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First Move with Julia Chatterley

U.S. Secretary of State Blinken meets Israeli PM Netanyahu; CEO to Appear before U.S. Congress in March; Fed Expected to Hike Rates again this Week; Zelenskyy: Vuhledar & Bakhmut under Constant Russian Attacks; U.S. Stocks begin the Trading Week in the Red; NASA's Secret Process for Selecting Moon Mission Crew. Aired 9-10a ET

Aired January 30, 2023 - 09:00   ET




ZAIN ASHER, CNN HOST, FIRST MOVE: A warm welcome to "First Move", I'm Zain Asher in for Julia Chatterley. So good to have you with us, just ahead on

today's show terror in Pakistan more than 30 people are dead and scores injured after a suspected suicide bomb attack in a mosque the blast

occurring in Northwest Pakistan. We are live there with the very latest.

Plus, calls for calm U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrives in Tel Aviv for high level talks amid escalating violence in the region. And

Adani's anger Asia's richest man fights back against fraud allegations in a 400-page rebuttal cooling charges against his empire and attack against


Shares of Adani controlled companies are falling for a third straight session. All that and so much more here on the "First Move" but first,

let's give you as usual a quick check of the global markets U.S. futures pointing to early session losses. Europe mostly lower too but gains in

China as markets there reopen after the Lunar New Year break.

Wall Street coming off a winning week, with the NASDAQ rising more than 40, 4 percent excuse me, not 40, 4 percent. But hefty challenges await

investors in the days ahead, including an interest rate decision from the Federal Reserve the Bank of England and the ECB all of that happening this

week, closely watched earnings from Apple, Meta, Alphabet and Amazon as well.

Plus, a big U.S. first it's a busy week, this week big U.S. jobs report on Friday as well a closer look at the markets later this hour. We're the

ground level of Invesco. But first let's get straight to Pakistan that is our top story a massive explosion inside a mosque killing at least 34

people and injuring more than 120 others this happening in Northwestern Pakistan.

The Pakistani Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attacks. Sophia Saifi joins us with the very latest. Sophia, this is just or for right now

the death toll stands at 34. Of course, that number could rise. Sophia just walk us through what happened here?

SOPHIA SAIFI, CNN PRODUCER: Zain this happened during afternoon prayers in the police aligns mosque which is in the heavily secured police compound of

Peshawar city and there was a blast. The police are saying that it's probably a suicide attack. The Prime Minister has also called it a suicide

attack when he was condemning it.

We know that the ceiling itself fell in and that people were trapped in the under the rubble and they some people continue to be trapped under that

rubble. And this is a city Peshawar which has seen many such attacks in the past. And now that we're getting this claim of responsibility from the

Pakistani Taliban, which has been known for many, many heinous attacks in the City of Peshawar was specifically and of course across Pakistan.

There has been an increase in militant attacks, especially from by the TTP since the end of November last year, or when a ceasefire between the

Pakistani government and the Pakistani Taliban fell apart. The Pakistani government has often blamed its neighbor, Afghanistan for harboring the

Pakistani Taliban.

And just last month in December, there was an attempted suicide attack in the capital City of Islamabad. So over the past couple of weeks, just in

Islamabad, where I'm standing right now, there's been a heightened sense of security. They've been check post they've been paramilitary troops

wandering around in the capital.

And it has been a similar situation in the City of Peshawar. We do know that death toll could rise. And it's just a very horrible, horrific sense

of deja vu for the people of Peshawar who have seen many similar attacks happen over the past couple of years over the past decades, and they had


But ever since the fall of Kabul in the summer of 2021 the Pakistani Taliban have regrouped and has started a further series of attacks

especially in the North of Pakistan. So there had been smaller attacks on check posts on military outposts, etcetera in the North of Pakistan. But

this is a big attack that has taken place here in Pakistan and in Peshawar, Zain.

ASHER: Yes, thoughts obviously with the relatives of the victims. God knows what they're going through right now. Sophia Saifi live for us there, thank

you so much. Right, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is set to meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu after multiple deadly incidents

in the region.


ASHER: A Palestinian gunman killed seven people outside a synagogue in East Jerusalem on Friday a day after an Israeli military raid killed nine

Palestinians in the West Bank. Shortly after landing in Israel, Blinken condemned the violence and he also called for calm as well.


ANTONY BLINKEN, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: It's the responsibility of everyone to take steps to calm tensions, rather than inflame them to work

toward a day when people no longer feel afraid, in their communities and their homes and their places of worship. That is the only way to help the

rising tide of violence that has taken too many lives. Too many Israelis, too many Palestinians.


ASHER: Hadas Gold is live for us in Jerusalem. So obviously Antony Blinken is going to be spending time with Netanyahu. And Hadas, what does he need

to say? What does he really need to say Hadas, to contribute to the resumption of dialogue between both sides?

HADAS GOLD, CNN JERUSALEM CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Zain, when Anthony Blinken landed just in the last hour, so he mentioned that this was really a

pivotal moment. But really, it's more than pivotal. It's a high stakes crisis moment right now. And the sense of urgency over Secretary of State

Blinken's visit couldn't be higher right now.

There's a lot of hope that what he can do will help calm things down. But I have to say, based off of the multiple people, officials, former officials,

I've been speaking to experts, there is not a lot of optimism that what he can do can really and truly halt the cycle of violence. I think it might be

able to really, maybe lower the temperature just a little bit, but not completely halted.

Now his first visit as we speak right now, actually, he's with Benjamin Netanyahu. And we do expect to hear from both of them on some press

statements within the next hour or so. And likely he will be telling Benjamin Netanyahu that he will support Israel's right to fight terrorism

and he supports Israel's right to do that.

But he will likely want Netanyahu to moderate some of the list of actions that the Prime Minister announced that Israel will be taking in the wake of

those attacks. Things that are seen as collective punishment, for example, demolishing attacker's families, homes there are threats also to revoke the

Israeli residency and identity cards of families of attackers.

And he will also be calling on Netanyahu to rein in the settlements. There have been several reports of violent attacks by Israeli settlers in the

occupied West Bank, mainly things like burning cars and damaging homes. But if you consider also what Netanyahu is facing in domestic politics, you

know, he is now leading what's largely considered the most far right religious government in Israeli history.

And some of his Ministers who are more on the extremist edge are even pushing for more. So Netanyahu was going to essentially have to balance the

American pressure to moderate him. And then on the other side, his own domestic coalition partners that really without them, he does not have


He is not Prime Minister, and then tomorrow, Blinken will head to Ramallah where he will meet with the Palestinian leadership. And there we expect him

to put pressure on the Palestinians to resume that security coordination that the Palestinians severed on Thursday after that Israeli Military raid

in Jenin. This security coordination is seen by many as really vital to help some sense of calm.

There's a lot of fear of what will happen if that security coordination does not exist. I spoke to one retired Colonel he worries about the vacuum

that that could leave for military groups to take over but the Palestinian leadership themselves face their own domestic pressures to sever that

coordination, because for many Palestinians, they see it as just doing Israel's bidding in the Palestinian territories.

And throughout all of this, we will likely hear from Antony Blinken that the Americans still support the two state solutions. They see it as the

only way forward. But the way it feels right now is those two seem to be words on paper and no closer to reality, Zain.

ASHER: And as you point out, it's very difficult balancing act for Netanyahu where he has to sort of appear to appease the U.S. while at the

same time also appeasing his far right coalition partners as well. Hadas Gold live for us there thank you so much. I want to turn now to the savage

and deadly police beating of Tyre Nichols in the United States.

The Memphis Tennessee Police Department is permanently closing down or permanently shutting down their so called Scorpion street crime unit. The

five police officers charged with murdering Tyre were members of that unit. A warning that Sara Sidner this piece this piece that we're about to show

you her story here contains graphic images of police brutality.


SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Police body camera and surveillance video are bringing into question the initial statement made by

the Memphis Police Department regarding the brutal arrest and death of Tyre Nichols.

The initial statement writes that officers attempted to make a traffic stop for reckless driving. Further writing as officers approached the driver of

the vehicle a confrontation occurred as seen in the police body camera video. Nichols was actually pulled out of the car and thrown to the ground

tased and beaten.


SIDNER (voice over): The Memphis police department statement said that Nichols fled the scene on foot. Officers pursued the suspect and again

attempted to take the suspect into custody. While attempting to take the suspect into custody another confrontation occurred. That second

confrontation includes officers spraying him with pepper spray and punching and kicking him repeatedly.

ANTONIO ROMANUCCI, TYRE NICHOLAS FAMILY ATTORNEY: I have more and more doubts that there was any issue of reckless driving whatsoever. I think it

was a narrative. I think it was a justification for the stop, just as they pleated on some of the video that you saw in the second encounter, that

there they were saying, did you see him reach for my gun? That never happened? Those are all excuses. Those are all Lane defenses and just a

reason for what they did, which is now we know has no basis at all.

SIDNER (voice over): According to the Memphis Police, the suspects complained of having shortness of breath, at which time an ambulance was

called. Video shows Nichols propped up against a police car clearly in distress, while the officers stand around chatting with each other. Medics

arrive, but it is not until 25 minutes after Nichols is subdued that an ambulance arrives on the scene.

This is certainly not the first time that videos and evidence contradict initial police accounts that favor the officers involved. In the case of

George Floyd, the Minneapolis Police said Floyd appeared to be suffering medical distress. When in reality video evidence showed Officer Derek

Chauvin kneeling on Floyd's neck.

In the case of Breonna Taylor, the initial statement from Louisville police said she had no injuries. Even though six shots struck her, when police

entered her home using a battering ram to execute a search warrant the report also says there was no forced entry.


ASHER: That was our Sara Sidner reporting them. Alright, turning to a 400- page rebuttal the Adani group responding to fraud allegations report released last week accused the business empire of praise and stock

manipulation and accounting fraud scheme over the course of decades knocking nearly $70 billion of an Adani's market.

Cap to unpack the very detailed response 400 pages was actually. Let's bring in CNN's Anna Stewart. So just walk us through the latest in terms of

AB accusations and of course the rebuttal here.

ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: It was quite extraordinary how the financial fallout has just continued through the weekend. And you mentioned how much

money has been wiped off some of the stock. Gautam Adani, who is the rich manager, is not as rich. He's lost some $30 billion according to the

Bloomberg Billionaires index on the back of this fallout.

Now over the weekend, we had this big rebuttal from the Adani group. Now they'd already said that the allegations were baseless that said that they

were malicious. But yesterday they published this 400 plus page report. I haven't made it quite the whole way through.

But I can give you some highlights it caused the attack by Hindenburg research as rife with conflict of interest and design for Hindenburg

financial game. And I also said this will bring up a quote from you, it says it wasn't just an unwarranted attack on any specific company, but a

calculated attack on India, the independence, integrity and quality of Indian institutions and the growth story and ambition of India.

To which to that we had Hindenburg responding on Twitter saying fraud cannot be obfuscated by nationalism. They also said that the Adani report

this big rebuttal actually ignored, they say every key allegation they had. So this spat that started last Wednesday has only intensified. And at this

stage, then it's very unclear who is going to have the last word at this stage?

ASHER: Right, so what is next for Adani, I mean, it's clear that the group is not going to be able to raise the kind of money they want to go forward.

STEWART: Well, that's just it. So they're trying to raise 2.5 billion dollars by issuing new shares and that's in Adani enterprises right now

although there was a slight pop on the shares this morning. Over the last few days, the losses are so great that currently the share price is

underneath the bottom range for that share issue.

So really unclear what's going to happen, it's meant to close tomorrow? That's something we're going to have to watch the investor appetite doesn't

appear to be there at all. Not only that, but if we just go back to last Wednesday before the sort of spat really intensified.

At the heart of this there are some very serious allegations made against the Adani group in terms of fraud. And so I think another part of the story

to watch out for is whether any financial regulator gets involved and then official investigation is launched. I think investors are probably waiting

to see what happens next as well, Zain.

ASHER: All right, Anna Stewart live for us there, thank you so much. All right, the CEO of TikTok is going to be appearing before Congress in March

as American lawmakers look to scrutinize the Chinese owned video sharing app.


ASHER: Shou Zi Chew is expected to testify on the company's privacy and data security practices and its relationship with the Chinese Communist

Party. Joining me live now is CNN Paul La Monica. I mean Paul there has been so much talk of a possible TikTok ban in the U.S., which sort of seems

in a way unthinkable but just explained to us how realistic that possibility really is at this point?

PAUL R. LA MONICA, CNN REPORTER: Yes, I don't think we can rule out Zain at this point, the possibility that TikTok could be banned in the United

States. It's already being shunned by many people in government agencies; there are national security concerns, because as you point out, the parent

company ByteDance does have you know, as Chinese companies, there are worries about ties to the Chinese Communist Party.

And that is why there already had been this agreement to have TikTok in the U.S. hosted on Oracle platforms instead of ByteDance's. You know, that's

one way that TikTok was able to avoid an outright ban through an agreement.

You know, a little while ago, I think what remains to be seen Zain is what will this mean for ByteDance potentially ever going public be it in an

international market like Hong Kong or Shanghai or even the United States? This is at last check the world's most valuable startup valued at more than

$140 billion.

ASHER: Paul, also I mean, if there were to be a ban on TikTok in the EU. I mean, obviously it's very hypothetical at this point in time, but if there

were to be a ban, just how would that really change the social media landscape here in the U.S., do you think?

MONICA: It would be drastic if you had all of a sudden young people and influencers not being able to use TikTok it is obviously become a very

important tool for people to tell their stories. And I think that is something that you know, potentially could benefit companies like Alphabet

which has YouTube shorts, it could benefit Snapchat, which has been struggling lately.

And then obviously there is Meta, the Facebook owner that also owns Instagram and real so there are alternatives of course to TikTok Zain, but

TikTok clearly has just galvanized I think you know many people in the influencer community to use this platform. I think it would be a very

unpopular decision for these people --.

ASHER: You can't say that again, you know what; I must be the last person standing because I've just not gotten into TikTok at all. I don't have a

TikTok account, do you by the way?

MONICA: I do not instruct my kids wind up watching it on YouTube their exposure for TikTok is watching people--

ASHER: Then on your kids are not on TikTok.


ASHER: That is a real miracle. If your kids are not on TikTok, I don't even know how old they are but they're not on TikTok that's something that's

unheard of assuming that they are teenagers.


ASHER: Paul R. LA Monica live for us there, thank you so much. All right, still to come here on "First Move". Powell, profits and payrolls a busy

week ahead on Wall Street off the strong start the New Year, Gamma Ball, keep the rally going. We'll discuss with Brian Levitt of Invesco. Plus,

from a positive market disposition to a NASA moon shot mission who will the U.S. pick to land on the moon for the first time in decades? We'll explain

coming up.



ASHER: All right, welcome back to "First Move", U.S. stocks remain on track for a lower open as investors gear up for an extremely challenging week.

Cautious sentiment today but tech stocks are coming off a fourth straight week of gains. The NASDAQ in fact up 11 percent so far this year.

Stocks getting a boost last week from encouraging inflation data the Feds preferred measure of inflation easing to 15 month lows so that's certainly

good news there. Slowing inflation gives the U.S. Central Bank room to lighten up on rate hikes. A less aggressive quarter point rate hike

increase is widely expected from Powell and company this week.

Earnings however, remain a concern in the U.S. profit sector to post their first year over year quarterly decline since 2020. Weaker profits will

surely lead to increased slow growth fears hourly forecasts from the Atlanta Fed. So it's the economy growing at less than 1 percent annual rate

this quarter.

New data showing Germany's economy contracting in the fourth quarter as well. Let's bring in Brian Levitt, the perfect person to talk to you about

all of this. Global Market Strategist at Invesco joins us live now. So Brian cost there's so much to talk about in terms of what's going on in


I don't even know where to begin, really, but let's start with what we expect on Wednesday from the Fed, what sort of a rate hike? Are you

anticipating this time is the days of the 75 sort of basis point increases? Are those days gone? Are those days behind us now?

BRIAN LEVITT, GLOBAL MARKET STRATEGIST AT INVESCO: Yes, those days are behind us. So the market is expecting 25 basis points, I see very little

reason why the Fed would surprise the market. As you mentioned, inflation is coming down rapidly. And I'm not even sure investors realize how rapidly

it's coming down.

Yes, the 12-month percent change in the consumer price index is 6.5 percent. But if you look at the six-month percent change, it's zero. If you

look at the bond market's expectations of inflation within the tips market, it's somewhere between 2 and 2.5 percent over the next 10 years. So

inflation is becoming - and the Fed is getting closer to the end of the tightening cycle.

ASHER: OK, so does that mean that Jerome Powell is getting the soft landing that he has been dreaming of over the past year?

LEVITT: We still don't know. Right now the market is very enthusiastic about the prospects of a soft landing. I mean, interest rates have gone up.

What foreign after this week 475 basis points in 9, 10 months, that's a lot. And yet the unemployment rate remains low consumer spending is hanging

in there.

I think it's a little bit too optimistic to think that the economy can go through all of this tightening with not without having some incidents. So

the economy is to slow, that's what the Fed wants. Will we have a recession, there's a reasonable probability of it.

But what I think matters more for investors is that the market is largely priced it in. The S&P 500 fell peak to trough from January 3 to October 16

of last year 25.4 percent. That's very much in line with how markets decline around are associated with relatively mild recessions.

ASHER: So if you're Jerome Powell, what do you need to see before sort of pausing rate hikes entirely? What would you need to say?

LEVITT: I've already seen it. So what I would have needed to see was long term inflation expectations, get back into the twos. That has absolutely

happened; I would need to see directionally the consumer price index rollover, which it has. You've never seen in U.S. history where inflation

went up rapidly that it didn't come down just as rapidly.


LEVITT: If I was Jerome Powell now I would be concerned about over tightening the same way in 2021. They were too easy I would be concerned

now about over tightening, all the telltale signs of a decline in inflation are there.

ASHER: OK, so jobs report day Friday, what are you expecting?

LEVITT: This economy continues to hang in there. So I wouldn't expect anything robust that is particularly disconcerting for the Fed. I would

expect around average fairly modest job growth, which is fine. Clearly the bigger issue is going to be what's happening with wages, you are seeing

some signs of wages slowing, which is important.

Now, some would say how could that be, if you talk to a restaurant owner, or you know, somebody that works at a hotel or somebody that works for an

airline, it's hard to get workers. That's absolutely true, but the tech sector is starting to shed some state shed easy for me to say shed some


ASHER: That's a tongue twister.

LEVITT: The financial sector, seeing wages come down from the prior year. So that's all pointing towards a moderation, which is what we hope to see

in the data, which will give the Federal Reserve even more comfort to be done with their tightening stance, perhaps by February or March of this


ASHER: And you know, Brian, you know, I'm glad you brought up the tech sector, because when you think about the interest rate hikes we've seen

over the past year, what sort of impact just pulling back slightly? What sort of impact has all of that had on tech stocks?

LEVITT: Yes, I mean, think about it this way, when tech stocks were roaring, and I'm not talking about the bellwethers, I'm talking even the

speculative technology companies, interest rates were zero. And so in a zero rate world investors are willing to speculate on a lot of things,

whether that's tech stocks, crypto NFTs, anything else in a 4 percent interest rate?

Well, that's a big difference, because now I have an alternative, right? I have a burden to hand type of investing and as result valuations on those

types of things come down. If you look at the tech sector, valuations have come down a lot. In fact, the earnings yield on a growth index, the Russell

1000 growth is about in line with the 10-year treasury which suggests valuations are now once again reasonable relative to bonds as rates come


Now, they're not going to come down rapidly. But over time as rates come down, that starts to become more supportive of the growth part of the

market and technology stocks because as rates come down, it's pointing to a, you know, ultimately a more modest long term growth environment.

ASHER: Right, Brian Levitt, so good to see you. Thank you so much for being with us early in the morning we appreciate it.

LEVITT: Thank you.

ASHER: All right still to come here on "First Move", I speak with the CEO of Ukraine's third largest mobile network provider working to keep the

country connected despite war and an ongoing energy supply crisis incredible, that story next.




ASHER: All right, Former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says that Russian President Vladimir Putin once threatened him with a missile strike.

Johnson said it happened during the phone call before Russia's invasion of Ukraine last year. A short clip was released as a preview to the BBC

documentary, Putin versus the West.


BORIS JOHNSON, FORMER BRITISH MINISTER: He sort of he threatened me at one point and said, you know, Boris, I don't want to hurt you. But with a

missile, it would only take a minute or something like that. You know but I think from the very relaxed tone, that he was taking the sort of air of

detachment that he seemed to have. He was just planning along with my attempts to get into negotiate.


ASHER: All right, the Kremlin coming out and saying that Johnson's claim that you've just heard there in the part of that documentary there they're

calling it a lie. Meantime, in Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with the Danish Prime Minister in Southern Ukraine Monday.

The two visited wounded Ukrainian soldiers in a local hospital. Mr. Zelenskyy says that Russia hopes to drag out the war to exhaust Ukrainian

forces and has renewed his pleas for more firepower as his country braces for another Russian offensive.


VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT: Russia hopes to drag out the war and exhaust our forces. So we have to make time our weapon. We have to

accelerate developments. We have to speed up the supply and launch of new necessary military options for Ukraine.


ASHER: Mr. Zelenskyy noted that the situation is very tough, especially on the Eastern front lines the Donetsk region, which has been under constant

attack in recent days. Let's talk to our Sam Kiley joining us live now from Kyiv. So as the Ukrainians continue to sort of hold the light in Bakhmut,

just explain to us Sam what sort of weaponry are they relying on here as they wait for the leopard two tanks to arrive?

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's all - it is - I mean, in the view of many international analysts, military experts, of

course, President Zelenskyy's statement that the Russians are playing for a longer game than the Ukrainians could potentially sustain is almost a

statement of the obvious.

The Russians have the advantage Zain in terms of personnel, and in terms of weapons in terms of the quantity rather than the quality. And this is the

key issue, the leopard tanks, or challenger tanks from the United Kingdom.

The leopards of course, the German made tank, could be very, very useful indeed for the Ukrainian effort, but they really need the ability to defend

their skies against the cruise missile attacks in particular that are coming so regularly from Russia.

They have also been talking from day one of this war demanding actually; to have the right to be given aircraft because of course, the control of over

the skies is still not totally dominated at all by Russia. There is a Ukrainian Air Force, it is still conducting operations.

But if they had more modern NATO type weapons, there's a lot of talk about F-16s that could be making a strategic difference. And there is a slowly

growing understanding within NATO, that the Russians by playing the long game, or freezing the front lines, roughly where they might be now.

That would effectively turn out to be a victory for Russia that the only future for Ukraine is to completely destroy the Russian army here and drive

the Russians out of the country entirely. That's not yet a full consensus in terms of what NATO leaders privately think because they're very worried

about the use of the nuclear option by Russia if Putin's forces were absolutely backed into that position.

Now there is though a growing consensus that the Ukrainians do need much more modern weapons. Now recently Chancellor Scholz of Germany said that

Germany would not be supplying aircraft.


KILEY: But that doesn't mean that other countries will not. The issue for the Ukrainian perspective is that they need it now. They need it very, very

urgently because as President Zelenskyy said, the Russians could outlast them, Zain.

ASHER: Alright, Sam Kiley, live for us there. Thank you so much. The deficits in Ukraine's power systems remain significant according to the

country's national energy company, Ukrenergo.

It says the power grid is still recovering from damage caused by Russian missile attacks. And that all the regions will be subject to power outages

as demand continues to outstrip production. Attacks on the electrical grid are also putting major strain on the country's communication network.

And that is where my next guest comes in. Lifecell is Ukraine's third largest mobile telephone network operator. And it has been on the

frontlines keeping customers connected. The company initiated the launch of a national roaming system in Ukraine, allowing users to switch networks if

theirs is temporarily unavailable.

And it's also helping to restore communication in liberated territories as well. Joining me live now is Ismet Yazici. He's a CEO of Lifecell. Ismet,

thank you so much for being with us! I mean, the work you're doing in your country is hugely vital.

I mean, it's so vital for Ukrainians to be able to communicate with each other, especially from different parts of the country during this time of

immense crisis. Just explain to us what sort of impact Russia's relentless ongoing bombardment of the power grid the energy infrastructure has really

had on the services you're trying to provide?

ISMET YAZICI, CEO, LIFECELL: First of all, thank you for having me. You know, we finished 11 months in this war and all these inhuman attacks. And

each and every day war is being escalated to newer phases.

And as the escalation is going on, people are being impacted as well for their daily lives. And being the mobile operators you know, I'm sure you

know the motto leave no man behind our biggest motto is leave no women and men behind the unconnected.

This is what we have been trying to do, not only us together with other two major mobile operators. This has been our biggest efforts from the

beginning of the war. But power cuts are really impacting us very badly. And this one also showed us that after finding shelter, and food and water

supply, the next most important need is communication.

People need to be in contact with their loved ones, families or soldiers in the army from their families. So that's why it is very, very vital to keep

the communication networks up and running. But unfortunately, these power grid attacks are putting our networks for others.

This number may go up to 50 percent of total networks are not working time to time. We have been trying to fix them of course. There is a tremendous

efforts going on by our field forces, I mean our employees and subcontractors.

And also we have been trying to buy these generators and Ilion batteries, lithium batteries. Unfortunately, there is a big shortage on both diesel

generators and lithium batteries. I have been making, you know, big announcements on the social media to everybody to all the mobile operators

in the globe.

We are asking them to send us these generators and Ilion batteries. That being said, we are not looking for donations. If we can find some diesel

generators and batteries, we are ready and happy to buy them. As I said, our biggest aim is to keep all Ukrainians connected, while they are

resisting and they have been putting in epic wars in front of the world.

ASHER: That's incredible. You talk about this idea of not needing donations that you're more than happy to buy the generators and buy the batteries

that you need. I mean, I'm sure that obviously will be it I'm sure has been an outpouring of support for your country.

Especially because as you point out, I mean, communication is vital not just in terms of obviously having family members communicate with each

other and having soldiers at times be able to communicate with their loved ones that is crucial.

But I think what is equally as important is that communication in any sort of - in any country where there's more communication is vital for morale. I

mean President Zelenskyy needs to get his message across needs to be able - needs to ensure that people - members of his country obviously he can

listen to his speeches and that is crucial for maintaining the popular support of this war right?


YAZICI: Yes, definitely. And I have to admit that Mr. Zelenskyy has been following up with all these communication related issues around the clock.

Really I'm not exaggerating. And we are getting guidance, firstly, from Mr. President.

And with all the institutions of the country or regulatory bodies, so we have been working in a great cooperation. And so far, we are also

resisting. We are also holding the line. We never left Ukrainians without any communication by all means.

ASHER: So how frequently are repairs actually needed on the ground? I imagine it must be pretty much every day?

YAZICI: Yes, unfortunately, that's the case. But of course, there is a correlation between these missile attacks or drone attacks, and our

networks' status. For the last almost two months, all the power systems power grids have been under attack.

And whenever there is a hit, tanks got Ukrainian air defense systems have been very, very successful. But at the end of today, some of the power grid

elements are being hit. And after that, as soon as the air raid sirens became silent our field teams are going to the field to start making the

connections or hundreds of our employees also the other mobile operator's employees have been running around the site with the mobile diesel

generators as well.

I mean, it is really tremendous effort. It is easy to say but I have been also personally taking part just to support my guys in the field. It is

really very, very tough job, especially when you consider the weather conditions minus 10.

ASHER: So isn't it you yourself as CEO, you've been going out into the field and helping your teams make the necessary repairs?

YAZICI: Of course. What I have done is not comparable, what the great things my teams have been doing. My point was to feel their difficulties in

the field, and also to show them my support and idealize that people are really getting motivated.

At least they know that all their great efforts are being recognized, and also known by heart. So that was my point. Of course, being one person my

contribution is going to be so limited, but at least I was proud to be in the field together with my team.

ASHER: Yes, incredible solidarity there standing shoulder to shoulder to, you know, with all the people who work for you but Ismet thank you so much

for being with us. I wish you all the best appreciate it.

YAZICI: Thank you again for having me. And let me finish with saying slow Ukraine so "Glory to Ukraine". Thank you very much.

ASHER: OK, thank you so much isn't it we appreciate it. Thank you. All right, still ahead is struggling to keep the lights on South Africa's

energy crisis deepens, we find out how people are coping next.



ASHER: Alright, welcome back to "First Move"! U.S. stocks are up and running this Monday and we've got let's see here a little bit of a - I

guess mostly lower open across the board here. NASDAQ currently down just less than 1 percent there the bulls, taking a bit of a breather clearly

ahead of key earnings and economic data later on this week.

That said it has been a strong January so far. Many of last year's stock laggards joining in the funds that lead Tesla which fell more than 60

percent last year is up more than 40 percent year to date Disney and Netflix shares which also fell significantly last year up more than 20


And it's not just the U.S. shares that are rallying major European stock market are in the plus column this year as well. Meantime, let's see in

Asia, Chinese stocks up some 50 percent in the past three months as the country drops zero COVID regulations.

All right, South Africans have enjoyed power cuts for years but 2022 was the worst on record. More than 200 days of rolling blackouts the government

is struggling to keep the lights on I mean look at this. I mean this is literally I believe Johannesburg completely in the dark.

The energy crisis is crippling major cities there and also businesses as well. CNN's David McKenzie reports here. We want to warn you that some

viewers may cite find some of the images we're about to show you rather disturbing?


DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): tens of thousands of dead birds suffocated when the power failed and surges blew the backup systems.

It's the awful impact of a country in crisis.

MCKENZIE (on camera): So when you saw thousands of chickens die like this, what was it like for you?

HERMAN DU PREEZ, OWNER, FRANGIPANI FARMS: Glass of cold water in your face? It was so bad. I never thought it would happen to me.

MCKENZIE (voice over): Herman Du Preez has struggled for months with up to 10 hours of rolling blackouts a day. He can't hide his anger at the


DU PREEZ: I'm not asking them to do me a favor. Really I don't. I will do my job. I will produce food. I'll wake up early work on Sundays to produce

food for South Africa. I like what I'm doing. Just do your job. You have one thing to do, just do it. Just give us power please.

MCKENZIE (voice over): The power is in short supply. The farm that Du Preez and his father built from scratch now runs at a loss during the worst

blackouts. He says diesel costs could sink them.

MCKENZIE (on camera): The President himself has admitted that corruption, sabotage or lack of skills has caused this issue. Why should this

government then be trusted to fix it?

VINCENT MAGWENYA, PRESIDENTIAL SPOKENSPERSON: Well, David, as you know, this problem predates President Ramaphosa's time in government.

MCKENZIE (voice over): Even the President now acknowledges that decades of mismanagement and breathtaking corruption, crippled state owned power

utility, Eskom a lack of maintenance, a deep skills deficit, and regulatory red tape have all helped cause this crisis.

MCKENZIE (on camera): I'm going to repeat the same question, which is why should South Africans trust the government that caused this problem to fix

this problem?

MAGWENYA: We accept those mistakes. I've said it and the President has said it numerous times that there were massive, regrettable policy missteps that

led us to where we are now. However, now we're focusing on the solution and the opportunities that have been presented by this crisis.

MCKENZIE (voice over): Not everyone is buying it. The official opposition is calling for mass action.

MCKENZIE (on camera): You can sense the growing frustration in South Africa already this crisis isn't just inconvenient for people. It can kill the

dreams of a better future.

MCKENZIE (voice over): A better future is what Thando Makhubo and his family strives for.

MCKENZIE (on camera): Are you proud of your son?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes I am. But we used to fight a lot.


MCKENZIE (voice over): Thando turned a small government COVID grant into the Soweto Creamery. It's a huge hit here, thanks to the whole Makhubo

family. But when the power goes out, their profits evaporate.

THANDO MAKHUBO, SOWETO CREAMERY: So no, I'm about to turn on the generator.

MCKENZIE (voice over): Their plans to expand put on hold.

MCKENZIE (on camera): What do you want the government to do?

MAKHUBO: I want the government to be brutally honest with us. If they are able to fix it, please fix it. If they can't, they must let us know. And it

makes us feel that we are not really in a democracy, because it's meant to be for the people by the people, but it's unsafe for them by them, you


MCKENZIE (on camera): At the very least Thando and all South Africans just desperately want the lights to be turned back on David McKenzie, CNN,

Soweto, South Africa.


ASHER: All right, still to come here on "First Move", it has been more than 50 years since NASA sent astronauts to the moon. Let's take a look at who

could be going next after the break.


ASHER: Fly me to the moon. I was almost about to sing that but I thought I'd spare you instead. As NASA gives up to announce its first crew to blast

off to the moon in five decades, CNN has actually gained an exclusive inside look at the secret selection process as well as a list of possible


Kristin Fisher joins us live now. So Kristin, looks like this process is actually such a secret. I mean, it's such a secret in terms of figuring out

who might be getting sent to the moon but just explained to us who are the possible candidates on the list?

KRISTIN FISHER, CNN SPACE CORRESPONDENT: Sure. Well Zain, it's such a secret because it's kind of been this way at NASA since the very beginning.

Since those first Mercury Astronaut flight assignments were done in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

Over the years, it's gone through periods of being more transparent and less transparent. And the reason that there is so much secrecy around this

crew selection process Zain is because one it's very complicated. There are a lot of very small factors that go into it.

But the real reason is that you know there is just such a high talent pool here. I mean, Zain, these astronauts, there are 41 active astronauts at

NASA right now currently in the running for this Artemis II crew. They're already the best of the best. They've already gone through the astronaut

selection process beaten out thousands of candidates for these 41 slots. Most of them have already flown in space.

And so it's just very tough when you're dealing with this high quality of candidates to whittle it down. And so some of the deciding factors that CNN

has uncovered after interviews with about a dozen current and former NASA officials and astronauts is that it really comes down to a combination of

technical expertise, are you a team player.


FISHER: But they also really want diversity and Zain I'm not just talking about racial and gender diversity that that is very important too but also

professional diversity. They want a really solid mix of test pilots and citizen astronauts.

So based on that list, based on those conversations with those dozen or so officials, I was able to figure out who are some of the top contenders that

are receiving the most buzz inside NASA and I want to pop up on our screen. If we've got them, it's a wide mix of people.

You have everybody from Randy Bresnik to Victor Glover, Jeremy Hansen, Christina Koch, Anne McLean, Jessica Meir, Stephanie Wilson, and Reid

Wiseman all of them except one have flown on spaceflights before.

And you know the big question Zain is, you know, will Washington's leadership will the NASA administrator have a say in this process? And what

we have learned is that he told CNN that no he will not; he is going to leave this decision for this very critical crew assignment with the folks

at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas Zain.

ASHER: Oh Gosh, I can't imagine what it would be like getting that phone call saying that you are actually going to the moon incredible.

FISHER: I know.

ASHER: All right, Kristin Fisher, live for us there! Thank you so much. And that is it for the show. I'm Zain Asher. "Connect the World" is up next.