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Blinken Visits Kyiv as Donetsk Market Comes under Attack; Africa Climate Summit Attracts $23 Billion in Funding Pledges; U.S. Officials to Meet Saudis in Riyadh; Brazil Flooding Claims at Least 22 Lives; ISIS Members Filmed Committing Torture; U.K.'s Birmingham Halts All Non- Essential Spending. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired September 06, 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 HOST (voice-over): I'm Becky Anderson live from Abu Dhabi. This is CONNECT THE WORLD, 6 pm here.
Coming up this hour, a missile attack on a market in Ukraine leaves more than a dozen people dead.
The U.S. secretary of state reiterating his support on a visit to Kyiv.
A damning climate report says that this was the hottest summer on record.
And later this hour, Spain's Jenni Hermoso files a legal complaint against Luis Rubiales.
ANDERSON: We begin this hour in Ukraine, where there has been a major attack on a market in the eastern Donetsk region. The Ukraine prime
minister says that Russian shelling killed 60 people there, including a child.
The news of that shocking attack coming as the top U.S. diplomat visits Kyiv for a briefing on Ukraine's counteroffensive. Let's get you straight
to Melissa Bell, who is live in Kyiv.
And let's start with that attack, Melissa, what do we know?
MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: What we understand and we're beginning to get images, Becky, of some of the aftermath of that
blast in Kostyantynivka. Now this is a small town that is to the west of Bakhmut.
And so sadly, as for so many towns over this vast stretch of front lines of Russian artillery strikes, missile strikes. And that is exactly what
happened in the last couple of hours.
This was people going about their market. We just heard President Zelenskyy speak to this, the utter abomination of what has taken place. People at a
market, a pharmacy, civilians, 16 of them. But the toll could rise, as we understand, Becky.
Amongst those confirmed dead, though, one child at least. And I think it's an important reminder of what civilians continue to live through, day in
and day out. This is a large number of civilians to be killed in a single attack.
As to its timing, I think that we can safely assume that things are far too chaotic on the Russian side for us to read too much into the timing of
this, coming as it does on the day of Secretary Blinken's visit. It is all too tragically the daily life here in Ukraine.
Certainly the uncertainty of never knowing whether a missile strike or an artillery strike is going to land on you and there were also here in Kyiv
today, by the way, Becky, even ahead of Secretary Blinken's arrival, more ballistic missile, cruise missile strikes. Although intercepted by
Ukrainian air defense, did cause some damage, Becky.
ANDERSON: What do we understand to have been achieved during the meeting between U.S. secretary of state and the Ukrainian officials?
BELL: Well, what Secretary Blinken is here to do, Becky, is get his own idea from the Ukrainians about what is happening on the front line. So much
of that, of course, is hidden in the fog of war, because it is so difficult to get to the front lines.
We've had this opportunity for these past few days to speak to some of the men who are responsible for the liberation of Robotyne last week.
BELL (voice-over): The flag now flies over what's left Robotyne. Ukrainian leaders say it's the first victory of three-month counter offensive, a
source of great pride for the men of the 47th Mechanized Brigade.
KARATSUPA, BRADLEY CREW COMMANDER, 47TH MECHANIZED BRIGADE (from captions): We evacuated six civilians that day. Our infantry prepared the civilians
and they collected their essential belongings.
BELL (voice-over): The soldiers hadn't expected to find them but rushed the handful of men and elderly women into their Bradley vehicle before
speeding away as quickly as they could.
KARATSUPA (from captions): As soon as we left, our location was shelled. The Russians don't care whether it is soldier or civilians. They don't
care, it's all the same for them. They hit just two meters from Bradley.
We were lucky, thank God. And thanks to the fact that the cross-eyed Russians didn't manage to hit the vehicle directly. Bradley was on fire.
Smoke everywhere, the side was cracked but the reinforced armor held. The Bradley was stumbling but we managed to drive away.
BELL (voice-over): Back into safety of a nearby wood, the civilians are given much needed water and phones.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hello, daughter. Hello, hello.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hello, Doll.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Daughter, we were rescued.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I know, Mom, I know.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do not cry. We are home.
BELL (voice-over): But for the 47th brigade, Robotyne was just the start. And some of its heroes have since fallen.
BELL: I'd like to ask about your colleagues the day you went into Robotyne and you took the civilians out there was another team but they were killed.
PAN, BRADLEY DRIVER, 47TH MECHANIZED BRIGADE: We trained with them in Germany at an American base. Believe me, it's hard to talk about it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For us it's a terrible loss. It's very hard to think about them, to talk about them, it's heartbreaking. When you live, eat and
bunk with someone who is suddenly not there anymore, it's heart-wrenching.
BELL (voice-over): Still they carry on southwards along a stretch of road they've nicknamed the road to hell.
BELL: It's what happened further down that road that Secretary Blinken has come here to find out more about. The American assessment for the time
being is that the recent gains around there have been significant -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Melissa, good to have you, thank you very much indeed.
Well, a season of simmering; that is what the U.N. chief calls the summer that much of the world just endured. European scientists say June to August
was the hottest summer ever recorded in the Northern Hemisphere. Here's what that looked like.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON (voice-over): Scorching brutal heat, enormous wildfires and devastating floods. The crisis largely blamed on human activity.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: And the real world impact of these rising temperatures, first extreme heat and wildfires, now a storm named Daniel dumping torrential
rain on parts of Europe. Greece got several months' worth of rain on Tuesday alone. Cars swept into the sea along Bulgaria's Black Sea coast and
roads and bridges made impassible.
Several deaths blamed on the floods in both countries. And in neighboring Turkiye, torrential rains flooded parts of the northwest. Turkish media
says at least five people have been killed and three others are missing. Six have been rescued.
And in Istanbul, this video posted to social media shows a street full of cars submerged in floodwaters. Officials there say two people died in
Istanbul's flash floods.
In Nairobi, African leaders just wrapped up their first ever climate summit. The event was part of a massive effort by African leaders to
position the continent as a destination for green investment, as the world tackles the climate crisis.
Africa was able to succeed by landing funding pledges worth $23 billion, including a $4.5 billion pledge by the UAE to support clean energy projects
on the continent. The summit also called on the international community to reduce carbon emissions, cut the use of coal and honor its climate finance
For more on this, let's bring in CNN's Larry Madowo, who's been on the sidelines of the summit.
I just want to, as things come to a close and you have been keenly keeping an ear across what has been going on in the building behind you, what is
the legacy of this summit, Larry?
LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I think, Becky, the fact that all of these African leaders got here but Ursula van der Leyen from the E.U.; the
U.N. secretary general; John Kerry, the U.S. climate envoy; everybody came together.\
And added their voice to this conversation is important but I don't want to give that legacy, because I have the CEO of the Africa Climate Summit here
with me, Joseph Ng'ang'a.
It's all come to a close now.
How do you feel?
JOSEPH NG'ANG'A, CEO, AFRICA CLIMATE SUMMIT: I feel very good.
NG'ANG'A: I think His Excellence set an ambition in February.
MADOWO: President Ruto?
NG'ANG'A: President Ruto, President Ruto, yes, indeed, to amplify, to magnify the ambition and the agency of the climate conversation around
green growth and climate finance. And in six months (INAUDIBLE) we are here celebrating that ambition.
And it has landed because, as you say it, global leaders but also over 20 African heads of state but countries, over 40 countries represented at the
ministerial level, private sector, Indigenous people, civil society. We have come together.
And guess what?
We signed the declaration today. That, for me, is incredible.
MADOWO: What did the Africa Climate Summit achieve?
NG'ANG'A: The climate summit achieved two things: one, bringing Africans together.
This is the first time that we've come together as a continent and agreed on a climate action plan, shared it in a declaration, negotiated it among
all of the A.U. countries and signed it and had it supported by over $20 billion of global commitment to (INAUDIBLE) that very ambition.
MADOWO: Commitments have been made before. A lot of financing has been pledged in the years past but then the money never comes.
Are you optimistic that this time is different?
NG'ANG'A: Absolutely. And the optimism comes from the practical aspect of this commitment. The way they have been defined is very clear. It's
companies that are already investing. So they are already underway.
It's commitment on adaptation that you can see where the funds are coming from. This is a departure from where you claim $100 billion but you have
no idea where it's coming from or the way it's being invested.
Today's commitment is $26 billion, very clear where the source is but also where the investments are going to be. And some of those are in various
stages of being achieved. So I'm fully confident that it will be achieved.
But one of the outcomes is a road map toward implementation. So we will be holding ourselves accountable to that implementation.
MADOWO: How difficult was it to agree on the language of the final Nairobi declaration?
I notice for instance it talks about fossil fuel phaseout -- a phasedown, not a complete phaseout.
NG'ANG'A: It is critical to be practical in this matter. And I think that that is where this summit is very different. It is an action summit based
on fundamentals. Phaseout is because you drove here today.
What did you use?
Petrol, diesel, whatever. It will take time to transition. So we must be practical about it but we must also be ambitious and we must work with
urgency. And so a language agreement required, as with any such document, a level of compromise.
But I think what has been achieved is an incredible amount of alliance and collaboration and commitment with a combined outcome.
MADOWO: Did the compromise in this language about the declaration deviate from what the long-standing African position has been at every COP?
NG'ANG'A: No, it builds on that. We must be very clear that this building on what the African group of negotiators have been negotiating so far. That
is fantastic work and it must continue.
But as His Excellence, the president of Kenya, Dr. Ruto, says, this is not enough. The crisis requires a new, a larger quantum of money, a level of
urgency. And so this builds on top of that and does not in any way dilute what has already achieved.
MADOWO: And most importantly, was this able to convey that urgency to the world in the language from the leaders, both African and international, do
NG'ANG'A: Absolutely. And that is both in the declaration, in the commitment to achieving the global energy outcomes, driving carbon markets,
driving SMEs but also the quantum of money committed. And as I said earlier, that is not shadow money. It is money that is going into real
transactions today. That is urgency.
MADOWO: All right, Joseph Ng'ang'a, thank you so much, the CEO of the Africa Climate Summit.
And Becky, you cover a lot of these climate conversations. You know how much of a political hot button they tend to be and that language is always
a compromise, as we saw in COP27 last year. Naturally, as Africans are coming into COP28, there are already some of these compromises coming into
ANDERSON: Yes. I thought that was a fascinating conversation. Thank you. Good to have it, good to have had you there over the last couple of days.
And your analysis and insight has been extremely important. Thank you.
Larry Madowo is in Nairobi, Kenya, for you.
Coming up on CONNECT THE WORLD, two senior U.S. officials are in Saudi Arabia today to discuss Middle East diplomacy and push for a deal that
could reshape the entire region's politics.
And a famously reclusive leader and an iconic armored train. A look inside Kim Jong-un's secretive travel strategies, up next.
ANDERSON: Two high-level U.S. officials are meeting with Saudi officials in Riyadh today, as the United States pushes a potential normalization
agreement between Saudi Arabia and Israel, a deal that would be groundbreaking for this region.
Of course, I'm coming to you from our programming hub here in Abu Dhabi.
The two officials are Brett McGurk, a U.S. National Security Council official with years of experience in the Middle East and on policy, and
Barbara Lee, the State Department assistant secretary for the region.
The meetings come a day after Palestinian officials reportedly visited the kingdom to discuss their demands from the Israelis if normalization with
Riyadh moves ahead. That is according to "The New York Times."
The White House national security adviser stressed that the trip is focused on broader regional issues and not just a normalization deal.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE SULLIVAN, U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: Normalization will be one of the topics on the agenda. But it's not the main thrust of this trip. And
like I said before, with respect to the phone call Secretary Blinken made today, we don't expect any imminent announcement to breakthroughs in the
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, very much managing expectations, Jake Sullivan there taking questions about the reason for the trip. The bulk of this reporting
comes from my colleague, CNN's Kylie Atwood, who joins me now live from the U.S. State Department with more details.
It's important to point out here that this normalization deal that the U.S. is so enthusiastic about between the Saudis and the Israelis, which will
extend what is known as the Abraham accords, sits as we understand it, Kylie, as a pillar of a Biden administration Middle East policy going
Jake Sullivan there very much managing expectations on this.
So what do we know at this point?
KYLIE ATWOOD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, there is a lot of pieces to what would be this potential normalization agreement
between Saudi Arabia and Israel.
And because of that, there are incredible a number of complexities that go into this. It's not just about the U.S. sitting down with Saudi Arabia to
develop a pathway forward but also the U.S. sitting down with Israel to figure out what Israel can do.
The Israelis also figuring out what they can do for the Palestinians, to make sure that the Palestinians feel like they're getting something out of
this; what a security agreement between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia would look like as part of this.
The backdrop also being Saudi-China relations right now.
What can the U.S. do to get closer to Saudi Arabia as part of the deal and pull them a little bit further away from China?
So there are so many elements to this. And what we are seeing this week is a flurry of engagements --
ATWOOD: -- that appear to indicate that things are moving forward. Now as you said, national security adviser Jake Sullivan said that the trip by
Brett McGurk, by Barbara Lee, two top officials in the administration for Middle East policy at the National Security Council and at the State
Department, their trip to Saudi Arabia is not just about talking about the potential for normalization agreement between Israel and Saudi Arabia.
But they also aren't saying that that is not on the agenda, right?
And so we know that this is something that the administration officials are really privately focused on in the next year, what could be the last year
really of the Biden administration.
And so one of the critical pieces to all of this, as you noted, is that the Palestinians are actually engaging this go-around. They, in the last round
of Abraham accords normalization agreements, they really did not engage. They were frustrated, they felt that engaging would not be beneficial to
And now, they are seeing that there could be room for them to get something out of it. According to "The New York Times," as you said, they were in
Saudi Arabia for meetings yesterday; the day before, this delegation of U.S. officials is in Saudi Arabia.
So there are a lot of pieces to this but it does appear that this flurry of engagement could be pushing things forward right now.
ANDERSON: And you are right to point out, what is in this for the Palestinians?
Because Saudi Arabia has said that, without a future pathway for the Palestinians, they will not normalize with Israel. We know that secretary
of state Antony Blinken spoke Tuesday to Mahmoud Abbas, who is, of course, the head of the Palestinian Authority.
Do we know what they discussed?
ATWOOD: Yes, so the State Department put out a readout of that call. It did not at all talk about the normalization conversation between Israel and
But I do want to read what they did include in that readout, saying, quote, "Blinken expressed continued concern about ongoing violence in the West
Bank. He reaffirmed U.S. support for measures to advance freedom and security and improve the quality of life for the Palestinian people.
"The secretary and President Abbas discussed their support for a two-state solution and opposition to actions endangering its viability."
That is the key phrase there, "opposition to actions endangering its viability." It appears that the U.S. could be trying to see what the
Palestinians would want as part of this normalization agreement, what commitments from Israel they would be seeking if they're going to give the
green light and essentially allow or give their support to Saudi Arabia going forth with this normalization.
ANDERSON: Yes, it is complicated. It is full of layers and it is good to have you with us, Kylie, to help break down what is an incredibly important
story, not least for the region that I am in, here in the Gulf, but obviously has ramifications around the world. Thank you very much indeed.
The price of oil has been hitting new highs for the year after Saudi and Russia decided to continue cutting back on production for at least three
months. The two countries, the world's biggest exporters of crude oil, the global benchmark number was trading around $90 a barrel while the U.S.
benchmark around 86 bucks on the barrel.
According to the IMF, Saudi Arabia needs Brent crude to trade around 81 bucks on the barrel so that it can balance its budget. Russia, of course,
looking to produce revenues to support its ongoing war in Ukraine.
It has to be said both countries, but particularly the kingdom will say, that the macroeconomic picture, a slow growth picture in China very much
justifies the reason why they're sticking to these cuts.
But clearly, we also know that the kingdom is hell-bent on ensuring it can reach its Vision 2030 and keeping its balance, as it were, is also
strategically important for it.
ANDERSON (voice-over): Let's get you up to speed on some of the other stories on our radar right now.
A Muslim rights group is appealing the abaya ban in French schools. At a hearing before the state council, lawyers argued that the ban is not legal
and has been imposed in an arbitrary manner. A decision is required within 48 hours of the hearing that ended on Tuesday.
Tunisia continues its crackdown on opposition party members as the country's president strengthens his grip on power. Opposition party Ennahda
says its interim leader was detained while driving and taken to an unknown location. Ennahda says the head of its Shura council was also detained.
ANDERSON (voice-over): At least 22 people have died in Brazil after an extratropical cyclone slammed into the southern part of the country. State
authorities say that more than 300 meters -- millimeters, sorry -- 300 millimeters of rain fell in less than 24 hours, causing floods and
Authorities expect the death toll to climb and the flooding to continue.
Coming up, ISIS likes to control its own narrative, of course. But its members have been caught on camera, committing crimes, without their
knowledge. And prosecutors are paying attention. That is coming up.
ANDERSON (voice-over): Welcome back, I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi. Time here is just before half past 6:00 in the evening. You're watching CONNECT
THE WORLD. Wherever you are watching, you're more than welcome. Your headlines this hour.
At least 16 people have been killed in a Russian missile strike on a market in Eastern Ukraine. The Ukrainian prime minister says one child is amongst
the dead. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called the attack utter inhumanity.
All of this is happening while U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken visits Kyiv for meetings with top Ukrainian officials. The U.S. State
Department says one focus of the talks is to hear Ukraine's plan for pushing ahead in its counteroffensive against Russia after recent
European scientists say the three-month period that just ended was the hottest summer on record. The average global temperature was 16.77 degrees
Celsius, slightly higher than the previous record set in 2019.
The U.N. secretary general Antonio Guterres says the climate is imploding faster than we can cope.
ANDERSON: An Islamic terror group has used gruesome, brutal propaganda videos as effectively as ISIS or Islamic State, be it to recruit new
jihadis or to terrorize those who refuse to adhere to their twisted religious beliefs.
ANDERSON: But now, video recorded in a hospital in Aleppo without their knowledge has exposed the group's depravity and total lack of humanity as
well as giving international prosecutors concrete evidence to argue for tougher convictions.
Jomana Karadsheh has the details and I must warn you, her report contains disturbing and graphic video. If you'd like to look away, please do now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Answering the call to unite under one flag. This is the source of our glory.
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It was an ISIS hallmark. Slick media productions terrorizing the world. It's what they wanted us to
see. But not this.
CHRIS ENGELS, COMMISSION FOR INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE AND ACCOUNTABILITY: This film is different. This film is Islamic State without Islamic State
knowing it was being filmed.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): Never before seen video inside the groups headquarters in the Syrian city of Aleppo in 2013, a children's hospital
turned into a house of horrors. CCTV video that captures the reality of the Islamic State, where torture was routine.
Hundreds of Syrians were held in this makeshift prison. Many never made it out to tell their stories. Others did, including some western hostages with
chilling accounts of what they survived and witnessed.
DIDIER FRANCOIS, FRENCH JOURNALIST: We could hear the Syrian prisoners in the first places where we were detained in the Aleppo hospital for
instance. We could see some of them in the corridors. And we could see some people lying in their blood.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): This video is much more than just a snapshot of ISIS' reign of terror.
ENGELS: As a normal state of affairs, the hospital had CCTV running. The members of the Islamic State didn't realize that this was being recorded in
the background and didn't think too much about it.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): And the cameras rolled for months, capturing scenes like this: a captive left hanging in a stressed position,
blindfolded detainees marched down the hallway. Here, a fighter laughing as he pushes down the head of a handcuffed and hooded detainee.
These only a few of the clips shared exclusively with CNN by the Commission for International Justice and Accountability, CIJA.
ENGELS: This is exactly the type of treatment that we've heard about from survivors. Right?
What makes this important is, as you see right there, the -- the Islamic State member without a mask on walking down the hall, that's a person that
would normally try and hide his face outside.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): We've blurred faces to preserve ongoing investigations and possible future prosecutions.
ENGELS: That's incredible evidence at trial for several of these individuals who have been identified.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): According to Engels, fighters from all over the world, including senior members from Europe and the U.S., were operating in
the facility. This video, he says, has already been used to identify a French suspect.
Evidence gathered has long allowed them and law enforcement in various Western countries to identify and track down ISIS members who fled. Before
the fall of ISIS' so-called caliphate, CIJA's war crimes investigators worked undercover collecting evidence like this from the battlefields in
Syria and Iraq.
ENGELS: It's often the case that domestic law enforcement and prosecutorial authorities have enough evidence to prove that they were a
member. What we think is important is that, wherever possible, we're able to prosecute them for the torture, for the kidnapping, for the murder.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): This is not just about the past. ISIS remains a top global security threat.
ENGELS: These are individuals that have already proven that they are a threat. And we don't want to give them the opportunity to decide to go down
that path again.
We've had several hundred requests for information. Our law enforcement partners have not at all forgotten about the conflict.
KARADSHEH: Just before dawn on January 17, heavily armed Dutch police descended on the street in the village of Arkel. They raided a house and
arrested a man suspected of having been a senior ISIS commander in Syria.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): His arrest in the small, sleepy town where he lived a quiet life with his wife and children shocked the nation. Residents
here were reluctant to speak to us about the suspect, identified as Ayham S.
He allegedly operated in Damascus, not Aleppo, so it wasn't the CCTV video that led to his arrest. It was a tip from a Syrian NGO and witness
testimony that triggered a years-long Dutch investigation.
Sources say he had a long history of extremism in Syria, holding leadership positions first within an al-Qaeda affiliate and later, ISIS. Ayham S., who
rejects the government's accusations, now faces life in prison.
MIRJAM BLOM, LEAD PUBLIC PROSECUTOR: He had a leading position within the terrorist organizations.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): Mirjam Blom is the lead public prosecutor on the case. She's charged him with two counts of membership in terror
organizations, with the aim to commit war crimes.
BLOM: In order to charge him with separate war crimes, like execution or violent arrest or torture, you need more evidence than indications.
KARADSHEH: So this is ongoing and --
BLOM: We have -- we have investigations still going on, yes.
KARADSHEH: Was he hiding?
BLOM: He was not hiding. He was just living here openly.
People like him and also war criminals like him come to the Netherlands, hiding in the legitimate stream of refugees. And to be able to -- to
investigate and prosecute those cases, it's very -- very important aspect in our mission, not to be a safe haven for war criminals.
KARADSHEH (voice-over): The trail of terror ISIS left behind will haunt not only their victims but those who tormented them -- Jomana Karadsheh,
ANDERSON: You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD, I'm Becky Anderson. Time here in Abu Dhabi is 6:35. More news just ahead. Stay with us.
ANDERSON: Let's get you to the U.K. Birmingham, Britain's second largest city, says it doesn't have the money it needs to balance its budget and is,
in effect, bankrupt. It is shutting down all non-essential spending for more than 1 million residents while it tries to make up the snowfall.
The council says that long-running equal pay claims and successive funding cuts by the central government are to blame. I want to bring in Anna
Stewart, who is in London.
What's happened here?
ANNA STEWART, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This isn't actually the first time that a local government council has effectively declared bankruptcy but this is
Britain's second biggest city after London.
It's not what you'd expect. For this city council, this local government association essentially, its not just the general financial strains. But in
addition to that what's really pushed them to the edge -- and I suspect over it -- is an historic equal pay claim pertaining to female employees in
They lost a big case in the supreme court and apparently they need to pay between $800 million and $950 million related to the claim. They've already
paid $1.4 billion relating to the claim so they've done well in that sense.
But they think they will have a deficit this year of $109 million. So they filed a section 114 notice, effectively declaring bankruptcy and they just
won't be doing any new spending or anything that is not essential. That still means people's rubbish will be collected. Schools will be open,
libraries will be open.
STEWART: Roads will be maintained. So I don't think people in Birmingham are currently at panic stations. But perhaps you should send me there and I
will do some original reporting from the streets.
ANDERSON: OK. I will give you permission to do that. Listen, I understand the blame game has emerged from this. The council is not blaming its poor
record on equal pay. Tell us what is going on here.
STEWART: Of course, it is not just blaming its very poor record. It has been a whole host of things, including a new I.T. system.
It is blaming increases in adult social care spending that been a big issue here; decreasing business rates, inflation and unsurprisingly for a Labour
majority council, it's also blaming the ruling Conservative Party.
This is a quote from that deputy leader of the council. She says that the council "had 1 billion pounds of funding taken away by successive
We also have a quote from the spokesperson of the leading party, the Conservatives and the U.K. prime minister, Rishi Sunak, which says that,
effectively, "Clearly, it is for locally elected councils to manage their own budgets."
So, yes, we have a very typical political blame game going on. There's a serious issue here, though. The chair of the local government association
has said that councils in England do face a funding gap of almost 3 billion pounds over the next three years.
So this might be something that we see happening again, local councils really been pushed to the brink -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes, probably not just in the U.K. But that is the story that we are reporting on today and we appreciate your time, thank you very much
Legal action has been taken against the president of Spain's football federation. Jenni Hermoso from the women's national team has now filed a
complaint with Spain's prosecutor's office. She has accused Luis Rubiales of kissing her without her consent. Amanda Davies joins me now.
And this certainly adds another layer to what has been, what, a sort of ongoing saga now for I feel like more than two weeks.
AMANDA DAVIES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, very much. August 20th was when the unsolicited kiss took place. Of course amidst the celebrations of Spain
winning that first Women's World Cup trophy.
But this is perhaps a significant development, because it means that the president of the Spanish football federation, Luis Rubiales, yes,
suspended, of course, by world football's governing body but he could face criminal charges.
Spanish prosecutors said last week that they were going to give Jenni Hermoso 15 days to file a complaint if she so wanted. They made it clear at
that point that was a complaint that could lead to sexual aggression charges.
So the Spanish prosecutors have said they will be issuing another update. That is all we know as things stand. But this is a story that just goes on
and on and on in so many different levels of course. Spain have a new woman's head coach and we have got news of that and the other developments
coming up in a couple of minutes.
ANDERSON: As you rightly point out, this is a significant development. More on that in "WORLD SPORT" as Amanda says, coming up after the short
break. We are back top of the hour for you.