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U.N.: Dam Disaster The Most Significant Damage To Civilian Infrastructure Since The War Began; Pope Back In Hospital For Surgery; Blinken In Riyadh As U.S. Reengages With Saudis. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired June 07, 2023 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Becky Anderson live from Abu Dhabi where the time is six in the evening. This is Connect the World. Coming up, the
Ukrainian president says hundreds of 1000s are without water after that dam collapse.
Pope Francis is hospitalized in Rome after abdominal surgery. Today, New York City faces some of the worst air quality in the world. And later, the
PGA Tour faces a deluge of backlash over its surprise partnership with LIV Golf.
No running water, streets impossible, homes unlivable. Communities along Ukraine's Dnipro river are facing what the UN calls the most significant
damage to civil infrastructure since the Ukraine war began. Immense flooding from a destroyed Russian control dam has forced more than 1500
people to evacuate.
Satellite Imagery is giving us a stark aerial view of the dam before and after that massive breach as well as the extent of the devastation to towns
in that flood zone. Well, ten people so far have been reported missing. Seven in Russian controlled territory and three on the Ukrainian side.
President Volodymyr Zelensky says the disaster has left hundreds of 1000s without drinking water. Well CNN's Sam Kiley is in Ukraine. He's monitoring
the situation. He joins us today from Central Ukraine.
Sam, you were reporting on this as it happened 24 hours ago. What more do we know at this stage about what caused this?
SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It remains for the time being a mystery. Except insofar as, ultimately in the view of the
international community blame for the collapse of the dam rests fairly and squarely with the Russians. That's the view of the U.N., of the Britain,
United States, France, European Union and others.
And that's because the Russians had control over it. There's been no evidence yet that the dam was blown up in the immediate period before the
dam collapsed. But there is substantial evidence that it was beginning to fall apart, dating back certainly to the end of May.
Satellite imagery would indicate that and it was allowed by the Russian authorities to overfill putting even more pressure on that fragile
structure already affected, of course, by the war. And I think there's an important aspect of this, Becky, which is that a Ukrainian officer that we
spoke to said that he saw Russians -- Russian troops being swept away by this dam blast.
This is our report.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KILEY: A new phase in Russia's war on Ukraine, a dam under Moscow's control burst. Soon vast areas downstream were flooded, including parts of Kherson
city. Ukraine and its allies blamed Russia for the breach, but that may have backfired.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): OK, we need to leave quickly.
KILEY: He escaped, but according to a Ukrainian officer who commands a team in the area, many Russian troops who hold the east bank of the Dnipro did
CAPT. ANDRIL PIDLISNYL, UKRAINIAN ARMED FORCES: Their positions were fully destroyed. They are full with water. They have a lot of wounded people and
dead people for now. We see them all because they are just run in and they try to evacuate themselves. They left not only positions they left all
their weapons equipment, ammunitions, and vehicles including armored vehicles too.
KILEY: But if this is to Ukraine's advantage, can you be sure that Ukraine didn't destroy the dam?
PIDLISNYL: No, Ukraine didn't destroy the dam cause first we haven't control of it. That's a problem for us too, and the main problem is about
civilians because a lot of them need evacuation now.
KILEY: All Ukrainian drone footage of the area has been held back by the government amid a campaign of secrecy surrounding its planned counter
offensive. Satellite imagery shows that the dam suffered structural failure at the end of May as the lake waters above it broke through.
It has been under Russian control since March last year.
VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): It was mined. It was mined by the Russian occupiers. And they blew it up.
KILEY: Russia says Ukraine did it to offset battlefield losses in the East. But again, Ukraine civilians suffer. 80 settlements and 10s of 1000s of
people face flooding, clean water and power systems have been destroyed in Kherson again.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Everything is going to die here, living creatures, all the birds, everything will die and people will be
KILEY: Ukraine evacuated civilians in trains as the waters rose. And they now face an ecological and humanitarian disaster, but one that may offer a
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KILEY: Now Becky, the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine said yesterday that they anticipated something like this might happen, that they built the
flooding of the Dnipro Valley into their battle plans. Now they may or may not be telling the truth because of course, this is in the buildup period
to what is anticipated to be the so-called summer offensive.
And of course, we've seen a lot of the shaping operations for that already both inside Russia and behind the Russian front lines inside Ukraine,
ANDERSON: Sam, thank you. Sam Kiley is in central Ukraine. Pope Francis is back in a Rome hospital. The Vatican says the 86-year-old pontiff is
undergoing abdominal surgery. Let's bring in CNN Barbie Nadeau. She is outside the hospital, Barbie, what do we know at this point?
BARBIE NADEAU, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, you know Becky, we do know that this is not for say an emergency surgery. He was in his hospital yesterday for
about an hour for a checkup, went back to the Vatican and conducted his usual Wednesday audience in front of a full crowd in St. Peter's Square.
Then he came by his own car here to the hospital for this procedure. Now this is a procedure that is to take care of a hernia on what is presumed to
be scar tissue from surgery he had about two years ago on his colon. And we've understood from the Vatican that it was because he was under
recurrent painful and worsening pain.
Now what's especially important is the pontiff, 86-years old, as you mentioned, has a very full summer ahead first week of August. He's planning
to go to Portugal for World Youth Day. End of August he's planning to go to Mongolia. None of those plans have been cancelled. So, this could very well
just be a procedure.
You know, the Vatican says he will recover fully they expect in order to just make him more comfortable. He was in pain. Now it is worth noting he
has had a lot of health problems. He is confined to a wheelchair for much of the time due to knee problems. He has sciatica problems.
In March he was in this very hospital behind me for infectious bronchial situation where he was here for four days. So, 86-years old, anyone would
be worried about a loved one that's that age undergoing surgery and under general anaesthetic -- anesthesia. Thank you.
ANDERSON: Barbie, thank you. Barbie Nadeau on the story. The U.S. Secretary of State arriving in Riyadh for his second day of meetings in Saudi Arabia.
So, Washington looks to try and mend relations with the kingdom. Antony Blinken met yesterday with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah for
nearly two hours.
Let me tell you that was after midnight that that meeting began and they discussed as we understand it, a number of sensitive issues including human
rights. Let's bring in Nic Robertson. We haven't got him yet. Let me -- I will get you to Nic Robertson, in a moment. Before we do that.
Let me get to another story for you. While we are keeping a close eye on our Secretary of State Antony Blinken, his trip to Saudi one topic under
discussion that the conflict in Sudan, now in its eighth week. Blinken thanked the Saudis for supporting the evacuation of U.S. citizens from
Both countries have broken ceasefires between the warring factions to limited effect and fighting has intensified in and around the capital of
Khartoum since the latest truce expired over the weekend.
Well, a video edited and released by the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces or RSF shows extensive damage and dead bodies after what that group claims
was an aerial bombing by Sudan's military in Khartoum. The Democratic Republic of Congo says 10 of its nationals were killed.
Or Mat Nashed is a journalist who extensively covers this region with a focus on Sudan. He joins me now via Skype from Cairo where he is based and
you have been obviously following what is going on in Sudan very closely.
We are what, into the seventh or eighth week at this point, just how much worse have things gotten in the capital since this ceasefire was broken?
MAT NASHED, JOURNALIST AND ANALYST: Yes, irrespective of the ceasefire, it's just getting progressively worse. It has gotten progressively worse. I
think the issue with this ceasefire is that it created a smoke cover that distorted the spiraling catastrophe on the ground.
What we're seeing in Khartoum, for certain is essentially the RSF, which is one belligerence looting homes, occupying water stations, which are cutting
off water for entire neighborhoods, using rape as a weapon of war, occupying military hospitals and turning them into military outposts. And
then at the same time, what we're seeing is the military has more or less lost the city.
They do control the sky, and they are trying to mount a bit of a larger offensive in order to retain its symbolic legitimacy among some people
within the capitol that do support the military, not necessarily because they support the military, but because of the violence from the RSF has
been so up close and personal, Becky.
ANDERSON: Mat, Antony Blinken is in Saudi Arabia this week, as we've been reporting. We know that Sudan has been on the agenda as he spoke to the
Crown Prince there. The U.S. and the Saudis, of course, have been brokering these -- these ceasefires that have, frankly, not worked. And I wonder
whether that group, the U.S. and Saudi have any chance at this point of bringing these rival factions back to the negotiating table? What's your
NASHED: No, I think it's a dead initiative, to be honest. And I think it was dead in the water from the moment it started, because it essentially
focused on a ceasefire to uphold the laws of war, which both parties should have been upholding anyways, so really bestowed legitimacy on them to do
the absolute bare minimum.
And then anything short of respecting the laws of war would still be tolerated. What is needed at this point, is a far more concentrated
international effort, and an awareness and recognition about the most powerful actors in the world, including the U.S., Russia and China, that
they stand to lose a lot more than to gain if this war continues.
There is at least in framework and blueprint, a better laid out initiative that includes enabling the civilian dispensation that has been unveiled by
the African Union, the African Union has no leverage, really, unlike maybe the Gulf states or the Saudis, when it comes to Sudan.
However, I think if there is backing for that initiative, I think if there is leverage that's exerted from most powerful actors as high up to the
Security Council, then that initiative might hold a bit more chance. So, where they have legitimacy and some impartiality, they can be aided with
the leverage of more powerful states.
ANDERSON: So, I just want you to explain a little further what you mean by the U.S., China and Russia having so much more to lose at this point. What
do you mean by that? And of course, you know, we -- we've got to remember, first and foremost, it's the people of Sudan who are suffering so badly at
But what do you mean, when you talk about the -- the involvement of the international community here and what they've got to lose?
NASHED: Well, let's, let's say that I don't think that the interest of the international community are, are rooted in, you know, interests that are
related to human rights. Let's put that you know, for most, so I'm talking about more structural strategic interests.
From China's perspective, they have a Belt road project that is heavily dependent on infrastructures built throughout East Africa, on the continent
of Africa. And the crisis in Sudan will not be contained. It's going to have permutations that impact East Africa, could upend the horn, and, you
know, significantly impact West Africa as well.
From the European Union and U.S. perspective, what we're going to see is, you know, potentially a frozen conflict or destabilized state if this is
not contained and halted immediately. And that could result in you know, extreme, you know, growing, growing acute numbers of people forced to flee
their homes, seeking refuge abroad.
Unfortunately, seeking asylum, which is an international right is something that is not upheld by the European Union, de facto unfortunately and they
are scared of this and in terms of instability across the region, I think Russia and the U.S. are worried about you know, in insurgent groups that
are exploiting the chaos and then having to rely on counterterrorism measures.
And for Russia, I am by no means bestowing the previous status quo, but it was more favorable probably to Moscow than what's taking place right now.
So, you know, on and I don't think there should be a return to that status quo, but on every level for every powerful actor, this isn't going to work
out well, unless the war is stopped immediately.
ANDERSON: It's good to have you, sir. We'll have you back. I'm sorry that we are talking about a story that is, you know, continues to bring such
suffering to the people of Sudan, and it has no end in sight. The UN, of course, just that the weekend did, did extend its mission there. But
clearly, things have to change. Thank you.
Well, we reported earlier U.S. Secretary of State arrived in Riyadh, for his second day of meetings in Saudi as Washington does try and sort of
rehabilitate its relations with the kingdom. Antony Blinken met Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah last night for nearly two hours, they
touched on a number of sensitive issues, it is said including human rights, the conflict in Yemen, and the potential normalization of Saudi Israeli
Well, Blinken's visit comes, of course, just after the Saudis announced, they'll be slashing oil output starting next month to boost crude prices.
Let's check in with CNN International Diplomatic Editor, Nic Robertson. And I have to say, Nic, you know, I live in the region. And I was just
reflecting with the team here, that it seems not a day goes past these days where the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia isn't hitting their headlines.
And yesterday, of course, was -- the past 24 hours has been no exception at all. This trip for the Secretary of State coming at a very, very busy time
for the Kingdom. What did you make of what came out of the meeting between Blinken and the Crown Prince? We have readouts as they are known.
Statements about what was discussed. What did you make of -- of what was discussed?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: I think the way that this meeting was -- was characterized it in the beginning by State
Department officials that this was going to build on the successes of cooperation, to try to bring peace in Yemen, and also the way that the
United States and Saudi Arabia had been working in Sudan to try to de- escalate the conflict there as you were just discussing.
That -- they were building on that, and one of the areas they hoped to build in was the economy. You know, Saudi Arabia's got a $37 billion deal
going with the United States with Boeing Airlines, for aircraft. And that's seen as very significant. 140,000, I mean, yes, 140,000 jobs in the United
States depend on Boeing.
So, there's this economic part, and there was thoughts to sort of tie up on 5G and 6G, telephone, cell network connections, you know, development in
that area. But I think the thing that caught my eye was the area of working together on clean technology, clean energy supplies. And I think in this
area, they might be referring, it's not clear, they might be referring to the development of a domestic nuclear power program for Saudi Arabia.
This is an objective of Saudi Arabia at something they want. And some people see this as potential leverage to get this normalization between
Saudi Arabia and Israel is something that the United States has. So that was a line that came out of that meeting that was interesting.
But I think Blinken set this -- set this normalization issue ahead of the meeting by saying nothing on this is going to happen fast, but it's
something that it's important to the United States.
ANDERSON: Yes, and we know that the Saudis have been, you know, intent on getting that acknowledgement and support for a nuclear power program. They
say that's because you know, they're looking at an energy transition, which they are which this entire region is here in the UAE. It's -- it's a
And also, we know that the Saudis are looking for an uptick in the -- on the security file from Washington, they got a lot of levers to pull at
present, haven't they? And this is a delicate balancing act for the Biden administration. We are of course following another huge story out of Saudi
and that is the partnership between LIV Golf and the PGA Tour, broken on this show just last night, that was a breaking news story around this time.
We've seen some backlash accusations of sports washing when it comes to that deal. And we -- this isn't the first time we hear sport and sports
washing when we when we talk about the investment in sport by the -- by the kingdom. I want to bring up at Tweet from sportswriter, Adam Crafton.
So, I thought this is interesting. And he writes for The Athletic and he, he writes, "The thing with Saudi is that there is a balanced story to tell,
there are societal changes, there is an opening up, there is diversification of investment. But he goes on to say there is also
Khashoggi, the 911 families, the continued repression of women's rights/LGBT rights."
And he goes on to say those who benefit from Saudi cash only want to celebrate the good and ignore the bad. Your thoughts?
ROBERTSON: Yes, I think Saudi Arabia recognizes that, you know, diplomat, Saudi diplomats will tell you that the reputation of the Crown Prince
Mohammed bin Salman was, was very badly tarnished by the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.
And -- and this is not something that's going to be easy to step aside from, but the position that the Saudis have taken is they're going forward,
and to your point about Saudi sort of asserting itself diplomatically, the strong diplomatic agreements that it now has with China to broker a better
relationship between Saudi Arabia and Iran is significant of Saudi Arabia, looking at what it feels is the United States, deserting it diplomatically,
the Gulf region.
And therefore, them looking for other allies and partners, diplomatically and also, potentially, for weapons supplies, as you were suggesting. So,
the Saudis' attitude to this point that's put forward here, which is a very real point, which is a very heartfelt point, which is very well understood
in the West.
Their view on it is, we are going to go in our direction, and it's up to the rest of the world to catch up with what we're doing. And I think the
LIV PGA situation has shown just how far the reach of Saudis influence and many would estimate that's come through the check book, through money, how
far their influence can go, and what they're intending to do.
And I think this is sort of writ large of the way that MBS wants to be, an important regional power, an important global diplomat, an important -- an
important significant player on the global sport stage for a prestige for international image and for domestic consumption at home as well, where he
has really liberalized the kingdom.
Where he has gotten rid of the hard conservative leaders if you will and marginalized them and their voice has gone and he is now allowing sports
and music outside and all the things that Saudis have -- young Saudis had clamored for, for so long. These are two different worlds and on -- on this
access of human rights, there's a huge collision.
ANDERSON: Yes, I mean, let's be quite frank, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia is a very significant regional leader, they have an economy which is
a G20 member. Fastest growing economy in the world, last year. We know that there are challenges, significant challenges in executing on the vision
2030 project that was announced what in 2016.
They're halfway through that, and to ensure that they can physically get that done. There is a very forward facing, you know, you're with us or
against us, you know, attitude to a certain extent many will say in where they are going and you know, the critics of Washington, certainly in this
region where I am will say that, frankly, the Biden administration has played a very bad hand when it comes to at least how they deal with that
It's going to be very interesting to see how it develops going forward. Thank you. You're watching Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson. Still
ahead, the U.S. condemn the attack that caused two Russian pipelines to leak into the Baltic Sea, last September. Remember that, but was the
sabotage, a surprise? Well, CNN has a new twist on the investigations.
ANDERSON: Welcome back. You're with me, Becky Anderson here on Connect the World. Well, the time is, it's 26 minutes past six. You will recall perhaps
the underwater explosions last September that caused two Russian natural gas pipelines to leak into the Baltic Sea.
The deliberate attack on the two Nord Stream pipelines was condemned by the U.S. and its Western allies. Investigations continue with a new twist.
Officials tell CNN, the U.S. was told by European ally that the Ukrainian military was planning to sabotage those pipelines three months before the
event actually happened.
More -- for more on exactly who knew what when. Natasha Bertrand is at the Pentagon for you. This is your reporting. What do we have?
NATASHA BERTRAND, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY REPORTER: Yes, Becky. So, what we're learning is that the U.S. did receive intelligence from a European
ally in June of last year, telling them that they did believe that European ally had intelligence that Ukrainians were actually planning an attack on
the Nord Stream pipeline.
And these -- these Ukrainians who were apparently planning this attack, according to this intelligence, were under the direction of Ukrainian
Commander-in-Chief Valerii Zaluzhnyi and that was because again, according to this intelligence, they wanted to keep Ukrainian president Volodymyr
Zelensky out of the loop on this plan.
And because it was one step removed from the presidency, they felt that they did not need to kind of loop him into this potential operation. Now,
it is important to note that the intelligence does say according to The Washington Post, that this plan was put on hold. And so, it's unclear
whether these Ukrainians actually went on to carry out this sabotage attack.
But of course, details that the German investigators have been uncovering about this sabotage and they have determined that it was sabotage, that the
pipelines were damaged by underwater explosions are kind of aligning with the plan that was laid out in the intelligence assessment that was provided
to U.S. last summer, including the fact that German investigators do believe that six people rented a boat, went to the kind of site around the
Nord Stream pipelines, dove underwater, planted explosives there.
And did all of this kind of under false identities. That apparently matches up with a plan that the Intelligence said was in the works by Ukraine's
military. So, all of this, of course, raising new questions about whether the Ukrainians did in fact carry out this attack on the Nord Stream
pipeline, which of course, has been used by the Russians as kind -- as kind of an arm of their warfare using energy kind of as a tool against the
Europeans bypassing the Ukrainians using this pipeline and kind of trying to choke them off of key energy resources.
So obviously, you know, U.S. officials do believe that the Ukrainians would have had a motive to do this. But again, this intelligence is not
necessarily dispositive, and it is still unclear here what ultimately happened, Becky.
Natasha has sown the story for you. Thank you. CNN reporting. Well just ahead as we have been reporting, Pope Francis is back in the hospital.
Vatican says he has been in a lot of pain of late. We are going to take a closer look at his health, up next.
ANDERSON: Welcome back. I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi. You're watching Connect the World. The time here is just after half past six. The Vatican
says it will not give out updates on the Pope's condition after his surgery. He is back in a Rome hospital where doctors aren't repairing a
The 86-year-old pontiff is expected spent several days in the Gemelli hospital. Soon CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins me.
Now we know many people around the world who have questions about exactly what the -- what the Pope has been through. And what we can expect.
The word from the Vatican is that the hernia surgery is intended to fix what has been quite a recurrent, painful and worsening symptoms. What can
you tell us about this type of surgery, Sanjay?
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. So, what seems to have happened here, Becky, is that back in 2021, Pope Francis had an
operation on his colon, and that involves an incision in the abdomen. When people hear hernia, sometimes they think of a hernia in the groin. This is
a different type of hernia that we're talking about, one that is actually in the abdomen.
When they do that operation, and they repair the tissue in the muscle, sometimes that repair starts to open up, people may develop a little
pooching that they may see on the abdominal wall at that point, you can sort of see an idea of what that might look like on this graphic.
Ultimately, though, intestines, things like that can start to actually fill that opening, fill that that pooched area. And that's what causes the pain.
When people have an operation, like the one that he had back in 2021 and then they develop a hernia and incisional or abdominal hernia, most of
time, it's going to need some sort of repair. And typically, that happens when someone starts to have significant symptoms, which is what sounds like
In case you're wondering about the time course here, why 2021 And now two years later, it's because this can take, it can take place over some time
and repairing them, that abdominal wall, repairing those muscles, to make sure that that pooched area is no longer there. That's the goal of the
ANDERSON: And Sanjay, what are the risks here with this surgery, particularly when you add in of course that he is 86-years old and -- and
should people be concerned for him?
GUPTANDERSON: It's a sizable operation. I mean, typically would take two to three hours, you know, but it's big operation. I would say that the biggest
risk really is the anesthesia. General anesthesia is required for this, his age plays a factor there.
Although I can tell you Becky, as you know, I still operate. In fact, I operated on someone who is even older than Pope Francis this week. So,
people do get through these operations. They do get through the anesthesia. It's a concern. But you know, this -- this sort of thing happens quite a
He's you know, if you look at his health history overall, you may know that he had a lung operation back when he was a kid or a very young person I
should say but other than that we haven't heard about significant heart or vascular problems. That bodes well because when you say what's the risk of
anesthesia, it's usually in terms of worsening a cardiovascular condition of some sort.
He had a fever in May, you may remember we reported on that, and then obviously had this operation back in 2021. But not a, you know, 86-years
old for certain, but -- but, you know, people have general anesthesia and come to these operations at that age, all the time.
ANDERSON: Yes, members of my own family who have who have done well on, on that at a ripe old age. Thank you, Sanjay. Well, still ahead the fallout
from the shock announcement of the deal between golf's rival tours. What it means for the future of the sport, and what's the real story in the
background here after all.
And if Golf is a Saudi back tournament, PGA Tour, of course, a U.S. one. Back after this.
ANDERSON: Thick smoke is pouring down from Canadian wildfires and blanketing American cities across the Northeast and Midwest. It is from the
more than 150 wildfires that are now burning in Quebec. And those fires and smoke turning skies orange as you can see here in Ottawa.
In New York, the city now as air quality described as very unhealthy. In fact, it is worse than any other metropolitan city in the world outside of
Delhi. Given what we are seeing here, and these images are pretty bad, aren't they, let's get you meteorologist Derek Van Dam.
Derek, can the northeast of the U.S. expect any relief from this anytime soon?
DEREK VAN DAM, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Well, not as long as these wildfires continue to burn Becky. We're looking at a satellite image of the wildfires
just basically exploding in growth over this past weekend. And you can see the resulting smoke. This is Quebec, this is the border of the United
States. And you can just see the direction of the wind really going from north to south. And that is pushing the smoke into the eastern seaboard and
some of the most heaviest -- heaviest populated areas of the United States.
Now I want to give a heads up to our viewers, anyone who has family or friends or perhaps you're watching New York City is about to see their
worst air quality that they've experienced so far from this bout of smoke we've had over the past 24 hours. And it's all because of this little area
You got to look for that kind of almost a milky look to the satellite imagery. This is all cloud covered here, the brighter whites, but that
brown haze that is actually the thickest cloud that we've seen so far. And we expect the air quality to drop significantly in the minutes and hours to
come for places like Baltimore, Philadelphia as well as New York City.
And we can confirm that because upstream, where we look towards Albany and to Syracuse, New York, for instance, they have already been in this
hazardous, hazardous air quality index over the past couple of hours. And our near surface smoke forecast shows this quite well. This is that kind of
coagulating smoke just moving into the eastern seaboard.
Maybe we get a brief break overnight, but then another wall of smoke starts to settle south, according to the latest computer models.
ANDERSON: Thank you, sir. Well, a mixture of first shot confusion and outrage following an announcement that shook up the golf world. This time
yesterday, we learned that rival PGA and LIV tours are forming a partnership and a deal, frankly, no one saw coming apart from one assumes
The PGA Tour Commissioner responding to what is very loud criticism over the move.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAY MONAHAN, PGA TOUR COMMISSIONER: I recognize that people are going to call me a hypocrite and anytime I've said anything, I said it with the
information I had at that moment. And I said, I said it based on someone that's trying to compete for the PGA Tour on our players. And so, I accept
those criticisms. But circumstances do change. And I think that, you know, in looking at the big picture and looking at it -- looking at -- looking at
it this way, that's -- that's what that's what got us to this point.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, Amanda Davies joins me now and Amanda, this partnership deal, merger, call it what you will, I think we're supposed to not call it
a merger, but we don't actually have an awful lot of details at the moment. And that is the problem, isn't it?
That he said circumstances have changed. He's facing an awful lot of scrutiny. He is being accused of being a hypocrite and part of this nobody
actually understands the full extent of what is going on here aside from the fact -- in fact that it seems that the Saudi backed LIV tour PIF, the
sovereign wealth fund who own that are putting an awful lot of money into this new setup. Explain if you will.
AMANDA DAVIES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. And it seems that this is a decision that was made by just a handful, literally a handful of five to seven of
the key not even stakeholders, key individuals that we're talking about here. We were absolutely blindsided by it yesterday, but so were all the
players and they have felt really uncomfortable with not only the speed of this decision, the way it's been delivered, and the fact that the likes of
Jay Monahan, that Keith Pelley from the DP World Tour, the LIV Golf PIF individuals are saying we haven't ironed out the details, they are still to
And this is an issue that was not just a sporting issue when LIV waltzed on to the golfing scene, but it was being billed as a moral and emotive issue
as well an ethical issue as well, wasn't it? So there really has been an about turn and up the man who has been seen as the moral compass of the
last 18 months, Rory McIlroy has finally had his say, and we're hearing from him in just a couple of minutes.
ANDERSON: Fascinating good stuff. Thank you. We will -- we will be ready for that after this very short break. Viewers standby as World Sports will
be back top of the hour for you with the second hour of Connect the World.