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Isa Soares Tonight

Wildfires In Hawaii Claim Over 50 Lives; Federal Prosecutor Investigating Hunter Biden Appointed Special Counsel; Russian Missiles Target KyivRare Protests In China In Aftermath Of Typhoon; Outrage In China Over Areas Flodeed To Save Bigger Cities; Judge Holds First Hearing In Trump's Jan. 6 Case. Aired 2-3p ET

Aired August 11, 2023 - 14:00   ET



ISA SOARES, HOST, ISA SOARES TONIGHT: A very warm welcome to the show, everyone, I'm Isa Soares. Tonight, wildfires in Hawaii claim over 50 lives,

and it's unclear how many people are still missing. A political bombshell in the United States, the federal prosecutor investigating Hunter Biden,

son of the president, has been appointed a special counsel in that case. We will of course, explain that.

And Russia is keeping up its deadly attacks on civilian targets in Ukraine. We're live on the ground for the very latest. Well, we begin this hour on

the Island of Maui, once a tropical paradise, and now this. It's just a matter of days, this is all it remains, really, of the historic town of

Lahaina. It's buildings, as you can see there, reduced to rubble.

The county mayor says it's simply -- it's all gone. You can see ash there. The wildfires have killed at least 55 people on the island. That number,

unfortunately, is expected to rise, as recovery efforts continue. Fires are still burning, but the main blaze is now largely contained. And winds are

due to die down over the weekend. Some reprieve there.

But for the residents of the island, the true scale of the destruction is coming into focus. Our chief climate correspondent, Bill Weir says it looks

like a bomb is gone off. He shows it's just some of the devastation. Have a look at this.


BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: This is the historic Banyan tree, a 150-year-old majestic tree at the center of Lahaina town. It looks

like it may have survived, it needs water desperately to survive right now. But for the locals who are coming down and looking at the damage, this is

such a sign of hope that maybe their iconic tree will have lived when so much else has gone here.

But the history can never be replaced. Right here, this is the first hotel in Hawaii, the pioneer hotel. Pioneer theater. It's completely gone. Right

over here was the library, it's just now a stone shell of scorched blocks around front street there, Fleetwoods, Mick Fleetwood of the band Fleetwood

Mac, his place is gutted out with flames. It's just unrecognizable.

One of the most charming, beloved port cities anywhere in the world is just scorched like a bomb went off.


SOARES: Really apocalyptic. Well, that was our chief climate correspondent, Bill Weir, showing us what Lahaina looks like right now. He

also spoke to some of the residents of the island, about just how devastating this is going to be for the locals.



WEIR: But you were telling me that this is not just one village on Maui, this will affect all on --

GARCIA: Every single person --

WEIR: Maui --

GARCIA: Every one of my friends lost their job, because the building they worked at. So much of the people that live here, work here on the west

side, it's like where the hotels are, it's where all the tourists come, it's the reason we don't have beaches. You know, so, it's like everyone's

lost their job, they've lost their house, they've lost their family.

I think there's going to be hundreds of people dead. And I don't say that as any conspiracy theory. I just look at how fast it moved. And I know how

people around here, we're all in slippers. You know, it happens, what happens? How are you going to get out that fast? It's all wooden houses,

super close together in that neighborhood.

You've probably been here on vacation, there is a way you can help. It's your turn. Help here because it's needed. Every single home in Lahaina is

gone. It's like I said before, it's apocalyptic.


SOARES: Just so devastating. Well, meanwhile, other residents are saying that they didn't even get a proper warning about what was to come.


ALLEN VU, LAHAINA RESIDENT: No real warning like the -- like the AMBER alerts for -- or the storms that we would normally get, that would vibrate

and make loud noises from our phone. We didn't get any of that. There was no sirens.


SOARES: And those concerns may be discussed when the top U.S. government emergency official arrives in Hawaii to meet with state and local

authorities about response as well as recovery efforts. Well, the fires were fueled by a combination of strong winds, and dry conditions. Now,

winds are dying down and some brief showers are expected.

To get a sense of what's to come, let's bring in CNN meteorologist and severe weather expert, Chad Myers.


And Chad, you know, what we have heard and from several people now in the last several hours is, no one expected this to come so quickly. One of the

gentlemen there, he said, you know, we were in our slippers. Put us -- put everything into perspective for us from what we've just heard?

CHAD MYERS, METEOROLOGIST: These are called urban wild land interface fires, where the wild land, typically in California, that's a forest, but

in this case, it was just scrubbed, comes very close or into a town itself. So, when that interface connects, all of a sudden, you have a wildfire that

blows into a town or a city. It happens every time we lose major population centers because of a fire, typically it doesn't start in a city, it starts

outside of the city, and blows into the city.

And in this case, those winds were 120 kilometers per hour. So think about how fast those winds were blowing embers to the next house, to the next,

and to the next. So things have really helped a little bit here, as Dora has moved away, that hurricane, and the high pressure to the north has also

moved away. So the winds are nearly what they were on those days of the fire.

We're talking about 30 kilometers per hour right now. A normal day, you're always going to get 20, because it's a trade wind, and that's what we

always expect. We're not going to get really any significant rain here, whatsoever, over the next couple of days. It's not a big system coming at

all. So, this is the west side of Maui, a very dry area. Well, why is it dry?

It's dry because it's a rain-shadow effect. I'm going to draw on this map, do a little bit of show-and-tell. The wind from those trades comes in, in

this direction, right through here, blows up the hill and it rains on top. But all of a sudden, it doesn't rain down here, because the air is already

dried out, and the rain has already gone. What else happened here?

There are canyons on this part of Maui, that may have funneled the wind right down to Lahaina, which is right there, and look at the canyons on top

of this extinct, very old volcano, all the way down through here, there's a canyon, right through here, there's a canyon. And this is the area that

picked up those winds that were so very strong.

So, this funneling effect may also have had a significant impact on why so much of this land and population center burned. Significant drought in the

area has been there for a while, winds picking up a spark and ember, we know that there are power poles that are down. If there are power poles

that are down, that means power lines came down.

Likely power lines that were still energized, creating sparks. So, here we go, things are good until I think the middle of next week when another low

center is south of Hawaii. And that may pick up the winds to 50 to 60. Not where they were at 100 to 220, but if things are still even glowing embers

out there, we could pick up some of these flames.

There's just -- there's just -- Isa, there's not much left to burn. I mean, literally, singularly, you look at the satellite pictures, the overheads,

the houses are gone. What we thought in our nighttime video, well, were just embers and hotspots that were burning trees, were not burning trees.

That was just the remnants of what was left of a house. It was just a big, bright, red spot.

And you thought, oh, that's just a tree that burnt. No, that was somebody's livelihood. That was somebody's home. That was somebody's business, was --

it's insane. It's incredibly sad to think about where they are right now.

SOARES: Yes, it's incredibly -- I mean, the images are really devastating. It looks -- it really looks apocalyptic on our hearts --

MYERS: Yes --

SOARES: Of course, go out to everyone who is living through this and trying to pick up the pieces really in this very stage. Chad, appreciate

it, thank you very much.

MYERS: You're welcome --

SOARES: If you'd like to -- more information on how to help really those impacted by the Hawaii wildfires, why don't you go to, there

you find all the organizations who may be able to direct them to those, of course, who need it most on the ground. The FBI is heading to Ecuador to

help with an investigation into the assassination of a prominent anti- corruption crusader.

Presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio was gunned down while leaving a campaign rally in Quito, just 10 days before the election. Mourners are

gathered in the streets today to pay tribute to him as well as call for justice. Villavicencio had warned Ecuador was becoming a narco state, run

by, quote, "a political mafia."

Authorities say one dead suspect and six others arrested are all Colombian gang members. I want to bring in our Rafael Romo who joins me live from

Quito. So, Rafa, do we know any more about these six Colombians? What are authorities telling you?


RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SENIOR LATIN AMERICAN AFFAIRS EDITOR: Yes, well, the new development that we have is that authorities have said that they have now

collected evidence to tie them to the murderer, and they have found weapons and ammunition that they were about to use, and they used some of that in

the murder.

And also, Isa, Ecuador's Interior Minister Juan Zapata said here in Quito, that those detained are members of organized crime, and as you mentioned,

all are Colombia nationals. He didn't specify though if they belonged to a specific criminal group in the past, officials have said that at least two

Mexican drug cartels operate in the country, and the security situation here in Quito and other cities around Ecuador, frankly, has been spiraling

out of control for years.

Earlier this year, two mayors were murdered, including one of the coastal city of Manta, the sixth largest in the country, there was another

candidate for local office who was murdered in Esmeraldas Province which borders Colombia. And there were two assassination attempts targeting the

mayors of two cities. And given this alarming situation, there are at least two presidential candidates saying that the upcoming presidential debate to

be held on Sunday and the election itself, planned for the following Sunday, should be delayed.

And even before the assassination of Fernando Villavicencio, Isa, Interior Minister Juan Zapata had already announced that 59,000 police would be

deployed throughout the country. The original goal, of course, was to safeguard the upcoming presidential election. And President Lasso also

announced Thursday, that he has requested support from the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, they have accepted and they are now here, Isa,

back to you.

SOARES: And Rafa, give us a sense of the mood on the ground in Quito because, you know, the elections that we've been told will go ahead, and I

wonder whether this assassination will drive voters away. What is the sense -- what is the mood that you're getting on the ground?

ROMO: That's a very good possibility. So, we find two different kinds of voters, the people here. There are many people who are indignant. People

who are outraged about what happened. They tell us listen, the best way to fight against them is to go to the polls on August 20th and show them that

we believe in democracy and that we want to do this.

But there is the other group, people who are terrified because they've been experiencing the effects of having organized crime across the country for

many years now. And they're afraid, and after seeing what happened on Wednesday, many of those people may decide that they're just not going to

go to the polls on Sunday.

SOARES: Rafael Romo live for us there in Quito, Ecuador, thanks very much, Rafael. Well, the report, an eight-year-old boy is among the latest victims

of Russia's war on Ukraine. Authorities say the child was killed in western Ukraine when a missile hit near a private home. There's been a wave of

Russian strikes over the past 48 hours in Kyiv, officials say missile fragments landed next to a children's hospital.

And in the city of Zaporizhzhia, missile struck a hotel on Thursday that was hosting a children's day camp. At least, one person was killed.

Ukraine's defense ministry calls it a miracle more lives weren't lost. Well, let's get the latest from our Nick Paton Walsh, who is live for us

this evening in Dnipro, Ukraine. And Nick, as we just laid out there, Russian shelling has really increased across several regions of Ukraine.

What more can you tell us about the casualties and the damage first from that strike in Kyiv?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR: In Kyiv, certainly, it appears that some of the missiles threw have been intercepted. But it's

really in Zaporizhzhia where we have an extraordinary vignette of how awful Russian barbarity against civilians can indeed be.

Along a riverside hotel, these are the images which many Ukrainians woke up to this morning, of a strike which killed one, injured about a dozen, and

appears because of the way the hotel was built, many were sheltered from the actual impact of the blast. But here's what it looked like for those




WALSH (voice-over): The first strike brought horror, a riverside hotel struck. This man, with his family, strolling in a Zaporizhzhia park at 7:20

Thursday evening. Terror, then another roar. The sun spots it first. Another rocket.


As though the hotel, they targeted, where a kids camp had ended just an hour earlier needed to be hit twice. Their screams like this, and they are

500 yards away.



WALSH: Imagine how the children in the hotel pool felt, dozens of guests injured, one dead who did not walk away. This is where the two Iskander

missiles hit, a pool and a playground and a car park.


A Russian official then declared all hotels in the city to be targets, saying they're full of Ukrainian soldiers.


Many hours after, sirens sounded in Kyiv as Ukraine only managed to take down one of four hypersonic Kinzhal missiles. Officials saying another

target was an F-16 training facility in the west. These nightly strikes, Russia's response to the pressure on the southern front where Friday,

important, at least, small gains were claimed.

A Russian stronghold slipping partly into Ukrainian hands, they said. President Zelenskyy has urged patience, and Friday moved to steady a slow-

moving ship, firing the heads of regional military recruitment, after a series of corruption scandals, replacing them with wounded veterans.

VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, PRESIDENT, UKRAINE (through translator): Warriors, you have lost their health, limbs, but maintain their dignity, and don't

have cynicism, can be trusted to run the system.


WALSH: Now, as you mentioned, Isa, they are still trying to clarify why were the impact of the explosions heard in Kyiv, recently, have been. But

this is essentially a nightly horror for all of Ukraine. And you saw there the acute nature of targeting a place where children were playing,

literally an hour earlier. Sometimes, these details flow to the surface and come off visible.

But really, this is the hell that Ukrainians are dealing with nightly as their counteroffensive in the south appears to be making important, but

small gains, still Russia is breaking its revenge across civilian population nationwide, Isa.

SOARES: Nick for us there in Dnipro this evening, thanks very much, Nick. And still to come tonight, a surprise announcement has been made in the

investigation into President Joe Biden's son. What the attorney general decided, and what it means, next. And then later, Russian flags and chants

supporting Vladimir Putin in the heart of Niger.

How a coup has exposed shifting allegiances that deeply elope the west. That story after this very short break.


SOARES: Well, a developing story we are watching today. A special counsel has been appointed in the investigation into the son of U.S. President Joe



Attorney General Merrick Garland announced he gave the position to David Weiss, already the top prosecutor in the Hunter Biden case. Garland cited

extraordinary circumstances, and said the move was in the public interest. Joining us now is CNN's political correspondent Sara Murray. And Sara, what

does this elevation then, of David Weiss as special counsel mean for the investigation? What powers will he have here?

SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Sure, well, it certainly is an expansion of power. And Garland said that this decision came on the heels

of Weiss going to Merrick Garland and requesting this special counsel status. Practically, what it means is that, David Weiss, again, U.S.

attorney in Delaware, does not have to seek anyone else's permission, anyone else's cooperation, if he decides he wants to bring charges in other


So, originally, there was this plea deal they were trying to strike with Hunter Biden in Delaware. That appears to now have fallen apart. And this

will allow the special counsel, if he wants to, to pursue charges in Washington D.C., to pursue charges in California, in other areas where they

believe crimes may have been committed.

SOARES: Sara Murray there for us, appreciate it, thank you, Sara.

MURRAY: Thanks.

SOARES: Now to Niger where supporters of the military coup are demonstrating outside the French military base.




SOARES: Rolling there a Russian flag there if you saw, but they've been chanting slogans hostile to France and to the ECOWAS bloc that's

threatening military action unless Niger's democratically-elected president is returned to power. West African leaders say they still favor a

diplomatic resolution that they are mobilizing troops in case that fails after agreeing to immediately activate a regional stand by force.

Well, Niger has been a critical partner of the United States and Europe, and was considered the last bastion of democracy in the Sahel. But now the

west is watching with extreme concern as Niger's coup leaders and their supporters appear to be shifting allegiances. Our Frederik Pleitgen

explains how the influence of Russia and its proxy militia men are on the rise there.


FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Since the military Junta overthrew the elected president of Niger, Russian

flags have become prominent at pro coup rallies.

"All the Africans know that Putin is ready to save us, this man says", he adds, "I prefer that the Russians settle in because today, if Russia does

so, it's not to exploit resources, it's to help us have peace." But the Wagner private military company might soon be settling in here as well.

France says it believes the Niger Junta leaders are already in talks with Wagner to bring the mercenaries to the long, independent former French


Wagner boss, Yevgeny Prigozhin, after his own failed mutiny inside Russia, says the group wants more business in Africa. In Niger, a country where the

U.S. has long deployed around a 1,000 troops to support counterterrorism operations, that allegedly means Wagner will soon be fighting terrorism


YEVGENY PRIGOZHIN, HEAD OF WAGNER MERCENARY GROUP (through translator): I am proud of the guys from PMC Wagner, he said in an audio message, just the

thought of them makes ISIS and al-Qaeda into small, obedient boys.

PLEITGEN: And while some West African nations have threatened to intervene in Niger after the coup, Wagner could confront them or even France, Russian

analyst Sergey Markov tells me.

SERGEY MARKOV, RUSSIAN ANALYST: Soldiers of Wagner will be happy to put French army on their knees in Niger.

PLEITGEN: Wagner mercenaries were some of Vladimir Putin's toughest and most successful forces in the war in Ukraine. But the group has also been

expanding in West Africa for years. CNN filmed the mercenaries training security forces in the Central African Republic. But they're also active or

have been linked to, Libya, Mali, Burkina Faso and Sudan.

Huge countries with vast natural resources, some of which Wagner are exploiting. Over the past years, investigations by CNN and human rights

groups, have established Wagner's involvement in complicity with atrocities against civilian populations in Sudan, Mali, and the Central African

Republic. And the French say, the group is also behind a smear campaign against them.

Paris says this drone video filmed last year in Mali, shows white men burying bodies at a site where a fake Twitter account probably created by

Wagner, falsely claimed French forces had committed a massacre.


PLEITGEN: U.S. Secretary of State Blinken saying Wagner is both exploiting and creating instability in Western Africa, where Washington has also

invested in training local military.

BLINKEN: Every single place that this group, Wagner group has gone, death, destruction and exploitation have followed. Insecurity has gone up, not



PLEITGEN: But for now, Wagner and Russia's stocks seems to be rising in West Africa. Tailors in Niger's capital busy making more Russian flags to

meet increased demand. Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Berlin.


SOARES: And still to come tonight, rare protest in China after a typhoon brings heavy rain as well as flooding. Why residents are angry over how the

government handled the storm response. Plus, I'm joined by the mayor of Montreal to hear how she's taking the city's climate crisis into her own

hands. That story after the short break.


SOARES: Welcome back, everyone. Returning now to our top story. The wildfires that have engulfed Maui, the death toll jumped to 55 overnight,

but that number only includes people found outside of buildings. Hawaiian Governor Josh Green saying, we will continue to see loss of life. Much of

the historic town of Lahaina is now destroyed.

Survivors said it looked like it was raining fire, thousands of people are now displaced with power as we've heard and communications wiped out. Well,

China says at least 29 people are dead in Hubei Province following a recent typhoon that brought heavy rain and flooding to the northern part of the


Rare protests broke out in the aftermath of that storm, after the government deliberately directed floodwaters to one area to protect bigger

cities. CNN's Ivan Watson has that story for you.


IVAN WATSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A rare moment of defiance in China, angry residents on the steps of a municipal government

building in the city of Bazhou. Their sign says, "give me back my home." The flood was caused by floodwater discharge, not by heavy rainfall. At

some point, men with police shields dispersed the crowd. The incident took place after deadly floods caused by the heaviest rains to hit northeastern

China in 140 years, a typhoon that killed dozens of people in and around the Chinese capital, Beijing, forcing the evacuation of more than a million

people from their homes.

Over the last two weeks, these three provinces all saw dramatic flooding, but we're learning that some communities weren't just damaged by a natural

disaster. The small city of Bazhou, where the protests took place, was deliberately flooded by authorities, following a government disaster plan

aimed at protecting bigger cities like Beijing and Tianjin.

(voice-over): At 2:00 a. m. on August 1st, authorities activated a flood- controlled plan, releasing water from dams into flood storage and detention zones. They then had to evacuate more than 800,000 people living in those

zones, which quickly flooded.

State TV showed the Communist Party Chief of Hubei Province touring the disaster area, instructing subordinates to reduce flooding pressure on

Beijing and vowing to resolutely be the capital's moat. In the event of a crisis, experts say countries often plan to redirect rising water, but

usually towards flood zones that are unpopulated.

ASHISH SHARMA, PROFESSOR OF HYDROLOGY, UNIVERSITY OF NEW SOUTH WALES: Seems like a planning problem. Somebody allowed development or overdevelopment in

an area that was designated to be a flood-controlled zone.

WATSON (voice-over): Provincial governments thank evacuees for their sacrifice, adding, "history will record your contribution." That's called

comfort to people who've seen their homes and livelihoods destroyed for the greater good.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Nearly all the factories in our area were seriously damaged. Ninety-nine percent of the factories have little hope of salvaging

the losses.

WATSON (voice-over): Under Chinese rules, people are entitled to compensation of 70 percent of the value of property submerged in flood

control areas. Experts say planning for the next extreme weather disaster will only get harder.

SHARMA: I think the entire world is scrambling to get prepared for the problems climate change is unfolding onto us.

WATSON (voice-over): Which seems like an almost impossible challenge. Ivan Watts in CNN, Hong Kong.


SOARES: And with warnings that extreme weather events are only going to become more frequent, intense and prolonged, the question is how can we

find solutions to curb the threat of a warming planet? It's an issue that the city of Montreal has taken up as it deals with wildfires that really in

June, if you remember, gave the city the second worst air quality in the world.

Now Mayor Valerie Plante has made it her mission to make Montreal the greenest city in North America. And she joins me now. Mayor, great to have

you on the show. Let me start off with getting your reaction to the scenes of true devastation coming out of Maui. I mean, whole communities scorch,

Mayor. Your reaction to what we have seen in Hawaii.

VALERIE PLANTE, MONTREAL MAYOR: I mean, it definitely breaks my heart and I can see how this is affecting everybody, like having communities being

displaced, people missing. And I mean, it breaks our heart. And this is why based on what we experienced earlier with wildfires here in Quebec, and it

did affect the quality of air even in New York, for example. What is happening in Hawaii is disturbing and terrible. And that just gives me just

more and more examples of why we need to act stronger and faster on climate change.

SOARES: And this is all like you're saying, Mayor, It's all interconnected. I mean --

PLANTE: Absolutely.

SOARES: -- it does seem like this is the norm. The U.N. Chief Antonio Guterres said recently that the era, if you remember, the era of global

boiling has arrived. I mean, you mentioning it there, Mayor, Canada, there's no, you know, it's no stranger to wildfires, talk to us about the

impact the wildfires had had in your country, but also the actions that you are taking.

PLANTE: For sure, it was very surprising for us to see -- to be recorded as the worst air quality in the world. It's something we've never thought we

would experience in Canada. So the wildfires, of course, have been contributing to that. So, I think that for us cities, we have a very

important role to play because we're at the far front when there's events, whatever.


It's flash flooding, flooding, heat waves, we want to protect our communities, our people.

So, there's ways to act, first of all, for the city of Montreal is how we're planting 500,000 trees. And it's planned. It's been planned. It's

been financed. This is how we create more parks. Water parks as well, because flooding is a big issue for a lot of cities as well. We're taking

every aspect. And even in our budget, there's now a large part like our budget is climate change oriented. Everybody's working towards that.

That being said, even those cities, we want to do a lot, I have to say we are limited, that this is where my role as mayor, but also part of the C40

climate change network, it is important to bring forward our ideas and make sure that this political will at the other levels.

SOARES: And is that political will have some of your ideas being welcomed by the majority of people? Because in some cities, they do face pushback.

PLANTE: I mean, you're right. I mean, I was talking about planting trees. I think that's an idea that everybody loves. But when it comes to having less

cars in our street, of course, I'm getting a pushback. And I know that other mayors, other provinces, other states are facing the same thing. But

at one point, there has to be things that people love, like I said, parks and trees. But we need to have that will. We need to accept that climate

change is going to affect us even worse if we don't act. And it is our role as political leaders to have this courage and to bring forward other people

that have courage in the civic society, from the business network as well. How do we bring everybody together to act right now to minimize the impact

later? Because the effects are already here.

SOARES: And then in that case then, mayor, how do you push them through these major challenges that benefit everyone here without losing the

support of your voters? What do you tell them?

PLANTE: Right. I mean, I would say that for us, it's really important to base our decision, even the difficult one and the less popular decision

based on data. And, of course, it's working with scientists, universities. We show that when we do this, this or that, of course, if we lower our

emission, it will have a great impact on people's health. Right now, people are seeing the impact, for example, of all the fires and how it impacts

their -- directly their health. And I think that's a way to show them we need to do something.

But at one point, and I have to be very honest, it is a position where we need to say, even though this is not a popular measure, I have to do it.

And I'm confident that with other mayors, and this is why the C40 Network, I want to bring it forward, it's so important because whatever it's Los

Angeles, Milan, Paris, New York, London, Montreal, we're together saying we need to do the right thing for the future generation, not just for now.

Those are for now, but we need to think about the future generations.

SOARES: Indeed. And, you know, you say you base a lot on fact. Well, here's a fact for viewers, it is estimated that 70 percent of the world's

population will live in cities by 2050. You went stressing there that making cities more green is essential, then implementing that kind of

change is crucial at city level. How can cities then influence other levels of government because that needs to go all the way up, right?

PLANTE: Yes, exactly. The numbers you just said are absolutely right. So, we need to prepare the cities for all these new people, right, coming in.

And for me, it's been how do I put measures forward that also contributes, for example, at the economic level, we've decided in Montreal to make

business streets, big business streets, pedestrians. And at first, for example, businesses were like, we're going to lose money. It's not going to

be interesting. It turns out they're making more money than ever.

And so there's less cars, more space for pedestrians, better quality of air, but also good business affairs. So we need to come up with a strategy

where there's a little bit for everything and to convene different actors. Because if I don't have the real estate with me, if I don't have the

business network with me, if I don't have the institution with me, it's not going to work. And we need to show higher level of government that when

you're audacious and when you think forward, things work.

SOARES: Mayor, really appreciate you taking the time to speak to us. Thank you very much.

PLANTE: Thank you for having me.

SOARES: Thank you.

PLANTE: And all my thoughts to the people in Hawaii, of course.

SOARES: Likewise. Thank you very much, Mayor. Appreciate it.

PLANTE: Thank you.

SOARES: Also on the show, we will continue looking for solutions, looking for inspired by really mayors across the world and what they are doing to

ease and to tackle climate change.

And still to come tonight, strong words from the judge and Donald Trump's election interference case will see what the former president will be able

to say publicly about the case. And in a rare bright spot for U.S.-Iran relations, Americans detained in Iran are moved from prison to house



It's a big step toward their freedom. We'll look at what's behind the deal. That's next.


SOARES: We are hearing from the judge overseeing Donald Trump's 2020 election interference case, the first hearing in this case, got underway

just a few hours ago. The special counsel's office has been clashing with Trump's defense lawyers over what the former U.S. president will be able to

discuss publicly as he runs for office, again. The judge is now largely citing with Trump's team over evidence disclosure but also has a warning.

Joining us now with more CNN's Katelyn Polantz. And Kaitlan, what exactly then is that warning?

KATELYN POLANTZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The warning is that there is the Administration of Justice and then there's politics. And in this case, the

justice system is going to need to come first. Donald Trump is a criminal defendant who may be running for president, that is his day job. She said

at one point during this hearing today, but that is not going to be what dictates this case. It's not going to be what the judge is going to be

factoring into it. It's going to be making sure that Donald Trump has a fair trial and that he plays by the rules of the court as he awaits trial.

I want to read one of the things that the judge said today because she was so clear about how this is going to proceed from this point on, that this

is the tone of how this case will work. She said about protecting fair trials, protecting juries. It is a bedrock principle of the judicial

process in this country. Legal trials are not like elections where people can have things discussed in meeting halls in the radio, in the newspaper,

and they have a right to that. There are free speech rights that Donald Trump still has as a political candidate or anyone living in the country,

but there are limitations that this judge is saying she legally is going to be making here and that she is able to make under the way the law works.

Some of those limitations are going to be about exactly what Donald Trump can discuss as he awaits trial. So, the Justice Department is going to hand

over a lot of evidence that they've collected, including things that Trump's team has never seen before, things like grand jury transcripts,

other information from witnesses, from searches, from warrants, and whenever that is given to Trump's team and they review it, if it's

designated as sensitive by prosecutors.


Then that means Donald Trump is not going to be able to share it widely.

And on top of that, one of his conditions that allows him to not be awaiting his trial from jail is that he can't discuss the details of this

case with other witnesses. So the judge is making quite clear this is how the evidence is going to work and also make sure that you are abiding by

the orders set by this court as you await trial, no obstructing justice, no witness intimidation, and no going over the boundaries that the court is

setting about how to handle the evidence here.

She said at one point in the hearing that there she will be scrutinizing the things that the former president says. And so this is really the tone

going forward to here. And also, you know, this wasn't that different from what the terms are for Donald Trump, both in his federal case in Florida

and elsewhere and also other people who have gone to trial from his political universe. But he now has a court order from this court on what he

could do and say before his trial.

SOARES: Right. So Katelyn, he has to play by the rules. What has been the response from Trump's legal team? I mean, can they fight this? Can they

keep politics out of this?

POLANTZ: Well keeping politics out of this is not what they seem to want to do in court today. They raised Joe Biden several times. They kept

mentioning Mike Pence. Is that the witness the judge is talking about? And she didn't play ball with that. She essentially didn't let her let them

take her down that lane and instead reminded them, these are what the orders are. You're agreeing to us that he's not going to be tampering with

witnesses that he can abide by these rules. And so that's what Donald Trump's legal team was saying.

But the overlay of this whole case is how fast it can go to trial. And so now that this evidence protection order is set up by the court, they can

all start preparing for trial and the judge did signal that she's going to want things to move fast. And even they may need to move faster than the

Trump team wants because one of the reasons that plays into her thinking is that if Donald Trump is escalating what he's saying, that's a good reason

to have a trial quickly. Justice Department wants it as soon as January. But we're not going to get a date until probably the end of this month.

SOARES: OK. Polantz with the very latest thing in the Washington. Thanks very much, Katelyn. Now to Iran where five American detainees are one step

closer to freedom after the U.S. reached a deal with Tehran for their eventual release. We know the identity of three of them. The U.S. says the

five are now under house arrest with four of them moved out of a notorious Iranian prison, the Evan prison. In exchange for their return, the U.S.

will release some $6 billion of Iranian funds that have been locked up by sanctions.

Kylie Atwood is at the State Department with more. So, Kylie, just talk us through first the efforts taking place behind the scenes to get these five

Americans home. What needs to happen now?

KYLIE ATWOOD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, well, it's a really good question because officials aren't really explicitly laying out what has to happen

now. We're being briefed, you know, from U.S. officials familiar with these negotiations as to kind of the general roadmap here. And what we do know

from those conversations is that there's two pieces that we should be watching for here.

The first of which, as you mentioned, are these $6 billion in Iranian funds that are currently in South Korea. The plan is to move those funds to a

location in a different place. The expectation being that those funds will be moved to Qatar. And then they'll be more easily accessible to the

Iranians. So, there's still going to be controls on those funds in terms of what the Iranians can use that money for, only for humanitarian purposes.

But this is something that the Iranians have been wanting because it's been really challenging to use the funds that are currently, you know, in South

Korea because of the challenges of transferring them into the right currency. So, that's one aspect. The second aspect that we've, you know,

learned from the Iranians is that they are expecting that there are going to be five people who are in U.S. custody that are released as part of this

prisoner swap that we'd be part of this overall deal. U.S. officials aren't commenting on that right now, but that's another piece of this that we will

be watching for.

And when you talk to Biden administration officials, they are cautiously optimistic about this, right? Obviously, they incredibly, you know, welcome

the fact that these four Americans who were in Iranian prison were moved to house arrest yesterday. There was another American who was in prison who

was previously moved to house arrest. So a total of five Americans are now out of Iranian prison, which is a good thing. But they know that there is a

while to go before they actually get home to the United States based on these steps that both sides have to take.


So we'll be watching this incredibly closely with the Secretary of State saying yesterday that he believes this is the beginning of the end that

these -- to the nightmare that these Americans have been living through.

SOARES: Well, I do hope so. Important first step, Kylie Atwood. Thanks very much, Kylie. Good to see you.

And still to come tonight, thousands of hackers taking on AI chatbots including ChatGPT. It's all backed by some of the biggest tech companies

and even the White House. That story next.


SOARES: Well, thousands of hackers from all over the U.S. are pushing their skills to the limit at a competition that's happening right now. They are

trying to see how AI chatbots like Chat GPT can be manipulated and expose as many flaws as possible. The goal is to help tech companies make the

system safer.

Donie O'Sullivan is at the conference in Las Vegas. Donie.

DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Isa. We are here in Las Vegas for DEFCON. It's one of the world's largest hacking conventions. And this year,

a lot of the focus here is on AI. Obviously, we have seen an explosion in artificial intelligence over the past year, especially with apps like

ChatGPT. What we're going to see is thousands of hackers are going to try and basically break chat GPT and other AI apps from Google and Meta.

And they're going to try and see if these apps will do things they shouldn't. These apps have been designed to not, you know, promote

misinformation, to not spew hate speech, and to not give out dangerous information. We saw researchers at Carnegie Mellon University here in the

U.S. a few weeks ago have managed to trick ChatGPT into giving us instructions to hot wire a car for instance.

You might think the companies would be against this sort of thing, that they wouldn't want hackers doing this, but instead they actually really

want them to do this and they want to hear from the hackers. Have a listen.


O'SULLIVAN: So what is Red Teaming?

MICHAEL SELLITTO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah. So Red Teaming is a technique where basically researchers, in this case they're about going to be about

3,000 people that do this over the course of the weekend, really try to put prompts in to the models. They get the models to do things they're not

supposed to. So, give toxic outputs, create misinformation, tell you how to build a bomb, right? There's a limited number of bad things that the models

could be asked to do.


We as developers try to build in guardrails, prevent the models from responding or helping to do bad things or harmful things in the world. And

we want people to test our systems to figure out are there ways to get around those guardrails? And the goal is that, you know, we'll use the data

that's collected to retrain our models to make them more safe, make them more harmless.

O'SULLIVAN: What's your kind of big hope for this weekend here?

SELLITTO: I hope somebody finds some really interesting ways to hack or break our systems that we haven't thought about.


And even the White House is backing this effort. We'll see over the next few days what the hackers can get up to. And of course we ourselves are a

bit nervous. We're trying not to get hacked ourselves while we're here in Vegas. Isa.

SOARES: I hope not. Stay safe, Donie, there. Now the Chicago River transformed into a sea of sunshine yellows you can see there for a race

that brings a whole new meaning to the phrase getting your ducks in a row. Over 90,000 yellow rubber ducks flashed into the Chicago River really to

float their way to victory as thousands of onlookers cheered them on in this year's duck derby.

And behind the madness a great cause as the race has already raised, over $428,000 for the Special Olympics. One group of participants, pardon me,

took to social media describing the event as a quacking good time.

And that does it for us for this evening. Do you stay right here. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS is up next with Richard Quest. I shall see you in two weeks.

I'm off.