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Isa Soares Tonight

China Says It Will Bury Incoming Enemies Ahead Of U.S. House Speaker's Expected Trip To Taiwan; First Wartime Grain Shipment Leaves Ukraine; Dozens Killed And Hundreds Missing In U.S. Floods; Greek Beekeepers Fear Fires Could Destroy Vital Pine Trees; Protests In Iraqi Parliament; Kirby: China Won't Intimidate U.S. Over Taiwan. Aired 2-3p ET

Aired August 01, 2022 - 14:00   ET



ISA SOARES, HOST, ISA SOARES TONIGHT: A very warm welcome to the show everyone, I'm Isa Soares. Tonight, China ramping up the rhetoric, saying it

will bury incoming enemies ahead of U.S. house speaker's expected trip to Taiwan. Then, a grain shipment has left Ukrainian port for the first time

since Russia's invasion, one step towards alleviating a global food prices.

And then later, deadly floods in the U.S. The search for the missing is underway. The cleanup is just beginning, and more rain is forecast. But

first, high profile, high stakes, and potentially, a high cost. Despite warnings from both Beijing and Washington, Nancy Pelosi is expected to go

ahead with a visit to Taiwan as part of a tour of Asia.

She will be the first U.S. house speaker in a quarter of a century to visit Taiwan. Though the trip is not currently listed on her public itinerary.

But at a time when the U.S. and China relations are already at a low point, there are fears the visit could be highly damaging.

Well, I'll tell you this, for example, China releasing this video earlier showcasing its military assets, accompanied, as you can see, with a message

that will quote, "bury incoming enemies". Will Ripley has more from Taiwan.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Taiwan's first line of defense from a Chinese invasion, Taipei port. A crucial river

gateway to the capital. If China takes the port, the presidential office will be next. For decades, Taiwanese troops have been training to defend

this island from the mainland's massive military.

The world's only Chinese-speaking democracy preparing for a David and Goliath scenario, made more credible by Russia's war in Ukraine. The latest

fiery threats from Beijing, whose communist rulers regard Taiwan as a breakaway province, reaching fever pitch, all over leaked plans of a

potential visit to this self-governing island by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The highest ranking U.S. official to visit Taiwan in 25 years. Pelosi is leading a congressional delegation to the Indo-Pacific region, including

Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan. No official mention of Taiwan. Analysts say Pelosi could still visit Taiwan, a whirlwind stop lasting

hours, not days.

An attempt to rein in the rhetoric and tame China's threats to not play with fire by supporting Taiwan independence. Senator Tammy Duckworth's

delegation dropped by Taiwan for just a few hours in May. China still flew dozens of warplanes near Taiwan. Taipei leaders call Beijing a bully, and a

new cycle moved on.

TSAI HUAI-CHUNG, TEA SHOP OWNER IN TAIPEI (through translator): I don't think they will retaliate, I don't worry about it. Mainland China is just

threatening us. If they really decide to invade Taiwan, they can kill it within 2 to 3 days. They don't need to talk much.

RIPLEY: It's a view shared by many in Taiwan. They've been riding this rhetorical roller-coaster for decades. As the latest U.S.-China threats

dominated global headlines, they were barely mentioned by the media in Taiwan. The island with the most to lose has lost interest.

MAGGIE LIN, DIRECTOR OF AFTER SCHOOL CLUB IN TAIPEI (through translator): I wasn't interested in finding more about it. I'm not concerned. China has

done the same thing many times. But exchanges between Taiwan and the U.S. shouldn't be stopped because of this.

RIPLEY: Many Taiwanese people perceive war with China as a distant threat, a threat some observers say could draw closer with each escalation. Xi

Jinping is China's most powerful leader since Mao, his vow to bring Taiwan back to the mainland by force if necessary is backed by a massive military

and growing nuclear arsenal.


SOARES: Well, we are covering all sides of this major diplomatic story. Will Ripley is in Taipei for us, Kylie Atwood is in New York, and Selina

Wang is in Beijing. And Kylie, let me start with you this hour. Look, we know that Pelosi has always been an ardent supporter, I think of Taiwan's

democracy. So explain to our viewers what she is hoping, Kylie, to get out of this trip. Why does she feel this visit is needed now?

Unfortunately, we can't hear Kylie. Kylie, we can't hear you. So, apologies. I want to go to Will Ripley. Will, as we try to just fix that

audio, let me ask you this. We saw your report, how much concern is there at this moment, Will, in Taiwan, at the government level about this visit,

what are you hearing?


RIPLEY: I think that's a key distinction to point out at the government level, they are well aware that this trip is complicated, and it puts

Taiwan in an awkward position. The United States, of course, is crucial, a crucial ally. They provide weapons for Taiwan to defend themselves.

And so, for somebody of Nancy Pelosi's stature to want to come here, to want to have face-to-face meetings with Taiwanese leaders, this is hugely

important for the Taiwan government because they want American lawmakers to go back and have their experience on the ground here, shape their policy

decisions in Washington.

However, they also know that the timing is extraordinarily sensitive, given that they're just months away from President Xi Jinping's, you know,

potentially unprecedented third term, maybe even president for life at the party Congress. This is something that, you know, President Xi has been

preparing for. He wants absolute stability. He doesn't want any possibility of being embarrassed, or of China losing face at this very crucial time.

And so, for somebody of Nancy Pelosi's level to land, likely in a military plane, on the island of Taiwan, which China actually list as one of their

provinces in Chinese passports, even though this island has its own government and their own military, and they've had it for more than 70


Beijing's communist rulers, they may never have controlled this island, but they've always claimed it as their territory. They've got a lot of

countries around the world to kind of not diplomatically recognize Taiwan. But now they think the United States might be moving closer to supporting a

former declaration of Taiwan independence as its own country.

And China has said repeatedly, that's a red line that could spark a military conflict between United States, China and of course, Taiwan caught

right in the middle.

SOARES: Do stay with us. Well, let me go back to Kylie, Kylie, I think we fixed your audio problem. Picking up on what Will just said, given

everything that Will just outlined, I mean, why does Pelosi feel that now is the time to go. What is she hoping to get out of this trip, Kylie?

KYLIE ATWOOD, CNN U.S. SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think there are few factors to consider here. First of all, as you were saying earlier, she's

always been a supporter of Taiwan's democracy, and a supporter of protesters in China as well. And so, this is a continuation of that kind of

rhetoric that we have heard from her for her entire career.

The other factor is that, she is the speaker of the house, she's not going to be speaker of the house forever, and so, in some ways, this is cementing

her career as a politician on the foreign policy stage. But then the other hugely significant piece of the puzzle here is that the Biden

administration senior U.S. Intelligence officials including the CIA Director Bill Burns have said that China is working hard to be able to

militarily take over Taiwan at some point.

They haven't put an exact time-frame on that, but that is the backdrop that U.S. officials are concerned about, and watching extremely closely. And she

wants to be part of that voice of U.S. officials to support Taiwan as those concerns are growing.

SOARES: And Selina, to you, we have seen some pretty inflammatory rhetoric from Beijing. I mean, we even saw that video we played a few minutes or so

ago. So, the question, I suppose is, how does China have a strong response, Selina, and save face without escalating this?

SELINA WANG, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Isa, I've been talking to experts about that exactly, this tricky balance. And they say it should

include, likely will include some sort of show of military force, military demonstration, that could include sending more Chinese warplanes into

Taiwan's self-declared air defense zone, which China has already been doing quite frequently.

But to your point, the key here is how they send a strong message that conveys their anger, that shows how serious they are about this, but while

also not smacking this into a further military escalation. The rhetoric we've been hearing just over the past few days has been growing stronger

and stronger.

You've heard officials talk about promising powerful retaliation, the Defense Department has also said China's military won't sit idly by. But

this is rhetoric that we've heard before when it comes to Taiwan. The difference now though, is not only the stature of Nancy Pelosi, but also

the fact that XI Jinping cannot appear weak at this moment.

We are just months away from a key political meeting where he is expected to seek an unprecedented third term. And already, we are seeing the show of

military force. There's that propaganda video you mentioned. There have been more of them as well. Some of this also coinciding with the

anniversary of China's military, which is on August 1st.

There have also been several military drills held in various seas as well as around Pingtan Island which is the closest point in China to Taiwan,

just over 77 miles away, across the strait. Now, the question here is though, how they strike that balance. Because on the one hand, XI Jinping

doesn't want to be humiliated, on the other hand, China also wants stability leading up to this moment.


But you cannot over -- as you cannot overstate how important Taiwan is to the DNA of the communist party, to its legitimacy, they see a visit by one

of America's most powerful politicians to the island as tacit support for dependence, which Will had set earlier, is a red line. So, while most do

not think that China would engage in direct hostile action, the fear is that with more military assets in the region, that more easily there could

be a miscalculation or accident --

SOARES: Yes --

WANG: That could spiral into real conflict.

SOARES: Selina Wang there for us, Will Ripley and Kylie Atwood, really appreciate it, thank you very much. Now, I want to take you to a major

development that Ukraine says will bring relief for the world for the first time since Russian invasion. A shipment of Ukrainian grain has left port,

heading to Lebanon under landmark deal to end Russian Naval blockade. Eleni Giokos explains how the breakthrough voyage is considered a glimmer of hope

amid really a global food crisis.


ELENI GIOKOS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): After weeks of negotiations, the first ship leaves port in Ukraine. A slow sail, and only

a drop in the ocean to alleviate the grain crisis. There's only carrying corn expected to arrive in Istanbul on Tuesday for inspection set up by

grain deal between Russia and Ukraine before setting sail to Lebanon's Tripoli Port.

The U.N., a broker of the grain deal inked in Istanbul welcome the development. Turkey, who spearheaded the negotiations. And now hosts to

join coordination center says more ships to depart soon. The shipment is very positive according to the Kremlin's spokesman.

While the U.S. Embassy struck a more cautious note about the deal's future. The agreement remains shaky, with Russia hitting the Odessa port just after

the signing last week. The first ship has left the port. But the success of the deal, and ending global grain shortages, will depend on whether or not

the grain's precious transport keep sailing. Eleni Giokos, CNN, Abu Dhabi.


SOARES: Well, the diplomatic success in resuming grain shipments isn't easing fighting on the ground in Ukraine. The city of Mykolaiv came under

intense shelling overnight as Russia escalates relentless attacks. Officials say several civilian buildings were hit including a hospital's

trauma center. In the occupied Kherson region, Ukraine says it's managed to hit another Russian fuel depot, but it says Russia is now deploying

additional forces to bolster its southern flank.

I want to go live to Ukraine now, that's where we find our Nic Robertson near Kryvyi Rih. Nic, you're now in Kryvyi Rih, but you were earlier for us

in Mykolaiv. Give us a sense of what you saw there on whether civilians are leaving the city following on as we've said from that brutal round of


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Well, there's certainly a lot of concern about this increase in shelling. And the sort of

reality of the situation on the ground is, Mykolaiv is relatively close to the front lines that would give the Ukrainian forces access towards Kherson

and the Kherson region.

And that potentially could be one of the axis of advance to try to retake that area from the Russians. And we know Ukrainian government officials say

that they believe Russia is moving troops from the east of the country, down to the south to bolster their positions in Kherson.

So when I asked the mayor of Mykolaiv, why he thought there was an increase in shelling, he said it was because Russia wasn't taking territory on the

ground, and that's why they're -- that's why they're targeting Mykolaiv much more strongly. And this increase, it's something most people, most

residents in the city can really feel. The impacts are huge and it shakes the building you're in.


ROBERTSON (voice-over): With dawn, an end to Mykolaiv's heaviest night of shelling so far, but not to the fear it brings. In the immediate aftermath,

fires to be put out. The only fatalities at this residential mansion. Multi-millionaire businessman, Alexei Varatovski(ph) and his wife

Raiisa(ph) were sheltering in the basement when their home took a direct hit. Neighbors still in shock.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know what to do. We hate Russia. It's unbelievable that it can in one moment just destroy everything.

ROBERTSON: Maxin(ph) has lived here almost 20 years, but maybe no more.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just don't want to stay here right now.

ROBERTSON: This crater here gives you an idea of just how big the blast was. Debris strewn down here, and the windows of the building blown out,

other buildings around here also hit.


Those with military links off limits to our cameras. The mayor concerned, Russian sympathizers at work.

MAYOR OLEKSANDR SENKEVYCHM, MYKOLAIV, UKRAINE (through translator): I am sure that they have spies who are going around the city. And they say, like

I saw the number of machines or the people, military people, they send this information and Russian attack there.

ROBERTSON: And do you think those saboteurs might have helped in the attacks last night?

SENKEVYCHM: I am sure they helped.

ROBERTSON: Within hours, life returning to what passes as normal. Pensioners and others in line for drinking water. The city's clean water

supply destroyed months ago.

"They hit us, and they hit us hard. From 1:00 a.m. until morning", Valantina(ph) tells us, "we are scared. We want to leave, but that's how

life is for us now."

Whether mansion was hits and residents are richer, another neighborhood of the dead businessmen tells me he can't take it anymore. That he'll leave.

Not clear if high profile businessman Alexei Varatovski(ph) was an intended target. President Zelenskyy held him a hero. His death and the up-tempo

strikes here, chilling, the city's otherwise resilient mood.


ROBERTSON: And the mayor's message for the people of the city is leave. Mykolaiv has been hit pretty much every night since the war began. Much

heavier, much harder now. It was a city of about 480,000 people, it's down to about 230,000. That's still a lot, and the mayor is very clear, you just

need to leave to be safe.

SOARES: And Nic, I just want to show our viewers really a state of play right now in Ukraine, because it's important to put all of these cities

into context. As we look at it now, we're looking at Kherson, we have seen the Ukrainians, Nic, making incremental gains in Kherson.

But now, as you clearly pointed out, further north, you have Mykolaiv, and we have seen those escalated attacks in Mykolaiv. Who has the momentum

right now, Nic, what -- six months into this war?

ROBERTSON: On this line, in the south at the moment --

SOARES: Yes --

ROBERTSON: It appears to be fairly static. And I think that's the picture pretty much across the whole country in the east as well. What we know is

that the Russians are digging in hard in the city of Kherson. That they are putting tanks and concrete bunkers so that they can't be targeted by the

HIMARS system or they can't be targeted by drone.

So they're digging in hard, and if you will, forming a line, a defensive line, that they don't -- clearly, don't want to fall back from. So, the

potential here is for Ukrainian forces to take the land back as they say they want to. But they don't seem to have the manpower, an ability to do

that yet.

And so there isn't a real momentum that we see, although the Ukrainian government says in the east of the country, there have been incremental

gains for them. But the Russians say the same for their forces too.

SOARES: Nic Robertson for us there, Nic, really appreciate it, Nic, thank you very much. And still to come tonight, protesters in Sudan demand an end

to military role after a CNN report exposes the corruption that's allowed another country to plunder Sudanese gold.



SOARES: Welcome back everyone. Now, demonstrators in Sudan are calling for return to civilian leadership. Sudan's protest in Khartoum was triggered by

an exclusive CNN report into Russia's plunder of Sudanese gold to bankroll its war in Ukraine. Sources inside Sudan tells CNN that authorities are

stepping up strong-armed tactics as they hunt for people who spoke to us.

CNN's Elbagir is leading this investigation, and shows us the notorious Wagner Group suspected of helping Moscow. Have a look at this.


NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): Wagner's tentacles stretch right across Africa. We have discovered some of its most notorious operatives are working on Sudan. Yevgeny

Prigozhin; the head of Wagner, Mikhail Potepkin; Prigozhin's head of Sudan's Opsand(ph), Alexander Sergeyevich Kuznetsov; Wagner's key enforcer,

previously convicted of kidnap and robbery, working with this man.

Sudanese General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, aka Hemedi(ph) in a quid pro quo for training and weaponry. We travel 200 miles north from the capital,

Khartoum, to gold country to take a closer look at Wagner's main money- maker, Artisanal Gold. Miners bring rocks they extract here to be processed, 85 percent of Sudan's gold is produced artisanally.

(on camera): This right here, it may not look like much, this is what's left after the rocks that the miners have brought in is milled. Now,

they've taken what they can out of it, but this gets sold, and when it's properly processed, with someone who has superior technology, you can make

ten times what those miners over there are making.


SOARES: And CNN's chief international investigative correspondent Nima Elbagir joins me now live. Nima, let's start with really, the threats, the

pressure, the intimidation that your sources on the ground have been receiving.

ELBAGIR: There is really a sense that the generals I spoke to -- I mean, you saw the outcry that came over the weekend in the aftermath of this

reporting, the demonstrations. And they are targeting anyone that they suspect could have helped us. So, a lot of their tentacles are reaching

into the anti-corruption unit within the former civilian officials.

They're trying to intimidate people that they believe could have more, and stop them from coming forward. But what it really shows is one of our

sources said, is how afraid they are, that they could genuinely be up for prosecution.

SOARES: And we have seen those protests over the weekend. And just so our viewers -- I'm sure if we've got the footage of it, you were -- last time

we spoke last week, you were talking about the fact that, you know, Russia's presence in Africa is not new. Wagner's presence in Africa also

not new. How this -- how is this, Nima, changed the mood as we look at this protest that really started post your investigation.

ELBAGIR: Well, absolutely, you're right. Russia's presence and its exploitation of African resources isn't open secret. I think for a lot of

people that we were speaking to, what was so heartbreaking was the contrast between the hunger and the deprivation, and that staggering inflation, just

under 200 percent in Sudan versus the numbers that we were able to unearth, that potentially, there's up to $13.4 billion that is being stolen in

Sudanese gold.

And for a lot of Sudanese people, it felt like, well, then, what was the point of fighting and dying --

SOARES: Yes --

ELBAGIR: To push aside the old regime if these new generals are our new iteration of corruption and theft and exploitation?

SOARES: And with inflation situation on the ground so dire, already inflation, hyperinflation, I believe you told me last time. I mean, I'm

guessing, we've got in contact.


You've talked to the highest echelon in Sudan. What are they telling you? Are they getting back to you on any of your investigative reporting?

ELBAGIR: Well, you see, these generals have refused to comment as have the Russians, as have contacts for Yevgeny Prigozhin. But it's clear that they

are -- spoke to me. What our sources described houses been searched, relatives being threatened. It is really important that people continue to

pay close attention to Sudan. That is really people's hope back there. That the international community doesn't look away right now.

SOARES: And nothing from the U.S. since?

ELBAGIR: We had Admiral Kirby on a little earlier, and he attempted to put a slightly positive spin on this by saying that this is proof that Russia

is feeling the bite of U.S. sanctions. But what is being done to stop --

SOARES: Yes --

ELBAGIR: Russia as it evades U.S. sanctions, didn't have much to say on that.

SOARES: Well, you've definitely touched a nerve, that's for sure, in Sudan. Thanks very much, Nima, appreciate it. And still to come on the show

tonight, Kentucky's governor says hundreds of people are missing after a historic flooding. We'll take you there. We also have an update on

California's most devastating wildfire so far this year, one that's just a few days old.


SOARES: Welcome back. More now on our top story of reports that U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will visit Taiwan on her Asia trip despite

considerable Chinese opposition. Well, just moments ago, the White House National Security Council Coordinator addressed the furor, he urged Beijing

to tone down its rhetoric and actions surrounding the possible visit. Have a listen.


JOHN KIRBY, WHITE HOUSE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL COORDINATOR: Beijing's actions could have unintended consequences that only serve to increase

tensions. Meanwhile, our actions are not threatening and they break no new ground. Nothing about this potential visit, potential visit which -- oh, by

the way has precedent, will change the status quo and the world should redirect any PRC effort to use it to do so. We will not take the bait or

engage in saber-rattling. At the same time, we will not be intimidated.


SOARES: John Kirby still calling a potential visit, of course, but it comes on the heels of what we've heard from China just last week saying if you

play with fire, you will get burned. Of course, we'll stay on top of any developments out of Taiwan.

In the meantime, Kentucky is bracing for another round of storms after back to back downpours in the eastern part of the state. The governor says the

death toll has now gone up to 35. But that number is expected to rise. Hundreds of people have been rescued by air and water in recent days by the

National Guard and power outages are making these rescue efforts much more complicated. Evan McMorris-Santoro is in one of the area's most affected

for us. And Evan, just brings a picture of what you are seeing. I mean, clearly, the challenges for rescue workers are huge right now.

EVAN MCMORRIS-SANTORO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's absolutely right. I mean, that's the exact right thing people should be focused on when they're

thinking about what's going on here right now. I'm in Perry County, one of the hardest hit counties of more than a dozen counties in this massive,

massive flood to hit last week. And here, they're still working on rescuing people. They're trying to go out and find people. It's a difficult task

because of the terrain around here. A lot of people in this part of Kentucky live in what's called hollers, kind of small valleys where several

houses might be connected to the main road by just one road or one bridge.

Well, a lot of those roads and bridges got washed away by this flood, which means that in order to get at those people, people have to navigate these

torn down bridges, navigate these washed out roads maybe with small vehicles, but folks are trapped up there. So the governor, as you

mentioned, he talks about that rising death toll. He also talked about the fact that he's urging people who haven't heard from their loved ones and

haven't heard from their friends out here to call the state police and tell them because right now, crews are going out while the water is low right

now, dry out at the moment, are going out and knocking on doors and trying to find people who are still lost.

The problem is, as you mentioned, is that rain is forecast for later. Right now, we're on -- standing in this hot, humid day, you wouldn't think it.

But forecasters tell us there could be more rain. In an area that's soaked with water already high in creeks and rivers, that's a very dangerous


SOARES: And like you're saying, right now in the picture behind you is very sunny, Evan, but with more rain forecast, are people being evacuated?

SANTORO: Yes, the main thing right now is what the governor calls stabilizing people in advance of expected high temperatures in the next

couple of days. These floodwaters coming in are not expected -- or these rain coming in, rather, are not expected to produce the same amount of

floods as we saw on Thursday, but obviously, it is a dangerous thing to worry about.

So what's happened here now is the things like schools and churches have been converted into emergency shelters, people are staying in those all the

hotels are full of people, and the governor -- this is a state that's been hit with so many tragedies in recent years that the governor has purchased

his own set of travel trailers for the state. And those travel trailers are now being shipped across Kentucky to where I am right now to provide homes

for people who just don't have anything, who lost everything last week.

So it's not so much about evacuation and leaving the area, it's about providing a safe place for people to be to ride out what might be rain

tonight, and then heat coming down the road. And then they can talk about the long and arduous process of trying to rebuild what was destroyed by

these historic floods here.

SOARES: Just truly devastating. Evan McMorris-Santoro, really appreciate it. Thank you very much, Evan.

Well, meanwhile, on the opposite side of the country, the McKinney Fire has now become California's biggest wildfire this year. It has consumed more

than 55,000 acres, that is more than 22,000 hectares. California's governor has declared a state of emergency in the surrounding areas. Mandatory

evacuations are underway. Officials say the fire started on Friday and was made worse by thunderstorms and wind over the weekend.

We are also seeing dangerous wildfires in France. Europe has been dealing, as you remember, with a brutal heat wave this summer. And now official data

shows that France experience its driest July for more than 60 years. The Minister says there's an 88 percent deficit of rainfall compared to what

would have been necessary.

Well, and there's a similar pattern right across the channel. The U.K. is National Weather Service says England has just had its driest July on

record since 1935. The U.K. saw temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius last month for the first time.

Well, wildfires have also been raging in parts of Greece. The Blazers have burned through forests and sparked fears that the flames could affect the

country's bee population. Eleni Giokos explains why.



ELENI GIOKOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: These honey bees produce delicious pine honey, a traditional and popular treat in Greece and an important export.

And these bees require thriving pine forests to do so. But wildfires are wiping out not only the trees, but the beehives as well. Last year, a

wildfire in Athens destroyed 250 beehives belonging to this beekeeper. The loss still haunts him.


SIDERIS TSIMINIS, HONEY PRODUCER (through translator): It is a really awful thing to be afraid to enter the forest, the few forests that exist, but you

are afraid of losing even more of your wealth and ending up with nothing.


GIOKOS: Unfortunately, wildfires are burning again this year. And they're becoming more common due to climate change.


CHRISTOS ZEREFOS, CLIMATE EXPERT: A large phenomena like the heat waves or like extreme weather, lightning, and other, and wildfires in the forests of

Europe, particularly in the Mediterranean. We know the costs, and the costs are very high.


GIOKOS: In the last year, Greece has dramatically boosted spending to fight and prepare for wildfires, from some $20 million to more than $122 million.

Greece is also debuting the European Union's prepositioning project, where firefighters from other E.U. member states are stationed in Greece to

respond quickly to the fires. And to provide much needed relief to the Greek firefighters.


KOSTAS ZINELIS, FIREFIGHTER (through translator): The extreme weather phenomena unfortunately put a strain on Greek firefighters. As the working

hours in the field increase, they have to be on alert all the time.


GIOKOS: And as the firefighters battle the fires, they help preserve the pine forests, and the bees, and the bees then help rebuild the forest.


TSIMINIS: It will take many years for it to go back to the way it was. But it is essential for the bee to be there because it helps the burned forest

to be reborn.


GIOKOS: Eleni Giokos, CNN.


SOARES: And still to come tonight, a brazen murder in Italy has the country doing some soul searching. We'll explain next. And protests in Parliament

violence in the streets, the latest on Iraq's political crisis. You are watching CNN.



SOARES: Back now to our coverage of Russia's war in Ukraine. Even with the constant bombardment from Russian forces and the very real threat of bodily

harm, Ukrainians are still enlisting the army to join the fight on the front line. CNN's Jason Carroll spoke to several Ukrainians to ask about

what keeps them going. But a warning, some of the images in his report are graphic.


JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yuriy Hudymenko is just out of the hospital after doctors spent more than a month tending to his injuries



CARROLL: This is a shrapnel from --



CARROLL: An unwelcome souvenir of war, another piece embedded in his chest, his leg shattered so badly these rods now hold it together.

This video showing the moments after Hudymenko was injured and rescued in June by fellow soldiers who were fighting alongside him on Ukraine's

eastern front, an area where Ukrainians have managed in places to hold back the Russian advance. Hudymenko was laying a mind when he was hit by Russia

and mortar fire. Doctors initially thought his leg needed to be amputated, but they saved it and his life.


HUDYMENKO: I feel the pain. But I feel also angry and my angry is more bigger than the pain.

CARROLL: Patriotism, sense of duty, anger, there are a range of reasons for what continues to motivate Ukrainians to join the military. But anger is

one reason this new soldier, who will soon be deployed to the Eastern Front, gave up his job as a personal trainer to join the fight. Soldiers

ask that we not show their faces to protect their security.


CARROLL: Do you have any worries about going there?

UKRAINIAN FIGHTER: Of course, but my hate is much more than any worries.


CARROLL: He says he did not tell his family he joined the military.


CARROLL: You think that's going to work?

UKRAINIAN FIGHTER: They will be worrying less for some time.


CARROLL: Family, not an issue for this young soldier who says his father is already fighting for Ukraine. And he says his decision to join was not

about emotion. But Yuriy Hudymenko says it is hard for him not to give into his emotions. He says as soon as he's well enough, he would like to go back

to the front line despite his wife's objections. She says no woman in the world wants her man to go fight, but respects his desire, one Hudymenko

says is also personal.


HUDYMENKO: Now I have a personal motivation to because I need to revenge for this. I want to gut all the enemies of my country and kill them. Kill

them all.


CARROLL: Jason Carroll, CNN, Kiev.


SOARES: Incredibly both men and women, too. Well, we told you earlier about the first grain shipment leaving a Ukrainian port under a landmark deal to

end Russian naval blockade where it's heading to Lebanon, one of the country's in need of grain. And this incredible scene happened Sunday in


Two massive grain silos collapsed leading the way for others to follow according to Lebanese media reports, the silos were damaged and the massive

2020, if you remember, poor blast. Officials say soaring temperatures ignited fermenting grains. There have been no reports of injuries. The

grain shipment is headed for Tripoli, not Beirut.

Well, in Italy, a brutal murder in broad daylight in fact is sparking difficult conversations as well as national outrage. It comes after this

man, a Nigerian street vendor, was attacked and killed on the streets of a coastal town on Friday. He leaves behind a wife and son. Police arrested

the 32-year-old Italian citizen on charges of murder as well as robbery. One police officer says the killing was not racially motivated. Barbie

Nadeau joins me now live from Rome. Barbie, so one police officer said it was not racially motivated. What are authorities saying about this brutal

and fatal attack?

BARBIE NADEAU, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: You know, there are a lot of factors at play here. One, of course is the fact that so many people were able to

capture it on social media and tweet about it and things like that, but nobody had the courage to pull him off the immigrant who was on the floor.

The other issue here, of course, is all ways, you know, he says it's not racially motivated but there is always sort of a hint of racism in this



We've talked about it, you and I, many times, racism in soccer, anti- immigrant stance, things like that. So a lot of people who hear that it wasn't racially motivated don't quite believe it. But authorities say that

the man who was the attacker, not the authorities, the lawyer for the man who was the attacker, says that he had mental health issues. So there's a

lot yet to be to be sorted out in the investigation, but people are angry here. Very angry here.

SOARES: And Barbie, you know, you and I have discussed at length covering the migrant crisis in Italy. Has it ignited you think, Barbie, a debate

about racism, in particular about against migrants as we head to critical elections in Italy?

NADEAU: That's right, you know. This is especially important because the coalition that's pulling ahead of the rest right now is the center right

coalition led by Matteo Salvini, and Giorgia Meloni, and Silvio Berlusconi. Now Salvini and Meloni are very staunchly anti-immigration. And in fact,

recent uptick in immigration, Matteo Salvini was going to go straight to the island of Lampedusa to say that only he could stop immigration. So

you've got this sort of as the background, this horrific, horrific, fatal attack against the background of these elections where you had, right away,

Matteo Salvini posting a picture of the victim, saying that justice has no color.

But at the end of the day, a lot of people are talking right now about what they want, what's best for this country. And when we talk about this subtle

racism or not so subtle racism ahead of an election, I think it's going to really count at the voting box, you know, what people really think about


SOARES: Barbie Nadeau for us in Rome this hour. Thanks very much, Barbie, good to see you.

Well, in Iraq, protesters are causing complete chaos in Parliament. They're staging is sitting for a third day. More than a hundred people were injured

in clashes over the weekend as demonstrators breach Baghdad's Green Zone for the second time in a week. Police are demanding major changes in their

government. CNN's Nada Bashir has a story for you.


NADA BASHIR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The center of Iraqi politics, now at the heart of some of the biggest protests Baghdad has seen in months. For three

days now, these protesters have occupied parliament, the vast majority, ardent supporters of Muqtada al-Sadr, the influential Shia cleric calling

for an uprising.


SAMIR NAEEM, PROTESTER (through translator): We want free and fair elections and we want to amend the Constitution. But the most important

thing is to put an end to corruption. If we end corruption, then we win.

AMIR AL-UKEYLI, PROTESTER (through translator): Politicians do not represent the people, their legitimacy is over. Now the legitimacy is for

people only.


BASHIR: Protests was sparked a week ago following the nomination of a new prime minister by Iraq's pro Iran coordination framework Alliance, their

pick rival Shia leader, Mohammed al-Sudani. The move follows months of political deadlock over the establishment of a new government and a mass

resignation by al-Sadr's lawmakers who accused the opposition of serving the interests of Iran over the Iraqi people. Now as frustrations mount over

the country's dire political and economic situation, al-Sadr is calling on the Iraqi people to take to the streets despite the Outgoing Prime

Minister's appeal for dialogue.


MUSTAFA AL-KADHIMI (through translator): The political bloc's must sit down, negotiate and reach an understanding for the sake of Iraq and the

Iraqis. A thousand days of quiet dialogue are better than a moment in which a drop of Iraqi blood is shed.


BASHIR: Water cannons, tear gas, and even stun grenades were used by security forces over the weekend in an attempt to push protesters back

outside the perimeters of the Green Zone. Amid the chaos, at least a hundred injuries. Western leaders have expressed concern over the further

destabilization of security in Iraq. But the implications of this latest crisis could prove far reaching. Al-Sadr's movement, if successful, could

cut political parties aligned to Iran out of the Iraqi Government, dealing a major blow to Tehran's growing regional influence. And as these protests

gain momentum, there are fears that already delicate regional dynamics could be pushed into even greater uncertainty. Nada Bashir, CNN, Istanbul.


SOARES: A monkey pox outbreak in New York has caused a local state of emergency. Mayor Eric Adams says the emergency order allows him to bring in

extra measures to combat the virus. And this will include further testing, education, as well as vaccination. It comes as the city is reporting around

25 percent of all cases across America.


And still to come tonight, well, it's coming home after 56 years of defeat, the England football team have brought a trophy back to London ahead. How

the Lionesses are celebrating their historic win. That is next.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lift that trophy.


SOARES: That is the electric sound of football coming home right here in London as a (INAUDIBLE) women's football team celebrate their historic win

for England. You are looking at pictures of their victory parade in the heart of the Capitol earlier today. The lionesses, of course, made history

on Sunday, I watched that game, becoming champions of Europe after defeating their longtime German rivals. Not only did they break 56 years of

hard for English football, but a record-breaking audience turned out in the stands and at home in front of their TVs. Our Alex Thomas has more on their

inspiring story.


ALEX THOMAS, CNN WORLD SPORT: We've seen many other sporting celebrations here at this iconic London landmark before, but none quite like this.

England players taking to the stage with huge cheers from the thousands present, some wearing shades, maybe not just because of the bright

sunshine, they did admit they partied hard, and all through the night. But it was wonderful to see them so happy and celebrating their unique success,

many of them clearly still pinching themselves.


LEAH WILLIAMSON, ENGLAND CAPTAIN: We partied more than we actually play in football in the past 24 hours. But, yes, obviously incredible to be able to

share with everybody that came to the game and around the country. We're very grateful for everyone's support. Yes.

SARINA WIEGMAN, ENGLAND HEAD COACH: They're very, very good football players. They're very, very good people. Yes. The willingness, the

commitment, the resilience, the behavior towards each other, the support has been so incredible, and most of all, the willingness to want to win so

badly and they won.


THOMAS: There were people here from all over the country, young and old, boys and girls, some kids who are already out of school for the summer

holidays enjoying the fact they were free to come here and cheer on their new heroes.



THOMAS: One day, you'd like to play for England?


THOMAS: Who's your favorite player?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Probably the goalkeeper. She's been brilliant, so, yes (INAUDIBLE) a really good weekend. So, she plays herself. So it's nice to

actually get up and see what they can achieve if they put them on top.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's amazing getting me on the women's game. I think they should get a bit more exposure and, you know, it should have

better access to the game, you know, because there's not much opportunity to go and watch a women's game.

THOMAS: How far have you come down?


THOMAS: And you've been watching the whole for (INAUDIBLE)


THOMAS: Nonstop?



THOMAS: If anyone deserves a break now, it's certainly the England women's football team and their coach, Sarina Wiegman. It's clear that she's made

a huge difference to the perception of what English women's football can achieve. And what this particular group of players can go on to do as a

Women's World Cup coming up next, and that's sure to be their next big target. Alex Thomas, CNN, Trafalgar Square.


SOARES: And do you know what I take away from all of this? One of the many things I take away, if you want anything done, call in the girls. And don't

forget, you can catch up with interviews analysis from the show online on my Instagram @IsaSoaresCNN and on my Twitter, see the details that are

right there on your screen. Thanks very much for your company. Do stay right here. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" with Richard Quest is next. I'll see you

tomorrow. Bye-bye.