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Isa Soares Tonight
Sixteen Killed In Massive Russian Missile Attack Across Ukraine; U.S. Citizen Held In A Notorious Prison In Iran Speaks To CNN; Thousands Protests In Israel Against Judicial Reforms; Remains Of Americans Killed In Mexico En Route To U.S.; Georgia's Ruling Party To Withdraw "Foreign Agents" Bill; HIV Battle At A Crossroads; Climate Change May Worsen Flight Turbulence; AI Can Mimic Your Voice. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired March 09, 2023 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ISA SOARES, HOST, ISA SOARES TONIGHT: A very warm welcome to the show, everyone, I'm Isa Soares. Tonight, Ukraine still on high alert as it reels
through a massive Russian strike which the Kremlin says was retaliation for a cross-border attack. We'll speak to one of President Zelenskyy's advisors
for the very latest.
Then an American citizen being held in Iran's notorious Evin prison is speaking to CNN from behind bars. We'll have more on that remarkable and
exclusive interview. Plus, tens of thousands of Israelis take to the streets, angry at controversial judicial reforms. But, first this evening,
dawn brought fresh grief for Ukraine on Thursday, after a massive barrage of Russian missiles killed at least 16 people.
Now, Ukrainian officials say Russia fired a total of 84 missiles and 12 drones right across the country, as you can see there, using an
unprecedented array of weaponry. Five people died in this strike in Lviv. Ukraine's president says Russia attacked critical infrastructure and
residential buildings, saying Moscow means to intimidate as well as terrorize civilians.
Russia fired several different types of missiles including six nuclear capable Kinzhal ballistic missiles. Ukraine says it has no capabilities to
counter them. They are urging the West to send more defensive weapons, and to impose more sanctions to stop future attacks from killing even more
civilians. I want to get the latest now from Melissa Bell who joins us this evening from Kharkiv.
Melissa, what we've just laid out just shows that the largest barrage, I think of strikes so far on Ukraine this year. Just talk us through the
damage across the country including where you are in Kharkiv.
MELISSA BELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Of course, as you mentioned, Isa, the most tragic, that loss of life, mainly around Lviv. But of course, as you
say, these are strikes that are intended as President Zelenskyy says to continue to keep Ukrainians under pressure. It's been about a month since
we'd had such a large series of missile strikes. Most of them coming over the course of the night.
Here in Kharkiv, it was critical infrastructure that was hit, about 15 of those more than 80 missiles you mentioned landed in the greater Kharkiv
region, and perhaps you can see behind me, all you'll see are the cars on the street there because the city is practically entirely without
electricity at all. So inside the homes of people, there is no electricity, there is no heat, there is no water as a result of those critical strikes.
And that is the point to put people in a maximum state of discomfort as regularly as they can, and keeping them in a sense of uncertainty, because
no one knows when these strikes are going to come. Beyond the overnight strikes that you mentioned, Isa, there have also been -- there's been an
uptick of activity all along the frontline, not just around Bakhmut, say Ukrainian authorities, but in other key flash points to the north of that
along the frontline In places like Lyman and around Kupiansk.
But also to the northern border, to the north of where I am here, what the Ukrainian authorities are saying tonight is that they're seeing an uptick
in engineering activity. And what we've seen over the course of the day since the overnight strikes have been artillery, mortar barrages, all along
that northern border. So places like Chernihiv, Sumy region here, Kharkiv region.
The fear is, we've just been hearing the air raid sirens again, Isa, the nationwide one, but also the more local one, warning of those S-300 that
come across the border, that just are not very long range, but that managed to make it here to Kharkiv. The fear is that some of that pressure on the
whole of Ukraine might continue. Isa.
SOARES: Melissa Bell for us in Kharkiv this hour, thanks very much, Melissa. Let's get more on all of this. Let's bring in Alexander
Rodnyansky; he's an adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, and an assistant professor of economics at University of Cambridge, a well-
known face here on the show. Alexander, great to have you back.
He joins us from Kyiv this hour. And I'm not sure whether you heard our Melissa Bell there in Kharkiv, really stating very clearly that this attack
was just it seems, an attack meant to destabilize Ukraine and create anxiety. Just give us a sense, then, of the scale of the damage as you
understand it, because we saw it was very dark where Melissa was in Kharkiv.
ALEXANDER RODNYANSKY, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF ECONOMICS, UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE: Yes, absolutely. I mean, I agree with everything you have
commented or just said, your reporter just said. Ultimately, I heard the blast myself this morning, I woke up from them.
There are some water shortages today in Kyiv. But in general, I mean, Russia is pursuing several objectives with this. First one is political. I
mean, that's clear. They're trying to again use nuclear blackmail. You know, they bombarded one of our nuclear plants, very close to nuclear
plants in Ukraine, and that cut off power from the nuclear plant to our grid. So again, I mean, it just shows you how careless they are, how much
risk they're taking and how much they're trying to intimidate western populists, west population, western voters into stopping their support for
So that is a political objective. Number one. Number two, it's obviously economic terrorism. An economic objectives that they're pursuing. They're
sending a very strong signal to everyone in Ukraine and then perhaps some of our refugees outside of Ukraine, that, you know, life is very far from
returning to normal, despite the fact that over the recent weeks, it was more quiet. It was quiet --
SOARES: Yes --
RODNYANSKY: Around here, there was fewer attacks. And so that tells you that, you know, refugees are not going to return, businesses are not going
to invest. So it's a question of managing expectations perversely for them, and showing that this is a long game, and that they're trying to plan this
war for years. Which we know they do. And finally, there is a third military objective, which is obviously technical.
They're using hypersonic missiles, they're using new types of weapons, and they're seeing how our air defense systems can cope with them. And
unfortunately, like you said, they're not coping well enough with them.
SOARES: And we heard from the Russians, they basically said, Alexander, that this was retaliation for what they say, what they call terrorist
actions on Russian soil in Bryansk, I think it was last week. So, your response to those comments, to those allegations.
RODNYANSKY: Right, I mean, I don't think there's much to comment, given what Russian propaganda puts out and however they want to justify this or
rationalize this, and use some sort of isolated events. I mean, the fact that there's something going on in Russia now, and that things are starting
We should commend that in some sense because remember, our ultimate objective here is, unfortunately, to stop Russia from having the resources
to divert their resources from being able to wage this war effort, in order for them to focus on their domestic issues, rather than on their foreign
policy issues as they see them, right? In terms of this war.
So it's no question that, you know, life is not going to get better in Russia over the medium run with this sort of government, with this sort of
regime. And the fact that things are starting to get out of hand is unfortunately in the situation, something that we should welcome. Now,
however, they want to motivate, that's obviously not something that you would even want to comment on. There is a full scale war going on for more
than a year. And that's it.
SOARES: And you and I have spoken before. And we focused in particular on Bakhmut, and this is something we have focused in great deal here on the
show on the eastern front, where we have seen, of course, this grinding battle. But if we go further south, Alexander, on that front, we'll find
the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant.
Which was completely earlier today disconnected from Ukraine's power grid due to the shelling. This is what the head of the IAEA, Grossi -- Mr.
Grossi had to say. Have a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAFAEL GROSSI, DIRECTOR-GENERAL, IAEA: This is the largest nuclear power station in Europe, operating for the sixth time under emergency diesel
generators. I am astonished by the complacency. Yes, the complacency. What are we doing to prevent this from happening? We are the IAEA. We are meant
to care about nuclear safety.
Each time we are rolling a dice, and if we allow this to continue, time after time, then one day our luck will run out.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: So Alexander, I mean, what needs to be done to avoid any element of luck here?
RODNYANSKY: Yes, I mean, absolutely, I agree with everything that was said. And I said it before myself, I mean, the Russians are extremely
careless, extremely complacent as the head of the IAEA just said in terms of what they're doing. But that's exactly, unfortunately, what they're
trying to weaponize and what they're trying to instrumentalize because they expect that sort of reaction, and they expect the fear, the waves of fear
that are going to rivet through western society.
And that potentially, you know, that's the danger will pressure western voters and western policymakers into saying, look, we should somehow stop
this war, we should somehow strike some sort of deal in order to prevent anything bad from happening.
SOARES: Yes --
RODNYANSKY: But that's exactly what Russia is trying to achieve, and we need to make sure that we prevent that from happening, and how do we do
that? Well, unfortunately, we are in the middle of a full blown war in Europe for more than a year. So we have several instruments. We need all
the weaponry, all the possible air defense systems that we still don't have enough of.
And today is testimony to that. In order to protect our skies effectively, we need air -- private jets. We need air power. We need obviously economic
isolation and economic punishment for Russia. And that's still, you know, lacking to some degree because there is no secondary sanctions in place as
there should be. Many countries are still trading with Russia, some are trading more.
We need to further isolate Russia and we need to raise the costs and destabilize this regime as far as possible, such that they do not have the
resources to wage this sort of terrorism.
SOARES: Alexander Rodnyansky, always great to get your insights, thanks very much, Alex, appreciate it.
SOARES: Now, from inside Iran's notorious Evin prison, CNN has received a desperate plea for help from an Iranian-American wrongly imprisoned for
years. U.S. citizen Siamak Namazi was in Iran on a business trip in 2015 when he was wrongly convicted of cooperating with a hostile government,
presumably the U.S., and he has been left behind during multiple U.S.-Iran prison exchanges in the year since.
Well, Evin prison sits in an ironically scenic location in the hills of northern Iran, with the harsh conditions many prisoners face have made it
really an icon of an autocratic regime, bent really on crushing anyone it deems an enemy. It is from inside Evin's high walls seen here during a
controlled media tour that Siamak Namazi spoke with our Christiane Amanpour, pleading with the Biden administration to finally bring him home.
Have a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SIAMAK NAMAZI, IMPRISONED IN IRAN (via telephone): The very fact that I've chosen to take this risk and appear on CNN from Evin prison, it should just
tell you how dire my situation has become by this point. I have been a hostage for seven and a half years now. That's six times the duration of a
hostage crisis. I keep getting told that I'm going to be rescued, and deals fall apart where I get abandoned.
Honestly, the other hostages and I desperately need President Biden to finally hear out -- finally hear our cry for help and bring us home. And I
suppose desperate times call for desperate measures. So this is a desperate measure.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: Well, we contacted Iran's foreign ministry for its reaction, though so far have heard nothing back. The U.S. government has responded,
our Christiane Amanpour joins me now from New York with that and more of her disturbing and deeply moving interview. And Christiane, it was
incredibly hard I have to say, not to be moved by Namazi's words.
And you know, like I'm sure many of our viewers, I heard frustration, I heard a huge sense of abandonment. But this was hugely risky. Which I
suppose speaks to how desperate he is.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: You know, this was really directed more at the United States than at the Iranian government
that's imprisoned him. He knows, and everybody knows that any deal -- because that's what it will take, a deal to get the other foreign nationals
out, whether they're from whatever country, but in this case specifically the U.S. foreign nationals, Namazi and two others will require a deal to be
Like all the other previous releases. And that lands firmly for the United States on the table of President Biden, which is why he specifically asked
me to be able to directly address President Biden, which he did. And of course, we actually reached out, as you mentioned, to the administration.
Just going to read you their comments, and then we'll discuss a little bit further.
But they said "Iran's unjust imprisonment and exploitation of U.S. citizens for use as political leverage is outrageous, inhumane, and contrary to
international norms. The United States will always stand up for the rights of our citizens wrongly detained overseas, including Siamak Namazi. Senior
officials from both the White House and the State Department meet and consult regularly with the Namazi family.
And we will continue to do so until this unacceptable detention ends and Siamak is reunited with his family." So Isa, the truth of the matter is
that, he is a pawn, that's what everyone including the U.S. government describes him as. And it is going to be some kind of deal to get struck.
But what kind of a deal, especially in this very highly charged moment of very negative relations between Iran and the United States --
SOARES: Yes --
AMANPOUR: There was obviously the crackdown on the human rights, and also the issue of Iran sending weapons to Russia for use in Ukraine.
SOARES: So on that point, Christiane, what is your understanding of what is happening behind the scenes? What efforts are been made to free Namazi?
Because from Namazi -- from what I heard, he feels like he's been abandoned by this administration.
AMANPOUR: Yes, and just --
SOARES: I might add --
AMANPOUR: Yes, and just to be clear since 2016, now he's been imprisoned for 7 full years of a 10-year sentence for you know, very nebulous charges
which he fully refutes. So there have been three previous prisoner swaps between the United States and Iran in that period of time. And he was not
included in any of them. Why? He doesn't know we can't figure it out.
But all the others involved, either prisoner swaps and or cash, basically.
Iranian cash, that has been frozen overseas that they want back. Not other people's cash, Iranian cash that they want back. Just like they wanted
their cash back from the U.K. to get Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe released. Now, he -- you know, doesn't understand why it hasn't happened. I spoke to
Vali Nasr as you well know, well-known to our audiences, a former State Department adviser on these issues, and on that region, he says there has
been and continues to be some kind of deal in the works with Qatar acting as the intermediary.
But we have no idea where that is going, and whatever happens, the results and the execution of that kind of deal would land firmly on the -- you
know, on the desk of President Biden for the U.S. side.
SOARES: Christiane Amanpour, thank you very much for your time to speak to us on this, Christiane, I mean, a truly moving and clearly very risky
interview there, unprecedented from Evin prison. I really urge you all to listen to it, go online and find it. Thanks very much, Christiane, I
appreciate it. Now, breaking news to bring you this hour. We are getting news of a shooting in Tel Aviv.
Three people wounded, one severely. Police say, the suspect shot pedestrians and has been neutralized by police officers. Hadas Gold is in
Jerusalem. Hadas, what more can you tell us.
HADAS GOLD, CNN JERUSALEM CORRESPONDENT: Well, Isa, what we're hearing from authorities, it's just in the last 30 minutes or so, this shooting
attack taking place in central Tel Aviv on Dizengoff Street, this is the heart of the going out area in Tel Aviv and on a Thursday night, which is
the equivalent of essentially a Friday night in Israel.
What we know so far from emergency services is that three people were shot and wounded, one of them is in critical condition, they have all been
transferred to the hospital. We are hearing (INAUDIBLE) reports from Israeli police that they may have as you noted shot at least one of the
attackers, say that there may have been more than one attackers.
Now so far, authorities are calling this a suspected terror attack. I should remind you that not only was this -- did this take place on a very
busy going out, with bars and restaurants were likely completely full of people, but it also happened not far from a similar attack that happened
last year during that initial wave of terror attacks that sort of prompted the recent Israeli authorities operations in the West Bank.
That attack last year on a bar killing three Israelis. But it's also happening on the same day of these massive anti-Israeli government protest
against the planned judicial reforms. So when the shooting took place, there were likely hundreds, if not thousands of Israelis protesting not far
away on the streets of Tel Aviv, the continuation of the protests that we've seen all day long.
So, we're still looking at the exact details, the exact nature of this attack, who carried it out. But so far, Israeli authorities are saying it
is a suspected terror attack, and they are saying that three people have been wounded as a result.
SOARES: And as you said, Hadas, you know, this is happening, tensions continue to rise really for several weeks as you've been keeping on top of
this for us. But as these protests, we're seeing more and more of these protests over judicial reforms. And now also comes from the day that
Secretary Lloyd Austin was visiting too. So, give us a sense of what he's been saying about the tensions really between the Israelis and the West
Bank and indeed judicial reforms being sought by Netanyahu government.
GOLD: Yes, a lot happening here today. Today was another day of disruption planned by these protesters. So going beyond just protesting in the street
or in front of the Israeli parliament, but really trying to essentially shut down the everyday life of Israelis, and this time, they took these
protests to the airport.
GOLD (voice-over): Protesters in Israel taking their days of disruption to Israel's main airport, Wednesday. For 10 weeks now, tens of thousands
coming out to the streets against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's plans to weaken the judiciary, and give Israeli politicians unprecedented power
to overturn supreme court decisions.
Passengers forced to drag their suitcases, so as not to miss their flights. This man from France walking more than half a mile to the terminal, saying
he understood the protesters point of view.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's -- when you're fighting for what is right, you need to fight and not violence.
GOLD: Among the demonstrators, former fighter pilot who said they wouldn't heed the call to serve a government they believe is hurting democracy.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's more important to have a free country than to catch a plane.
GOLD (on camera): The protesters here at the airport slowing down traffic to the entrance, trying to disrupt not only Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu's planned trip to Italy, but also affecting U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin's arrival. The Pentagon saying Israeli officials asked
the Defense Secretary's team to push back and alter his schedule, instead of him meeting with officials in Tel Aviv.
Instead, he's arriving here to this airport, and immediately going to a complex right next to the airport, meeting with officials and then flying
(voice-over): In an unusual move, Austin wading into the judicial reform debate while standing alongside the Israeli defense minister.
LLOYD AUSTIN, SECRETARY OF DEFENSE, UNITED STATES: The genius of American democracy and Israeli democracy is that they are both built on strong
institutions, on checks and balances and on an independent judiciary. And the president also noted that building consensus for fundamental changes is
really important to ensure that the people buy into them, so they can be sustained.
GOLD: Meanwhile, in Tel Aviv, protesters blocking traffic along the main highway, chanting shame and democracy, before dozens of police including
mounted officers push them off. Organizers vowing they will continue taking to the streets until the planned judicial changes are stopped just like
this traffic on this highway.
GOLD: And just today, Isa, the National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir announcing that the head of police in Tel Aviv was going to be moved from
his position to become head of training. This is largely being described in Israeli media as a demotion, and the reaction to the police chief's
response to those protests.
Because unlike last weeks when the police responded much more aggressively and violently with the protests, although, there were some minor clashes
today, the police were much more hands off than they were last week. Isa.
SOARES: And from what I understand as well, Hadas, President Herzog has been speaking to the nation, have now spoken about the protests and about
the judicial reforms being -- by the Netanyahu government, pardon me. What has he said?
GOLD: Yes, this address was announced sort of at the last minute. We just got about a 30-minute heads-up, before he made this address. Now, the
Israeli president separate from the prime minister. He doesn't have as much legislative power, but he is seen as a very important figurehead. And he is
making an attempt and has been making an attempt in recent weeks to get all sides to sit down together to talk with one another, to try to come to some
sort of consensus.
But his speech today was the first time he really spoke out directly against the specific legislation. It's essentially saying that the set of
legislation currently being discussed is wrong. He called it predatory, and undermines Israel's basic democratic foundation. That is the strongest
language we've heard from him, specifically speaking out against these legislations.
He is warned about where Israeli society stands right now, essentially saying that it's at a breaking point, and that there's no turning back,
essentially calling out for a hail Mary for people to come together, to come to the negotiating table, to come and sit together and talk, otherwise
he says he fears for what will be an Israel's future. Isa.
SOARES: In the meantime, it doesn't seem that Netanyahu is budging on this, at least, we haven't seen any signs of that, correct? Hadas, just --
am I right on that?
GOLD: No, Netanyahu is -- yes, Netanyahu is actually in Rome right now. He just arrived for an official meeting there, and he will be staying there
through the weekend.
SOARES: Hadas Gold for us in Jerusalem. Thanks very much Hadas. And still to come tonight, citizens say they see no end to the fighting as gang
violence terrorizing Haiti's capital, we'll have that story next.
SOARES: Well, in Haiti, nonstop gunshots have terrorized civilians for weeks after violence among criminal gangs erupted. More than 50 people have
been killed and dozens of people are missing. Large areas of Port-Au-Prince are run by criminal groups, fighting really for territory control. Doctors
Without Borders say the violence has been -- even forced its hospital closed in the capital city.
Our Patrick Oppmann is in Havana, Cuba, and joins me now. Patrick, good to see you. Look, the situation in Haiti seems to be deteriorating very
quickly and it has been deteriorating, I should say, for a while. What exactly is Doctors Without Borders saying about their decision to close?
How long will they close for, and what impact would this have on the ground, more importantly?
PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is really and especially troubling site, Isa. Because as we all know from traveling around the
region and the world, Doctors Without Borders is one of those organizations that seems to work in the toughest places imaginable. The most war-torn and
desperate countries there are.
And so, for them to say that their clinic that is operating in Cite Soleil, which has long been one of the most dangerous parts of Port-au-Prince, the
capital of Haiti, that it's too dangerous for them to operate there really is chilling, because it does indicate just how bad things have gotten. But
they say that it's not a question of gang violence, not a question of crime, it is an all out war that is going on, on the streets outside their
Their patients have been shot, that it's not safe for their doctors to operate in this clinic anymore. So, they are closing down temporarily they
say, but without any clear sign of when they can reopen this clinic. Which means that hundreds of thousands of people who live in this part of Port-
au-Prince essentially will not have medical care.
They will not be able to access one of the few clinics that was operating in this area. But it just goes to show how bad the gang violence has
gotten. A problem --
SOARES: Yes --
OPPMANN: That has long existed in Haiti, but has reached a level we simply have not seen before. Where you have a clinic like this being operated by
an international aid organization that is used to working in extreme circumstances. And they say, as many other aid agencies have been in the
past several months in Haiti, they say they're simply too dangerous for their staff to operate.
And that they are running risks that are no longer acceptable to them. But of course, that compounds the problems of Haiti's --
SOARES: Yes --
OPPMANN: Misery, that so many people in one of the poorest areas will simply not have access to medical care.
SOARES: Which begs the question, you know, where are the police forces? What is the government doing to stop these gangs, Patrick, or are they just
simply outgunned here?
OPPMANN: You know, the police forces have tried to confront the gangs in recent months. But you remember, recently it was the police after a number
other officers were killed and tortured by the gangs and couldn't even recover their bodies for several days. It was the police that demonstrate
against their own government because they say, they are simply as you said, outgunned, don't have the resources.
The United States and Canada have promised more weapons, more armored tanks, armored trucks, that kind of thing to help the police. But of
course, the Haitian government has asked for actual boots on the ground for the militaries to come in and assist our police. At this point, no country
seems to be willing to take that step of sending troops to restore order.
And for the moment, at least, it seems like the gangs will have the upper hand and the government here is just overwhelmed by this problem.
SOARES: Yes, and those affected are really ordinary Haitians who can't go to school, can't see doctors, can't buy food because of course, it's
economic, social, as well as political crisis. Patrick Oppmann, appreciate it. Thanks Patrick. Now, the bodies of two Americans killed in Mexico last
week are expected to be back in the U.S. sometime today.
Shaeed Woodard and Zindell Brown will be brought to Texas where they will have a second autopsy. Woodard and Zindell were part of a group traveling
from South Carolina, so one of them could get a medical procedure. But they were all kidnapped, if you remember at gunpoint in northeastern Mexico.
The other two were found alive Tuesday, are currently being treated at a hospital in Texas.
U.S. officials say the Mexican drug cartel most likely mistook them for Haitian drug smugglers.
Still to come, the Georgian government opposition is saying they are not stopping the protests.
SOARES: Welcome back to the show, everyone.
Georgia's ruling party has withdrawn a controversial piece of legislation which sparked days of protest. The U.S. embassy in Tbilisi, NATO and the
U.N.'s human rights office all welcome the withdrawal.
The bill was considered to be pro Russia and the opposition worried would drive a wedge between Georgia and Europe. The government has also released
all detained demonstrators, something opposition leaders demanding before ending their protests but many are continuing another night of rallies.
Let's go now to Tbilisi where Mariam Nikuradze joins me.
Mariam, give me a sense of where you are and how big the crowds are, how large these crowds are behind you.
MARIAM NIKURADZE, JOURNALIST: Hi. The crowd is quite big. I mean, it's practically reduced a bit now as, just a few minutes ago, we learned the
Georgian Dream, the ruling party, announced that they would have a special session tomorrow to see, to fail (ph) that foreign agents draft on
legislative level (ph), which was the main demand of today's protest.
As you know, this morning, (INAUDIBLE) which is why the protest is together today here and it was once again, one of the largest protests I've seen. In
the past we've seen (INAUDIBLE).
Some of the protesters are leaving now. They are going to come back tomorrow at 11 am when the (INAUDIBLE) session is scheduled. But some
people decided to stay and some are planning to stay overnight. And here outside the parliament when the (INAUDIBLE) session starts.
SOARES: So let me get this straight. There will be a parliamentary session tomorrow, 11 am.
SOARES: Local your time, where the government will vote on whether to go ahead with this foreign agency bill, right, that the government has
SOARES: What are the chances (INAUDIBLE) actually passing, given there are 76 members of the prime minister's party was backing this to start off
NIKURADZE: I believe that the goal of tomorrow's session is to actually save it though it means that the (INAUDIBLE) will still have the majority
in the parliament and going to (INAUDIBLE) for the draft, which will mean on paper that the draft will fail.
And it will not succeed in the future, to become a law. That's the only reason why tomorrow's session is being scheduled. This is the result of all
this protest we've seen and all these violence, with riot police, (INAUDIBLE) and so on.
SOARES: So the session tomorrow could be interpreted, at least on paper and for now, as a victory.
So why are the protesters still there?
Why are they not dispersing?
NIKURADZE: They were gathered here, I think, from 6 pm to (INAUDIBLE) actually what happened already to schedule this session for an early
future, because (INAUDIBLE) hold a session on the 27th of March and people didn't believe that they would actually hold their word.
And they demanded (INAUDIBLE) to withdraw the law immediately, which is what happened in I think about 12 hours ago, which is why protesters are
still here. But (INAUDIBLE) already left. Like right behind me was attacked (INAUDIBLE).
(INAUDIBLE) just past, really. Now the agency, it's more spacious now. But some people are leaving. So their main demands have been met.
SOARES: Let's just see. Let's see tomorrow whether they vote against it. And I'm sure from what you've told me, if they don't, protesters will
return to the streets of Tbilisi. Mariam Nikuradze, we really appreciate you taking the time to speak to. Us thank you.
NIKURADZE: Thank you.
SOARES: Tonight, the battle against HIV and AIDS has come a long way. Hear why there's much more work to be done. That story, just ahead.
SOARES: Well, the fight against HIV is at a crossroads 20 years after U.S. President George W. Bush announced the plan to combat the pandemic. Now
nobody could have really predicted what an astonishing impact, of course, that plan would have. But now many have largely forgotten about the
disease, as our David McKenzie found out.
DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You started taking the medication.
Did you start feeling better straightaway or it took a long time?
PHILISANDE DAYAMANI, HIV PATIENT: I felt better straightaway.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): It's an epidemic many have forgotten.
DAYAMANI: It wasn't easy for me to accept. Many people cry when they hear about this.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Philisande's young life upended when she tested positive for HIV last year. Years ago, her mother died of suspected AIDS.
DAYAMANI: I first cried. I said, I cried. And it eventually happens, I knew I had to take my pills.
These are the most important ones.
MCKENZIE: Are they easy to take?
DAYAMANI: So easy. Nothing hard about taking pills.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Life-saving antiretroviral drugs that she will take for a lifetime.
DAYAMANI: I've got a purpose.
MCKENZIE: How do you feel about that?
DAYAMANI: I feel normal. It's part of life.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Part of life for nearly 6 million South Africans on treatment. The country still has the highest HIV burden in the world.
People, who could otherwise die, living normal lives. It's an extraordinary public health achievement.
GEORGE W. BUSH, 43RD PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Many hospitals tell people, you've got AIDS. We can't help you. Go home and die. In an age of
miraculous medicines, no person should have to hear those words.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Twenty years ago, President George W. Bush announced the Presidents' Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief or PEPFAR. The
region was in crisis. In the hardest hit areas, the virus was seen as a death sentence because it often was.
Life expectancy dropped by 20 years. Child deaths have tripled. Multiple generations were at risk.
BUSH: Seldom has history offered a greater opportunity to do so much for so many.
JOHN BLANDFORD, CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AFRICA: It was a complete surprise.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): John Blanchard, CDC's director in South Africa, has been HIV positive since the mid '80s; on antiretroviral pills since the
BLANDFORD: Despite the fact that we had highly effective therapies starting in 1996, that were largely available in Western Europe, in the
United States, the challenge was then getting the effective drugs, lifesaving drugs, to the places where they were needed most.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): In those regions, PEPFAR saved more than 25 million lives.
Like 64-year-old Julius Mleppe (ph) in Lesotho, who has been on treatment for 10 years.
"If you have faith in the pills, they will work for you," he says. "You will start to get sick if you skip the treatment."
But public health officials say that the AIDS epidemic is at a crossroads. Infection rates among men who have sex with men and young women remain
stubbornly high. These groups have been a special focus.
Globally, more than 600,000 people still die of AIDS, despite wide access to prevention and treatment, that could save their lives and stop the
spread of HIV.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A lot of the world has sort of forgotten about HIV. But we haven't forgotten.
MAKHETHA MOSHABESHA, KARABO EA BOPHELO: No, we haven't. We haven't forgot. We still have people who are dying of HIV in as bigger numbers than we've
seen it before. We still see HIV impacting lives of people in the household.
We see children who are still born with HIV. We still see young people still being exposed to HIV because of issues of availability (ph). So we
can't forget it.
DAYAMANI: It's a very big risk like for a person to take a medication if they are HIV positive and also not to be sure that they are not HIV
positive and they have to go test. It's a very risky thing.
MCKENZIE: Why is it risky?
DAYAMANI: Because a person can die without knowing what killed them.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Philisande wants to become a doctor or a singer.
The burden she has to carry is one no child should carry.
But in the next 20 years, with enough will, this virus can be beaten -- David McKenzie, CNN, Johannesburg.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'd like to close out today's ceremony with a question.
SOARES (voice-over): (INAUDIBLE) year old, still to come tonight, how technology is literally putting words into other people's mouths. The story
on the power of AI, next.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: Welcome back, everyone.
As the violent passengers and runway close calls are not enough for you, severe turbulence can be another headache for flyers. Some 5,500 flights in
the U.S. experience it every year on average. But as Tom Foreman reports, that number may grow, thanks to climate change.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Violent turbulence has been a feature of flying for decades, with each year bringing fresh and
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A lot of people hit the ceiling. And a lot of screaming.
FOREMAN (voice-over): A series of recent incidents have alarmed some flyers.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was honestly pretty scary. It was kind of like, out of a movie.
FOREMAN (voice-over): And they have terrified others.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My life just like flashed through my eyes. I thought it was the end.
FOREMAN (voice-over): Climate change has been scientifically linked to increasingly severe weather. So amid all the headlines about planes being
rattled, a troubling question has emerged.
It the climate making turbulence worse, too?
Yes, says the coauthor of this 2019 study, Professor Paul Williams, who studies atmospheric science.
PAUL WILLIAMS, ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE RESEARCHER: Climate change has made more turbulent flights more likely much in the way that it has made heat
waves more likely as well. Climate change is strengthening clear air turbulence at all flight levels, in all seasons, everywhere around the
world where there's a jet stream.
FOREMAN (voice-over): Simply put, he said climate change is creating atmospheric disturbances which generate a ripple-like effect in the air,
even when no bad weather is apparent. But proving a link for any given flight is tricky.
When a passenger is injured, like the seven who went to the hospital after a lufthansa flight a few days ago, or if someone dies, as happened with a
woman on a private jet over New England, the National Transportation Safety Board notes the incident. But it does not track turbulence on all flights.
PETER GOELZ, CNN AVIATION ANALYST: And frankly, that's not enough.
We need to have a more robust system, because the attempts at forward- looking radar to pick up clear air turbulence, they simply have not panned out yet.
FOREMAN (voice-over): More information is key, researchers say, because the threat is not going away.
WILLIAMS: I would love to see more efforts put into collecting reliable, robust data, as we move into this more turbulent future.
FOREMAN: The Federal Aviation Administration says it is stepping up efforts to collect more data on turbulence. Perhaps that will lead to
smoother and safer flights ahead -- Tom Foreman, CNN, Washington.
SOARES: Well, let's say that you are on the phone with your husband or wife and you start talking about what your day is going, what you're doing
for your day.
What's for dinner tonight?
What you're doing?
That sort of thing.
How do you know you are really talking to your husband or wife?
A rise in a fairly new technology allows a computer to really mimic your voice and it's a lot easier than you think. Also, rather scary. Donie
O'Sullivan has more.
NOREEN O'SULLIVAN, DONIE'S MOTHER: Hello?
AI DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Hi, Mom.
N. O'SULLIVAN: Hi, Donie. How are you?
AI: Does my voice sound different to you?
N. O'SULLIVAN: Yes, I just said that to Sinead. I said Donie sounds so American.
AI: This is not actually me. This is a voice made by computer.
N. O'SULLIVAN: Oh my God. Are you serious?
DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN TECH CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Mom. I'm sorry.
There has been an explosion in fake audio and voices being generated through artificial intelligence technology.
AI WALTER WHITE: This is an AI-cloned version of Walter White's voice.
AI LEONARDO DICAPRIO: This is an AI-cloned version of Leonardo DiCaprio's voice.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: All you need is a couple of minutes recording of anyone's voice and you can make it seem like they have said just about
anything -- even --
AI COOPER: Anderson Cooper. We've come here to UC Berkeley today to talk to Hany Farid, a digital forensic expert about just how easy it is to put
words into other people's mouths.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: It's a lot of fun.
HANY FARID, DIGITAL FORENSIC EXPERT AND PROFESSOR, UC BERKELEY SCHOOL OF INFORMATION: Sure.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: But it's also really scary.
FARID: I think once you put aside that gee-whiz factor I don't think it takes a long time to look at the risks.
AI WOLF BLITZER: This is Wolf Blitzer. Hany Farid, you are in "THE SITUATION ROOM."
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: That's something.
FARID: That's good.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Yes, that sounds pretty good.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): By uploading just a few minutes of me and some of my colleague's voices to an AI audio service I was able to create
some convincing fakes, including this one of Anderson Cooper.
AI COOPER: Donie O'Sullivan is a real piece of (INAUDIBLE).
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: That's AI.
FARID: Is it really?
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: That's AI.
FARID: That's good.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Yes. Anderson's is really good --
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: -- because Anderson doesn't have a stupid Irish accent.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): The technology did struggle with my Irish accent but we decided to put it to the ultimate test with my parents.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: I am about to try to call my mom back in Ireland and see if I can trick her with this voice.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Do you think I'm going to be successful?
FARID: I'm nervous. I'm like -- my hands are.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: All right.
N. O'SULLIVAN: Hello?
AI O'SULLIVAN: Hi, mom.
N. O'SULLIVAN: Hi, Donie. How are you?
AI O'SULLIVAN: Just finished shooting our story here. I'm going to the airport in a while.
N. O'SULLIVAN: There seems to be a delay in the phone, Donie.
AI O'SULLIVAN: Can I say a quick hello to dad?
N. O'SULLIVAN: Yep.
DONAL TOMMY O'SULLIVAN, DONIE'S FATHER: Hi, Donie.
AI DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Hi, dad.
DONAL O'SULLIVAN: How are you doing?
AI DONIE O'SULLIVAN: How are you?
DONAL O'SULLIVAN: Good. Yourself?
AI DONIE O'SULLIVAN: I just finished shooting our story here. I'm going to the airport in a while.
DONAL O'SULLIVAN: (INAUDIBLE). Oh, you're going back -- going back to New York?
AI DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Are Kerry playing this weekend?
DONAL O'SULLIVAN: They're playing Tyrone Sunday.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): My dad went on to have a conversation with the AI Donie about how Kerry, our home football team, had a game that
weekend. Eventually, I had to come clean.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Dad, I'll give you a call better later on. Can you just put me back on to mom for a second?
DONIE O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): My parents knew something was off but ultimately, they still fell for it.
N. O'SULLIVAN: Oh, yes. Some of it don't be bad but it was like -- it was like your voice was a little tone lower and it sounded very serious.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Yes.
N. O'SULLIVAN: Like you had something serious to say. Because I went oh, jeez, my heart was hopping first.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Oh, I'm sorry.
DONAL O'SULLIVAN: I thought the voice was very funny. I thought the voice was very funny -- yes, I did.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: All right.
DONAL O'SULLIVAN: I heard on it (PH).
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: I'll call you later, dad.
DONAL O'SULLIVAN: OK. Bye-bye.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Bye-bye.
FARID: Is this not classic?
The mom's like something is wrong with my son. The dad's like everything's fine.
AI-GENERATED JOE BIDEN: I'd like to close out today's ceremony with a question. If you were given a choice, would you choose to have unlimited
bacon but no more video games or would you rather --
DONIE O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): With fake Biden and Trump recordings going viral online, Farid says this could be something to be wary of going into
the 2024 election.
FARID: When we enter this world where anything can be fake -- any image, any audio, any video, any piece of text -- nothing has to be real. We have
what's called the liar's dividend, which is anybody can deny reality.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): With a flood of new AI tools releasing online, he says companies developing this powerful technology need to think
of its potential negative effects.
FARID: There is no online and offline world. There's one world and it's fully integrated. When things happen on the internet, they have real
implications for individuals, for communities, for societies, for democracies. And I don't think, we as a field, have fully come to grips
with our responsibility here.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): In the meantime, I'll continue annoying my colleagues.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: Hear this, what Anderson said.
AI COOPER: I've been doing this a long time. I have to say Donie O'Sullivan is probably the best in the business.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN: That's very kind of him to say that.
FARID: That is really -- you know, you should be honored, really.
SOARES: Very funny but also very troubling indeed. Thanks for Donie O'Sullivan on that report.
Now Barbie has released a new doll, this time, celebrating women in STEM. It is in the likeness of Black female space scientist Dr. Maggie Aderin-
Pokock. Her Barbie doll wears a starry dress and comes with a telescope for stargazing, as you could see there.
The British space scientist, as people are often surprised that a Black female, would have such a career but she says her life mission is to
encourage girls in STEM. Because, she said, today, "These subjects are just too important to be left to the guys."
Thank you very much for your time. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is up next with Rahel Solomon. I shall see you tomorrow. 'Bye.