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Isa Soares Tonight

U.S.-Saudi Arabia Broker A 72-Hour Ceasefire In Sudan; Joe Biden Officially Announces 2024 Re-Election Bid; Russian Minister's Ex-Wife Stirs Outrage With Lavish Lifestyle; North Dakota Governor Signs Bill Banning Abortions At Six Weeks; Kenya Starvation Cult Suspected After 89 Dead Found In Mass Graves; Corruption Fuels Lavish Life Of Russian Minister's Family; Prince Harry Says William Settled Phone Hacking Claims; Harry Belafonte Dead At 96. Aired 2-3p ET

Aired April 25, 2023 - 14:00   ET



ISA SOARES, HOST, ISA SOARES TONIGHT: A very warm welcome to the show, everyone, I'm Isa Soares. Tonight, the U.S. and Saudi Arabia have brokered

a ceasefire in Sudan, the state of that ceasefire, the status of evacuations and the dire reality facing the Sudanese. Then U.S. President

Joe Biden makes it official. He will run for re-election.

And then later, a special investigation into the ultra lavish lifestyle of a Russian socialite with close ties to a Russian deputy Minister of

Defense. Why is this allowed to happen in France despite sanctions? But first, sporadic clashes are threatening a very fragile ceasefire in Sudan

today. But foreign governments are racing to take advantage of the reduction in fighting to get more of their diplomats out.

The U.S. and Saudi Arabia brokered this latest truce agreement between Sudan's army, as well as a powerful paramilitary force. And while it may be

holding in part, witnesses report heavy fighting in northern Khartoum and gunfire in the capital itself. Aid groups say the 72-hour truce could be a

potential life-saver if humanitarian corridors are open for civilians desperate, of course, as we've been telling you on the show, for food, for

water, as well as medicines.

The U.N. warns shortages are becoming extremely acute, and the prices of basic goods are skyrocketing. Let's begin this hour with an update on the

international evacuation efforts, our Sam Kiley is with us this hour in Djibouti, we're also joined by Natasha Bertrand at the Pentagon. Sam thank

-- first to you. I mean, this is as we've just outlined there, pretty shaky ceasefire, but it's an opportunity to get people out.

Talk us through the journeys and routes that people are taking, because these are quite perilous even at this stage.

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: They are perilous, but they are perceived in different ways. So the United States is seeing the

situation on the ground, notwithstanding the tenuous, I should say, a near ceasefire that has supposedly been negotiated that went into effect at

midnight last night, Khartoum time.

That notwithstanding, as far as the Americans are concerned, the situation is not quite enough for them to conduct any more air evacuations. Contrast

that with the United Kingdom, which is planning to do two rotations of air evacuations pretty much as we speak. We don't have any information as to

whether or not they have actually gone ahead.

But they did see it. I quote, "as a more permissive environment". The French have managed to dock a frigate at Port Sudan, and taken on board 500

people who have been able to cross to Port Sudan from Khartoum, a journey of 800-plus kilometers, 500-miles plus. They are now safe on board and they

are going to be taken to Jeddah.

Egyptians also docked at Port Sudan recently, so there is a good difference in approach here. The Americans are giving a lot of air assets to this in

order to keep an eye on what is going on, on the ground, but they don't see it as safe enough to put their own aircraft yet on the ground. There are

some 16,000 Americans believed to be still in Sudan.

But the situation really is also getting worse and worse, because as the banks are closed, there's no cash, water, fuel, food is in short supply,

people are unable to recharge the credit on their phones to communicate with the outside world, in so far as it's possible at all, as believed to

be only one cellular network still working in Khartoum.

All of this coming, increasing the pressure on these warring factions to dial down the violence so that there could be some prospect of peace, but

more importantly, to maybe get those land corridors open, open towards Egypt, open towards Port Sudan. U.N. reporting some 20,000 refugees already

crossed into Chad in the west, and large numbers of refugees from South Sudan have also been returning back into the country that they fled because

of violence there in the past.

SOARES: And let's then turn to Natasha. Natasha, you heard there, clearly, a different -- U.S. taking a very different approach to this. Why go

differently? What are the options is U.S. considering here?


NATASHA BERTRAND, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, Isa, the U.S. has said repeatedly that they simply do not view it as a viable option to

conduct a massive kind of U.S. military-assisted evacuation operation for the roughly -- or I should say, the dozens. That's what they have said,

Americans that have expressed a desire to get out of the country.

There are roughly 16,000 Americans there who have registered with the embassy, but the number who actually have expressed the willingness and the

desire to get out of the country is a bit smaller. But look, I mean, the U.S. government is saying that they're preparing for every possible plan

here. The military here in particular, they are deploying ships, Navy ships to the Port of Sudan in order to assist with the potential evacuation of

Americans who actually are able to reach that port on their own.

And, of course, to provide any medical care to those people who reached that port, who may need it. And we just heard actually from the State

Department, who said that not only are they trying to assist Americans to get into the port, and to getting out of Khartoum in the areas with the

heaviest fighting, but also people in Sudan who have helped the American government over the last few years, who are affiliated essentially with the


Maybe that is local staff, people affiliated there with the embassy. They say they're really trying everything short of a kind of military evacuation

to get them to safety. But their repeated argument is that the kind of massive military evacuation that we saw play out in Afghanistan in 2021, is

simply not going to happen here, and those are actually quite rare.

And that usually, in cases like these, the U.S. government will simply advise citizens on a safe route out, and of course, the military has been

providing intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance overhead to make sure that those convoys and those Americans that are trying to get out can

do so safely, potentially warning them, of course, of any threats or of any risks that could be posed to them by exiting themselves.

But ultimately, the message here is, look, we will help you try to get to areas that are safer, but we are not going to employ the military here to

do that. Now, that could change, of course, and the military has repeatedly said that they are planning for any scenario, but it's really up to the

State Department at this point to kind of give them the go-ahead to actually do it, Isa.

SOARES: And given this volatile situation, Natasha, are American citizens doing that?

BERTRAND: Yes, so, we are told that the -- there are dozens of Americans - - that's the word that they have used, that have expressed the willingness to get out of the country, and they have seen signs that Americans have

been able to get to the Port of Sudan, and that they have been able to reach these areas of safety.

But of course, there are many more that are potentially at risk that the U.S. government may not even --

SOARES: Yes --

BERTRAND: Know about, because not every American citizen registers with the embassy there, Isa.

SOARES: And let me go back to Sam in Djibouti, because we are learning, Sam, and I hope you can give us more information here that a lab in

Khartoum was seized by the RSF, the paramilitary force. What more are you hearing? Because it's potentially very dangerous.

KILEY: Well, this is a lab that has biological -- dangerous biological items within it, viruses and the like. So there is real deep concerns in

the W.H.O., that measles, that cholera and the polio that is kept there for the production of vaccines and also other forms of research, are in danger

of being released into the general population at a time when of course, the health services of all, but completely collapsed in Khartoum two days ago.

There were reports that less than 70 percent of the hospitals were functioning at all. So that is a major concern right now, on top of all the


SOARES: Indeed, Sam Kiley for us, Natasha Bertrand, thank you very much. Well, most Sudanese civilians don't have the luxury, of course, of boarding

aircraft or ships to reach safer ground, and they fear their lives will be even in more danger once foreigners leave. Some are asking why the world is

abandoning them during a time of war.

Those who have managed to flee are describing truly horrific conditions back home. These families made it to neighboring Chad that still face

incredible hardship. Have a listen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Well, we have no water, no food, no mattresses to sleep. Some of us are sick and need medical attention.

We're all tired and hungry, we cannot go back because it's not safe. They took everything we have, shot at us and burned houses.


SOARES: Well, another civilian says she fled Khartoum after her house was hit by missiles. She says the world could have done much more to help.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think the international community missed a golden chance when they evacuated the foreign nationals, that they could have

gotten in some supplies, anything to tie things over. They didn't. We're basically left to fend for ourselves virtually with nothing.



SOARES: While the United Nations says it is bracing for a mass exodus of Sudanese refugees, estimating as many as 270,000 could flee to Chad and

South Sudan alone. We'll stay on top of the story, of course, for you. Now, U.S. President Joe Biden has made it official. He's running for re-election

in 2024. He made the announcement in a new video released earlier in the day. Have a look at this.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: When I ran for president four years ago, I said we're in a battle for the soul of America. And we still

are. The question we're facing is whether in the years ahead, we have more freedom or less freedom. More rights or fewer. I know what I want the

answer to be, and I think you do, too. This is not a time to be complacent. That's why I'm running for re-election.


SOARES: So what can we take from this announcement? Joining me now is CNN political commentator Van Jones, also joining me, CNN senior political

analyst Ron Brownstein. Van and Ron, great to have you on the show. Van, let me start with you. We obviously -- we just played a short clip of that

announcement. But what did you make of the pitch? I mean, he said he wanted to finish the job, that as a pitch, what do you make?

VAN JONES, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Oh, I think he's doing what we expected him to do. You know, Joe Biden, his entire career has been

underestimated. You know, people thought he was -- you know, not going to be able to even get the nomination for the Democratic Party, he wind up

wiping the floor with all the opposition, beat Donald Trump.

When you have that kind of -- and then he's delivered so much for his base when it comes to infrastructure, when it comes to climate, when it comes to

marriage equality. And so, we have that kind of record, it's hard to just stop, and I think he thinks I'm going to -- I'm going to beat the odds one

more time. I'm going to show him wrong one more time.

And he's focused on this idea of freedom, where he really feels that the Republican right has gone too far in authoritarian direction. And this idea

of finishing the work that he started, and we'll see. But four years ago when he announced, we yawned and said there's no way, four years later, Joe

Biden may well be -- being underestimated again.

SOARES: And four years ago, Ron, I mean this, you know, the elephant in the room was age, yet again, we're talking about it. He is 80, 70 percent

of Americans -- we had this polling yesterday, don't believe he should be really going again because of age, should be running again. How do

Democrats then, Ron, change this public perception? Does the president even have to acknowledge it here?

RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: How much it matters in the end. That's really one of the critical questions. You know, Americans, you

look at the polling, Americans are not wild about Biden's performance as president. In some ways as Van says, he's still underestimated by the

public, his approval rating is 42 percent or below, in four major national polls coming out in the past week, and it may not matter that much.

Because I mean, the essence, I think of his situation is the quote that he often uses in speeches that he attributes to his father. "Don't compare me

to the Almighty --

SOARES: Yes --

BROWNSTEIN: Compare me to the alternative" --

SOARES: The alternative --

BROWNSTEIN: And what we saw in 2022 was that an unusually large number of voters who said they were mildly disappointed in his performance or unhappy

with the economy voted for Democrats anyway because they felt that the Trump-era Republican Party was an unacceptable alternative. One of the

polls that came out today at "PBS", "NPR"-Marist poll, only 41 percent of adults approved the Biden's performance as president, 64 percent said they

did not want a second Trump term.

And I think that might apply as well to candidates in the Trump mold like DeSantis, and that really is, I think the biggest asset that Biden has

going for him, is that on these core issues, there are still many voters, perhaps a majority of voters who are reluctant to entrust the White House

to Trump or other politicians in this mold.

SOARES: And Van, on that point, I mean, I was looking at some of the recent polls. 45 percent of Democrats from what I saw, don't think he

should run. But you know, like you said, he's been in U.S. politics for what? Some 50 years, he's beaten Donald Trump. How much does Trump's

potential return helping uniting, you think, Democrats behind him? This idea that he might be the anti-chaos candidate.

JONES: I think that that's why he's running. I think he's afraid that Donald Trump is going to get back in there, and he thinks that he stopped

him. Once he thinks he can stop him again, I think if you're Biden, you look around and you say, well, what Democrat is going to do a better job of

uniting the party and stopping Donald Trump than I just did.

And he may not be able to identify that person in his own mind. You know, the danger to him, of course, is that if he goes again and he gets beaten,

and then you know, all of this incredible achievement that he's been able to pull off gets completely reinterpreted.


And it's kind of like, you know, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the beloved Supreme Court justice, because she stayed a little bit too long, didn't allow Obama

to replace her, she wound up handing the Supreme Court over to the far right in the eyes of a lot of people. So you can't stay too long, you're

taking a big risk with the country and with his own legacy.

But I think if you're Joe Biden today, you think if anybody has earned the right to take this kind of a risk, it's me. I was eight years loyal to

Barack Obama, I've done a great first two years, I don't see anybody else who could do better, and I've got to stop Donald Trump.

SOARES: And so, Ron, what do you think then will be the major things that you'll have to focus on, and that you will have to win on critically. I

know the economy is always the number one. But --


SOARES: What other themes do you think will be critical here?

BROWNSTEIN: Well, that's why his video today was kind of striking. You know, Biden has really downplayed -- with the exception of abortion, the

culture war fights that Republicans like Trump and DeSantis and many other red-state governors have been pushing forward on issues like voting rights,

LGBTQ rights, book bans, classroom censorship.

He's really emphasized in his public appearances, the idea that he is delivering kitchen table benefits for working families. Talking about how

many blue collar jobs his investment programs create, protecting Medicare and Social Security, lowering drug prices, lowering insulin prices -- in

many ways, a throwback to the pre 1970s Democratic Party that he was brought up in.

This video elevates the other side of the agenda that many Democrats have wanted to hear more on, which is a direct response to those Republican

attempts to roll back rights that are really raging through the red states. And I think it is a reflection of the actual priorities of the coalition

that will elect him.

One thing to keep in mind is that we are an era of trench warfare in American politics, where very little is moving around the margins, even if

it is a Trump-Biden or Trump-DeSantis, you're talking about a handful of states, probably five or less, that will pick the next president. And in

those states, you're talking about a tiny number of voters.

I mean, literally, there are a handful of neighborhoods around Atlanta, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Philadelphia, Detroit, that are going to pick the next

president for a nation of 330 million people.

SOARES: And so, Van, your honest opinion here. I mean, the challenges then for President Biden. What are the weaknesses that you think Republicans can


JONES: Well, I think his age is obviously --

SOARES: Yes --

JONES: A liability for him. Last time, he was able to -- because of COVID, he didn't have to go out and campaign as much. I think he's going to have

to deal with that. I think some of these cultural war issues, some of them do cut into Democratic base. Some of the transgender stuff and other stuff

may come to the Democratic base, so he's going to have to be a very adept politician.

He's lucky he can also deploy Kamala Harris, and she can go out, and she can do some of the things out in the country while he stays, maybe more in

D.C., and they can divide and conquer that way, while the Republicans are still figuring out who their VP is going to be.

SOARES: And Kamala Harris played quite a significant role in this video today. Did that strike you? Did that surprise you?

JONES: Made me very happy. You know, there was a lot of talk about him throwing her overboard or not, you know, not sticking with her. That could

create a lot of pandemonium in the party that it happened. I think he's clear. He's Joe Biden. He rides with the ones who ride with him --

SOARES: Yes --

JONES: And I think she's going to be able to do a good job on the campaign trail for him.

SOARES: And Ron, the last question really to you. Are we -- for an international audience, are we possibly looking at rematch here or do you

think that DeSantis has a chance, although, of course, he hasn't thrown his hat in the ring yet?

BROWNSTEIN: Look beating Trump in a Republican primary is not impossible, but it's not going to be easy. Today, in a poll out today, you know, 65

percent of Republicans said they would want a second Trump term even if he is convicted of a crime. And of course, the challenge for DeSantis would

be, even if he can beat Trump, can he beat him in a way that does not effectively turn him into Trump in the eyes of those suburban white-collar

voters that have moved towards the Democrats since 2018, and provided, you know, much of their strength?

By most conventional measures, his job approval dissatisfaction with the economy, the number you cited and the number of people who don't want him

to run again, Biden begins in a vulnerable position, but all of those conditions were present in '22 as well --

SOARES: Yes --

BROWNSTEIN: And Democrats did surprisingly well, especially in the swing states that will decide the '24 election precisely because too many voters

somewhat dissatisfied with Biden's performance or disenchanted with the economy, still felt the Republican alternative was unacceptable. And you

can see in this video today that he intends to be reminding them exactly what that alternative is at every opportunity.

SOARES: And I'm guessing the investigations then, Van, into Donald Trump that are taking place. Does that help his base or hinder him in some way in

terms with -- via the Democrats.


JONES: Well, look, you would think that being under four different criminal investigations would hurt you as a candidate --

SOARES: Yes --

JONES: Unfortunately, it seems to actually be helping him with his base. It's kind of a sense that he's a martyr now, he's being -- he's being

martyred. The system is against him because he's against the system and that kind of stuff. And so, it's actually making it harder for other

Republicans to catch fire and get past him, of course.

For the Democrats, it makes us even less enthusiastic about Trump getting back in there and more enthusiastic about stopping him. But this is --

SOARES: Yes --

JONES: And with any other candidate, yes, you get a parking ticket or an overdue library book and you quit in shame. I know, this guy has got four

investigations, he might -- he might go to the White House with them still going on.

SOARES: Yes, teufel(ph) candidate of sort.

BROWNSTEIN: Real quick, 63 percent of Republicans say today they still want a second Trump term if he was convicted of a crime. Those numbers go

down to like 15 percent to 25 percent among independent voters, young voters, voters of color, college educated whites. The Republicans have a

dilemma, whereas Van says that the legal actions against Trump are causing a kind of a rallying around the flag, circling -- you know, circling the

wagons effect among their voters.

But it is having the expected effect on voters outside of the Republican coalition, which it makes it even more reluctant to return to the White

House, someone who they were dubious about, particularly after January 6th to begin with.

SOARES: Gentlemen, always great to have you on the show, Ron, Van, I could talk for you -- to you both for hours, but I'm being told we must wrap, we

must go to this break. Thank you very much.

JONES: And thank you --

SOARES: And still to come tonight, we'll give you a look at how one Russian socialite is spending loads of money in France even after Russia

has been slammed with sanctions, that story next.


SOARES: Well, Ukraine says it is achieving impressive results against Russian forces in the Kherson region. Ukrainian military officials say they

have destroyed numerous Russian artillery tanks and defense systems on the east bank of the Dnipro River, and they say more operations are coming.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Armed Forces says Moscow is so focused on Bakhmut that they are reducing offensive operations in other


Let's get the very latest from our Nick Paton Walsh, and he joins me now live from Zaporizhzhia. So, Nick, we have two battles really going on,

Bakhmut in the east where you and I have discussed for many months, we've seen intense fighting and where the Russians are concentrating.


And then this new push in the south. Just give us your analysis of the strategy here from both sides.

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR: Well, Ukraine's strategy is deliberately not entirely transparent at the moment. And when

we first started hearing reports from western analysis of pro Russian military bloggers, looking at events along the Dnipro River, the west bank

of which is controlled by Ukraine, the east bank of which is controlled by Kherson.

Ukraine's Armed Forces very quick to step forward and essentially demand silence around that entire issue from the media here in Ukraine, part of

which operates under military restrictions. Yet, still over days to come, we saw more evidence of Ukrainian forces crossing over that river in small

numbers, possibly, possibly not unprecedentedly, they may have been doing it in past months as well.

We don't entirely know. But that evidence grew, and then today, we see Ukraine stepping forward and talking about the quote, "impressive results"

of those attacks. Taking out Russian hardware, artillery, mechanics, et cetera. And it seems also pushing back Russian forces partially from that

bank. All of this is hard to independently verify, I should stress. What it does certainly do, though, is raise the specter in the mind of Russian

military officials that they're going to have a problem potentially on the eastern bank of the Dnipro River, around Kherson, which is something they

may have ruled out as being a threat.

Does that mean they have to re-adjust their full strengths in that part of occupied Ukraine? Does that reduce their attention on the Zaporizhzhia

region, where they've built a large defensive line of trenches, anticipating, like many analysts do, that Ukraine will try and push south

through there, cutting occupied Crimea off from the rest of occupied Ukraine.

That would be an extraordinary strategic move and victory by Ukraine if they manage to pull that off. So while Ukraine has said it won't announce

its counteroffensive, and it certainly hasn't done anything at this point suggests it's underway despite signs out there that things are beginning to

move. This move, potentially on the eastern bank of the Dnipro River might herald a bit to get Russia off-guard or possibly, a prelude to that


All very hard to read at this stage, Isa, but it does make you feel something is underway. The long-awaited --

SOARES: Yes --

WALSH: Counteroffensive.

SOARES: Nick Paton Walsh for us there in Zaporizhzhia, thanks very much, Nick. And still to come on the show tonight, we'll dig into how Oklahoma's

abortion laws are creating confusion among hospitals. That story, that's coming up next. You are watching CNN.




SOARES: Welcome back, everyone.

The governor of North Dakota has signed a bill, banning abortions at six weeks with no exceptions for rape or incest and it becomes the latest U.S.

state to restrict the procedure after Roe v. Wade was overturned by the Supreme Court remember last year.

But as states create these new laws, it has led to a lot of confusion. A new study shows that, in Oklahoma, even hospital staff are unable to

explain their own emergency policies under the state's abortion restrictions. Abortion is banned in Oklahoma, except for medical

emergencies to save the life of the mother.

Our health reporter Jacqueline Howard joins me now with more.

So, Jacqueline, do you -- do you think what was found in Oklahoma here is somewhat reflective of what is happening in other states with abortion

restrictions as well?

JACQUELINE HOWARD, CNN HEALTH CORRESPONDENT: It certainly looks that way, Isa. what we're seeing in Oklahoma is just one example of the confusion

that's happening across the country when it comes to the state by state differences in abortion policies.

And for that study in Oklahoma , what researchers did, they called 34 different hospitals. And the researchers posed as patients, asking the

hospitals about the type of abortion care that they might provide during an emergency.

And the researchers found more than half, 65 percent of hospitals, were unable to provide information about the procedures, their policies and the

type of support they would offer to doctors, who might have to terminate pregnancies during a medical emergency.

And then it was surprising, Isa, that we also saw 12 percent of hospitals in this study provided misinformation, some saying that nowhere in Oklahoma

could you get an abortion under any circumstance, even though we know that the policy in Oklahoma is that abortion is only offered during a medical

emergency situation.

So this is just one example, again, of the confusion that's out there for patients but also, Isa, for medical providers as well and specifically for

doctors. And that confusion is also causing some fear, as doctors also don't know what they are allowed to do in their state and what is

prohibited, Isa.

SOARES: On the doctor front. I mean, what happens then, Jacqueline, if a doctor is found to be in violation of these Oklahoma laws?

HOWARD: Well, in Oklahoma, the abortion penalties include up to 10 years in prison, up to $100,000 in fines. So that's why there is this fear among

medical providers as well as the confusion, Isa.

SOARES: Ten years, $100,000, my goodness. Thanks very much, Jacqueline, appreciate it.

I want to take you to Kenya. Now police have recovered 89 bodies from mass graves in a forest. They're thought to be followers of a Christian cult who

believed they would go to heaven if they starve themselves. And a warning, these are disturbing images in the next story. Our Eleni Giokos has the

story for you.


ELENI GIOKOS, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Dozens of bodies recovered from shallow graves. This forest in Eastern Kenya, the site of a

suspected religious cult, believed to be encouraging followers to starve themselves in order to reach heaven.

Police say at least 34 people have been rescued. The families fear many more will not be found alive.


GIOKOS (voice-over): Police identified a man named Paul Nthenge Mackenzie as the leader of the cult, seen here, shouting, "Praise Jesus," as he's

escorted by police who arrested him after they were tipped off that his vast land in Kenya's Shakahohla forest contained mass graves.

Police say they got reports last month that Mackenzie was linked to the deaths of two children, allegedly instructed to fast until they died.

WILLIAM RUTO, PRESIDENT OF KENYA: Terrorists use religion to advance their heinous acts. People like Mr. Mackenzie are using religion to do exactly

the same thing.

GIOKOS (voice-over): Kenya's government has called for tighter regulations on those using religion to promote radical ideologies.


HUSSEIN KHALID, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, HAKI AFRICA: We came across one individual who was rescued from the interior.

But the moment we -- she was brought here, she absolutely refused to, you know, be administered with first aid. And she closed her mouth firmly, you

know, basically refusing to be assisted, wanting to continue with her fast until she dies.

We need psychosocial counseling so that they can be deradicalized and understand what is happening.

GIOKOS (voice-over): Police have said that all those culpable for the crimes of the suspected cult, dubbed the Good News International Church,

will face justice -- Eleni Giokos, CNN, Abu Dhabi.


SOARES: In the last 20 minutes or so, if you remember, we took you to Zaporizhzhya. We're showing you really what's happening on the front lines,

both in the east of the country in Bakhmut but also in the south in her Kherson.

Well, while the Ukraine war grinds on, a top Russian official's ex wife is living the good life in France. She is spending lavishly and partying at

elite resorts despite E.U. as well as U.S. sanctions. Our Clarissa Ward investigates how she's getting away with it.


CLARISSA WARD, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Svetlana Maniovich is a woman of expensive tastes. Diamonds and couture,

extravagant parties and European vacations.

Just last month, she was seen shopping and dancing in the elite French ski resort of Courchevel.

But Maniovich is no ordinary Russians socialite. She is the other half of Russia's deputy minister of defense, Timur Ivanov, one of the most senior

architects of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

And, according to a shocking investigation, Maniovich continues to gallivant around France more than a year into Russia's bloody war, despite

the fact that Ivanov was sanctioned by the E.U. in October.

The explosive report, put out by the Anti-Corruption Foundation, an investigative outfit founded by Russia's jailed opposition leader, Alexei

Navalny, is based, they say, on a leaked archive of more than 8,000 of Maniovich's emails over the last 12 years and has racked up more than six

million views on YouTube.

It claims that on March 25, 2022, as dozens of missiles rained down on the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, Maniovich spent more than $100,000 in a top

Paris jewelry store on the Place Vendome.

WARD: How is it possible that she can continue to do this?

MARIA PEVCHIKH, HEAD OF INVESTIGATIONS, ANTI-CORRUPTION FOUNDATION: It's a very simple trick that they played. Point number one, Svetlana has an

Israeli passport through her first -- with her first husband.

And second of all, six months into the war, they have filed for divorce. They haven't -- they haven't split any assets. Nothing has changed in terms

of like, you know, daily life. Whatever they owned, they keep owning together but technically, they're not legally married anymore.

WARD (voice-over): Equally shocking are the opulent lifestyle and lavish spending that the leaked emails document. According to Russian business

publication "RBC," Ivanov's official income was once declared to be around 14.2 million rubles a year, less than $175,000.

Yet, the Navalny group's report calculated that the couple spent more than a quarter of a million in just one summer. CNN has not been able to

independently verify those numbers.

WARD: How is he funding this lifestyle?

PEVCHIKH: Well, the answer is corruption. Corruption and specifically kickbacks.

WARD (voice-over): According to the Russian government, Ivanov oversees construction for Russia's Ministry of Defense, including what the Anti-

Corruption Foundation describes as lucrative contracts to rebuild the Ukrainian city of Mariupol, which fell to Russian forces under punishing

bombardment last May.

PEVCHIKH: Russian army has destroyed, demolished 70 percent of the apartment blocks in town. They had to build new ones and they did. So that

company that built those displace houses in Mariupol, it is the same company that pays for Timur Ivanov's' personal bills.

WARD (voice-over): Despite claims of such brazen corruption, Putin toured the construction project last month, a request for comment on the

investigation from the Russian ministry of defense received no reply.

In France, though, the pressure may be mounting. On Sunday afternoon, the Anti-Corruption Foundation organized a small protest outside the Paris

apartment it claims Maniovich still rents, demanding to know how she is allowed --


WARD (voice-over): -- to spend the profits of Russia's war in the heart of France. A question so far without any satisfactory answer.

WARD: CNN has reached out to the French foreign ministerial, who responded, saying, "We do not comment on individual situations. France,

with its E.U. partners, has ended visa facilitation for Russian citizens and has also adopted targeted individual sanctions against 1,499 Russian

officials and their supporters."

We also attempted, of course, to reach out to Svetlana Maniovich, sending her an email. But, as of yet, we have not received a reply -- Clarissa

Ward, CNN, London.


SOARES: Still to come tonight, new allegations from Prince Harry and his lawsuit against British tabloids, this time involving his brother. Anna

Stewart joins me with all the details.




SOARES: Welcome back.

New claims are emerging in Prince Harry's lawsuit against British tabloid newspapers. Court documents claim his brother, Prince William, settled the

phone hacking claim against the news group for, quote, "a very large sum." The Duke of Sussex is suing the media group for a similar reason.

Anna Stewart joins me now to make sense of all of this.

So just explain first of all the timing of this, why Prince Harry is bringing his claim up now because this is an old case, right?

ANNA STEWART, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is an old case. I would add to that that it also suggests that "The Sun" newspaper was involved in illegal

phone hacking and intercepting of private information.

We knew about "News of the World;" that is now defunct, too. A journalist and a private investigator went to jail over that. But you're right. The

timing of it is really critical as well because the timing of it is exactly what the current pretrial hearing is all about.

The publisher of the newspapers say not only is "The Sun" not involved in phone hacking, they also say the limitation period is over. These

allegations are too old. They should have been made earlier,

Prince Harry says not. He says he didn't know the full extent of all of the allegations of phone hacking against him.

He didn't have all the information. He also says, Isa, he alleges that the royal family, the institution, he says, with full knowledge of the queen,

struck a secret agreement with the publisher of the newspaper that they wouldn't take this into court. They wouldn't make a claim for many years,

to allow the dust to settle so the royal family could do this without having to go into a witness box.

SOARES: Do we know what it was, what they were trying to hide their in this secret agreement?


SOARES: Do we have any detail -- ?


STEWART: We didn't even know there was a secret agreement. This is just the claim from Prince Harry. So, at the moment, we have the statement from

the publisher of these newspapers, who say there was no such agreement.

And we have essentially a no comment, as you would always expect from Buckingham Palace. But then we have another bombshell, because Prince Harry

has also said another reason why he should be able to bring this to court now, at such a late date, is because he says his brother, Prince William,

reached a settlement for a, quote, "very large sum of money" from this publisher only in 2020.

So very recently. Again to that, we have no comment from the palaces; from this one, though, from the publisher of the newspaper, we have a no


SOARES: So no comment from the publisher but, OK, this is getting very confusing. So in terms of, I mean, the Murdoch group not commenting on

this. But the timing of this is interesting, especially because we've got, in two weeks we have his father's coronation --


SOARES: -- how awkward will this be?

STEWART: Well, this is tricky. Now in terms of the legal cases, these have been in the works for a very long time. So I don't think these timings were

on purpose. I think the meeting of Prince Harry, the reunion of him and his family, was already going to be pretty awkward.

After that book, "Spare," the autobiography of Prince Harry, after all the interviews, all the allegations of wrongdoing from Prince Harry about the

royal family. So this is certainly piled on even more pressure on that.

SOARES: And I saw you earlier, just for our viewers, I saw Anna reading through piles and piles of court documents in terms of witness statements

from Harry.

Is there anything that gives a sense of what he -- it's gone, what he's gone through in terms of the hackings and the hacking scandal?

STEWART: I just had some more actually on that. And I'm just flicking through. And you can just see paragraph after paragraph describing

situations with his ex girlfriend, Chelsea Davey, or his good friend, Guy Pelley; instances where a story would come out in a tabloid newspaper.

And he would assume that his girlfriend or his friends were leaking information about him and, instead, his phone calls, his voicemails were

being intercepted.

SOARES: And it's just -- very quickly, on this secret, the whole hidden thing, the whole secret agreement here, do we know?

I mean, do we have any details as to -- or did Harry say anything as to what exactly the family, the royal family was worried about here?

STEWART: So the concern on this one, according to Prince Harry -- and I will keep saying that because we do not have anything at all from the royal

family here -- but according to Harry, a secret agreement was reached so that we wouldn't see members of the royal family at a witness box, having

to talk about the conversations they've had in private, on voicemails.

You may remember there have been in the past situations where voicemails were leaked or phone calls were leaked. Prince Charles and Camilla, now

King Charles and the Queen Consort, during their affair, when he was still married to Princess Diana, a whole conversation was leaked, which was

terribly embarrassing for King Charles.

And I think nobody wanted to have a repeat of that -- again, according to Prince Harry.

SOARES: We'll see what happens in this legal matter, we will probably find out what the next couple of days or so in --

STEWART: Three-day pretrial hearing, we will soon find out whether this and the other case against the "Daily Mail" publisher goes to trial.

SOARES: Anna, thanks very much.

Now a woman from the U.S. could be asked to leave Australia, all because of what was found in her suitcase. Sydney airport officials say they found a

24 karat gold-plated handgun in her luggage on Sunday. The woman does not have a permit for the firearm in the country.

Australia has some of the most strict gun laws in the world. Intentionally bringing a firearm into the country without prior approval can carry a

stiff penalty, up to 10 years in prison.

And still to come tonight, new research is highlighting the risk of devastating heat waves in countries that may not be able to cope with them.

Bill Weir joins me next.





SOARES: Well, we know that the world is heating up but it's getting hotter faster. That is the word from scientists at Bristol (ph) University in

England. It highlights the places most at risk for severe heat waves, as you can see there in your map, like Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea as well

as Central America.

The new study paints a scary scenario for any nation really not prepared to deal with extreme heat. I want to bring in CNN's chief climate

correspondent, Bill Weir.

So, Bill, talk us through these scenarios and why scientists are so concerned about this data.

BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Isa, they started by looking at what are sort of statistically implausible heat waves, like the

one in 2021 up in Western Canada. Lytton, British Columbia, had temperatures in what is typically a very temperate spot at around 50

degrees Celsius, 121 degrees Fahrenheit, for several days.

The whole village actually burned down.

And they looked at the world, they looked at 60 years of data sets, at climate projections into the future and said, where is it most likely that

this kind of catastrophe could happen again?

And it's the bright red splotches on there that you see, that includes Beijing, China, has 250 million people right there to worry about.

Also Afghanistan and Central America, places where infrastructure is already struggling due to conflict or other issues there as well. And those

can touch off tensions, you know, in places like Afghanistan, Pakistan, certainly climate migration in Central America as well.

And so these pockets of intense heat may have rippling effects beyond just the folks who live there.

SOARES: Yes, and I'm guessing a lot of these countries -- China, Afghanistan as well as well as Central America -- they won't be prepared.

They won't have the means to be prepared for something like this.

How would you even prepare for this?

WEIR: Yes, this, the scientists say this was sort of a call to attention for leaders to think about building cooling centers in places where you

normally wouldn't have them. I mean, that's sort of the challenge of adaptation to the warming that's already baked in.

If you live on the coast, you got to think about sea level rise when you're already maybe living quarter to quarter in terms of tax bases in places.

This is investment into a hotter world that a lot of these places haven't experienced.

So how do you prepare for something without that sort of historical baseline set?

But yet another warning to get ready.

SOARES: And the health risk too right because we've seen significant high rises, high temperature here in Europe, in particular, where we have seen

the elderly really being impacted.

WEIR: Absolutely, it's your most vulnerable, it's the young. It's the elderly. It's those who are not as mobile. It's people in places where

there is no sort of standard air conditioning. And heat is the silent but deadly killer.

The hurricanes, the big forest fires get a lot of attention. They're easy to, you know, much, much easier to see, obviously, and track over time. But

heat is the number one to worry about.

SOARES: Indeed. And of course, we haven't even gotten through to the whole -- with the impact that has on agriculture as well in produce. Bill Weir,

thank you very much. Great to see you. Bill.

WEIR: Good to see you.

SOARES: Now a legendary American singer and actor, who risked it all to fight for justice, today the world mourns Harry Belafonte, who has died

aged 96. He found fame, bringing music inspired by his Caribbean heritage to an international audience.



SOARES: Classic. Born in New York to Caribbean immigrants, when segregation, of course, was still widespread, Belafonte's march at the top

of the show business really was kind of groundbreaking. Known as the king of the calypso, he stormed the charts with his personal brand of folk music

in the 1950s.

He would go on, in fact, to make more than 40 albums and star in more than 10 movies.

But Belafonte was an entertainer who refused to sit back and enjoy it, from standing side by side with Martin Luther King as well as Nelson Mandela, to

fighting famine, really, in Africa, he remained an indispensable crusader for social justice right until the very end.

Undaunted by the barriers he faced, Belafonte famously said this, "You can cage the singer but not the song."

We will leave you that for today's quote for today.

Thanks very much for your company. Do stay right here. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" with Richard Quest is next. I shall see you tomorrow. Have a

wonderful day. Bye-bye.