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Russia Arrests American Journalist, Citing "Espionage"; Bolsonaro Returns to Brazil; Taiwanese President's Visit to U.S. Sparks Chinese Fury; Health of Pope Francis "Improving"; Tech Leaders Call for Pause on AI Race; "Hotel Rwanda" Hero Back in U.S.; King Charles III on First Visit Abroad as Monarch. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired March 30, 2023 - 10:00   ET




BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST (voice-over): I'm Becky Anderson live from Abu Dhabi. It is 6 o'clock in the evening here and this is CONNECT THE WORLD.

Coming up this hour, "The Wall Street Journal" reporter detained in Russia for alleged espionage.

Jair Bolsonaro returns to Brazil after his self imposed exile.

Pope Francis recovering from a respiratory problem in a Rome hospital.

And King Charles meets the German chancellor in Berlin.


ANDERSON: Well, let's begin with something that hasn't happened since the waning years of the Cold War, an American journalist arrested in Russia and

accused of spying. The Russian court press service says Evan Gershkovich of "The Wall Street Journal" has been officially charged with espionage and

will be detained for nearly two months.

His employer denies the allegations and is urging the Kremlin to release him. CNN's Matthew Chance is in Moscow.

What are officials there claiming in Moscow, Matthew?

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, I mean, there's not much detail that's come out to us, Becky, about what Evan

Gershkovich, the 32 year old "The Wall Street Journal" reporter, has actually done wrong because all we've got is a statement from the FSB, the

successor organization to the Russia KGB.

And they say that they apprehended Evan Gershkovich in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg when he was in the process, apparently, of trying to get

secret information about Russia's military industrial complex.

There are no more specific than that. Within the past few minutes or so or within the past hour, at least, Gershkovich has appeared in a court in

Moscow. And as you mentioned, that court has designated the case top secret.

They've said that Evan Gershkovich has not admitted guilt and that's one of the reasons they've designated it top secret so they can go to trial. And

they've remanded him in custody until March 29th, so one month and 29 days from now -- from now.

Obviously, you know, immensely worrying. You mentioned "The Wall Street Journal." They've issued a statement saying they vehemently denied the

charges against their reporter and they've called for his immediate release.

And what we haven't seen yet is any announcement, as far as I'm aware, from the United States, so that the State Department and the White House

expected to say something very soon, if they haven't already, Becky.

ANDERSON: Yes, all right and we will be monitoring anything that comes in on this from stateside. We expect to get something soonest. Thank you,


For the time being, Matthew Chance is in Moscow on our top story.

Well, Finland is on the precipice of becoming a NATO member. The Turkish parliament debating Finland's application today and it is expected to be

approved. And that is the final hurdle after Hungary gave the green light earlier this week.

Finland along with Sweden applied to join the military alliance last year after Russia invaded Ukraine. Hungary and Turkiye holding up Sweden's bid

at present.

Brazil's former president, Jair Bolsonaro, has returned to the country after three months in self imposed exile. Loyal supporters wearing the

country's colors gathered to greet him at the airport. The far right politician had been in Florida since December. He left after he failed to

win reelection last year.

He had a reception hosted by his political party, Bolsonaro pushed back against the current government's mandate. He has recently said his mission

in Brazil is not over. Want to bring in Stefano Pozzebon. He joins us from the capital of Brasilia.

Security tightened ahead of his return; he says his job is not over.

What's the overall feel?

What's the atmosphere like in the capital?

STEFANO POZZEBON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Becky. The atmosphere has downgraded a little bit compared to the early hours of the morning. We went

to the airport, for example, very early this morning, when Bolsonaro was arrived in Brazil after these three months off of self exile.

And now here, we're speaking to you from in front of the headquarters of the liberal party, which is Bolsonaro's party --


POZZEBON: -- where he has just been named the honorary president of the party.

The atmosphere is -- and it is an atmosphere of great expectations. Of course, most of his supporters who are still here, from the early hours of

today, they still want to get a peek of the man himself. The -- Bolsonaro only waved very briefly to the crowd when he arrived at the location. And

he did not speak to crowds, neither at the airport nor here.

And then, of course, there is on a -- just a light, slightly bigger picture, expectations about how Bolsonaro intend to use his political

capital in the next few months because while he had said that he did not come to Brazil to lead the opposition, today, speaking to members of his

party, he said that he very much intends to keep the current government in check. Take a listen.


JAIR BOLSONARO, FORMER BRAZILIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): They won't do whatever they want with the future of our nation. Today, I love

being here with you. I'm sure you will drive Brazil to a safe harbor. And it's with immense pride that I return.


POZZEBON: And if you talk with the people, like we did earlier today, here in Brasilia, Becky, they will tell you that they're just very happy because

their leader has come back. Many of them pointed out that the opposition movement, the opposition to the president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, was

leaderless, was a little bit without coordination, without a strategy.

And now they hope that with Bolsonaro being in back in the country, he will lead that opposition, notwithstanding the fact that Bolsonaro himself faces

several investigations, from -- spanning from his role in the COVID 19 pandemic handling to his role in the events leading up to the January 18th

riots earlier this year here in Brazil.

And just next week, he will have to testify in front of the police on a case related to jewels that the Saudi Arabian government gave to the

Brazilian government when Bolsonaro was in charge and that he allegedly did not give back once he left office.

So multiple fronts and a lot of expectations about what will happen in this country in the coming future. Becky.

ANDERSON: That's the story in Brasilia in Brazil. Stefano, thank you.

A rapturous welcome in New York and fury in China. Taiwan's president will soon head to Central America to shore up relations there. But it's her

stopover in the U.S. It's got China really hot under the collar.

Beijing claims democratic Taiwan as its territory, saying today that her U.S. visit violates China's sovereignty. Well, she's having none of it,

sending a message to Beijing during a New York event. Have a listen.


TSAI ING-WEN, TAIWANESE PRESIDENT (through translator): Taiwan has made tremendous progress in diplomacy and its relationship with the U.S. has

never been closer.


ANDERSON: Let's get the view from Asia with CNN's Marc Stewart.

How strong is the president of Taiwan's message when she says Taipei's relationship with the United States has never been closer?

MARC STEWART, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, there, Becky. Let me give you some context. The president of Taiwan has actually made six trips

to the United States in a very similar way, using American soil as a transfer point, as a stopover point. That's the language that's being used.

But at this particular moment, tension between the United States and China is very high. I just was thinking back. There was supposed to be a meeting

between secretary of state Antony Blinken and Chinese officials in Beijing. That still has not happened.

It will be interesting to see if this visit by Taiwan's president, the stopover in the United States, perhaps delays that even further. Yet there

is a lot of care to describe this moment in time as a nondiplomatic stop, as an unofficial stop.

Yet despite all of these words, Beijing is not taking kindly to this. Take a listen to some remarks we heard just a few hours ago from China's

ministry of foreign affairs.


MAO NING, SPOKESPERSON, CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY (through translator): The United States and Taiwan colluded with each other and arranged for Tsai

Ing-wen to engage in political activities in the United States under the guise of transit, an attempt to enhance official exchanges and substantive

relations between the United States and Taiwan.

This seriously violated the One China principle and the provisions of the three Sino-U.S. joint communiques and seriously damaged China's sovereignty

and territorial integrity.


STEWART: Well, there is a lot of discussion about this One China policy.


STEWART: The United States does acknowledge China's position, that Taiwan is part of China. Despite that issue and despite this ongoing tension,

President Tsai has very serious work ahead of her in the diplomatic sphere.

She's not only trying to get support from within the Asia Pacific region but she is going to Central America, try to find some friends and allies in

other places, as relations between China and Taiwan and the United States are at a very difficult point in time, Becky.

ANDERSON: Marc's in Tokyo for you where the time is 11:10 in the evening. Thank you, sir.

Ten past 6 here. Two Israeli Jewish settlers have been charged with terror offenses over an attack on Palestinians in Huwara. The West Bank village

was a flashpoint of violence this year. These settlers charged today are accused of going with a group to Huwara during the Jewish holiday of Purim

and throwing stones at a Palestinian family sitting in their car.

Hadas Gold following developments for us in Jerusalem.

What more do we know?

And how significant is this?

HADAS GOLD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think it's pretty significant to have Israeli settlers involved in the violence and who are

being held somewhat accountable for what they did.

Now to be clear this -- what happened in Huwara in this incident is separate from that May night of revenge attacks and rampages that we have

been reporting on now. This happened a couple of weeks after those in immediate incidences.

But as we've been noting, since that day, since that day that those two Israeli brothers were shot and killed and then in Huwara and then a few

hours after the Israeli settlers went, going on that rampage across Huwara, Huwara has remained a flashpoint for violence, not only Palestinian

attacks, mostly on Israelis driving through the town but also on settler attacks against Palestinians.

Part of the reason, of course, is that main roadway that Huwara sits on, that's used by Israeli settlers and also the fact that Huwara is surrounded

by several Israeli settlements, Jewish settlements, that tend to be further right wing even than most sellers.

Now, according to Israeli authorities, two men were charged with terrorism for this attack. Happened when a family was sitting in their car. Now the

Israeli authorities say that the two began throwing stones at the family in the car and that one person in the group hit one of the occupants of the

vehicle with an ax.

They were arrested a week later, the authority said. And said that they are charged with several counts, including with a count of terrorism. Now this

-- the Israeli authorities also accused the two of being a part of a violent group, they say, that works to harm Palestinians as well as to

disrupt the activities of Israeli security forces in thwarting Palestinian terrorism and maintaining public peace in the area.

Now an attorney who is representing -- helping represent the two settlers claims that the evidence against them is very thin. But I think it is quite

significant to see Israeli authorities starting to hold Israeli settlers accountable for what's been happening in Huwara recently.

ANDERSON: Hadas Gold is in Jerusalem for you. Thank you.

We've got a lot more in our "Meanwhile in the Middle East" newsletter, a story there up now on what Benjamin Netanyahu may do next as he faces

intense pressure both inside and outside Israel over the judicial overhaul legislation there.

That's at CNN Digital and on our app. Just scan the QR code on the bottom of your screen.

OK, folks, you're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson. Some of the biggest names in tech are raising the alarm on artificial intelligence.

I'll be speaking to one of them -- up next.





ANDERSON: Improving health; that is the word from the Vatican on Pope Francis, who is in hospital in Rome. The Vatican says the 86 year old

pontiff experienced respiratory difficulties before he was admitted on Wednesday.

His illness, raising concerns ahead of Easter, which is a week from Sunday. Of course, Vatican correspondent Delia Gallagher joining us from outside

the hospital in Rome.

What details are the Vatican offering today?

DELIA GALLAGHER, CNN VATICAN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, you hit it on the head, improving. That's the word that everybody wanted to hear. That is the

important word. Got quite a few details from the Vatican this morning in their update, saying the pope slept well. The clinical picture is

progressively improving.

They will continue with the planned treatments. They told us yesterday to expect a few days in hospital for these treatments, for the respiratory

infection. To give you an idea, the pope's rooms are just behind me. Here, the top floor. There's about five windows with the shutters down.

Those are the rooms the pope stays in when he's here at the Gemelli Hospital. The Vatican said that this morning he had breakfast, he was able

to read some newspapers and indeed do some work.

So certainly a reassuring update from the Vatican. Remember, of course, the pope is 86 years old. When he was 21, he had part of a lung removed due to

a respiratory infection. Becky, so that's important to take into consideration in this whole thing.

But we are hoping for another update later on and we will bring you that news when we have it. For the moment we are expecting to be here for at

least the next few days. We'll see what happens, as you mentioned. Easter week coming up starting on Sunday. Palm Sunday big busy time at the


We'll see how the pope progresses. Becky.

ANDERSON: All right. Thank you very much. Indeed. For that.

Pope Francis was also in the news earlier this week.

Remember this?

The pope rocking a puffer coat. Of course we now know it's not real but it looked realistic. When it went viral. It was created using AI -- and

there's the rub. Some of the biggest names in tech, including Elon Musk, are worried about powerful AI systems. And they put their concerns in


They are urging artificial intelligence labs to stop research and development for at least six months, pointing to what they call profound

risks to society and humanity.

Well, the Future of Life Institute published that open letter, calling for a pause in AI research. It's headed by my next guest, Max Tegmark, who

tweets, "Rushing toward AI prematurely is likely to kill democracy."

Max joins me now via Skype from Boston.

What are we talking about?

Scientists are not known for hyperbole. But it does sound rather histrionic to wonder whether the powerful AI system can potentially lead to a

dystopian society. Just explain where you are at here, sir.

MAX TEGMARK, PRESIDENT, FUTURE OF LIFE INSTITUTE: I'm delighted to. First of all, this letter does not call for a pause on AI research. It just

causes for a pause on the most risky kind of AI research, which is building systems more powerful than GPT-4 when we don't even fully trust them, able

to predict that.

Now what is the thing you were worried about here?

We are in the process of running a race, in fact, to build ever more powerful AI systems that we don't understand and we can't control. And they

will have to eventually share the planet with when they get smarter than us, which is what the goals -- stated goals are at least, its companies,



TEGMARK: And having to share the planet with smarter entities than ourselves who don't care about us is something that can be quite

inconvenient. And yet, you know, just ask the Neanderthals how that went.

ANDERSON: Who should we be charging the responsibility with to develop AI because, as you rightly point out, you know we're well aware that there is

big money in this and Big Tech business.

In this something you are saying should be the responsibility of the government?

And by the way, we know there's no regulation out there at the moment. We know what happened. There was no regulation with the internet. So that's

another issue, isn't it?

At this point, we are sort of regulatory free at present. That's an issue that many people see as a big concern.

But whose responsibility is the development of AI at the moment to your mind?

TEGMARK: Great questions. For other risky technologies, we of course, have, safety standards that have to be met. You can't just build a new

nuclear reactor, you know, on Trafalgar Square without meeting some requirements. The reason we don't have AI is not that the policymakers

don't want it but that that they just haven't kept up with technology.

So a little pause will help with that. But more encouragingly, I would, say the leaders of these tech companies that are all trying to build a smarter

than human AI -- OpenAI, Google, DeepMind, Anthropic, et cetera -- all of them have publicly stated that they acknowledge these risks.

And they all say that there will come a point when they're willing to slow down for safety to do it right. And they should really be commended for


Then what we're saying in this letter is just, at that point is not in some distant future; It's now. And I think of this letter, actually, not as us

signing it versus these corporate leaders but rather us helping them to do what they all actually want to do but aren't able to, because you know, no

company in part alone because they're just going to have their lunch eaten by the competition, then.

ANDERSON: Who decides, to your mind, what is risky research and what isn't?

You know, I mean, I'm wondering what it is during this six month pause that you think should be sort of looked at.

And again who should be doing the looking?

TEGMARK: What's risky is obviously when you have systems that are getting very close to human intelligence, we felt quite safe and comfortable with

previous AI because it's been dumber and so much dumber than us that we could get all the benefits without worrying.

And what we start seeing in these new systems like GPT-4 is that we really don't understand them well enough to be confident we can control them. When

GPT-4 recently tried to persuade the journalist to divorce his wife or tried to create -- trick it because it's a teenager to commit suicide, you

know it wasn't because some engineers at these companies programmed it to do that.

They had no idea that was going to happen. They -- because they just fundamentally didn't understand and couldn't control the outcome.

Who's going to do it?

I am quite confident that -- and optimistic that because these company leaders actually want to do it, they will -- pressured by this, you know,

have the cover, the state of their shareholders.

Hey, you know we're going to pause a little bit and the experts from the companies from elsewhere can get together and set and define really good

safety criteria.

They have to be met, just like we have for nuclear industry, for instance.

ANDERSON: But that does suggest a certain sense of altruism, which we just do not see in the world of tech. It just doesn't go along with capitalism


So once again, I mean, I put it to you. It's a lovely idea to believe that those developing the riskiest AI -- and I have to ask you whether you think

you know, AI is sentient at this point because there are Google researchers who can or are concerned about that.

But you know, do you genuinely believe that people are altruistic enough, given the amount of money there is and given the kind of bad guys out

there, that we can really ring fence, pause for six months, work out what's good, ensure that we're not weaponizing this?

I just really want to get your sense.

TEGMARK: Yes that's a great question. I think that pure egoism will -- is really on our side here.


TEGMARK: Because the leaders of these companies, they understand better than almost anyone else how dangerous this is. They don't want to, you know

-- Sam Altman, who leads OpenAI, gave us Chat, you know, GPT-4. He said himself recently that the worst case outcome of this is lights out for

everyone, you know.

Don't take my word for it. Listen to him. And so he understands very deeply. He doesn't want lights out for his own loved ones nor do any of the

other leaders. We want to get -- they all want to get close to human level intelligence and they want to keep it set or maybe a little bit beyond.

But they want to keep it safe. But they cannot do it alone. If other competitors aren't forced to stop, too. So that's why I went to some --

when public opinion steps in, like with this letter and then policymakers step in and level the playing field by setting safety rules, it's actually

what those leaders of these companies also want.

And I really want to commend them again for being much more honest about the risks than I think this example to build Fukushima --


ANDERSON: -- have to ask you, is this -- is this something that's pitched at the U.S. tech giants, the Sam Altmans of this world?

And do you have any expectations that, were they to agree to pause, were they to be altruistic enough, that the potential bad guys, as it were, in

other parts of the world, would be prepared to sort of down tools at the same time?

TEGMARK: Absolutely. This letter has been picking up a lot of signatures in China, for example.

And you might ask what why is that?

Well, you know, the Chinese government really likes to be in control. The last thing they want to do is lose control to some systems that are so

smart that they can't control them.

And in fact, the Ernie (ph) bought, which is a much, much weaker version of GPT, for -- that was once in China -- was very abruptly restricted because

the Chinese government felt this was too out of control.

And you know, it's a mistake to think about this as us versus them. It's really us versus it, where "it" is just a bunch of out of control

technology that ruin things for everyone.

And to come back to the very near term threat I think is easiest to grasp, it's the threat to our democracy. You know, I really like the free market.

And if a tech company gets superhuman intelligence before anyone else, they will become the most powerful monopoly that the world has ever seen.

And it would be naive to think that they wouldn't just crush (INAUDIBLE) competition if they have billions of artificial employees that don't need

any pay except a little bit of electricity.

And it would be naive to think that they're not going to ultimately just take over our democracy as well. And you know, it's we humans building this

future. Democracy means power to the people, not power to the machines or to some unelected tech brothers who control the machines.

ANDERSON: Max, I've run out of time. I got to take a break at the bottom of the hour but I mean, it's fantastic to have you on. Thank you for your

analysis, your insight. This is a story that we will continue to cover. I mean, it couldn't be more important. You pointed that out. We'll have you

back to discuss this further.

Thank you very much indeed for the time being.

TEGMARK: Thank you.

ANDERSON: still ahead on CONNECT THE WORLD, with me, Becky Anderson, we're live from the White House. Find out how the U.S. is responding after an

American journalist was arrested in Russia. That is after this.





ANDERSON (voice-over): Welcome back. I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi. You're watching. CONNECT THE WORLD. Your headlines this hour.

Former Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro returned to the country under tight security earlier today. He indicated to supporters that he is

rejoining the political scene after a three month self imposed exile in Florida in the United States.

Angry Beijing says the U.S. stopover by Taiwan's president violates China's sovereignty. Taiwan's leader was given a euphoric welcome in New York on

Wednesday, where she announced Taipei's relationship with Washington has, in her words, "never been closer."

Our top story this hour, "The Wall Street Journal" strongly denying charges that one of its journalists was spying in Russia. Russia's security service

says correspondent Evan Gershkovich was arrested in the Urals.

Foreign ministry claimed he was trying to obtain secret information for, quote, "the American side."

ANDERSON: U.S. officials are working to get more information about the arrest. Jeremy Diamond is at the White House.

What do we know?

At this point, Jeremy?

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's right. We still don't have an official statement from the White House on this matter. But I

can tell you, Becky, that White House officials and State Department officials have been working since learning yesterday about Evan

Gershkovich's detention, to try and gather more information about this case.

They've also been in touch with "The Wall Street Journal" directly to coordinate efforts to find out more about his detention and his formal

arrest. Now today and we know, Becky, that this comes at a moment of extraordinary. Tension between the United States and Russia.

And Russia has a track record of using detained Americans on trumped up charges as bargaining chips in their broader diplomatic gambits.

And so when you see the Kremlin coming out and defending this detention, arguing a court in the words of Dmitry Peskov, that they caught this

reporter, quote, "red-handed," that severely diminishes the possibility that this can be chalked up to some kind of misunderstanding and that we

could see Moscow backtrack on this.

What seems far more likely is similar to what we saw, of course, with Brittney Griner, who, back in December, was finally released in a one for

one prisoner swap with the Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.

But now, of course, we have two Americans, not only Evan but also Paul Whelan, who was arrested several years ago on espionage charges and

sentenced to 16 years in prison. This now becomes, of course, a top priority for President Biden. And we'll let you know as soon as we get a

statement from the White House.

ANDERSON: Thank you, sir.

Let's get you up to speed and some of the other stories that are on our radar right now.


ANDERSON (voice-over): And a deadly fire engulfs a ferryboat in the Philippines, killing at least 28 passengers. On Wednesday night, the

interisland ferry was carrying 250 people when it caught fire in the south of the country. Many jumped overboard.

The Philippines Coast Guard says search and rescue efforts are ongoing.

Indonesia's president said his country must accept FIFA's decision to revoke hosting duties for the under 20 men's World Cup. FIFA acted after

the governor of Bali (ph) called for Israel to be banned from any football matches taking part there. FIFA says a new host nation will be announced as

soon as possible.

Well "Hotel Rwanda" hero, Paul Rusesabagina, has arrived back in the U.S. after a stop in Doha. He was released from a Rwandan prison last week.

Paul's daughter, Karine, confirmed that Dad's return on Twitter, saying, "Our family is finally reunited today."


ANDERSON: A number of presidential decrees reshaped the UAE's leadership last night, starting with the heir to the throne, a role that's been vacant

since Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan assumed leadership of the country last year.

Last night, the country's state news agency announced the appointment of his eldest son, Khaled bin Mohamed, as heir to the throne of Abu Dhabi.

Well, other appointments include Mansour bin Zayed, the ruler's brother, deputy prime minister and owner of Manchester City as vice president of the

country of the UAE.

Sharing that post with Dubai ruler and UAE prime minister, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

All right. Meanwhile, national security adviser Sheikh Tahnoun -- on the left hand; his brother, Haza (ph) on the right -- both siblings of the

president were appointed as deputy rulers of Abu Dhabi.

Taking a short break. Back after this.





ANDERSON: Welcome back. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson for you.

Britain's King Charles III is in Germany on his first trip abroad as king. And he just became the first British monarch ever to address the Bundestag,

Germany's parliament. He gave a speech in both German and English, praising the two countries' friendship and thanking Germany for its full throated

support for Ukraine.

The king and his wife, Queen Consort Camilla, met with displaced Ukrainians at a refugee center. CNN royal correspondent Max Foster is in Berlin

traveling with the king and filed this report.

MAX FOSTER, CNN LONDON CORRESPONDENT: Day two of King Charles' first official state visit overseas. And the Germans continue to roll out the

honors. King Charles meeting the chancellor behind closed doors and then coming here to the Bundestag for the first address to the German parliament

by a British monarch.

He talked about the historical cultural links between the two countries and also how they used to be adversaries during the world wars but are now very

much working together to support Ukraine in their war against Russia.

CHARLES III, KING OF THE U.K. (through translator): The security of Europe as well as our democratic values are under threat.

FOSTER (voice-over): King Charles going on to meet Ukrainian refugees being housed here in Germany. There are about a million of them and he is

very keen to emphasize what Germany continues to do: support Ukrainian refugees but also in the military effort.

The military support is offering Ukraine. He continues the tour by going on to Hamburg, a brief tour, which ends on Friday but so far is going down

incredibly well -- Max Foster, CNN, Berlin, Germany.