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Connect the World
Russian Strike on Kramatorsk Kills 11, Injures 60 Plus; Blinken: Failed Rebellion could Benefit Ukraine; At Least 11 Killed in Russian Strike on Kramatorsk; Trump Responds to 2021 Tape: "I did nothing wrong"; U.N.: Nearly 645,000 have Fled Sudan for Nearby Countries; Financial Impact of Climate Disasters. Aired 11a-12p ET
Aired June 28, 2023 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN ANCHOR, CONNECT THE WORLD: This hour very latest from Ukraine after a deadly Russian missiles strike claims the lives of 11
including children. Dozens are injured also in the headlines this hour. Calls for calm in Paris after a teenager is shot by a police shot dead.
French President Emmanuel Macron says there is no way to justify the 17 year olds killing and the officer who fired the fatal shot is being held in
detention. Here as President about to unveil a new centerpiece in his reelection campaign, well Bidenomics resonate with American voters.
The conflict in Sudan is threatening to destabilize the region. 10 weeks on I'll speak with the Norwegian Ambassador to the country. And Chicago,
Illinois had the worst air quality in the world on Tuesday, all from the wildfires burning out of control north in Canada. We'll show you how
extreme weather events can affect your wallet.
Welcome back, wherever you are watching, you are more than welcome. This is the second hour of "Connect the World" with me Becky Anderson. Kramatorsk
targeted by Russia yet again, unlike the horrendous attack on a train station in the early weeks of the war, civilians are killed.
Among them, 14 year old twin sisters the faces of the innocent now war victims. So tonight we ask is this strike a message from Russia's Military
that its war tactics aren't changing, even after that startling aborted insurrection this past weekend? Ben Wedeman was back with us this hour from
Nick Paton Walsh is in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv. Let's start with you. You were on the scene very soon after that missile strike last night, Ben.
What do we know and what are you hearing on the ground?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, we've been outside the restaurant for a couple of hours now. And what we saw just over
an hour ago, was a black body bag being carried out from inside. And we saw very distraught relatives seeing that body bag come out there still others
waiting for news of loved ones inside.
Just a moment ago, I saw a rescue worker showing a woman a damaged cell phone that perhaps belonged to one of her relatives. We understand that
there are still several workers from the restaurant that have still to be accounted for. At this point, more than 60 people were injured in addition
to the death toll of at least 11.
Among those 60 injured was an eight month old baby now. Becky, we were in that restaurant having lunch just day before yesterday. It's the most
popular considered the best restaurant in Kramatorsk. There were lots of soldiers, lots of civilians, there were children there even people and
brought their pets.
So anything hitting that restaurant is going to cause mass casualties. Now last night, we heard President Volodymyr Zelenskyy saying that it was
believed that what hit the restaurant was an S300 surface to air missile. But what's -- since then is that in fact, it was in Iskander, the Russian
That is a hypersonic ballistic missile, which is very accurate and has a very large payload, which would really explain the extent of the damage
here. It's not just the restaurant that guy got hit. We think it hit actually the kitchen. That's why so many of the staffs are dead, injured or
But this entire area, there are shops, there's a jewelry store around the corner. There's a post office nearby now in front of me you can see it,
there are residential apartment buildings, so the damage is massive.
And for the people in this city, it's just yet another worrying reminder of just how close they are to the frontlines. They're only about 35 to 40
kilometers a day and every day you hear the air raid sirens go out, you hear distant explosions, sometimes of very nearby, Becky.
ANDERSON: Ben, this is as you describe it clearly a civilian area. Are there any clear, obvious military targets where you are?
WEDEMAN: To the best of our knowledge, Becky, there are no military targets in the area. The only military target per se would be the fact that this
restaurant is very popular.
With soldiers, keep in mind that for instance I was in Kramatorsk last April and the city was largely a ghost town. What we've seen is that since
then a lot of residents have returned. But also, this is an important logistical hub for the Ukrainian Military.
And therefore, there are a lot of soldiers in town. There's a lot of equipment in town. But the restaurant itself, it's a no military value, per
se, except the fact that there are a lot of soldiers inside, Becky.
ANDERSON: We bring in Nick Paton Walsh at this point. Nick, I want to talk to you about new information today, on Yevgeny Prigozhin of -- mutiny.
Before we do that, I think, it's important just to question or pose the question, have we seen in any way a change in Russian tactics here or is
Kramatorsk, just an example of a strategy or a tactic? That is just Russia continuing to bomb civilian targets.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Yes, this is what they do in war. This is their tactic, they often, you may sometimes
wonder if it is a rare moment of accuracy from their weapons, I have to tell you, I've spent more times looking at Craters from Russia munitions
that have wildly missed their targets than actually seeing them strike them accurately.
But a very familiar Russian tactic is to fire into civilian areas, often at times of frustration on the battlefield, where they're losing elsewhere,
perhaps in the hope they might disrupt military operations or just cause adequate distraction within the town's infrastructure, somewhere like
Kramatorsk, to slow down a war effort, but a lot of the time to just to terrify the local population.
There's not just in this war, we've seen it in pretty much every war, the Russian Military flights from Chechnya through to Syria. So there's nothing
sadly new about this tactic. But it doesn't mean that the deaths in some way are excusable, this is just how Russia -- war despite the fact it often
tries to suggest that its targets are indeed military and hit with precision that is just repeatedly shown to be nonsense, Becky.
ANDERSON: Nick, we've had new reporting from the New York Times today about who knew what, and when, about Prigozhin, the Wagner Chiefs moves on Moscow
at the weekend. What can you tell us?
WALSH: Two separate reports, an American newspaper the New York Times reporting citing American officials that Sergey Surovikin, the Former Head
of the Ukraine campaign, and now the Head of the Air Force had advanced knowledge of the plot. Now that is somewhat undermined by the fact that the
Air Force were indeed involved in trying to slow down Wagner on the highway to Moscow.
And that Surovikin appeared on television on Friday, telling everyone to stop. The report suggests that this may have been a forced change of heart,
the Wall Street Journal. The two elements in its report are to suggest that Sergei Shoigu, the Defense Minister, and Gerasimov, the Chief of Staff
were, in fact meant to be captured by Prigozhin.
And also, the report suggests that, in fact, the Russian intelligence services had prior knowledge of the report, and I'd be speaking to a
European intelligence official about that. And he referred to the Surovikin's suggestion that he had advanced knowledge and the plot to
potentially capture Shoigu and Gerasimov's, something that was more in the realm of speculation.
Now, he said that there's still a lot of fog around all of this and time will really tell he said about what exactly Prigozhin's motivations and
plans were. But in terms of prior knowledge, the official did say that officials in the Russian security establishment may have known about it,
they may not have told about it, they may have decided to help it succeed.
And they may have had prior knowledge, what happened may Putin lose prestige and if that's what the factions wanted, then that is what they
got. Now, you wouldn't speculate if a purge might occur in the Russian security services, but he did say that turmoil would certainly continue to
So, a lot slowly emerging here, but also to clearly Western officials, we're going to have a field day, suggesting disloyalty amongst other
Russian top brass and getting Moscow to essentially tear itself apart after a catastrophic weekend, Becky.
ANDERSON: Nick Paton Walsh out of Kyiv in Ukraine, it's good to have you on Nick, thank you very much indeed. Well, joining me now live is the Deputy
Head of the Office of Ukraine's President, Igor Zhovkva.
He joins me via Skype from the Ukrainian capital. We must start by discussing the deadly missile attack by Russia on Kramatorsk. More than at
least 11 people killed including twins. So our hearts go out to the people of Ukraine.
And do you have any further detail you can give us on exactly what happened and why?
IGOR ZHOVKVA, DEPUTY HEAD OF THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE: Well, exactly what happened all the world has seen already. That's exactly what
happened in for almost 500 days of war, having absolutely importance, a lack of anything to show on the battlefield throughout the last half an
hour when we only winning over them and they are withdrawing their forces.
They are fighting in their war tactics they are fighting against civilians, civilian infrastructure. That's what happened today, unfortunately, once
again, and unfortunately, we cannot have any guarantees that it will not happen tonight, in any City of Kyiv, in any parts of Ukraine, which is no
Yes, right. You as of now, 11 people are reported dead and including three children and more than 60 wounded among them, eight month child, you can
imagine those images all the world has seen, but this is what is taking place and will be taking place, unfortunately, unless we withdraw them
fully for all the territory of Ukraine.
ANDERSON: Sir, is this strike a message from Russia's Military that its war tactics are not changing, despite this startling, aborted insurrection this
past weekend or perhaps in spite of?
ZHOVKVA: Yes, I mean, look, exactly on Saturday, then the strange events were taking place in Russia on the territory of Russia, which is very
dangerous, and I think caught them by surprise. In the night they resumed the severe attacks. Again, we will see the outcomes and implications on the
I would wonder what the morale of Russian armed forces would be after they saw the events on the territory of their country, when they saw this very
unstable and covered reaction of the law enforcement agencies of the armed forces of the President of this country. Yes, they will probably resume
their tactics of attacking the civilians by the missiles.
They're already producing the new missiles wave, unfortunately, the components coming from some western countries. So the western countries
should be very particular at trading with Russia, so they impose more sanctions and today on dual use technologies should be very particular
about trading with Russia, because every dollar every year they earn trading from your countries.
They spent at producing more missiles, more equipment, and more artillery to kill more Ukrainians.
ANDERSON: The man you work with in the President's office Andriy Yermak, says that the aborted insurrection led by the Wagner Chief at the weekend
destroyed the myth of the Russian armies, invincibility. Do you agree with him?
ZHOVKVA: Completely agree. Remember before the open aggression against my country 2022 they spread the myth that Russian army is the second strongest
army in the world. This myth immediately started to evaporate on the first days and mounds of the open aggression when they not even managed to
capture any single major city in Ukraine.
Out in the month of October started to withdraw to wait to kick them out of what most of the territories of Ukraine they captured and right Chief of
Staff is after that events, data insurrection, which happen everyone, just everyone saw the weakness of the Russian army or the Russian institutions
of Russian power.
ANDERSON: And yet we still see the sort of attack that we've seen in Kramatorsk, today and the impact on the Ukrainian civilians of this bloody
conflict. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said today that Yevgeny Prigozhin's rebellion could be beneficial to Ukraine's counter offensive.
Sir, I have to ask you, is it, will it be? What is going on in the ground? Is Ukraine actually making any progress at this point in its counter
offensive? Is it taking advantage of this situation?
ZHOVKVA: Yes, well, I will certainly not commend you on the particular details of the counter offensive sorry for this. We're not revealing it to
the press but try to the counter offensive has taken place. It is going it has made me go in like my President said it's not a Hollywood movie.
So you would not expect these counter offensives to be like swift and you know and immediate, I will remind you that before that had several counter
offensive operations, the counter offensive operation on Kharkiv, and the - - was different from the counter offensive operation on Kherson.
So, this counter offensive operation in several regions of Ukraine will be different, and will be definitely probably not the last one. But I do I can
say that definitely these events. These insurrection, like we call it in the Russian territory certainly didn't bring any additional benefit to
Russia, but will certainly make Ukrainian Armed Forces stronger, and with near the victory.
ANDERSON: With that, we'll leave it there, sir you are a busy man, we appreciate your time. Thank you very, very much indeed, for joining us.
ZHOVKVA: Thank you.
ANDERSON: For Israeli settlers involved in recent violence against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank have been arrested. We've just
received word on that from a Senior Israeli official in this comes as Israel's Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, both speak out against recent
I want to head to Jerusalem now and bring in CNN Hadas Gold and take us through, if you will, what it is that Benjamin Netanyahu has said this is a
warning to settlers in the West Bank and why it is perhaps significant at this point.
HADAS GOLD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, listen, Netanyahu has to sort of play this balancing act because on the one hand, Senior Ministers in his
government are settler leaders, people like Bezalel Smotrich and Itamar Ben Gvir, and he needs them in his government in order to stay as Prime
On the other hand, though, he has pressures from other Ministers like Defense Minister, Yair Golan who really want to go even harder against the
settlers. And at the same time, he also has the Israeli public and the Israeli settlers. And this latest round of the Israeli settler rounds
against Palestinians came in direct response to that terrorist attack that killed four Israelis who were at a restaurant and at a gas station.
So he has this balancing act and essentially, that's what he was trying to make these recent statements where he condemned the West Bank raiders and
said that it's unacceptable to me that when your blood is boiling, and people are murdered in the cruelest possible way that people give
themselves free rein raid villages start fires, it's absolutely unacceptable.
He said that calls to grab land illegally, there have been a group of seller especially known they're called the hilltop use who will go and try
to put out outpost by on their own. He says that those are not acceptable, saying that they should be done in a legal way.
But he has repeatedly reminded people that settlement construction has doubled under his watch that he promotes settlement construction. More than
4500 new settlement homes have been approved in the last few weeks. This is despite the major protests from allies like the United States.
So, Netanyahu trying to make this balancing act, what's interesting what we're hearing today about these four Israelis who were arrested, they were
arrested by directive of the Minister of Defense who's the only one who can sign off on these sorts of administrative detention orders?
Now administrative detention means that they have been arrested without charge and the intelligence on them is essentially held secret. This is
something we often see more often use on Palestinians for security reasons. It is very rare to see it being used against Israeli settlers.
But the Senior Official was telling me that they know that these four people have been involved in the recent acts of violence in the West Bank
in the last week, and that they have essentially intelligence that they believe that they may do something again, and that's why they've come under
Again, a very unique thing to have Israelis be placed under administrative detention, but goes to show you how there are some strains of the Israeli
government who are very much appalled by this really recent settler violence. The strongest statement, of course, from all this coming from the
Israeli security agencies the idea of themselves, who even equated this recent round of settler violence to acts of terror, Becky.
ANDERSON: It's fascinating. Thank you very much indeed, Hadas Gold in Jerusalem for us. French authorities trying to put a lid on unrest after a
teenager was shot dead by police. We're going to get you the video that set off so much anger in the Paris suburbs that's coming up.
Plus, hundreds of thousands of people have escaped the violence in Sudan only to face new dangers in neighboring Chad. That is up next.
ANDERSON: Paris and its surrounding suburbs are bracing for what could be a second night of protests. Angry riots erupted after a video emerged with a
traffic stop on Tuesday morning, where a 17 year old boy was shot dead by police. Melissa Bell has our report and I've got to warn you it begins with
part of the video showing that violent and deadly confrontation.
MELISSA BELL, CNN PARIS CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Police weapons drawn and aimed at the driver of this yellow car. All puts a bullet in your head
someone shouts a gunshot as an officer opens fire and the vehicle drives off crashing nearby at this intersection in the town of Nanterre near
A 17 year old boy shot and killed named as Nael M by family lawyers laid amid the wreckage. Another passenger a teen was taken into custody police
say the third remains missing. Overnight protests erupted and cars burned with around 350 police officers mobilized to quell the unrest.
Wednesday morning brought heartache appeals for calm and investigations for what a family lawyer called a cold blooded shooting. French football star
Kylian Mbappe tweeted that his heart was aching for France and call the incident an unacceptable situation, the French President saying Wednesday
that nothing justifies the death of a young man.
EMMANUEL MACRON, FRECH PRESIDENT: We need calm for justice to carry out its work. And we need calm everywhere, because the situation, we can't allow
the situation to worsen.
BELL (voice over): Meanwhile, one police officer was taken into custody for culpable homicide.
LAURENT NUNEZ, PARIS POLICE CHIEF: At that time the driver who had first turned off the engine restarted the vehicle then left. It was in this
context that the policeman used his firearm.
BELL (voice over): The search for answers now underway. Melissa Bell, CNN, Paris.
ANDERSON: Let's get you up to speed on some of the other stories that are on our radar right now and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and New Zealand's
Prime Minister Chris Hipkins met in Beijing a short while ago. Hipkins is on a five day visit to China and met with the President on Tuesday.
Two sides held a bilateral meeting and sign agreements involving cooperation in science and innovation in food safety and in agriculture we
are told. Landslides have hit southwest, China's state media says they were triggered by sudden rainstorms and flash floods in the area killing at
least four people.
Nearly 1000 have been evacuated for the threat not over. Chinese authorities, warn 21 counties could see heavy rain and more landslides
today. Federal prosecutors in the United States have charged five more people in connection with a human smuggling operation that left 53 migrants
dead in Texas last year.
All five are now in custody and accused of managing the operation that stopped migrants into the back of a trunk in sweltering heat without a
working air conditioner. Well, you're watching "Connect the World" with me Becky Anderson, coming up, the U.S. President trying to connect with
Joe Biden about to unveil a key finds in his reelection campaign and a major new development in one of Donald Trump's probes his high profile
Former Attorney's has been talking to federal investigators.
ANDERSON: Welcome back, you're watching "Connect the World" with me Becky Anderson. Your headlines this hour, rescuers in Ukraine are searching for
survivors after a Russian missile strike in a busy restaurant in the Eastern City of Kramatorsk. At least 11 people have been killed and dozens
others have been injured.
Europe's top diplomat calls Tuesday's attack another demonstration of Russian terror on civilians. Well, the New York Times reports U.S.
officials learned that Russian general knew about Wagner Chief Yevgeny Prigozhin's plans to rebel against military leaders before he's aborted
insurrection on the weekend in the Wall Street Journal.
So reporting Prigozhin originally wanted to capture to top Russian Military leaders but then changed plans to march towards Moscow when that plot was
discovered. Security forces will be fanning out across France tonight to keep protesters off the streets. Violent demonstrations erupted on Tuesday,
after a video emerged showing a 17 year old being fatally shot during a traffic stop.
The officer who opened fire is intention and the French President Emmanuel Macron is promising justice and calling for calm. For a short time from
now, U.S. President Joe Biden is set to give a major speech in Chicago. He is likely to talk up his administration's accomplishments on the economy
and pitch them as a key plank of his reelection campaign.
His team is hoping the so called Bidenomics strategy will appeal to middle class and blue collar voters. CNN said Jeremy Diamond is in Chicago. And
Jeremy, Americans have been struggling for months with what has been fairly high inflation and interest rates which are higher than they've been for
years. How will Mr. Biden go about selling this plan of a successful economy at this point?
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, the first thing has to do with timing, Becky, the President's advisors believe that this is the
right time for them to be able to go out and sell the President's economic vision and his economic record inflation is cooling faster than it has in
the last two years.
The jobs market remains strong. And the presidents' economic advisers are increasingly confident that the economy is headed for that elusive soft
landing, avoiding a recession.
And yet the president's chief political challenge is to try and convince Americans that the economy is actually in good shape because in poll after
poll, Americans do not feel that way. I asked the president's top Economic Adviser, Lael Brainard, about that disconnects in an interview.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DIAMOND: A CNN poll last month found that only 23 percent of Americans rate the economy as at least somewhat good. So how do you explain that
LAEL BRAINARD, DIRECTOR, U.S. NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL: So I think the American people have gone through just record economic uncertainty over the
last two years, a global pandemic that just went on and on. So I think what the president would say is people need to see it, they need to see it in
And that's what his policies are all about. As Americans see that and experience it, the president's confident that they are going to feel much
more optimistic about their own economic futures.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DIAMOND: And so beyond implementing the president's policies, they are also leaning on this term Bidenomics as the messaging vehicle effectively, to
try and sell the president's economic vision for the future, and to take credit for what they believe, is an increasingly strong economy. But there
are risks to that strategy as well, the risk, of course, that Republicans could co up the term and point to what is still bad in the economy and say
that is Bidenomics.
And also, of course, even though they are increasingly confident in this soft landing, there is still the possibility of a recession. Some
economists still predicting it in the next year, and the president could then of course be tied to that economic downturn, a challenge for him
heading into this reelection effort, Becky?
ANDERSON: I mean his challenge is going to be that there has been a significant uptick in spending. The Democrats will defend that and say that
spending was needed for a whole host of reasons; not least the fact that this pandemic went on for so long.
But the fiscal side of this administration's policy is a difficult one to sell, to sort of, you know, to the Republican Party, and certainly to
anybody who may be, you know, an undecided voter. What kind of accomplishments is Joe Biden expected to stress when he speaks tonight?
DIAMOND: Well, the White House is defining Bidenomics as building out the economy from the middle out. And they're putting that in opposition to the
trickle down policies that Republicans have leaned on.
And in terms of specific policies, the president is going to lean on some of his most significant legislative achievements, everything from the
Inflation Reduction Act, which delivered historic funding for combating climate change, the infrastructure bill as well and this bill that is also
aimed at spurring semiconductor manufacturing here in the United States.
And the facts are that beyond the broader economic numbers that are trending in a positive direction, we are starting to see the effect of some
of those pieces of legislation in particular, with the boom of the manufacturing sector that is starting to happen here in the United States.
That is something that is really being borne out by the numbers and something that the president is going to lean on, especially as he looks to
appeal to blue collar voters around the country.
ANDERSON: Fascinating. Thank you. Jeremy Diamond is on the story for you. Well, the day after CNN obtained an audio recording of Donald Trump
discussing classified documents, the former U.S. president insists he has done nothing wrong. Well, that recording, of course, is a key piece of
evidence in the U.S. Justice Department's indictment against him. Here's what he told Fox News Digital on Tuesday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, 45TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: At a whole desk full of lots of papers, and mostly newspaper articles, copies of
magazines, copies of different plans, copies of stories, having to do with many, many subjects. And what was said was absolutely fine and very, very
perfectly. We did nothing wrong.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're not concerned and with your own voice on those recordings?
TRUMP: My voice was fine. What did I say wrong on those recordings? I didn't even see the recording. All I know is I did nothing wrong. We had a
lot of papers, a lot of papers stacked up. In fact, you could hear the rustle of the paper.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, in the past, Donald Trump has actually denied holding on to any classified documents after he left office. He is not repeating those
denials. Now he does say though, he doesn't know if there are any other recordings of him out there and he blames what he calls a whole hoax. And
Trump's former attorney is backing him up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIMOTHY PARLATORE, FORMER TRUMP ATTORNEY: Well, certainly you can hear the rustling of papers there. But as to what he's specifically holding to get
the tape is in my opinion is unclear. And you can when you hear the sound of his voice, he does seem to be acting with a bit of bravado and playing
to the crowd.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, Trump has pleaded not guilty to 37 criminal counts, including conspiracy to hide classified documents from the U.S. government.
Well, you watching "Connect the World" with me, Becky Anderson.
Just ahead, efforts to end the bloodshed in Sudan, the U.S., UK and Norway are speaking out against what they describe as the ethnic violence that is
happening now. I'm going to speak with the Norwegian ambassador to Sudan, and get him to explain what he understands to be happening and, and tell us
what he believes should happen next.
ANDERSON: In Sudan, the paramilitary rapid support forces are accused of violating their own one day ceasefire. A pro-democracy activist group says
the RSF terrorized some local businesses even beating staff and civilians and other rights group reported renewed fighting in the state of South
The Head of Sudan's army is announcing a ceasefire on Wednesday for Eid, but calling on young men to defend their country against the RSF. Well,
many people have had to leave their homes because of the violence. Nearly 2.8 million people according to the UN, it says the majority of them are
still in Sudan, but almost 650,000 have chosen to cross the border.
It is rainy season and that is making it harder for officials to reach those refugees and move them away from the border into safer camps. UNICEF
says more than 100,000 children from Sudan are now facing new dangers. In neighboring Chad, they say they don't have access to water, shelter, health
and education, they say is extremely limited and communities are having to share limited resources.
Well, that is the very grim picture. The U.S. UK and Norway, the three members of what is known as the Troika, are condemning the violence in
Sudan. They are now calling for coordinated international pressure to put an end to this conflict. Norway's Ambassador to Sudan and Eritrea,
Ambassador Endre Stiansen joins me now.
It's good to have you, sir. You, your colleagues in the UK and in the U.S. have put out a very firmly worded statement. You have condemned and I quote
here "The widespread human rights violations, conflict related sexual violence and targeted ethnic violence in Darfur".
Just explain how bad things are on the ground. We're going to, we're going to talk about who it is that is committing this sort of atrocity in a
moment. Just explain the picture on the ground as you understand it at this point.
ENDRE STIANSEN, NORWEGIAN AMBASSADOR TO SUDAN & ERITREA: Well, you know, the situation on the ground for most people is a living nightmare. They
could never have imagined, you know, going through a situation like this. This, I think is for the whole country, even though it's worse in some
areas. And Darfur has been recently especially badly hit, because there are so many groups fighting each other.
And it's just a horrendous situation, made worse by the fact that we're not able to get humanitarian assistance to it. Because we just don't have the
agreements to do that. We just don't have the mechanisms to do it now.
So the numbers you gave probably underestimates, because we just don't have accurate information about large part of the country. But we just don't
know that the situation that most people are facing, after more than two years, two months of fighting is terrible, and it's getting worse.
ANDERSON: You described this as targeted ethnic violence, and we are talking about sexual violence amongst other things here. You say this is
mostly attributed to the RSF and allied militia. You talk about the number of forces varied forces on the ground. Again, can you just explain a little
STIANSEN: Yes, you know, this refers more specifically, more specifically to the situation in Darfur, where, you know, it's a long way from Khartoum,
it's a long way from really from everywhere, and where for a long time now, it's been a very troubled situation with ongoing violence, and then you
know flashpoints and, and escalations from time to time.
But what has happened in the last two months is that everything has kind of got worse and worse and worse. But it's not that coordinated, even though
there are links between the different groups. So you have, you know, a situation that is approaching unlucky, but it's maybe it were chaos is
But you have groups that go off to each other and using what these groups do when they're fighting a war. And that is everything at their disposal,
including sexual violence against women, young women, older women. And so this is well known. And it's not the first time it's happening now and it's
got to stop. It is in fact that most of these areas somehow are controlled by the RSF, which is why we are naming those.
ANDERSON: Ambassador, both the RSF and the Sudanese army have declared unilateral ceasefires for this Eid holiday. Do you genuinely believe that
this fighting will stop? Can a force like the RSF actually control? What is going on, on the ground?
STIANSEN: No, I think that's part of the problem. You know, there are huge command control issues within the RSF. So they may be, we'll say at the
top, but their ability to do something about controlling force on ground is limited. And that's what we're seeing, especially in Darfur.
Now they're trying to take measures they say against it, but it's not controlled. Change it dramatically, I think, because it's just it's not,
it's not in their means to do it. Now, I don't believe this ceasefire is going to hold any better than previous ceasefires.
And the report is coming from Khartoum today, where I've been in touch with people is that there is no continuous fighting, maybe not as much as
previous days, but still continuous fighting in different parts of the city. So the ceasefire is not holding up. Let me also add that a ceasefire
for one or two days doesn't make much difference.
It lets people rest, it lets them to regroup. And then the fighting stands again. What we need is a much longer ceasefire that the both sides that
everybody commits to, so that we can start the humanitarian assistance in a serious, large scaled up manner, that we get access to all parts of the
And that this sets the kind of the stage for a political process that can deal with the, you know, the more economies or contextual issues so that we
can have in any -- trouble.
ANDERSON: But there is there seems to be no evidence that either side at this point has any interest in a political solution. You are calling on the
international community to do more at this point; the UN has extended its mission. A number of Sudanese leaders have actually called for the
resignation or the removal of the UN Special Envoy in Sudan, of course at this point.
But I mean, realistically, what do you think? What do you believe the next steps should be by the international community? It frankly looks as if the
international community has run out of ideas at this point.
STIANSEN: Well you know I'm traveling in the region going from capital to capital and talking to very important people in the regional countries to
help them step on their efforts.
So, it's always been our position to take a position to work with the countries in the region, because they really have the best access, they
really have the best way of influencing the parties into Sudan. That's the historical fact. So we're working on that basis.
This is a regional organization has some concrete proposals, we work with them on making them real, making them, you know, happening on the ground.
And then we also working very close with the African Union to step up the pressure. It is the pressure has to be stepped up. We also have to look at
the supply lines, to the fighting forces, so that the war can stop as soon as possible.
The Americans have looked at sanctions. I'm sure they're looking at that, again, that's also a reference to that in the statement. And there is, you
know, there's more people can do, the pressure can work, and it must work if the aid was necessary to apply it.
There can be no, this is a catastrophe for the region as well, a spillover and the spillover is happening. It will be detrimental to every single
country in the region. And if we don't stop it now, to recover later, it's going to be much more difficult, because you're dealing in a very, very,
very fragile environment.
But maybe that it will now give us the chance to kind of to come together to say enough is enough. We have to stop this in a concerted manner.
Because the consequences for the region not only sit on, but for the region are so huge, so dire, that it cannot prolong, it has to stop.
ANDERSON: Well, I don't think anybody is going to disagree with you on that point. The question is how it has to go about it, thank you sir for coming
in. Your -- yep. Thank you, sir.
STIANSEN: -- people do disagree, because they think they can win the war. We don't think it's possible.
ANDERSON: Good point. Thank you. The National Police Authority in Stockholm has authorized a Quran-burning protest outside the city's central mosque on
Wednesday. Now only a single protester is behind it. And he has been fighting in Swedish courts for three months for the right to hold the
Swedish police say the decision was made in accordance with the right of freedom of expression and poses, "Little immediate security risk". Well,
the demonstration coincides with the beginning of the Eid al-Adha, one of the most important holidays in the Muslim calendar.
This is taking place as Sweden, of course attempts to join NATO, those attempts being held up by member states, Turkey, a majority Muslim country.
CNN's Jomana Karadsheh standing by in London, you've spent years covering Turkey from Istanbul, of course, for us as well.
You're in London at present. We've seen Quran-burning protests in Sweden before that have deeply upset the Muslim community around the world, not
least those in Turkey and the Government of Turkey. Has there been any reaction from Turkey? And does this have the potential to further aggravate
talks on Sweden's accession to NATO?
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, Becky, as you mentioned, it's not the first time that we're seeing this happen in Sweden. You have
that earlier this year back in January, where you had a far right Danish politician who burned the Quran outside the Turkish Embassy.
And we saw Turkey's reaction at the time not just condemning it, not just seeing outrage across the Muslim and Arab world. But Turkey canceled a
visit by the Swedish Defense Minister at the time, in protest against the burning of the Quran. But if you look at what is happening this time, as
you mentioned, it's one man I spoke to him earlier.
He's an Iraqi refugee, now a Swedish citizen. He has very anti-Islam views and he decided to express it this way outside a mosque in Stockholm today
by burning the Quran. But I think for Turkey and for the Muslim world who is doing this and why is very much irrelevant for them.
And we've heard this question in the past is why is Sweden allowing this to happen? Why are they authorizing these put on burning acts. Now Swedish
officials have condemned this in the past who said they don't agree with this. They find it offensive.
But they say that this is what Sweden is about. This is freedom of expression that is protected by the country's constitution. They say that
freedom of expression is central to the country's democracy. And they can't stop this.
And in this very specific case, we heard from the police in their permission allowing this protest to go ahead. They acknowledge that this
could increase the risk of terrorist attacks that this is something that could have implications when it comes to foreign policy.
But they say it poses no direct security threat. So they've allowed it to go ahead. We have heard from the Turkish foreign minister, a very brief
statement in the past hour or so, condemning this, calling it a heinous act.
And of course, questioning again why Sweden would allow this to happen saying on the first day of Eid, this is a disgraceful act against our holy
book unacceptable that Sweden would allow these anti-Islamic actions under the pretext of freedom of expression to turn a blind eye to such heinous
acts is to be complicit in them.
So really, this is likely to further complicate what is an already very difficult situation when it comes to Sweden's NATO accession talks and
Turkey's position on all of this, Becky.
ANDERSON: Jomana, thank you. Jomana Karadsheh is in London for you. Just ahead on "Connect the world" forecast you of course from the UAE. Has
severe weather events, can leave you paying more for everyday products, that is after this.
ANDERSON: Welcome back. You're watching CNN. One new picture to show you of the debris from the Titan submersible that imploded last week killing all
five people on board we are waiting and watching the Canadian Coast Guard. Unload pieces of the sob at a pier in St. John's.
The passengers were going to view the wreckage of the Titanic on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean when they lost contact with their mothership and the
sub imploded. This debris was found not far from there. These images just coming into CNN. Well, more than 80 million people from the U.S. Midwest to
the East Coast run the air quality alerts as smoke from Canadian wildfires sweeps across the border.
A video posted to social media from the U.S. State of Wisconsin shows the smoke is so bad they can't see the sun. Canadian authorities say that 200
wildfires are still burning out of control making it Canada's worst fire season ever. And in Chicago and Detroit, they had the worst air quality in
the world throughout the day on Tuesday according to IQ air.
Well, extreme weather can also wreak havoc on the economy. And now our reporting, so far this year losses have exceeded a billion dollars due to
extreme weather events. Let's bring in Bill Weir to talk about the financial impact of this severe weather. And just give me some examples of
what you've seen that really sort of captures this financial and economic toll from severe weather events.
BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: Well Becky, it really informs sort of every sector of our lives. If you look closely enough from what was
on your breakfast cereal this morning, maybe the bees that were wiped out by Hurricane Ian and Florida help pollinate those, that's a little bit of a
The shipping problems on a Mississippi River that either has too much or too little water during the height of the growing season that adds up. Its
productivity costs when workers in construction for example, can handle these triple digit temperatures Fahrenheit in North America and around the
world. Or even in China where they shut down semiconductor plants during heat waves to protect people there.
This ticks up as well. And you mentioned there's been an at least $9 billion event this year seven from storms, one from floods, one winter
storm event, that trickles up into insurance premiums if you live on the coasts or in wildfires zones as well. But we're beginning to feel this in
the pocketbook as well as just in the ambient temperature.
ANDERSON: We're seeing extreme heat in places like Texas, of course, right now sort of more south away from the impact of the smoke in that part of
the state. How is that extreme weather in Texas impacting energy costs, Bill?
WEIR: It's a real interesting study there because Becky, unlike the rest of the United States, Texas has its own pretty much isolated power grid.
They've added a bunch of solar in the last year, which happens to be filling in the gaps as a couple of coal fired plants went down.
They're using rolling blackouts to try to manage that demand, filling it in with the renewables when they can. But overall, the demand and just basic
economics makes it more expensive for everyone as these cooling, peak cooling demands hit Texas set a record yesterday for energy demand as well.
And the worst is yet to come this big heat dome, the new phenomenon we're seeing is they just sit and just torture people for weeks at a time. So, we
may not see an end to this big one in the middle of the U.S. until next week.
ANDERSON: Yes, fascinating. Bill, it's always good to have you, thank you very much indeed. Folks, you've been watching "Connect the World" with me,
Becky Anderson. "One World" is up next here on CNN. From those working with me here in Abu Dhabi and those working in our hubs around the world who are
involved in this show, it's a very good evening.