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Shooting of Former Prime Minister Imran Khan Sparks Protests; Missiles, Scrambling Jets, Joint Drills Amp Up Tensions in the Korean Peninsula; Iranian Rapper Toomaj Salehi Under Arrest for Supporting Protests; Ukraine Wary of Possible Trap in the City of Kherson. Aired 10- 11a ET
Aired November 04, 2022 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: North Korea fires off artillery rounds in anger over U.S. Military exercises with South Korea,
prompting the U.N. Security Council to call a special meeting.
Ukraine's president is accusing Russia of energy terrorism as the country suffers blackouts and both sides prepare for a battle for the city of
And the new boss of Twitter, Elon Musk, will decide the fate of thousands of employees this morning. Who gets to keep their job and who is fired?
Hello, and welcome. I'm Christina MacFarlane in London. This is CONNECT THE WORLD.
At this hour in Pakistan thousands have taken to the streets. One day after someone shot the former prime minister Imran Khan. This is the scene in
Quetta where protesters blocked traffic. It's one of at least five cities seeing protests today. In the hall where Khan is recovering, protesters
burned ties outside the government's house.
Khan was riding on top of an open truck when the shots rang out. He was quickly rushed to the hospital in nearby Lahore and was reportedly hit in
the leg and is expected to recover. Police have one man in custody for the shooting. They say he confessed in a video.
Well, Sophia Saifi has been following the story since it broke about 24 hours ago. She joins us now live from Islamabad.
Sophia, good to see. What more are you learning about the motive for this shooting and if indeed the shooter acted alone?
SOPHIA SAIFI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christina, well, you know, you mentioned this video and CNN is not airing that video because we don't know under
what circumstances it was filmed. It had been released to us yesterday within an hour of Khan being attacked. We do know from watching that video
that the person in the video, he's an unnamed male, who's saying that he was unhappy with the way Khan was operating.
He said that Khan's rallies were playing music during the call to prayer. And that's when he decided that he needed to get rid of them. Now this
could just be a lone wolf situation but because of how highly charged the political atmosphere here in Pakistan it's already become a politicized
The Pakistani government headed by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif who Imran Khan through his aides claimed is behind his attack. Imran khan released a
statement via his close aides saying that Shehbaz Sharif, the prime minister, Rana Sanaullah, the Interior minister, and Major General Faisal
who is a senior intelligence official, is behind the attack on Khan.
Regarding the investigation both parties are already blaming the other. And the government has come out and called Khan's statements grievous and the
irresponsible. We're expecting Khan to speak and address the nation in just a couple of minutes. So we'll have more on the investigation on what Khan
feels and what evidence he might have for these accusations that he's made against three men -- Christina.
MACFARLANE: Yes. And Sophia, it is a politically charged moment. We know that Khan's party themselves are calling for people to protest in the
streets. We've been seeing the images there. How much concern is there that these protests could turn violent and how are people, you know, both for
and against Khan politically responding to this?
SAIFI: Well, Christina, yesterday I feel that there was a huge period of shock, like as soon as people heard the news there was the shock across the
country. Whether they were people who are pro-Khan or whether they were not because of how deeply Imran Khan himself, he's a cricketing superhero. He's
also been ingrained in Pakistan's popular imagination for many, many decades.
Since then there were organic protests that happened yesterday. Khan's party had called for more protests after Friday prayers. Earlier today
parts of those protests have only started heating up in the evening hours. They are not as many numbers as we had feared as many watchers of the
situation had feared but it's still -- we're still waiting on Imran Khan to come out.
His party did say that they wanted to stop their long march that was coming towards the capital where Khan had been calling for early elections, that
long march had been halted. And now the party is calling for protests. People have come out. There have been violence. There has been pushback
from the police. And it's been from the north to the south of this country because he is immensely popular.
But we are just going to have to wait and see whether Khan encourages this or whether he decides to put a stop to some of the outrage that we are
seeing on the streets here and on the roads of Pakistan tonight -- Christina.
MACFARLANE: Yes. It feels like there is a lot riding on what Khan may say in the coming half hour. And we will of course keep a close eye on that.
Sophia, thanks very much for now.
Well, the U.N. Security Council is set to have an open meeting in the coming hours after a week of amped up tensions on the Korean Peninsula. The
latest example, South Korea scrambling fighter jets after its military port is seeing around 180 North Korean warplanes near the border. That comes
after Pyongyang's barrage of missile launches this week. And thus the U.S. and South Korea extend their joint military drills to Saturday.
Well, our Will Ripley is joining us now live from Seoul.
And, Will, what are the government saying there about these North Korean warplanes, the number of them?
WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, if you'd kind of take a step back, Christina, with 240 warplanes from the U.S.
and South Korea engaging in Operation Vigilant Storm, you can see from the North Korean perspective why they to get as many of their own warplanes to
fly near the border on Friday over a four-hour period because they wanted to show force.
And then the South Koreans then they sent their planes, including some very advanced F-35 Stealth fighter jets to show force of their own. So it's this
tit-for-tat escalation that we've really seen all week. And when you consider the fact that yesterday North Korea attempted to launch their most
powerful ICBM over Japan, a launched that is believed to have failed mid- flight, but still a very serious provocation from the perspective of the South Koreans and the Japanese and the United States.
The day before that you had North Korea with this unprecedented missile testing blitz, more than two dozen cruise and ballistic missile launched in
a single day, the most ever, which caused the extension of the, you know, war games here in South Korea that North Korea is saying is the cause of
all this in the first place. An excuse, let's be honest, because North Korea conduct their own military drills regularly.
But every time the U.S. and South Korea engage in these scheduled military exercises, which are, you know, required because of the diplomatic and
military alliance between South Korea and the United States, then North Korea calls it a dress rehearsal for an invasion. Then they often engage in
missile launches and other types of provocations of their own. Because don't forget there was also now on a couple of different occasions this
week large scale artillery barrage from North Korea into the maritime buffer zone that divides the two Koreas, known as the Northern Limit Line.
So, the big question now is, is this it? Is this Friday going to be -- you know, is this going to be the end of it or because these girls have
extended into Saturday, does North Korea have something big planned for the weekend? We don't have to answer that question.
I wouldn't even try to guess, Christina. But I will say this. I'm keeping my phone ringer on loud and right next to me because you just never know
when you're going to get that call that something else has happened. And that's kind of been the story of our lives all this week.
MACFARLANE: Yes. You absolutely do not at this time. As I was mentioning, Will, we know the U.N. Security Council are moving to have a meeting in the
coming hours. We know they have moved to issue sanctions in the past. What are officials there hoping to come out of that meeting?
RIPLEY: So the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Linda Thomas-Greenfield, has actually come out and called out China and Russia for failing to condemn
these North Korean acts which many -- the ballistic missile launches at least are a violation of U.N. Security Council repeat violations. Of course
that doesn't bother Kim Jong-un, he's been flagrantly violating the U.N. Security Council resolutions all this year and in previous years.
But especially this year when you're talking about at least 30 launch events, and, you know, a launch event is, you know, 24 hours of launches.
So the day that had two dozen missiles launched, that counted as one launch event. But you're talking about upwards of 60 North Korean missiles
launched this year. It's the most that they've ever launched before.
And part of the reason why Kim Jong-un knows he can get away with this is because Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping are clearly in mode to work with the
West on punishing Pyongyang. And they have veto power, permanent veto power at the U.N. Security Council. And so if China and Russia are not on board
with really stepping up enforcement of sanctions, there's very little leverage that the West has at this stage to get North Korea to stop.
And what I'm being told by diplomatic sources is that anything short of a direct engagement from President Biden to Kim Jong-un which at this stage
seems completely like it is not going to happen.
I mean, President Trump really broke precedent when he started interacting directly with the North Korean leader but now that the North Koreans have
had they're not interested in lower level diplomatic talks. They're not interested in the United States offer for talks without any pre-conditions.
They're basically just plowing ahead with as much testing as they feel they need to do and with very little in terms of consequences, at least as
things stand right now for these acts.
MACFARLANE: Yes. These are unprecedented times even for North Korea.
Will, great to have you with us there live from Seoul tonight. Appreciate it.
Well, Iran's leader is lashing out at U.S. President Joe Biden's promise to free Iran. During the campaign speech in California Thursday Mr. Biden
seemed to imply that his administration would support Iran's national uprising.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Don't worry, we're going to free Iran. They're going to free themselves pretty soon.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACFARLANE: Well, responding to those statements Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said his country was freed 43 years ago during the Islamic Revolution
and quote, "Iran will never be your milking cow." Iran has repeatedly blamed America and its allies for whipping up anti-government anger and has
launched a violent crackdown.
But that hasn't stopped the movement. Demonstrations were held in Tehran and at least three other cities Thursday to mark 40 days since the killing
of Hadas Najafi, a prominent protester shot to death in late September. One of those gatherings unfortunately turned violent when demonstrators threw
rocks at police vehicles and officers attacked them.
Well, our Jomana Karadsheh is following all the latest developments on this out of Istanbul and Turkey.
And Jomana, Iran's regime bristling in anger there at the comments from U.S. presidents and of course for the outside support that is ongoing for
the demonstrations inside Iran. But having said that, the continuing attacks on mourners are also happening and continuing to happen.
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, Christina, for the past few weeks we've heard from the Iranian regime continuing to dismiss the
grievances of the thousands who are taking to the streets describing what is going on in the country as a foreign conspiracy and blaming the U.S. and
Israel for what they describe as these riots on the streets. But what you are seeing is people rising up demanding change, demanding the freedoms
that they have never known for this young generation especially under this repressive Islamic republic.
And the government for the past nearly two months now, Christina, has been trying to throw everything it's got. All the brutal tactics to try and
crush dissent and to try to stop these protests. But that doesn't seem to be stopping these defiant and determined Iranians. As you mentioned there,
we are still seeing protesters taking to the streets, several protests taking place yesterday, again today as well.
Some of them seem to be larger than others we have seen in the past, angrier, and some even turning more violent. And you know the government
has tried everything. The brutal force that we have seen unleashed on the streets, the beatings, shooting of protesters, and the most disturbing
latest news that we have gotten from the United Nations this weekend, an official saying that 14,000 people have been arrested so far. Behind bars.
Some of them facing the death penalty, including a popular dissident rapper.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): These are the lyrics that could cost Toomaj Salehi his life. The Iranian rap artist was arrested last weekend charged with
crimes punishable by death, including cooperating with foreign governments, forming illegal groups to destabilize the country, and propagandist
activity against the government. But his real crime, his music calling on Iranians to rise up and remove their repressive regime.
Toomaj has also proudly posted these videos recently showing him out at the protest leading the chants for change. Family members say he was arrested
along with two friends in a violent raid on Sunday. His uncle tells CNN they have information he was tortured.
EGHBAL EGHBALI, TOOMAJ'S UNCLE (through translator): We still do not know anything about Toomaj's health or condition. The family tried hard to even
hear his voice. No one has given us any information. We don't know, are all of Toomaj's friends are alive or not. We want to know what happened to our
boys and what torture has the Islamic government given them.
KARADSHEH: This short edited clip released on state media Wednesday claims to show Toomaj expressing remorse. Outraged Iranians say it's a statement
made under duress. His uncle and others believe it's not even Toomaj.
The underground rapper has been a rebel for years fighting repression through his politically charged lyrics, speaking out against corruption,
poverty and impunity. He was briefly arrested last year but this time is different. The regime is struggling to contain the national uprising, is
unleashing all its brutal tactics. Thousands have been arrested, more than 1,000 of them indicted. Many protesters accused of waging war against God
and corruption on earth.
Facing the death penalty in what human rights groups say are sham trials. Many fear the ruthless republic will hand too much and others the harshest
of sentences, to make them an example to those who dare to dissent.
EGHBALI (through translator): Toomaj's mother was a political prisoner. She has passed away a long time ago. If my sister was still alive, she would
have become Toomaj's voice. The same as I am Toomaj's voice. The same as many more on the streets are the voice of Toomaj.
KARADSHEH: A voice they've tried to silent. Now louder and more powerful now than ever.
TOOMAJ SALEHI, RAPPER, ACTIVIST (through text translation): No one can defeat us. It will take time but it's the end for them. If I am here or you
are here or not, it's their end.
KARADSHEH: And Christina, there's been a significant social media campaign calling for the release of Toomaj and others. His uncle telling us they are
very concerned about his condition, about his health. They're calling -- the family is calling on the international community to do something, to
send some sort of a medical committee to check on Toomaj and others and make sure that they are OK.
MACFARLANE: Yes, Jomana, as you say he's one of 13,000 people who have been arrested so far. Just extraordinary numbers and courageous dissent.
Jomana, thank you very much.
All right. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD live from London today. Still, ahead millions of people across Ukraine are spending part of today in the
dark. What Ukraine's president is saying about Russia's continuing assault on energy infrastructure.
And the U.S. president and his predecessor both hitting the campaign trail in the final sprint to next week's midterm elections. An update on a
critical race that could tip the balance of power in Washington.
MACFARLANE: Welcome back. Much of Ukraine's capital has spent parts of today without power. The mayor of Kyiv earlier said 450,000 households were
blacked out, the results of continuing attacks on Ukraine's energy infrastructure.
In his nightly address Thursday President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said four and a half million customers across Ukraine face temporary power disruptions.
They accused Russia of committing energy terrorism to make up for its failures on the battlefield. And now, the G7 has established a coordination
mechanism to help Ukraine repair its energy and water infrastructure.
A word of the possible Russian withdrawals in the occupied city of Kherson is being met with some skepticism by Ukraine. One official says Russian
forces appear to be setting a trap despite decreasing their footprint in Kherson.
Nic Robertson has more for us.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR (voice-over): Atop Kherson's main government building, a change. No Russian flag. On a bus
nearby, residents cheer, realizing a Russian checkpoint is gone. A city resident whom CNN is not identifying for their own security describes the
Almost no large armored vehicles in the city during the day," he says. And all the military checkpoints in the city are gone.
The region's Russian-installed governor told a Russian media propagandist Russian troops are holding the city for now but added most likely our
troops will leave for the East Bank.
What Russia is planning, not clear. Ukrainian officials fear deception.
NATALIA HUMENIUK, SPOKESPERSON, UKRAINE DEFENSE FORCES SOUTH (through translator): We see it and realize that these may be certain tricks.
Military maneuvers to build correct defensive, as they see it. Nevertheless, we see that in Kherson, there are still regular units wearing
ROBERTSON: But Ukraine still claiming gains, Thursday destroying several boats in Kherson port. And Wednesday, destroying a Russian surface-to-air
missile system often used to hit Ukrainian civilians in nearby Mykolaiv. In the Black Sea, too, Russia appears on the back foot as grain shipments
resumed following Putin's reversal of his refusal this past weekend to cooperate with the U.N.-brokered deal, citing new guarantees from Ukraine.
VLADIMIR PUTIN, RUSSIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): Russia reserves the right to withdraw from these agreements if these guarantees are breached by
ROBERTSON: Another sign, according to Ukraine's president, that Putin is being forced to change.
VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): Two hundred and fifty-two days ago, Russia demanded security guarantees from the United
States of America. After eight months of the Russian so-called special operation, the Kremlin is demanding security guarantees from Ukraine.
ROBERTSON: In Kherson, Putin's intent still far from clear. Residents report plenty of Russian heavy weapons on the edge of the city.
MACFARLANE: Nic Robertson is running now live from Kramatorsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Nic, we were hearing you there talk about why Ukrainian officials are being understandably cautious over this possible Russian retreat. What is the
likelihood that this is a possible trap emerging?
ROBERTSON: There is that possibility. You know, the psychological operations have been part of this war. The reason Ukraine was able to make
rapid advances in the north of Ukraine recently was because they signaled very clearly that they were going to attack in the south. Russia redirected
forces to the south. Ukraine had an easier time of it in the north. So Ukraine obviously smart to the idea that they could be being fooled.
I think when we heard from the defense minister earlier today, he said that -- Ukraine's Defense minister, he said that this could be a gesture of
goodwill in essence from the Russians, that they might be about to leave and then he went on to sort of joke about previous good gestures of
goodwill, like the gesture of goodwill that the Russians leaving Kyiv and Chernihiv nearby, and Snake Island in the south which actually they left
because the Ukrainians beat them out of there.
That was his point, that if Russia is going to leave it's not going to be without losses, and he did say that he thought that Russia was perhaps
hastening its departure from Kherson because some of the irrigation ditches that they're using as trenches will be filling with water because of the
heavy rain. And we know this evening there have been explosions at an airfield on the northern outskirts of Kherson.
We know that President Putin has been saying that residents in the area must leave their homes, must be evacuated, civilians. And some of those
evacuations are now on the eastern bank of the Dnipro River which signals that Russians are bringing in reinforcements on the other side of the river
And significantly, civilians are being told to leave their homes near the Nova Kakhovka dam on the eastern bank of the Dnipro River. And Ukrainian
officials have said that when they can be within artillery range and control that dam, the strategic dam just up the river from Kherson, that
will be the moment the Russians know is their last chance to evacuate.
So preparations on the east side of the river by the Russians suggests again that a withdrawal is perhaps getting closer.
MACFARLANE: And just briefly on the energy crisis, Nic. We obviously heard from President Zelenskyy, 4.5 million Ukrainian civilians now without
power, alleging energy terrorism. How is that being felt where you are in the Ukraine? I mean, are you seeing evidence of blackout all around you?
ROBERTSON: Absolutely. It's hard to miss to be perfectly honest. This town had a blackout all last night. How does that affect people? Well, they can
sit in their home with candles, but this is the modern era. The internet here was barely working because of no electricity available to people. Most
of the shops couldn't function. There were a handful of restaurants here that would deliver people, deliver family -- I'm sorry. Delivery food to
families here. They weren't able to function last night.
A lot of pensioners here. So it makes the conditions much harder. But absolutely, the energy shortages reach way beyond the capital into the
countryside where the support networks, the heating networks, are already at a very low ebb.
MACFARLANE: Yes. And it will be interesting to see of course how this all affects morale as we head into the winter months.
Nic Robertson there live from eastern Ukraine. Thank you.
Well, just ahead, the latest U.S. job numbers are out. What they could mean for the future of interest of interest rate hikes in the world's biggest
economy. We'll get a live update from New York next.
And thousands of Twitter employees nervously watching their e-mail wondering if a pink slip is about to land in their inbox.
MACFARLANE: Hi, welcome back. I'm Christina MacFarlane in London. And you are watching CONNECT THE WORLD.
The U.S. labor market isn't letting up. That's despite interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve intended to slow hiring. U.S. non-fund payrolls grew
by 261,000 in October, that's a lot better than expected and probably not what the Fed wants to see as it tries to cool inflation.
Here is what Wall Street makes of the latest U.S. jobs report on the last - - one day before Tuesday's midterm elections, of course. So in the green and up there.
Let's go to New York and straight to CNN's Matt Egan joining us live to break this all down.
Matt, good to see you. Only this week, the Fed said the U.S. labor market was overheated. So what could these numbers mean for future Fed rate moves?
MATT EGAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Christina, I think this was a truly mixed report. There is really something for everyone. But if you Zoom out,
it does paint the picture of a surprisingly resilient jobs market. Companies are still hiring. They're still competing aggressively for
workers. And that is driving up wages. And I do think that this is probably not going to sit very well with the Federal Reserve, so that does probably
mean more tough medicine ahead in terms of interest rate hikes.
But let me just break down some of the hot and cold parts of this jobs report. On the hot side, as you mentioned, more jobs added last month than
expected, and August and September's hiring numbers, those were revised significantly higher. At the same time, we saw the supply of workers
shrink. And month over month, wages actually accelerated. All of that is pretty strong, especially considering this all-out war on inflation that
the Fed is waging.
On the cold side, this was the weakest payroll growth since late 2020. The unemployment rate went up. As you can see on your screen, though, it is
still very low, historically way below that 2020 peak of nearly 15 percent. Also on the cold side, though, year over year wages have slowed down
I think at the end of the day, though, Christina, this is not going to allow Jay Powell and his colleagues at the Fed to sleep any better at
night. This jobs market is still running hotter than they want.
MACFARLANE: Yes, and the goal here was a soft landing, right. Tight economic conditions to drive down inflation, but not enough to tip the
economy into a painful recession, which we know is a really difficult needle to thread. So are there any indications given the report we're
seeing that this is still doable?
EGAN: I don't know that this report leans heavily one way or the other because inflation remains way too high right now. So it's not like we've
seen a big decline in inflation or a big cooling off of inflation, and we still have a strong jobs market. Inflation really hasn't budged much. It
remained near this 41-year high.
And so, you know, the good news is that the job market is not falling off the cliff despite the fact that the Fed is doing things that they haven't
had to do since the early 1980s. So that is encouraging, but the Fed has more work to do clearly. So there's nothing about today's report that is
going to, you know, make them decide not to raise interest rates again in December. They may have to move again early next year.
So the question is, what does the jobs market look like at that point, Christina, and we don't know.
MACFARLANE: Yes. All eyes once again closely on the Fed's next move.
Matt, thanks very much for joining us. Appreciate it.
MACFARLANE: Well, as Americans weigh their choices ahead of next week's midterm elections, there's news about former President Donald Trump and
whether he'll make a political comeback. Sources tell CNN his top aides are eyeing the third week of November as the ideal launch point for his 2024
presidential campaign. He's out stumping for Republican candidates right now and told a crowd in Iowa last night to, quote, "get ready."
U.S. President Joe Biden meanwhile is busy driving home his close message ahead of Tuesday's vote. He told a crowd in California that democracy is
under threat and called next week's election the most important of our lifetime.
One race that could decide which party controls the U.S. Senate is in Georgia where Democratic incumbent Raphael Warnock is locked in a tight
race with Republican Herschel Walker. Georgia is also ending a record- breaking early voting period later today. And that's where we go now to find our Dianne Gallagher joining us live from Atlanta.
Dianne, Georgia poised once again to be a crucial bellwether state in these midterm elections. And this Senate race is critical because it could help
decide which party controls the U.S. Senate next year.
DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It is, and right now, Christina, it is statistically tied. Technically in polling, Senator
Raphael Warnock, the incumbent Democrat, is leading, but it is within that margin of error. And the Republican Herschel Walker has been gaining in
polls in the weeks leading up now to election day on Tuesday.
Now you mentioned this early voting here in the state of Georgia. Across the country, we've really seen robust turnout, but here in the Peach State,
according to the secretary of state's office, more than 2,261,000 people have already cast their votes here. And on the last day of early voting, it
tends to be the most robust out there for people.
You probably see the lines behind me wrapping around this polling place right here. It's like this all over the state right now as people try and
get their ballots in person on these final days. They can still send in their mail ballots of course or vote on election day. The candidates
themselves trying to encourage people to vote and make -- essentially meet voters across the state. They are all on bus tours, both Walker and Warnock
on their bus tours trying to meet voters, convince them to vote early if they can, or if not, make sure that they have a plan to come out on
election day -- Christina.
MACFARLANE: All right. Last crucial few hours. We will see how it plays out.
Dianne Gallagher, thanks very much for joining us there from Georgia.
Join us on Tuesday for an in-depth special coverage of the crucial U.S. midterm elections which will determine control of Congress. It starts at
9:00 a.m. in the evening here in London, and 1:00 a.m. in Abu Dhabi.
Now there are lots of nervous Twitter employees right now. Many will be out of a job in the coming hours. Their new boss Elon Musk sent a memo to staff
saying layoffs would begin Friday morning. Staff who gets sacked will find out via e-mail.
This follows reports that the world's richest man plans to lay off up to half of the company's 7500 employees. Several Twitter employees have
already filed a class action lawsuit. They claim that the firings violate U.S. law.
Well, CNN's Oliver Darcy has more details, and joins us now from New York.
So as I mentioned there, Oliver, it's being speculated these cuts could be as much as 50 percent of Twitter's workforce. What are you hearing?
OLIVER DARCY, CNN SENIOR MEDIA CORRESPONDENT: Yes. It's a really, really tough day over at Twitter. We are already seeing a lot of employees turned
to the platform, that they worked out for so long to tweet that they are no longer employed there. That they've been locked out of their company
devices. So it's a tough day.
I should note they are handling it in stride. Many are posting memories of working at the company and reminiscing on things they learned and the
colleagues that they messed. So kudos to the tweets for handling this so well on such a tough, tough day.
This does come, you know, days before the U.S. midterm elections. And so usually around that period there is already a lot of chaos because foreign
actors might be trying to exploit the platform, there is disinformation being spread and misinformation being spread by the campaigns. And so this
is only going to perhaps increase the mayhem on Twitter.
And finally as you mentioned there is this class action lawsuit already that's been filed. Twitter employees are basically or some of them are
saying that perhaps the way this layoff was executed was not in accordance with federal regulations, which require advance notice if you're laying off
more than 50 employees at the specific site. And so they have filed a class action lawsuit.
It will be interesting to see what happens there. But all in all, a very tough, tough day at this very important platform.
MACFARLANE: Yes. A tough day. And a real indication as to how Musk intends to take this forward.
Elsewhere, Oliver, we're also seeing signs of advertisers getting nervous already about their association with Twitter, concerned they may tarnish
their brands if Musk scales back on misinformation, security protections. How much of a problem could this be for Musk potentially?
DARCY: This could be an incredibly big problem for Musk. He actually just tweeted a few moments ago, right before we came on air, that Twitter
revenue is down because of these advertisers pausing their ads or ditching the platform. And you know, he's saying that they haven't changed their
content moderation policies yet, although he has indicated of course that he will let people banned back on the platform and he might roll back some
of the content moderation.
But even with the same policies in place, you know, when you're laying off half the staff and since you can imagine that they won't be enforced in the
same way, and so this morning for instance you had the Jews trending on Twitter. That's not something that advertisers are going to want to have
their ads against. And so he has this big issue because this is an advertiser supported platform, and now advertisers are very worried that
their ads are going to be against hate speech or misinformation.
And more broadly speaking, this comes during a big downturn already in the digital advertising industry. And so you can imagine companies are saying
just cut Twitter ads. If they need digital ads, they can go to Google, they can go to Meta. There are other options that might allow them to get their
product and advertise their brand in a safer manner than on Twitter which has been thrown into chaos.
MACFARLANE: Yes. I mean, understandable concern if the functionality of Twitter is at stake here. We will watch to see how this plays out in the
Oliver Darcy, thank you very much for breaking it down for us for now.
DARCY: Thank you.
MACFARLANE: All right. Up next on CONNECT THE WORLD, one of the great defenders in football history says the time has come to hang up his boots.
That story when we come back.
MACFARLANE: One of the greats is calling it quits. A Spanish election with too many trophies to count says his career in football is over.
"WORLD SPORT's" Alex Thomas is here with the details. Alex, tell us what we're seeing.
ALEX THOMAS, WORLD SPORT ANCHOR: Yes, this is a video that General Pique posted on his social media. Quite an emotional one, charting his career
from football as kid to playing for the club he's always idolized, and although he did spend four seasons at Manchester United, he only came up
through the Barcelona Academy and played for that cup for most of his career. And he's very active back in Catalonia politics as well.
At 35, he's not that old. He's won everything there is to win even for his country Spain, winning European championships and the World Cup. But two
things that decided why he's going out. And you can find out what they are in "WORLD SPORT."
MACFARLANE: Leave me hanging. I'm going to have to tune in in 10 minutes.
Alex, thanks very much. And as you hear you can find out exactly why Pique chose to call it time in a couple of minutes. We'll be right back with
"WORLD SPORT." Stay with us.