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Isa Soares Tonight

EU Agrees To Gas Reduction To Counter Russia; Trump Returns To Washington; Russia To Withdraw From International Space Station; Russia Launches New Strikes On Black Sea Region; Griner's Hash Oil Requires "Further Study"; Russia's To Withdraw From ISS Partnership; Going Green; Congress Of Aboriginal Peoples Welcomes Pope's Apology; Jellyfish Cover Israel's Coast. Aired 2-3p ET

Aired July 26, 2022 - 14:00   ET



ISA SOARES, HOST, ISA SOARES TONIGHT: A very warm welcome to the show everyone, I'm Isa Soares. Tonight, the European Union reaches a gas

reduction deal, will it be enough to prepare for the possibility of Russia weaponizing energy. Then Trump is back in Washington for the first time

since leaving the presidency. What we expect him to say as the January 6 investigations rumble on.

And then later, Russia says it will withdraw its cosmonauts from the International Space Station. I'll speak to a former astronaut about what

that could mean. All that in just a moment, but first, Russia is launching new strikes on Ukraine's Black Sea region just before the first shipments

of critical grain exports are due to resume.

The mayor of Mykolaiv says port infrastructure was damaged in a massive missile strike today, the city's outskirts were also hit. Another attack

targeted the Odessa region, leaving this devastating, as you can see there, aftermath. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says there are no bases or troops

in the villages, Zatoka. Just people who quote, "rested and lived".

The EU meantime is trying to stave off what it considers economic warfare by Russia. Members voted to cut their gas use by 15 percent starting next

week, as Russia squeezes supplies in retaliation for western sanctions. Let's begin our coverage this hour with CNN's Ivan Watson in Odessa. And

Ivan, what more can you tell us this hour about the attacks near where you are? And critically, what this means for those grain exports that we were

just mentioning?

IVAN WATSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the Zatoka attack is outside of Odessa. It is farther down the coast to the southwest, so it

wouldn't immediately impact the grain exports. And Ukrainian officials have said that Saturday mornings rocket attacks here in Odessa did not hit,

damage the specific technology, the infrastructure that's needed for grain export.

And the big question is going to be, where does it go from here? Will both sides truly adhere to their agreement and let cargo ships out in the midst

of this vicious war. I've been reporting on the southern front in the east, the Ukrainians have lost some territory in recent days of fierce fighting,

but they say they are inching forward here along the southern front.


WATSON (voice-over): Scenes from Ukraine's southern front during the first months of the war. Footage shared exclusively with CNN shows Ukrainian

senior lieutenant Andrii Pidisnyi hiding in shell craters, flying a drone to call in artillery strikes on Russian physicians. But the team of

spotters also narrowly escapes long-range fire from the Russian military.

Months after filming these videos, Pidisnyi is still fighting on the southern front, where he commands a company of around 100 soldiers.

(on camera): Were the Russians in this village before?


WATSON (voice-over): The Ukrainian military is fighting to claw back territory seized by what this commander describes as well prepared


PIDISNYI: It's very slow, the process, to take back all of our territories here. But step-by-step and with the help of western guns, howitzers and so

on, artillery systems, we do that.

WATSON: This month, my team and I traveled the length of the southern front from the critical port of Odessa to the edge of the Donbas region. I

spoke to people willing to risk their lives to defend their country against the Russian war machine.

In the city of Kryvyi Rih, Ukrainian forces stormed a building. It's actually a training exercise to prepare these men for one of the most

dangerous forms of modern warfare.

(on camera): In this simulation, you see how treacherous urban combat is. There are people firing through windows of neighboring buildings, grenades

going off and attackers trying to storm up the stairs.


(voice-over): The commander here was gravely wounded, pushing Russian- backed separatists out of cities in the eastern Donbas region in 2014. Eight years later, there is even more at stake. "We have a duty to liberate

our territories", he says. "This is our land and we will not give it to anyone. It's only a question of time." That confidence shared by a regiment

of frontline troops in eastern Ukraine. They show off recently-arrived British-made Land Rovers and this armored personnel carrier.

(on camera): I just noticed something, take a look over here at this tire, made in Russia. This was Russian.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was Russian car, but our soldiers fought them and take this car to --

WATSON: You captured it.

(voice-over): But the war is taking a dreadful toll here. Day and night, Russian rockets pound the frontline city of Mykolaiv, and more appears to

be on the way. Ukrainian resistance groups shared this exclusive footage with CNN taken just days ago, showing the arrival of a train full of S300,

surface-to-air missiles in the occupied southern Kherson region.

Later confirmed by the satellite images provided to CNN by Maxar(ph). Ukrainian officials accuse the Russians of repurposing these weapons to hit

Mykolaiv. But with the help of U.S. long-range rockets known as HIMARS, Ukraine has been targeting Russian ammunition depots. Senior Lieutenant

Pidisnyi says he noticed a difference on the front lines.

PIDISNYI: We had about two-three weeks, when they hadn't enough ammunition to fight us with their artillery rockets and so on. So --

WATSON: Still, he predicts it will take a long time for Ukraine to liberate an occupied southern city like Kherson.

PIDISNYI: I'm not sure that we will win until the end of this year, maybe until the end of next year, I think.

WATSON: Before I go, Pidisnyi shows me captured Russian passports and drivers' licenses.

(on camera): When did you capture these?

PIDISNYI: About some weeks ago.

WATSON (voice-over): Russian men ranging from 22 to 41 years old, who Pidisnyi speculates are now dead.

(on camera): They look like you.

PIDISNYI: Yes, they look like me.

WATSON: They have similar names.

PIDISNYI: Yes, but they are our enemies because I'm staying in my territory and they came to me to capture our territory, to kill me, to kill

maybe my parents.

WATSON (voice-over): This is what Ukrainians are fighting for.


WATSON: Now, Isa, part of the Ukrainian strategy is to put pressure on the Russians in the south, and to force them to move forces away from the east

where they've made gains to reinforce here in the south. And at the same time, to use this long-range rocket and missile systems to sever supply

lines, hitting bridges repeatedly that the Russians have to use to bring in reinforcements.

One thing we haven't addressed in this report is the toll this is taking on civilians. We are getting reports of thousands of civilians trying to

flee occupied southern Ukraine, to reach the city of Zaporizhzhia being held up in the town of Skelivka because the Russians aren't letting them

through checkpoints. That is a pattern that we've seen throughout this five-month war. Isa?

SOARES: Ivan Watson for us there in Odessa, Ukraine, thanks very much, Ivan. Now, I want to take you to that gas reduction deal announced earlier.

EU leaders having hashing out what they call is a blueprint to act together in a coordinated way if the situation just worsens. The bloc aims to reduce

demand by 15 percent. CNN's Clare Sebastian has the latest for you.


KADRI SIMSON, EUROPEAN COMMISSIONER FOR ENERGY: We have a plan that takes us safely through next Winter, towards -- through energy independence.

CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN REPORTER (voice-over): It was yet another test for European unity. The EU agreeing to work together to avoid Winter natural

gas shortages and defend themselves against what Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy calls Russia's overt gas war on Europe.


SEBASTIAN: Not easy, but increasingly urgent. Russia tightened the screws again Monday, announcing the gas flowing through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline

would be cut in half from Wednesday. Taking what was Europe's biggest gas supply route from Russia to just 20 percent capacity.

SIMSON: There's not technical reason to do so, this is a politically- motivated step.


SEBASTIAN: Russia denies this. Once a symbol of Russia EU integration, Gazprom had already slashed supplies through the Nord Stream pipeline in

June, blaming delays and the return of a turbine being repaired in Canada because of sanctions. Now it says, another turbine needs repairs.


recession. Germany has already announced stage two of its three stages in terms of gas rationing. It will be very precarious situation economically.

SEBASTIAN: Energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie says with Nord Stream pumping at 20 percent, the EU should still be able to fill its gas storage to 75

percent to 80 percent ahead of Winter. Which should leave a small amount leftover in the Spring. That is, unless it's an unusually cold Winter. In

the end, getting this deal done meant compromising. If the EU does have to trigger an alert, and make the voluntary cuts mandatory, some countries

will be exempted or be given lower targets.

SIKELA: Firstly, there is a derogation for Baltic states, whose electricity system is synchronized with Russia. A derogation for islands

member states who are filling their gas storages for critical industries, states with limited interconnections, temporary increased consumption of

gas and electricity production.

SEBASTIAN: Cracks in the deal are already appearing, Hungary already calling the agreement completely unacceptable. And even with these

measures, Europe is now at the mercy of mother nature, praying for a mild Winter. Clare Sebastian, CNN, London.


SOARES: Let's get more on this story, I want to bring in CNN global economic analyst Rana Foroohar to dig down on this. Rana, great to have you

on the show. Well, Clare Sebastian was just outlining there, Europe really trying to show a united front, but clearly, there are fractures like cracks

like she mentioned, and that's only natural, given the different positions they come from. But what do you make of the deal and this 15 percent? Does

that even go far enough, Rana, at this point?

RANA FOROOHAR, CNN GLOBAL ECONOMIC ANALYST: Well, you know, I don't think it goes far enough in terms of solving the energy crisis, but --

SOARES: Yes --

FOROOHAR: Frankly, you can't imagine going any farther politically, and as you point out, it's unclear whether the European nations are going to be

able to sort of get over the devil in the details of this agreement. You know, I'm struck by the fact that there are already countries, you know,

like Spain for example that are saying to others like Germany, well, we haven't been living outside of our own energy means. You know, and that's

sort of a play on the last euro zone crisis --

SOARES: Yes --

FOROOHAR: Where Germany was saying that countries like Spain were living outside their means. All of it simply underscores the fact that Europe has

yet to become a really politically-unified bloc. And that's something that always flares up in crisis, be it financial or climate or political and

energy-related as it is now.

SOARES: Yes, for a lot of these southern countries, Spain included, Portugal, there's a lot of the shuddering for it moment, wasn't it? Given



SOARES: All the crisis, the economic crisis that we've all covered. But you know, the question they will be asking themselves no doubt, Rana, is,

can they build up its storage ahead of this Winter? And this is something that Clare touched on. Do you think this will help them through the Winter?

Because this is about storage now, how much they can store ahead of this Winter --

FOROOHAR: Yes. Yes, it's going to help, but let's be honest, the ability of Europe to source much more spare capacity at this point is --

SOARES: Yes --

FOROOHAR: Pretty limited. You know, I mean, Japan, South Korea, the Asian countries that actually could funnel extra liquid natural gas into the

continent have done so, the U.S. Itself is pretty much tapped out, so I'm not sure that unless all the stars line up, unless there is a mild Winter,

unless there is not a more extreme political reaction on the part of Russia really cutting off even more supplies --

SOARES: Yes --

FOROOHAR: That Europe is going to be OK. It's very much up for grabs.

SOARES: Yes, too many unknowns, but some would have said --


SOARES: No, the writing was on the wall right from the beginning. This is something that, you know, we have seen before and it's happening again. But

what does this mean, Rana, for the likes of Germany, of course, and it's kind of its heavy industry. I know they started --


SOARES: To reduce its dependence on Russian gas from the beginning of the war, so in what? Less than 6 months or so ago. But it still imports, of

course, a third of its gas from Russia.

FOROOHAR: Yes, my understanding is that it would take 18 months to 2 years for Germany to even, you know, contemplate being off of Russian natural

gas. Oil you can get off of, natural gas, no. So, we're looking at a very volatile couple of years on the continent. Of course, this is happening at

a time when the rest of the world is beginning to slow, China has a real estate crisis.


The U.S. may be in a technical recession this week. So it's going to be a long cold Winter, just as it is a long hot Summer at the moment.

SOARES: Yes, and of course, while some countries here in Europe may not be impacted by gas, supply disruption because of course, there may be limited

in terms of imports. The reality is, I was looking at the gas prices today, is that they face higher gas prices. I think it's up, something like 20

percent in the last two days, and then on top of that, Rana, you have inflation.

FOROOHAR: Oh, yes, absolutely. And that's again, a global phenomenon, not only in Europe, but the U.S., the stronger dollar has been sort of

exporting inflation to the rest of the world through demand and supply chain clogging. So, Europe is in a tough spot, a really tough spot. And I

think, I mean, my hope, frankly, for the continent and particularly for Germany would be a real rethink of energy policy.

SOARES: Yes --

FOROOHAR: You know, anybody could have seen this coming down the pipe. There were a lot of vested interest in government and in industry that

allowed these pipeline deals to go forward. And I think there is a lot of regret at this point.

SOARES: Could you think that the impact on Europe in gas could boomerang to the United States? It could have that impact?

FOROOHAR: Well, I think that European companies are suffering, U.S. companies are suffering, there is just kind of a perfect storm right now of

factors globally, it's hard to find a silver-lining amidst all of this. So you know, we are in for what may be a synchronized global recession with

stagflation. We haven't been --

SOARES: Yes --

FOROOHAR: In a place like that since the 1970s. So, yes, I think that nobody is expecting good news economically in the next 18 months to 2


SOARES: Yes, and if we think it looks pretty dire already, the IMF apparently today said it's going to get far worse --

FOROOHAR: I know that --

SOARES: Next year, right. Rana Foroohar, always great to get your insight, Rana, appreciate it, thank you.

FOROOHAR: Thank you.

SOARES: And still to come tonight, Britain gets closer to finding out who its next prime minister will be as the two final candidates go head-to-

head. But there was a dramatic moment during the debate, we'll bring you that, next.



SOARES: Welcome back. Now, the president who refuses to acknowledge he lost the election in 2020, well, he's back in Washington. Donald Trump is

scheduled in the coming hour to deliver the keynote address at a Convention of Conservatives. It is the first time Trump has been back in the nation's

capital since he very reluctantly left the White House in January 2021.

CNN has learned his speech is expected to focus on policy. U.S. national correspondent Kristen Holmes is awaiting Trump at the AFPI Summit in

Washington D.C. Kristen, so, is this him on the comeback trail? What are we expecting to hear here, I know it's a bit loud where you are.

KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN U.S. NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, look, we have seen him hint at these talk about a 2024 run. In one interview, he basically

said it wasn't a matter of if he was going to run, but when he was going to make an announcement. So, all of this is part of that. Now, we are told

that this is supposed to be a policy speech that focuses on law and order. Republicans believe that rising crime rates will bring people to the polls

in November for those Midterm elections.

But allies and advisors are really hoping that he actually stays on message. They want him to do two things with this speech, one, set a

Republican agenda ahead of those November Midterms, and two, lay the groundwork in a real way for a presidential bid in 2024, instead of what we

have seen, which is these large-scale rallies just with its base that focus really on the past.

The last election, his grievances within the Republican Party, the grudges that he holds, they want him to move forward, to look forward. I mean,

believe that with his help, they would actually help propel them in these Midterm elections. But it remains to be seen whether or not Trump can

actually pivot to focus on the future.

We know there have been a number of speeches before this one, in which they have been slated as something else and winded up again, talking about that

2020 election, talking about the past.

SOARES: Yes, stay on message has being quite a hard thing for the former president to do. But look, as we're looking at these images and as we await

his arrival, the irony really here, Kristen, is that, he returns to Washington of course, under the cloud of the January 6th riots as those

hearings of course continue. Is there appetite within the conservative party for a return here of Donald Trump?

HOLMES: It depends on who you ask. If you talk to some lawmakers on Capitol Hill, they will say yes, there is an appetite to have a full and

robust primary. We know that there are several people who are eyeing a potential run in 2024 with the Republican Party. But the other part of that

is that those same people who say that they want to see a large competition, several people in the running for a primary also say that if

Donald Trump is the nominee, they will fall in line and fall behind him.

Now, the question is, will they fall in line before he is the nominee? If he was to --

SOARES: Yes --

HOLMES: Announce, will they get behind him? Will they actually entertain a larger primary field or would we see what they have done almost every

single time Donald Trump has gotten involved, which is fall behind him?

SOARES: I mean, clearly a test as you clearly outlining there, Kristen, for the Republican Party. But what does it mean for other likely

candidates, possible candidates? I'm thinking here of Mike Pence, I mean, how awkward will this be?

HOLMES: Well, that's the big question, is if Donald Trump announces, particularly if he announces before the Midterms, is there any oxygen left

for other candidates? And the one thing that is very striking here, you have to remember, how crazy it is when you think about the fact that Mike

Pence is here in Washington with a man that he served with for four years is miles away, giving his own separate policy speech about what he

envisions for the future of the party.

These two men do not speak anymore. And it is really unheard of that he might launch a presidential bid, that both of them would, that would be an

epic showdown in 2024. Now, those close to Mike Pence have told me that they believe there is a lane for him if he were to enter into a

presidential run. That they believe he could be Trump policy without the Trump personality. But that remains to be seen right now. Trump still does

have a lot of sway within the Republican Party.

SOARES: Kristen Holmes there from -- live for us from Washington, thanks very much Kristen, I appreciate it. Well, here in the U.K., the final two

candidates vying to be Britain's next prime minister have gone head-to-head in a second live TV debate. Former Chancellor, Rishi Sunak and Foreign

Secretary Liz Truss answer questions on funding the NHIS, the cost of living crisis as well as the conflict in Ukraine.

This is the moment the debate was disrupted by a medical issue according to "Top TV" hosting -- Ian Collins. Collins says the issue is being attended

to. Well, the second debate comes as Conservative Party members gear up to cast their vote, with the next leader due to be announced on September 5th.

Joining me here in the studio is CNN's Bianca Nobilo.


Bianca, let's start on a first of all with that incident. Do we know exactly what happened there?

BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: So, we've heard from "Top TV" which was the channel hosting the debate. The moderator Kate McCann, who was doing a

tremendous job holding them to account to an already strong performance fainted. So, there was a medical issue, and even though, apparently, she is

feeling fine now, the medical team has deemed it inappropriate to continue.

So, the debate will not resume tonight, but apparently, the candidates spoke to people in the audience instead, and that's why we had a rather

dramatic ending in the expression that we saw there, first --

SOARES: And Kate McCann as well.

NOBILO: Well --

SOARES: From what we understand --

NOBILO: The statement says she is OK.

SOARES: Wonderful. Before of course, this is the second debate. I didn't - - I'm not going to lie, I didn't watch the one yesterday. But give me -- give us a sense of what you have heard in the last two debates, because

coming into our editorial meeting today, people were surprised by the conservative poll that suggested that actually, Liz Truss has done far

better than Rishi Sunak. Your thoughts?

NOBILO: So, it was prized in by Tory members and also the public that Liz Truss was probably likely to under-perform in this campaign. And that's

because she can be gaffe-prone, she can be quite stilted, awkward, which she admits, and she actually has done in every single one of the debates.

She tends to say at the end, I know I'm not a sleek performer, I know I'm not very charismatic, but I'm straight-talking.

Whereas Rishi Sunak is the direct contrast to that. So, he's very sleek, doesn't tend to trip up on his words, charismatic, confident. what struck

me and many about the debate last night, which was the first of their direct head-to-head, now that they're the final two candidates, is the fact

that Liz Truss definitely came across as more likable, and that was mainly because Rishi Sunak interrupted her over 20 times in the debate.

He was accused of mansplaining by those in Liz Truss' camp, they know her directly. And I think his team, well, perhaps, himself, may have thought

that red is passionate about the issues, but these things translate very differently through the prism of the TV debate, and he seemed very

aggressive. And a few people actually, including MPs, have said to me today, he reminds them of that person in debate club or in politics class

at school who annoys everybody and won't stop talking. So, that's not ideal for the Sunak campaign.

SOARES: But in terms of the policies itself, what is he saying? I mean, if it was -- if there was a general election now, where would voter -- who

would voters back here?

NOBILO: Well, that's the key question, and wearing it, we are dynamic at the moment because the voters that are selecting Rishi Sunak or Liz Truss

are a fringe of conservative voters. These are die-hard conservative members. So --

SOARES: Yes --

NOBILO: Most conservative voters are not members. So, these people tend to be over the age of 50, white and male, and from a more privileged position

generally. So they have different priorities to the country at large. The main dividing line at the moment, the line in the sand between the two

candidates is about tax cuts --

SOARES: Yes --

NOBILO: Or fiscal austerity and responsibility, Sunak being the latter. And that's the main point of contrast between them. Rishi Sunak saying that

Liz Truss is talking about fairytale economics, and you have to level with people and be honest and say we paid a lot in the pandemic so we can't pass

that on to our grandchildren and our children. Liz Truss saying, people need help now, we want the economy to grow, so tax cuts are needed, and we

made a promise in the manifesto not to raise taxes, so I can't do that.

SOARES: Very quickly, how much did Sunak's, you know, turning against Boris, how much is that hurting him here, Bianca?

NOBILO: Well, that's the fascinating thing --


Because in the debate yesterday, when both candidates were pressed on Boris Johnson and his legacy, they were tiptoeing around that, and being quite

complimentary --

SOARES: Yes --

NOBILO: Of the prime minister's legacy, and that is because the voters that they're appealing to are on the right of the party. They tend to have

a more favorable view of Boris Johnson. So, they are in this really difficult position where they're trying to argue for their own place and

disassociate themselves from some parts of the conservative legacy, but then not entirely eliminate or isolate the voters that would support Boris



NOBILO: Because they'll need them if they want to win --

SOARES: Yes, and it begs the question, is this the end of Boris, isn't it or we'll see more of him --

NOBILO: Yes, I feel like that question will --


SOARES: Bianca, thanks very much. And still to come tonight, Brittney Griner's lawyers say she will be taking the stand soon, and we'll bring you

the latest in U.S. basketball star's Russian trial. Plus, Russia says it's pulling out of the International Space Station, but NASA says, it's not

official yet. We'll explain, next.




SOARES: Returning now to our top story, concerns about the viability of a deal to resume Ukrainian grain exports are only deepening today after new

Russia attacks on the Black Sea region. Nic Robertson is in Kyiv with all the details.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR (voice-over): Along the coast from Odessa, more Russian airstrikes. Houses and hotels in a

seaside vacation town close to where grain ships are due to pass reduced to rubble, including this man's hotel.

"I have no idea why they hit here," he says. "There were no military targets."

Confidence in the U.N. brokered deal to move the grain safely along the coast, taking hits.

VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): We trust the U.N. and Turkiye with whom we signed the corresponding documents. And

they ought to have talked about the safety of other countries' ships.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): Concerns spiked Saturday, less than 24 hours after the deal was agreed, when Russian missiles hit Odessa, they say, destroying

a weapons store. After reviewing the strike, the British government say they see nothing to back up Russia's claims.

Northeast of Odessa, another port, Mykolaiv, also hit by Russian missile strikes Tuesday. Less a direct threat to grain shipping, likely part of

increased Russian attacks on the southern front.

Not far away in Melitopol, Russian heavy armor heads toward that southern front, raising concerns of a possible Russian advance.

Nearby, another indicator of an uptick: thousands of civilians lining up to leave Russian occupied territory. Ukrainian officials claim they had

been stuck there for days and are being used as human shields.

Further north and east, in the Donetsk, relentless shelling rewarded with tiny gains. This village, Berestove (ph), smashed and deserted. Villagers

here slowly crushed; near misses a part of daily life.

From the very north, lives hang in the balance along hundreds of kilometers of front line. Russia's intent, so much more than frustrate grain shipments

-- Nic Robertson, CNN, Kyiv, Ukraine.


SOARES: U.S. basketball star Brittney Griner will testify in a Russian court on Wednesday as part of her drug smuggling trial.


SOARES: Her lawyers say the cannabis oil found in her luggage was for medicinal use but she faces up to 10 years in prison. Kylie Atwood joins me


What do we expect to hear from Griner on Wednesday?

KYLIE ATWOOD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: She has, up until this point, said that she is guilty but also explained that the reason that she

had this cannabis oil in her bag is because she packed up in a hurry when she was traveling to Moscow.

And her defense lawyers have said that she was actually given the instructions by a doctor in the United States -- they showed that letter --

to use cannabis because of the inflictions (sic) that she had due to playing sports, sports injuries and the like.

So it's very likely that she will reiterate exactly the circumstances that led to her having this cannabis oil in her bag and describe the use that

she had for cannabis oil, which was medical and not recreational purposes.

SOARES: Kylie Atwood there for us, thank you, I'm sure we will touch base tomorrow.

The new head of Russia's space agency says Moscow plans to withdraw from the International Space Station after 2024. This would be a huge blow to

the partnership, just a few years before the station is set to retire.

Moscow has now released this image, it's the planned first stage of a future Russian space station. Let's dive in with Chris Hadfield, a former

commander of the International Space Station.

Great to have you on the show.

How serious do you think Russia is with this threat?

We have had a similar threat made previously.

COL. CHRIS HADFIELD, FORMER COMMANDER, INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION: I think this is the next in a series of similar threats. If you have to

renegotiate something, you want to renegotiate from a position of strength.

So for them to say we will not continue in the space station after 2024, it gives them a really good negotiating position. And obviously, with the two

previous news articles, the shelling that is going on and what's going on with Brittney, they are positioning. So I would not take it nearly as

seriously as a lot of people seem to be today.

SOARES: But if it's not bluster, go along with me for this moment.

If it's not bluster, what impact do you think this decision would have?

HADFIELD: Well, the Russians put their prime piece of the space station up there less than a year ago. It's the crown jewel of their space program.

It's their version of the James Webb telescope and the Hubble combined.

So they will not just back out of it and they have intergovernmental agreements and bilateral memoranda of understanding.

And they can't even undock. It's not like you can just separate and fly away or something. So the complexity and the reality of it is such that

this is just a chess move. And if we overreact to that, then we are being poor chess players.

SOARES: I'm guessing that's why we have yet to hear from NASA as to this news from Russia, right?

HADFIELD: They have not heard anything official from Russia. So NASA is not going to respond to a tweet or something somebody said somewhere. They

need to work this through.

It's 15 nations that are members of the International Space Station. So it needs to be worked properly. And there is always a negotiation when people

are extending their commitment to anything international, like the International Space Station.

All 15 nations have to do that. So this is an interesting gambit. But I would not get too carried away with excitement about it. And it's at least

two years away, they say, after 2024. So that is a huge amount of time to do different things.

SOARES: And like you said, it's international.

From a practical point of view, what would that mean, if Moscow pulls out?

Give us a sense of what Russia is responsible for right now.

HADFIELD: Like Europe, like Japan, Canada, America, they all have big pieces of the space station. That is why we have binding agreements. And

you can't -- you say pull out but it's not a parking spot or something. It's incredibly integrated and it's their hardware.

And their level of commitment, I think, is far more evident by the fact that they put their big laboratory, that they have been working on for

decades, and installed it less than 365 days ago on the space station.

I think that's the real measure of how integrated and committed they are to the space station project, rather than just some bombast who has been in

the job for 10 days, replacing the previous bombastic fellow who was the head of the Russian --



SOARES: Chris, your shot is frozen but I appreciate you taking the time.

Clearly, Chris doubts very much that the Russians will go ahead with this. We will stay on top of the story, of course.

If you have ever been in the market for a flight, you may have seen a slick real estate ad for a high rise, all about location and amenities. Saudi

Arabia has just raised the bar on that kind of advertising.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (voice-over): Imagine a traditional city and consolidating its footprint, designing to protect and enhance nature. It

will be home to 9 million residents and will be bilt to the footprint of just 34 square kilometers.

We are designing it to provide a healthier, more sustainable quality of life. The communities are organized in three dimensions. Residents have

access to all of their daily needs, within five-minute walk neighborhoods.


SOARES: That what you are looking at is a CGI rendered look at the Saudi crown prince's futuristic urban mega project called The Line, a one

building city in the proposed futuristic region.

Despite critics saying it is not technologically feasible, the Saudi government is backing it with $500 billion.

Still to come tonight, firefighters in California beginning to get the upper hand on a disastrous wildfire. But it's already caused massive


Plus, you do not want to see this on your beach vacation: thousands of jellyfish swarming Israeli waters. We will tell you where they are coming

from and why this could become the new normal.




SOARES: For the final story in our "Going Green" series, we head to Bali to meet a Gen Z environmentalist, who is working to connect, empoewr as

well as educate other young climate protectors around the world. Larry Madowo has the story.



MELATI WIJSEN, YOUTH ACTIVIST AND CAMPAIGN FOUNDER (voice-over): I grew up on the island of Bali, I saw nature and the beauty of nature in the

natural world every single day, whether that was rice fields, the ocean, the beaches.

LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): When she was 12, Melati Wijsen and her sister started a youth campaign to make Bali plastic bag-

free. After seven years and a conversation with the governor, they succeeded.


MADOWO (voice-over): Bali's governor signed a law banning single use plastics in 2019. Now at 21, Melati is on to her next challenge.

WIJSEN (voice-over): Throughout the journey, I found myself in other students' classrooms, spending more time there than in my own classroom.

WIJSEN: Who here is a story teller?

Who likes to tell stories?

WIJSEN (voice-over): And what I realized is that I always got one question, no matter where I was in the world, whether New York, Tokyo or

here in Indonesia. That question was always, Melati, how can I do what you do?

We are growing up in a world where, when we turn on the television or listen to the radio or swipe and scroll through our social media, every

other post or story is about the world that we are living in, the world where every living thing is slowly starting to die.

This is our reality. So that's where Youthtopia comes in. We are a learning platform where young people can learn from each other how to create change.

MADOWO (voice-over): Youthtopia runs 153 youth workshops and programs for young changemakers. They are tackling the climate crisis through education.

WIJSEN (voice-over): This booklet is an educational tool.

MADOWO (voice-over): Melati works with 200 young changemakers around the world. Together, they have educated more than 4,500 students with their

programs. She has spoken all over the world, from the World Economic Forum stage in Switzerland to the United Nations headquarters in New York City.

WIJSEN (voice-over): I think back that the reason why I am building youthtopia is for 12 year old Melati. Back when I started, I wish a

platform like youthtopia existed because how cool would it have been to call changemakers around the world and say, hey, I have this idea.

What do you think about it?

MADOWO (voice-over): Melati hopes her story will empower young people around the world to join in on her mission.

WIJSEN (voice-over): To all of you young people who are watching this, just go for it, don't wait until you are older to start creating change.


SOARES: And for this and more stories about the next generation of climate environmentalists, you can visit We will be back after

a very short break.




SOARES: Pope Francis held a public mass at Edmonton's Commonwealth Stadium today on day three of his weeklong Canadian tour.


SOARES: In his homily, the pope praised Indigenous tradition of showing respect for elders.

Tens of thousands of people attended the service, you can see there, one day after the pope asked for forgiveness for the abuse and forced

assimilation of Indigenous children in Catholic Church-run schools in Canada.

Firefighters in California are reporting good progress at this hour, as they battle a ferocious wildfire near Yosemite National Park. But they are

not out of the woods just yet.

The Oak fire has now scorched more than 7,200 hectares, destroying at least 41 structures, including 25 homes. Slightly humid air moved in at night,

enabling them to get the fire more than 25 percent contained.

In areas where the fire has already burned through, there is devastation, the remains of smoldering homes, vehicles as well as forests. Camila Bernal

takes us there.


CAMILA BERNAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The work that these firefighters are doing is paying off, because containment is increasing. So we are seeing


Unfortunately, we are also seeing the numbers of acres burned increasing as well. Authorities say the priority right now is to protect homes and

structures like this one here.

Unfortunately, there are many that will come back to this. It's hard to say exactly what was here because of the destruction. We believe it could have

been a garage. But it's really unclear because of what this fire has done.

Officials also saying that it's really hard to help people get out. That is because a lot of them live in areas that are surrounded by this forest. And

many times it is overgrown and dry. It is a direct result of the drought here in the state of California.

And experts say also directly connected to climate change. We do know that what we are left with is these huge fires that need so many resources in

order to be put out. Almost 3,000 people are working on this fire.

And you can see what they are dealing with at the moment. Officials with CAL FIRE say they dumped about 300,000 gallons of water yesterday. They

were using the retardant. There were also crews on the ground, putting out hotspots, doing anything they can to maintain that fire line.

But clearly, there is still a lot of work to be done here because this fire continues to burn -- Camila Bernal, CNN, Mariposa County.


SOARES: Israel's coastline has some unwanted tourists this summer. Swarms of jellyfish have taken to the water, stinging swimmers as well as clogging

fishing nets. It's costing the tourism industry $10 million in lost revenue. Hadas Gold has the details.


HADAS GOLD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): White specks dot the turquoise waters off the coast of Israel, each one, a translucent,

pulsating jellyfish, hundreds of millions of them.

Eye-catching but venomous, swarming the Mediterranean sea. While the region has always had a jellyfish season in the warm summer months, this year

rising water temperatures have caused an explosion in numbers.

Normally these beaches would be packed full of locals and tourists. But the lifeguards here tell me that the crowds are staying away because of the


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am afraid because it's very dangerous.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of my sons was stung the other day.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But mostly they're moving with currents.

GOLD (voice-over): Dr. Bella Galil is one of Israel's top jellyfish experts. She says the species is not native to the Mediterranean but in

recent years entered from the Red Sea through the Suez Canal. As the canal has expanded and waters continue to warm as part of climate change, she

warns that they can spread even further.

DR. BELLA GALIL, STEINHARDT MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY: Since the sea kept warming, it spread with the warming sea and it now reaches Tunisia, Malta

and Sicily. And with the expected continued warming, it might reach the European coast.

GOLD (voice-over): Their sting is more painful than that of many jellyfish native to the Mediterranean, Galil says. In some cases, it can cause people

to go into anaphylactic shock and coma. But it's not just the harm that they can do to beachgoers that is a cause for concern.

GALIL: The most important is having a swarm, a juggernaut of very efficient predators, predators going through the sea and eating up the

local biota, that other species are at a loss.

GOLD (voice-over): Galil says short term solutions, like creating salt water barriers in the Suez Canal could help stem the numbers.


GOLD (voice-over): And within a week, this current wave is expected to subside. But as climate change continues to push temperatures upwards,

these hauntingly beautiful yet dangerous creatures will keep coming -- Hadas Gold, CNN, Tel Aviv.