus caused by the COVID pandemic.
This four day festival is a showcase for artists from Lebanon, Syria and Iraq. And despite serious economic troubles the festivals organizers say
two of the whole concerts were sold out once they were announced and forgive us for the quality of what you can hear there.
An important story and one that we wanted to bring you. A reminder to subscribe to CNN's Middle East Newsletter that is meanwhile in the Middle
East, thank you for joining us. CNN continues after this short break.