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Early Start with John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin

Russia Launches Another Round of Missiles at Ukraine; NYC Mayor Adams Declares Emergency Over Influx of Migrants; ISIS Expanding into Mozambique, Escalating Natural Gas Insecurity. Aired 5-5:30a ET

Aired October 11, 2022 - 05:00   ET



CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: All right. Welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. It is Tuesday, October 11th. I'm Christine Romans.

Just into CNN, Russia has launched a new round of strikes across Ukraine. Air raid sirens have been heard in multiple regions. The Ukrainian armed forces claim this latest barrage was launched from two Russian aircraft, and that four Russian aircraft have been shot down. The new attack, after a storm of Russian missiles rained down on Ukraine Monday morning.

International security editor Nick Paton Walsh is live in Ukraine for us.

And, Nick, what can you tell us about these new strikes?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR: It's still early days for precisely what is furtive at the moment. I should caution that by this point yesterday, we had seen a significantly larger amount of Russian missile strikes against Ukraine. It appears to be lesser.

Some local officials in Odessa, other areas are saying that some of these missiles have indeed been shot down. There appears to be damage to part of the energy infrastructure around him or central town called Vinnytsia, but it does seems that Russia is trying to sustain the feeling of constant threat that the Ukrainians lived with throughout much of yesterday. Certainly many people in the country, awoken by the alert on their phones in the morning, warning of the possibility of strikes all day.

Yesterday's death toll now at 19, and it seems dozens of people are injured. And here are the remarkable seems many Ukrainians spent yesterday injuring.


WALSH (voice-over): This was the day the war came back to all of Ukraine. The capital Kyiv, like many cities for months edging towards normal, hit by multiple missile strikes. Carnage at rush hour, central streets hit.

The target: unclear. The aim? Utter horror. Over a hundred missiles and drones.

The civilian death toll rising along with global fury, but there was nothing the Kremlin would not hit. Even this Kyiv walkway to save face from endless losses in the weekend blast that hit another bridge between Russia and Crimea.

For a few hours this morning, almost all of Ukraine's cities seemed under attack. The bus next to this crater caught by one of two missiles critically injuring five. You can see the utter ferocity of the explosion here by the hole, one of the two rockets made.

But it's also a curious question as to why this was indeed the target. It seems like this telecom facility was unused at the time it was struck. But also, too, the callous disregard for human life being shown. All these apartment blocks just within the blast radius.

This woman said she ran her two children back into the kitchen in the minutes between the two missiles. Homes here gone and winter ahead made worse by the power cuts the missiles caused, however fast the recovery is.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is terrible. It is a crime against civilians.

WALSH: Anger here some fear but also resilience echoed by Ukraine's president. There may be temporary blackouts, he said, but the confidence in our victory will never have a blackout.

Why these particular strikes? The enemy wants us to get scared, wants us to run. We can only run forward and demonstrate that at the battlefield.

Russia's brutality was always a known quantity. But Ukraine's stubborn resistance still surprises. This day, sharing a video of a soldier shooting down a missile with a shoulder launch rocket. A David who wants more advanced arm to defend itself from a weakened goliath. A call that this rare and chilling moment of terror across the country will only amplify.


WALSH (on camera): Indeed, late yesterday it appears that Ukraine got what it has long sought for, a conversation between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and President Joe Biden.


A readout from the White House saying they have pledged to supply advanced air defense systems. It is unclear what, or when, to actually vital questions people one answering here as they continue to work out precisely the extent of the damage from yesterday's strikes, probably the worst I think we've seen since the first days of the war, and again today, to brace themselves for the possibility that this might sustain.

Although I think many analysts are wondering how Russia would presumably limit its supply of cruise missiles, and the Iranian made attack drones that seem to be behind so many of their attacks yesterday. How long that they might be able to sustain the barrage we saw yesterday, or how often they can repeat it.

Back to you.

ROMANS: All right. Nick, thank you so much. Let us know what you find out about these air raid sirens this morning, thank you, sir.

All right. A top British intelligence official believes Ukraine is turning the tide against exhausted Russian forces. Sir Jeremy Fleming set to give a speech in which he will claim Moscow is running out of ammunition, as Russia faces staggering losses of troops and equipment.

CNN's Salma Abdelaziz now joins me from London this morning.

What do we know about this British intel assessment, Salma?

SALMA ABDELAZIZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: So, this is significant because these speeches are quite rare. As you mentioned, it comes from Britain's top intelligence officer. We are expecting that statement in a few hours time, about 3:00 p.m. global time.

But I do have excerpts from that speech that will be given. Essentially, the picture he is going to paint's of Russian forces with low morale, exhausted, running out of steam, running out of ammunition. A Russia that is absolutely on the back foot, and is paying the price for this invasion in Ukraine.

Actually I have a portion I want to read it directly to you here. The cost to Russia -- in people and equipment are staggering. We know -- and Russian commanders on the ground know -- that their supplies and munitions are running out. Russian forces are exhausted.

It really paints a bleak picture of that battlefield. It very much reflects what we have seen over the last couple of months. Of course, a lightning strike counteroffensive by Ukrainian forces that has been able to recapture thousands of square miles of territory, a Moscow that is running out of shoulders -- soldiers on the ground, just over one week ago, Putin calling for that partial mobilization, bringing tens of thousands of soldiers, which again, this British intelligence officer is going to say are not well-trained, are low level conscripts, bringing tens of thousands of fresh soldiers on the battlefield.

Another portion that really stood out to me, in the excerpts of this statement, speaking about President Putin's decision-making. Sir Jeremy Fleming is going to say that in the absence of any dissent around President Putin, in the absence of any challenging voices, he has been left with bad strategy, bad decision making on the ground.

Now all of this might paint a good picture for Ukraine, but what we are seeing over there, and you just heard from our colleague, nick, sometimes that means the Kremlin turns to ever more brutal tactics, to ever more indiscriminate tactics, in the absence of a battlefield victory, will they civilians suffer is the question.

ROMANS: All right. Salma, thank you so much that.

Let's bring in CNN global affairs analyst Kim Dozier. She is an international affairs fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

Good morning, Kim.

You know, this is a furious Vladimir Putin who has vowed a harsh response to what he sees as an attack on Russia, from Ukraine when it is the Ukrainian civilian targets, and infrastructure targets clearly being hit in this large scale air assault. How do you interpret Vladimir Putin's response over here?

KIM DOZIER, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Well, I think part of this, Christine, is about silencing his critics, back in Moscow, and some of them actually deployed, the military blogger, some of them deployed with Russian troops who have been criticizing the way that the war has gone. And also, to silence all that conversation about Ukraine's recent victories, including the successful attack, we presume by Ukraine, although they have not claimed it on the bridge to Crimea, that Putin himself had inaugurated.

So Putin is feeling vulnerable. This barrage of weapons was a way to also signal to the Ukrainians, you might think that you are winning, but we still have weapons in our arsenal, despite what the head of GCHQ says.

Lastly, I think that it is a morale boost, or unintended morale boost to those conscripts that are being sent in with few supplies. Some have been told to supply their own military supplies as they deploy to a bloody war in Ukraine. I think if you are that person, heading into that conflict and you have seen Ukraine's advances, it's been a gut punch and Moscow wanted to change that.


ROMANS: What do you make of this, I guess the military resources that Vladimir Putin has at this point. He's got a new military member in charge of the effort, he named someone new to the war effort, you have this assessment from the U.K. they could be running out of ammunition? What do you make of where they stand on that front?

DOZIER: Well, it is what kind of ammunition they seem to be running out of, especially their smart bombs, some of those have components that Russia used to rely on the West to provide. So they are having trouble with the supply chain, replenishing those stalks.

Now, of course, Iran is stepping in, providing things like the smart drones that we heard about in Nick's report. But that is not enough to make up for the shortfall. The problem is Russia still has a number of old, Soviet-era docks, the dumb bombs. That's what they have been using increasingly.

And the appointment of this new, Russian commander who made his chops in Chechnya and Syria, and has a reputation for ruthless brutality, he has got no qualms about using things that might hit civilian areas. It's also been the messaging in the past couple of days. ROMANS: All right. Kim Dozier, CNN global affairs analyst, so nice to

see you this morning, thanks for your expertise.

DOZIER: Thanks.

ROMANS: All right. The mayor of New York scrambling to build tent shelters as thousands of migrants poured into the city.

Plus, stranded fishermen, rescued at sea while fighting off a shark attack.

And a fiery debate between Ohio's two Senate candidates.


REP. TIM RYAN (D-OH): Ohio needs an ass kicker, not an ass kisser.



ROMANS: All right, New York is building tent shelters to handle the waves of migrants coming in buses, many sent by Governor Greg Abbott of Texas.

New York Mayor Eric Adams declaring an emergency, calling on Abbott and others to stop shipping people to his city.

Athena Jones has the latest.


MAYOR ERIC ADAMS (D), NEW YORK CITY: We are at the edge of the precipice.

ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): New York City, facing a crisis.

ADAMS: We need serious partnership, and realistic solutions.

JONES: Mayor Eric Adams declaring a state of emergency, as the nation's largest city struggles to house thousands of migrants in an already overstretched shelter system. At least 17,000 migrants seeking asylum have been bussed to New York from the southern border since April. And the city expects to send at least one billion dollars by the end of the fiscal year, dealing with the influx.

It is not about an American dream, more than anything, a dream for my family back in Venezuela. The children we share, work hard, follow the legal route to asylum.

If migrants continue to arrive, the current rate, the mayor warns the city's shelter population, now out near capacity at a record 61,000 people, could top 100,000 people in the year to come. The mayor said 42 hotels have been set up as emergency shelters, and 5,500 migrant children have enrolled in schools. Adams is calling for emergency federal and state aid. He also wants

assistance with expedited work permits, a national strategy to slow the flow of asylum seekers, and a resettlement strategy, to better share the burden among cities.

ADAMS: This is a humanitarian crisis, that started with violence and instability in South America. And it is being accelerated by American political dynamics. Thousands of asylum seekers have been bussed into New York City simply dropped off without notice, coordination or care.

JONES: In a move critics call a political stunt, red state governors like Greg Abbott of Texas have been sending migrants to cities like New York on announced, to highlight the strain on border states grappling with the issue. And to call attention to what those governors say is the Biden administration's failure to control the border.

GOV. GREG ABBOTT (R), TEXAS: This all began back in April, when small, little towns on the Texas border were overwhelmed by Joe Biden's border policies. They were dumping thousands of illegal immigrants into these small little towns. They were completely incapable of dealing with it, and they needed relief.

JONES: In the next few weeks, the city plans to open a large, humanitarian emergency response and release center on Randall's Island, which will house hundreds of people. The mayor warned without immediate action, the center will be full in just days. More facilities will have to be opened.

But critics have long argued, shelters are not the answer.

SERGIO TUPAC UZURIN, SPOKESPERSON, NYC ICE WATCH: The city's strategy seems to be getting the migrants to be out of sight and out of mind, when they arrive off of the buses, they tend to be told to go to the shelter system, which are prison-like conditions.

JONES: Advocates for the homeless and for migrants are pushing the city to come up with a long term, permanent housing for them.

UZURIN: The city has the budget, the state and federal government have the budget to buy out a vacant housing and underutilized hotels to house every unhoused person in New York, almost immediately, that's what we want to see.

JONES: Athena Jones, CNN, Randall's Island, New York.


ROMANS: All right. Athena, thank you for that.

Bernie Sanders is sounding alarm. He insists Democrats are making the wrong closing argument, ahead of the November midterms. And how the expansion of ISIS in Africa could affect the price that you pay for natural gas.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We are entering the $20 billion dollar natural gas plant. This has the potential to taken at least 100 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.




ROMANS: ISIS-linked militants in Africa are threatening huge natural gas reserves the world so desperately needs right now.

CNN's David McKenzie joins me live from Johannesburg, South Africa.

David, you have been on the ground reporting this region, tell us more about what is at stake here, and what you found?

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Christine, there is a race right now to let the world get alternative supply of natural gas, a critical resource for the world. That's because of the war in Ukraine. The big issue of course is that in one key zone where there is a massive find, there's an ISIS-linked militant group. We went inside the fight.


MCKENZIE (voice-over): The fight against ISIS didn't end. It shifted, in ungoverned spaces like this.


We are embedded with Rwandan security forces in northern Mozambique, battling an ISIS-linked insurgency.

The tactics are familiar, if unspeakably brutal. To sow terror, burn schools, create chaos. They have displaced nearly a million people.

Jihadi Mozambique is an extension of the Islamic state in jihad all over the world, he says, in a message posted in August.

What was it like when they attacked?

They first came to this area to spread their propaganda, they say. They melted back into the forest, and then later attacked.

In Mocimboa da Praia, a strategic port town, ISIS Mozambique arrived in force, held the territory for a year.

When I find children like this, he says, they took them back to the forest. When they find men like this, they cut off their heads. The cost of this insurgency is in blood, but also enormous treasure.

We are entering the $20 billion natural gas plant. That's the potential to take in 100 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and in a time of global gas and security, this is a massive deal. Industry analysts say Mozambique's offshore natural gas potential

could eventually rival Russia. As Europe faces out Russia's gas supply, because of the war in Ukraine, alternate sources are critical.

There is not a soul anywhere over here. It is completely empty.

When the militants attacked Palma, energy giant Total declared force majeure. Mozambique, fearing a collapse of control looked elsewhere.

In 2000, Rwandan soldiers and police invited by the government took the fight to ISIS.

Later, regional forces joined in.

General, what is the chief consideration when dealing with the insurgency like this?

RONALD RWIVANGA, BRIGADIER GENERAL, RWANDAN DEFENCE FORCE: The first thing you have to do is to defeat the insurgency the military operation but after that you must try to win hearts and minds.

MCKENZIE: It is still opaque why I want to answer the call. Aid workers and Western diplomats praised their professionalism.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As you can see -- it is at 8.7.

MCKENZIE: The displaced are tentatively moving back, bringing what belongings they can.

I heard there is peace now, so I came home, said Benjamin Thomas. That peace is fragile.

Outside of Rwanda's zone of control, the killings, the beheadings continue. Intelligence sources say the insurgents have split into smaller cells, now using improvised explosive devices.

It is not just fixing one area and pushing the problem somewhere else?

RWIVANGA: Well, you could say it is natural for the enemy to escape, to places that are less, or they feel less pressure. But all we need to do is maintain momentum, following pursuit.

MCKENZIE: The stakes are extraordinary. And they should not be ignored. The window to defeat ISIS in Mozambique, before the insurgency evolves, is likely short.


MCKENZIE (on camera): And that window is narrowing, though it must be said they are having some success against these militants. The key issue here is that the U.S. State Department officials, they are also giving people hope, providing schools, electricity, development so they do not move towards joining groups like this.

And I have to stress, this natural gas site is enormous, and could rival Russia. It is really critical they get this right -- Christine. ROMANS: Absolutely. All right. David McKenzie, thank you so much for that reporting.

All right, a strike that could shut down the freight railroad system is suddenly back on the table.

And two top Republicans headed to Georgia today to back Herschel Walker in person.