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One World with Zain Asher
U.N. Reports More Than 9,000 Killed In 500 Days Of War In Ukraine; Cluster Munitions Could Be Sent To Ukraine By The U.S.; Beijing Hit 40 Degrees Celsius; Gun Violence Archive Reports 116 Lives Lost In The United States To Senseless Gun Violence; Nations Policing The Amazon Consider It A Fertile Ground For Drug Trade And Illegal Mining; Nigerian Chef Hilda Bassey Inspires Fellow Nigerians To Break Guinness World Record For Marathon Cooking; Twitter Threatening To Sue Meta After The Launch Of Threads; USFDA Approves First Alzheimer's Treatment. Aired 12-1p ET
Aired July 07, 2023 - 12:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PAULA NEWTON, CNN ANCHOR: The Ukrainian President is set to meet with the Turkish president as that critical grain deal may expire in just a matter
of days. Here's what's coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JENS STOLTENBERG, NATO SECRETARY GENERAL: We have seen the use of cluster bombs.
NEWTON: So, after the West criticized Russia for using cluster bombs, now the U.S. may supply the controversial weapon to Ukraine for the first time.
Plus, shattering records. The last four days were Earth's four hottest days ever recorded. What this means for the state of the climate. And later --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN: We outside for you, Da Bassey! When a Nigerian is doing something, we all come out, we show support.
NEWTON: Isn't that fun? Nigerian sensation and Celebrity Chef Hilda Bassey joins us live this hour. Hear how fellow Nigerians are trying to already
break her world-record for marathon cooking. Hello, I'm Paula Newton, live in New York, and I wanna welcome you to ONE WORLD.
And so, we do begin with sobering statistics from the United Nations as Ukraine prepares to mark a grim milestone this weekend. Now, the U.N. says
more than 9000 civilians have been killed as Kyiv approaches 500 days since the start of Russia's full-scale invasion. This as the United States gets
ready to announce a new aid package to Ukraine.
And for the first time, a controversial and dangerous item is expected to be on the list, cluster munitions. Meantime, on the battlefield, Ukraine
says it's making advances in the Bakhmut region. And then there is the diplomatic front. Volodymyr Zelenskyy is in Istanbul today, where he's set
to meet with the Turkish president at any moment on the agenda, a key grain deal set to expire in a matter of days. The Kremlin says it will closely
watch that meeting.
CNN's Nada Bashir joins me now from London with all the developments. You know, we were just saying 500 days in, and yet the fact that no one
anywhere in Ukraine is safe is really ringing true especially when you give that figure of 9000 civilians now dead.
NADA BASHIR, CNN REPORTER: Yeah, it really is a disturbing figure to think about and, of course, the U.N. has been clear in underscoring. These are
only the civilian fatalities they have been able to confirm. The actual true number of civilian fatalities is anticipated to be much, much higher
than that and we have seen a worrying trend over the last two months of an increase in civilian fatalities. And this, of course, over the last few
days, we have seen an example, really, of the reach of Russia's impact on civilian lives.
Just overnight on Thursday, we saw that devastating attack on Lviv in the west of Ukraine and it has, over the last few months, largely been spared
of Russia's incessant bombardment. But of course, we heard from officials in Lviv describing this missile attack by the Russian armed forces, one of
the most devastating attacks that the city of Lviv has seen since the beginning of the war.
And in fact, in the early hours of this morning there was that confirmation from local officials that a tenth person had been pulled from the rubble,
ending that search and rescue effort. Of course, at least 42 others were injured in that attack. And so, there is a clear sign there of Russia's
reach in terms of the impact that their bombardment has had on civilian lives.
NEWTON: Absolutely, and many of them living in a state of terror at all times. I want to get to that visit of President Zelenskyy to Turkey, a lot
at stake. What does he hope to accomplish and what's crucial here, Nada, is where is he likely to hit the stiffest resistance from the Turkish
BASHIR: Well, look, President Erdogan is in a unique position in terms of Ukraine's NATO allies. Of course, he has been active diplomatically and on
the military front in terms of supporting Ukraine, but he has also maintained cordial relations with President Putin. And that has proved
crucial over the last year when it comes to those negotiations, trying to secure that grain deal we saw last summer brokered by Turkey and the United
Nations, along with delegations from both Russia and Ukraine.
Now, as you mentioned there, that deal is set to expire in 10 days. That is a huge concern for the international community. We saw in the early months
of the summer last year a real crisis, a food security crisis for those countries most dependent on Ukraine's grain and agriculture exports. And
when we look at the figures in terms of how much agricultural goods Ukraine has now exported over the last year, it's more than 30 million metric tons.
And this is a significant deal.
It is in terms of how much agricultural goods Ukraine has now exported over the last year. It's more than 30 million metric tons, and this is a
significant deal. It is hugely important. But of course, as you mentioned there, there is that resistance that we are hearing from Russia when it
comes to the potential for renewing that deal. Of course, President Erdogan perhaps in the best position when it comes to Ukraine's allies to negotiate
with President Putin.
NEWTON: And we will wait to see the outcome of that meeting in the coming hours. Nada Bashir for us in London. Thank you. Now, as we were just
mentioning, the Biden administration is expected to announce today that it will send controversial cluster munitions to Ukraine.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON (voice-over): Now, the weapons, also known as cluster bombs, are banned in more than 120 countries. And here's why. Take a look at what
happens when they fall. They scatter bomblets over a widespread area, or they can fail to explode on impact, posing a major threat to civilians long
after that initial attack. And that's due to the unexploded munitions similar to landmines. Now, both Kyiv and Moscow have in fact used those
bombs since the Russian invasion, a move the U.S. has actually criticized in the past. Listen.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LINDA THOMAS-GREENFIELD, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: We've seen videos of Russian forces moving exceptionally lethal weaponry into Ukraine which has
no place on the battlefield. That includes cluster munitions and vacuum bombs, which are banned under the Geneva Convention.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: Joining us now to discuss all of this is Bonnie Docherty, she is a Senior Researcher at the Arms Division at Human Rights Watch. And I want to
thank you for joining us on what is this top line news that you have been watching quite carefully, you and your organization. You detailed in a
report recently that, of course, both Russia and Ukraine are putting civilians in danger.
In terms of how these cluster munitions work and the fact that they're so menacing long after the conflict is over. Why do you think at this point
you're not getting anywhere with the United States or Ukraine, not to mention Russia?
BONNIE DOCHERTY, SR. RESEARCHER, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH: Well, I mean, as you said, these transfers are very concerning. And I wouldn't say we're getting
nowhere. I think the certain states are holding firm. U.S.' allies have held firm those states that are holding, that are party to the treaty
banning cluster munitions are holding firm. And the U.S. has held firm for a long time.
However, the Ukrainian, the pressure from Ukraine to transfer cluster munition has finally pushed the U.S. particularly President Biden, who's
issued a waiver over the U.S. rule that prohibits the transfer of cluster munitions if there's an over 1 percent failure rate. President Biden has
finally issued this waiver, but it's taken a long time. So, there has been a delay, but finally the U.S. has agreed to this unacceptable transfer that
will undermine the stigma against these weapons.
NEWTON: When you say undermine the stigma though, it's very clear that we have the U.N. ambassador calling this perhaps even a war crime that was
said as well from the podium of the White House late last year. But why do you think they've decided to switch modes at this point?
DOCHERTY: I think there's pressure from the Ukrainian government and concerns about advances from Russia. However, I do think these weapons
cause foreseeable harm to civilians, and I think it will backfire. The Ukrainian government will, if it uses these weapons, which it claims that
it will do, is going to be only increasing the civilian casualty count that you just discussed in your introduction, as they will cause casualties at
the time of attack due to their widespread area effect that will kill civilians and not be able to distinguish between civilians and combatants,
and they will create a long-term problem for civilians, both those living in the area and those returning to Ukraine after the conflict.
NEWTON: You know, I know the kind of field research your organization has done. Can you explain what I find so insidious about all this is the fact
that their cluster bombs, some of these munitions are actually quite small. And because more than 40 percent of them are unexploded can then pose a
risk even years later that children actually are the most at danger in these situations. Why?
DOCHERTY: Children are often -- they're curious. They think these weapons are toys. They come in different models. Some models, not this particular
type, but some models have little ribbons that they think are handles. Some models are balls that they think are things they can throw. Each model has
a different type that makes them want to pick them up.
And actually some of the models that the U.S. has proposed transferring to Ukraine do have the little types of ribbons that the children have
sometimes -- I've seen in other conflict zones and in Iraq for example, in Georgia for example, that children have picked them up and swung them
around their figures. Obviously, we don't know exactly the details of the U.S. transfer yet but that is a potential risk.
NEWTON: You know, I'm interested in what you said, the fact that you believe this will backfire on Ukraine.
DOCHERTY: Obviously, we don't know exactly the details of the U.S. transfer yet but that is a potential risk.
NEWTON: You know, I'm interested in what you said, the fact that you believe this will backfire on Ukraine. You know, they're going to push back
and just say, we're fighting for our existence right now. What would you say to that?
DOCHERTY: I think there are other types of weapons that can be used. And you know, there are certain, there are certain weapons that have been
considered so egregious -- egregiously wrong from a humanitarian perspective that they've been banned by the majority of the world and
they're considered illegal and immoral. And this is one of them. And there are other ways to combat Russia, and this is not an acceptable way to do
NEWTON: I only have 30 seconds left, but do you think that's it? The United States has ceded the moral high ground here?
DOCHERTY: I think on this particular issue it has. I think that this is not an acceptable transfer, and I think that it has ceded the moral high
NEWTON: Bonnie Docherty from Human Rights Watch. We'll have to leave it there, but thanks so much. Really appreciate that.
DOCHERTY: Thank you for having me.
NEWTON: Now, CNN just visited a site in Belarus where the country's president says Wagner fighters could be housed should they take up Belarus'
offer to actually move there. Now, this follows yesterday's, pardon me, Thursday's surprise announcement that the head of the Wagner military
group, Yevgeny Prigozhin is not in Belarus as previously believed. Our CNN's Matthew Chance is on the ground now with more. Listen.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on-camera): All right, well, you join me here in this military base in Belarus, about an
hour's drive outside of the capital, Minsk. You can see it's a vast, tense city with all these enormous canvases, which we're told can house about
5000 people that have been erected in the past few weeks. There were satellite photographs of this place before and after, and we all believed
this is the location where Wagner forces, the mercenaries from Russia, would be located if they came to Belarus.
That was part of a deal, remember, with the Belarusian leader, Alexander Lukashenko, inviting Wagner and its leader to come into exile in Belarus as
a way of diffusing their military uprising in Russia last month. Well, I mean, at the moment though, these tents are completely empty. I mean, have
a look inside at one of these here. Completely empty. There's nobody in there. It's too dark for us to show you inside, but I can tell you it's
just wooden platforms. Nobody in there at the moment, but ultimately it can house as many as 5000 people.
The problem is, is of course, the events of yesterday here with the revelations from Alexander Lukashenko, the Belarusian leader, actually, is
that plan is no longer sort of in operation. It's on hold at the moment. And at the moment, Yevgeny Prigozhin, the Wagner leader, is not here in
Belarus. He's said to be in Russia. And not a single Wagner soldier has so far come here. And so, we don't know whether there is going to be a
transfer of Wagner to Belarus or not. At the moment, all we can tell you is that it hasn't happened yet. Back to you.
NEWTON: Our thanks to Matthew Chance there on the ground for us in Belarus. Now, if you've been outside this week, depending where you are in
the world, chances are, yeah, you didn't want to stay there long. Thursday was the Earth's hottest day on record. In fact, it was the fourth straight
day of record-breaking global heat. So, how hot was it? According to preliminary data, the average daily high for the entire planet, remember
that's places that are actually in winter right now, was 17.23 degrees Celsius.
For example, Beijing hit 40 degrees Celsius, Thursday. It's only hit that temperature or above 11 times since 1951 and the last five were in the last
two weeks. CNN Meteorologist Britley Ritz joins us now with the details. I mean, have we gone through the worst of it or are we expecting to break
BRITLEY RITZ, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Paula, it's just going to continue on, unfortunately. We'll see this record likely get broken again today and
throughout the weekend as temperatures really across the United States, the U.K., a good five to ten degrees above where they should be.
Let's put things into perspective for you. I want to show you this map. It's basically showing you the temperatures increasing throughout the
months. This is where we are today. Previous record was set back in 2016. There it is, that little bump right here. So, let's zoom in and show you
that. We are likely going to surpass this here in the upcoming few months.
Our record, you mentioned, Paula, 17.23 back on July 6, just yesterday. And previous record 16.92, August 13th, back in 2016. What's going on? Why are
we breaking all of these records in the northern hemisphere? Well, there's a lot more land and land heats up a lot quicker than water does. That's why
the southern hemisphere doesn't typically break records. We've hit nine years in a row where we've been hottest, warmest on record, by the way,
that started back in 2014. And we, in June of 2023, have already hit 1.4 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial period back in 2014.
And we, in June of 2023, have already hit 1.4 degrees Celsius above pre- industrial period. So, that just puts things into perspective, as well. On top of the climate changing, which is obvious, but we are also dealing with
what's called an El Nino. So, our sea surface temperatures are warming, not just in the Pacific, but all across the globe. And we're noticing the trade
winds starting to weaken. As they weaken, the warmer waters trek farther back off toward the Western coast of the United States, as well as South
And we're noticing this specifically even more so across parts of the northern Atlantic where temperatures are a good five degrees above normal.
And that's not just impacting the sea surface temperatures, but also land as you've seen in the United States, China, as well as the U.K., where
they've seen the hottest June on record at 15.8 degrees Celsius. So, quite a bit going on out there.
NEWTON: Yeah, absolutely breathtaking statistics, which we take your point, Britley. This is not going to end anytime soon. Appreciate that
update. Now to a CNN exclusive, the Special Counsel investigating Donald Trump's efforts to remain president despite his election loss is now
focusing in on a chaotic Oval Office meeting held in the final days of his administration.
The meeting featured some of the most radical ideas about how to overturn the 2020 election, including declaring martial law and seizing voting
machines. Witnesses say it devolved into a shouting match between White House lawyers and outsiders who desperately wanted to keep Donald Trump in
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC HERSCHMANN, FMR. WHITE HOUSE LAWYER: What they were proposing, I thought was nuts.
PAT CIPOLLONE, FMR. WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: I don't think any of these people were providing the president with good advice. And so, I didn't understand
how they had gotten in.
DEREK LYONS, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY COUNSEL: There were people shouting at each other. Rolling insults at each other.
SIDNEY POWELL, FMR. TRUMP ATTORNEY: Cipollone and Herschmann and whoever the other guy was showed nothing but contempt and disdain of the president.
RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN LAWYER: I'm gonna categorically describe it as, you guys are not tough enough. Or maybe I put it another
way, you're a bunch of --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: Okay, the investigation is being conducted by the same special counsel who recently indicted Donald Trump over his handling of classified
documents. Okay, coming up for us. After a week with multiple mass shootings in the United States, we ask how is this prevalence of violence
impacting mental health? And later this hour, cooking non-stop for more than 90 hours, we talk to a Nigerian Chef and new world record holder. Stay
NEWTON: A former Afghan interpreter for the United States who escaped the Taliban has lost his life now to gun violence in the United States. It
happened early Monday in Washington, D.C. Police found Nazrat Ahmad Yar in his car with a gunshot wound. Four people were seen running away, but no
arrests have been made. Yar and his family came to the United States in 2021. He became a lift driver to support his wife and four children.
Now, stories like these are nothing new, unfortunately. In just the last three days, the Gun Violence Archive reports 116 lives lost in the United
States to senseless gun violence. In all, the United States has seen at least 361 mass shootings this year. This week has been particularly deadly.
You see there, Philadelphia where police say a man in a bulletproof vest shot people randomly on the street. Then there's Louisiana, a block party
to celebrate Independence Day ended in gunfire, claiming four lives. And a spate of shootings in Chicago left several people dead, and this woman now
afraid to even go outside. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JORDAN: We was having fun. When they started shooting, I ran the other way. It's ridiculous. I'm done with outside. I'm not coming outside no
more. Chicago, we got to do better. It's ridiculous.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: Now, gun violence has become so pervasive, it's happening in every corner of American life. Schools, workplaces, malls, theaters, there's no
way to get away from it. And children are trained in active shooter drills at schools. So, what is this doing? Is this the new normal in terms of
Americans' mental health?
We're joined now by Erika Felix, an associate professor of clinical psychology at the University of California Santa Barbara. And she has done
extensive research on mental health following disasters, both man-made and natural. We thank you for joining us now as we try really to measure the
impact of this on Americans. In fact, as we just said, it's not just about where Americans live and have fun. It's about where they work, where they
shop, and its people who visit the United States. What have been the mental health consequences here?
ERIKA FELIX, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY, UCSB: Yes, there has been a ripple effect for each one of these incidents. And so, there are
the people most closely affected that these kinds of tragedies put them at risk for post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety, some
substance use problems. But it's also all the people. connected to this, even those that weren't directly impacted as they try to support their
loved ones or navigate life with more fear about going to the places we enjoy to go for pleasure or going to work or school.
There's an American Psychological Association stress in America report that shows that every generation feels stress related to this epidemic of gun
violence and especially with mass shootings. And the youngest generation reports the highest levels, the highest proportion of people who are
stressed about this. So, it's constantly in the back of our mind taking a toll on our mental health, even if we weren't directly impacted by these
NEWTON: Yeah, and I want to talk to you about that. I mean, obviously young people, less able to cope, right? They don't have the coping skills
of adults. And now, you also say that people that are not directly impacted can experience the fear, the anger, helplessness. And you do talk about, of
course, what you just said was acute stress. Now, even if you've never experienced a mass shooting, can just the reality of thinking about it,
make it a terrifying, harrowing experience, anyway?
FELIX: Yes, because we are constantly exposed to reports of another community being affected by a mass shooting. And so, it's become this
chronic background thought in our mind that, where people, when they walk into movie theater, shopping centers, schools, they're looking for the
exit, they're looking for the safety plan. And so, there's this chronic low level hyper vigilance that along with other stressors in our life take a
toll on our mental health, even for people who are not directly impacted.
But we must recognize that there's just a growing number of people who are impacted by these events, whether they were the closest ones there like
they witnessed and saw this in person or they were at the school or the shopping center or the workplace but didn't see it and then just all of us
exposed to it through constant reports about this on the news. So how to cope with this?
And then just all of us exposed to it through constant reports about this on the news.
NEWTON: So, how to cope with this because, you know, perhaps some might give the advice to tune it out, right? To not really become informed. And
yet is that responsible? At what point do you really, you know, tread that fine line about putting your head in the sand about what's going on, but
also tuning it out because you have to for self-preservation?
FELIX: Yes, and for each person that can vary, but of course, when one of these events happens, we are empathic human beings that wanna bear witness
and grieve with others and console them in that way. But we also have to monitor our level of media coverage of these events because we know that
the more time spent watching coverage, going into the details, really increases levels of distress and can have a potential long-term impact.
So, we do have to do this, but it's also understandable that we have to just sometimes tune this out because it's not like this is once in a
generation thing happening in the United States the way it can be in other countries like New Zealand or Finland or other places where these are one-
time events and then there's a lot of efforts to solve it. We see it all the time and so desensitizing is kind of an understandable reaction to this
and people shouldn't feel guilty about that. It's just kind of how our bodies and brains work to preserve ourselves.
NEWTON: Right. What a sobering comment though, right, that in the United States here you do have to really put up those defenses and become
desensitized to it. We're going to have to leave it there for now, Erica Felix, but really appreciate your insights on this. Thanks so much.
FELIX: Thank you for having me.
NEWTON: Now, coming up for us, saving the rainforest. We will tell you why two South American leaders say fighting crime is key to protecting the
NEWTON: Hello and a warm welcome back to ONE WORLD. We want to get you right caught up on those headlines. Kenyan police fired dozens of tear gas
canisters into large crowds protesting tax hikes. Opposition leader Raila Odinga called for the protests, saying the tax increases come at a time
when many can't even afford basic goods. Kenya's president says the hikes are needed to help pay for the country's growing debt.
Two Palestinians were killed during an operation by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank. Israeli military officials say the two were suspected
of carrying out a shooting attack on an Israeli police car earlier this week. Palestinians died during an exchange of fire with Israeli forces.
Three others were injured.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen met China's premier in Beijing Friday, telling him the U.S. is in favor of healthy economic competition. Li Qiang
said, Yellen's visit has drawn the world's attention. Now, Yellen also met with business leaders, saying a separation of U.S. and Chinese commerce
would hurt both countries. And she criticized what she called China's unfair economic practices.
STEFANO POZZEBON, JOURNALIST: Yes, Paula, the Amazon affects us all, not just we who live every day in South America, but really, it's an important
engine of the ecosystem of the entire world. I think that the masses of water that both the Amazon River move around the region, but also just the
currents of watery winds over the forest.
There is a glimmer of hope because we have just fresh new data that says that in the first few months of the presidency of Luis Inacio Lula da
Silva, the deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has decreased significantly. However, the region and the forest is really in the midst of
a security crisis that involves, as you said, huge transnational organized criminal organizations. And this is what we're hearing from down in
Leticia, from the heart of the jungle. Take a listen.
POZZEBON (voice-over): The Amazon is the largest rainforest in the world. But spanning over nine different nations, it is also a vast trafficking
region for international criminal networks. Illegal miners and drug traffickers know no border.
BRAM EBUS, INVESTIGATOR, AMAZON UNDERWORLD: A few days ago, we took a plane and flew over a cross-border river that springs in Colombia and
finishes in Brazil. This river is plagued by illegal mining barges which are destroying the waterways and using a toxic quicksilver called mercury
in the extraction process of gold. On this river there have been several military crackdowns to destroy the mining barges but they always have
returned because there is no structural control in the Amazon.
POZZEBON (voice-over): According to the United Nations, Narco- deforestation, which means laundering drug traffic and profits into land speculation and cattle ranching, is posing a growing danger to the Amazon,
potentially increasing the effect of climate change.
On Saturday, control over the region will be sent to stage as Colombian President Gustavo Petro welcomes his Brazilian counterpart Luiz Inacio Lula
da Silva for a bilateral meeting here on the shores of the Amazon River. The two leaders are pushing for renewed international attention to this
corner of the world.
Deforestation in the Amazon is still at record levels despite commitments by companies and governments to cut it down and scientists believe the
ecosystem will be further threatened this year by the emergence of a climate pattern called El Nino. New research this week shows that Latin
America saw its highest rate of warming over the last three decades. For a leader like Gustavo Petro, the bilateral is also an occasion to raise his
profile on the international stage.
JUAN CARLOS RUIZ, PROFESSOR OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, UNIBERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO: I think this agenda could be interesting for Colombia because it
allows Colombia to present itself as a stakeholder and an agent against greenhouse gases in Latin America or at least for the preservation of the
The meeting will serve to prepare an international conference over the future of the Amazon to be held in Brazil next month. But activists believe
of concrete steps must be taken urgently.
EBUS: Before new plans for the Amazon are made, we must recognize that there is a grave security crisis that needs more understanding and a better
comprehensive answer by the respective governments.
POZZEBON (on-camera): So, Paula, we were saying, a glimmer of hope perhaps because deforestation in the Amazon seems to have topped in the first few
months in the Brazilian Amazon, sorry, in the first few months of the presidency of Inacio Lula da Silva. But at the same time, you can
understand the logistical challenges that these transnational organizations pose to these governments.
The river that we were seeing at the beginning of that piece is the Japura River. It springs in Colombia and then flows towards the Amazon River in
the Brazilian Amazon. And unless there is close coordination between the two governments in this case, but also, all of the nine governments
involved in protecting the Amazon and controlling the Amazon, of course, the challenge is only going to be more mounting.
NEWTON: And all of us watching from the sidelines are certainly hoping that they can come up with some kind of coordination on this. Stefano,
thanks so much. Appreciate it. Coming up for us, crowds chant for a Nigerian Chef. If she breaks a world-record, world record for marathon
cooking, look at that. We'll speak with Hilda Bassey when we return.
NEWTON: They do say imitation, sincerest form of flatteries, if so. Chef Hilda Bassey should be really thrilled about this since hundreds of
Nigerians are now trying to imitate her, inspired by her attempt at breaking the Guinness World Record for marathon cooking.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: Can you tell that she got it? Legions of fans screamed their support when the 26-year-old cooked in a make-shift kitchen for four days.
Can you imagine finishing May 15th, she produced nearly 100 pots of food, cooking for 100 hours.
Now, I will say she was penalized for an error in her scheduled rest breaks. It didn't matter. Her eventual record-breaking time, 93 hours, 11
minutes. She beat the previous record by more than five hours. Now, I see that says she cried, prayed, screamed after it was done, and she says, get
this, her journey wasn't easy. Listen.
HILDA BASSEY, NIGERIAN CHEF: I'm very tired but at the same time I feel very blessed and really excited, as well. The first day was the most
difficult and I was ready to give up six hours a day. But I feel like a miracle happened and some way, somehow, I got to this point.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NEWTON: Miracle happened. Her feet took social media by storm with millions, millions in Nigeria and beyond following her progress. And it is
now time for The Exchange and we have that Nigerian sensation Hilda Bassey with me and she joins us for Lagos, Nigeria.
Seriously, big congratulations here. If I tried to actually fathom cooking for as long as you did, no one would blame you for really thinking it was a
miracle. And tell me, how does it feel to break this record and more importantly, why does it mean so much to you?
BASSEY: Oh, it feels so good. I can't even lie. Thank you so much for having me, by the way. It feels really, really good because this is
something I set out to do a couple years ago. And it just feels amazing to have, you know, planned it out, finished it and now gotten the record. It -
- like it's, honestly, a very amazing feeling. And it was very important to me to do this just because there were quite a number of reasons why I
wanted to even make the attempt in the first place.
It was important to me to push through like, you know, my physical limits and, you know, like everything. And I pretty much like spoke to a couple
people and we put together an amazing team and away from that it was also, I have a very strong nudging to put Nigerian cuisine and Nigerian recipes
on the map because I genuinely feel like Nigerian food is really good food. And you know, the more people try our recipes or the more people will hear
about it, they'll be willing to, you know, try the recipes, make it and, you know, and it would just cross overboard because it's honestly really
And I just wanted, you know, I was trying to create like an experience that was never before seen, you know, which is why we had the event at such a
grand scale. So, there were just, you know, too many things. I wanted to make myself proud, my family proud, country proud.
NEWTON: Yeah, I mean, it was it was a make-shift kitchen, but you were really on display there. And I know you talk about your team. We know you
lost weight. That team was really important to you. We saw some of the ingredients you used. You know, tell us in detail, what did it take to
actually prepare for this?
BASSEY: So, obviously, the first thing I would say was physical preparation was very important. So, I obviously had to start. I was much
bigger before. So, I actively started working on my weight. So, I lost a lot of weight and then I now proceeded to my physical strength. So, I got a
trainer, Kemen Fitness and, you know, I started working out and I was working out for like a really long time to build stamina, to build my core
strength. So, even the, what's it called, even the kinds of exercises that was given to me was pretty much geared towards me being able to withstand
that, you know, long, extended period of time on my feet.
And then, we now had to, I had to apply to Guinness and also now get an approval. And when the approval came, it came with a list of guidelines, a
very long list of guidelines, which meant that, you know, it was important to us to put a lot of things in place. You know, the kitchen needed to be
inspected. We needed to have health inspectors on ground the entire time. I was required to have adjudicators, timekeepers, there was video evidence
required, like three different kinds of video evidence.
BASSEY: I had to do a test -- taste trial, so I cooked for 24 hours. So, I had a dry run. So, I did a 24-hour dry run before the main four days
cooking marathon, just to see how my body would react to it and how the rest would.
NEWTON: It's really crazy, Hilda. I mean, just -- I'm looking at it now, just everything that it took to put it all together. You seem to have a
smile on your face throughout. I mean, why do you think it captured the imagination of so many Nigerians? It was like an Olympic event out there.
BASSEY: Yeah, so I just believe that the story itself and just the attempts is something that a lot of people can relate to. Just pushing
forward your boundaries and being determined because Nigerians have a very strong hustling spirit and we're very resilient people. And honestly, once
like you, put your mind to something, especially like as in Nigeria, and when you put your mind to something and you believe it, you're definitely
going to get the support.
And that's exactly what happened. It was like, everybody could see how much efforts and how much work, you know, had been put in. And it's almost like
they could relate to the dream and they could relate to the passion and the vision. And, you know, they just rolled out their numbers to support this
NEWTON: Okay, so, right.
NEWTON: So, the other thing that's happened here now is that people were so inspired by your goal, they're trying to break your record. How do you
feel about that?
BASSEY: It feels good. Honestly, for me, I feel like, for people to want to do what you have done, it means you did it so well that they like
they're inspired to now try the same feet, right. So, I honestly just feel like I started a trend or like I'm pretty much a trailblazer. That's how I
look at it because like only a trailblazer will start something and then other people would want to do it. It's because it was successful, it was
properly done and just seeing how good it is, seeing the turnout, people are now inspired to say, oh, I wanna do this, as well, I wanna try this, as
So, it just means that I've inspired something and I have, you know, just, and I mean, obviously on social media, in the news, everyone's just seeing
people that are trying to break the Guinness World Record, but other people are trying to break barriers in other aspects of their lives and their
businesses, as well. So, I just think that I've inspired lots of people to push, you know, through their own limitations and that's what we're seeing.
NEWTON: Well, you certainly managed to inspire so many in Nigeria and beyond. Such a gracious winner you are. I know this is going to now lead to
many more opportunities for you and we thank you for telling your story, Hilda. Thanks so much and congratulations again.
BASSEY: Thank you for having me.
NEWTON: Thanks. And coming up for us, unfortunately, another ugly twist in those social media wars. Why the Twitter-Meta grudge match could soon turn
into a court battle. We'll have that next.
NEWTON: So, Twitter is threatening to sue Meta after the launch of Threads, Meta's new app that's trying to actually take on Twitter.
Now, an attorney representing Twitter reportedly sent Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg a letter accusing the company of trade secret theft by hiring
Twitter's former employees. Now, Meta is dismissing the letter. CNN Business Writer Clare Duffy is covering all of this for now and you've been
following this very closely. What more do we know about this lawsuit and is it really going to slow down Threads? Because as I understand it, you've
got new news on that for us, as well.
CLARE DUFFY, CNN BUSINESS WRITER: Exactly, yes. It's -- what's not clear to me that this letter is going to amount to anything more than a threat at
this point. Twitter is accusing Meta of intellectual property theft, of hiring former employees from Twitter that may have had confidential
information. And Meta has really just sort of dismissed this out of hand. They say there are no former Twitter engineers who worked on the Threads
This letter is light on details and also, the layout of Twitter is not exactly a trade secret. And so, it's not clear if there is anything more to
this at this point. What I do think is happening here is that Twitter, really, is threatened. Musk is threatened by the launch of this new rival.
Musk tweeted competition is fine, cheating is not. And so, he really seems to be threatened by this new app, as well he should be. Mark Zuckerberg
said just a while ago that there have been 70 million user sign ups to Threads which is stunning at this point.
NEWTON: Seventy million. What's the scope of that? Because I know a lot of people who've gone, you know, there's a lot of excitement around it now,
but some people who've gone on it, you know, it's not really a full-fledged app at this point. There's lots of things you can't do.
DUFFY: Yes. Meta is going to have to continue building out this app if it wants people to continue to remain engaged, wants to continue to get more
signups on this app. It is missing a lot of the features that people really like on Twitter, things like DMs or trending topics. And then it has
already started --said it has started to work on some of those things, in particular, the ability to edit posts. Mark Zuckerberg has sort of been
engaging with people on the app who are making suggestions, saying they're working on new features. And so, it seems like they are thinking about
this. They realize that there's more that they have to do to ensure people remain engaged on the app.
NEWTON: Yeah, it's really one of those stories, right, Clare? It's like, stay-tuned because every day this story is going to change. And 70 million,
incredible. Clare, thanks so much, really appreciate it. Now, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has finally approved the first Alzheimer's
treatment proven to actually slow the progression of the disease. And with approval, an estimated million patients suffering from Alzheimer's will now
have access to this treatment. CNN's Meg Tirrell has our report.
MEG TIRRELL, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Six years ago, Joe Montminy saw a neurologist for what he thought were a few minor problems
with his memory.
JOE MONTMINY, PATIENT: She came back and said, you know what, Joe? You actually have early Alzheimer's disease. You're likely going to start to
experience declines in the next five years and you may not recognize your family in five to seven years.
TIRRELL (voice-over): Now 59, Montminy is one of millions of Americans living with Alzheimer's disease. But this year, new hope emerged. A drug
aiming to slow down the disease's progression got accelerated FDA approval in January, based on the fact that it clears amyloid plaque buildups in the
brain associated with Alzheimer's. But Medicare declined to cover it until the FDA granted a fuller, traditional approval based on a bigger clinical
trial proving the drug has benefits for thinking clearly and being able to function in daily life. Without insurance, the medicine, called Lecanemab,
and sold under the brand name Leqembi, costs $26,500 a year.
MONTMINY: You had this treatment at your fingertips and suddenly you had Medicare saying, yeah, but you can't quite get access to that at this point
TIRRELL: A larger trial funded by the drug's makers Eisai and Biogen did find that Leqembi can slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease by about
27 percent. It's the first time a drug has proven to alter the disease's course.
LAWRENCE HONIG, M.D., PROFESSOR OF NEUROLOGY, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY IRVING MEDICAL CENTER: It was a very dismaying experience getting a diagnosis of
Alzheimer's disease and to be told that we don't have anything that will slow down or stop the disease in its tracks.
TIRRELL: Columbia University's Dr. Lawrence Honig says this is the beginning of a new treatment era but he warns that Leqembi is not a cure,
and not everyone will be eligible for the drug. How difficult do you anticipate the conversations being with people who are more advanced and
maybe are too advanced to benefit from the drug?
HONIG: We're already having these conversations that sometimes are so easy. It's not that we know it's not good for people with moderate or
severe disease, it's just that we don't know.
TIRRELL: Side effects could be worse for people with more advanced disease, as well, he says. Already, there's something to be aware of. About
13 percent of patients receiving the drug in its trial had brain swelling, 17 percent had brain bleeding compared with nine percent in the placebo
Leqembi is administered through IV infusion, once every two weeks. Infusion centers like Vivo and Fusion are gearing up for an expected surge in new
UNKNOWN: In certain areas, I anticipate we will receive probably at least 15 to 20 percent more patient referrals for this drug.
TIRELL: Joe Montminy is hoping he'll be able to get it for a chance for more time with his wife and two grown sons.
MONTMINY: Like any parent, I would love to see them actually get married and have a family. I just want to experience many of the activities that
most people take for granted.
TIRRELL (voice-over): Meg Tirrell, CNN, reporting.
NEWTON: And of course, that was a story about the United States. So many drug authorities around the world are now looking at this drug,
understanding if and when it is appropriate to authorize it. I want to thank you for watching ONE WORLD. I'm Paula Newton. Stay with CNN.
"AMANPOUR" is up next.