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One World with Zain Asher

American Soldier In North Korean Custody; After Crossing Military Demarcation Line During Joint Security Area Tour; Donald Trump Gets Target Letter From The Special Counsel Jack Smith; U.S. Climate Envoy John Kerry Hopes To Tackle Climate Change And Other Issues; Violence Against Women And Children Increase Over The Years; Israel Protesters Hold Another Day Of Resistance Across The Country; Israeli President Isaac Herzog Meets With President Biden. Aired 12-1p ET

Aired July 18, 2023 - 12:00   ET



ZAIN ASHER, CNN ANCHOR: Hello everyone, I'm Zain Asher in New York and this is One World. We begin with a somewhat unusual development at the closely

watched border between North and South Korea. An American man is believed to be in North Korean custody. A U.S. official confirms that he is an

American soldier, and a Pentagon official says that he was at the time facing disciplinary action.

We don't have specifics in terms of what exactly that means, but a U.N. agency says that he was detained after he crossed the military demarcation

line during an orientation tour to the joint security area. The development comes during a highly sensitive time with Pyongyang ramping up ballistic

missile tests in a U.S. nuclear-capable ballistic missile submarine arriving in South Korea for a rare visit.

CNN's Marc Stewart is monitoring the story. He joins us live now from Tokyo. So, what more do we know about this American soldier? How exactly he

got into North Korea? And more importantly, Marc, why?

MARC STEWART, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, those are all very good questions, Zain. And right now, we're trying to effort all of that. From what we

understand is that soldier who was facing disciplinary actions was likely going to be returned to the United States. How that plays in this bigger

narrative still unclear. We certainly don't want to speculate.

It is very curious, though, exactly where and how this soldier crossed over, because it may be surprising for some people to learn you can

actually go on a public tour of the demilitarized zone and of this joint security area. It is very well marked, it is very well delineated, there

are no questions where the borders are.

There certainly is a compound that we are familiar with, with different buildings where we've seen North Korean soldiers looking directly at United

Nations forces, which are often American soldiers. But there's also an area surrounding it which is a bit wooded, an open field, almost a scenic

outlook where you can look directly into North Korea from the south. So, it's not clear exactly where that person entered and what their exact

reason was -- what that soldier's reason was.

We know that talks are underway right now. As part of this whole joint security area, there's actually a phone line that has been established

between the United Nations and the North Korean government to be used perhaps in a situation like this. We do not know if that has been activated

and if that is the diplomatic channel that is taking place. We are expecting some briefings though in the hours ahead from Washington,

hopefully, some of those gaps, some of those very valid and worthy questions will get a little bit more clarity in the hours ahead, Zain.

ASHER: I mean, there's a lot of speculation as to what this American soldier will be experiencing over the next few days inside North Korea. I

understand that you've actually spent time in North Korea, Mark. Just walk us through what the next few days might indeed look like for this


STEWART: Well, I can share with you my experience as a journalist who traveled to North Korea in 2008. I actually entered not at the DMZ, which

is often seen as the crossing point. I actually entered through an industrial area near Kaesong, which was actually set up by Hyundai, the car

maker Hyundai, many years back to help North Korea economically. There was a kind of an industrial park area.

I traveled by bus. I had to leave U.S. or any kind of newspapers from the West behind. I mean, it's a very, very insular insular country. What I can

tell you is that I also -- you know, there's limits on people we could talk to, there are limits on pictures we could take, there are limits to our

movement. I don't know exactly what this soldier is facing, but it is a very controlled, very regulated environment, Zain.

ASHER: As you point out, we should be getting hopefully more details in the next 30 minutes or so from Washington and we'll bring our audience that

press conference from Secretary, Defense Secretary, rather, Lloyd Austin as soon as it happens, hopefully he will be sharing more details in terms of

what the U.S. military knows about this individual, this American soldier who crossed into North Korea. Marc Stewart, live for us there. Thank you so


So, just to sort of expand on what Marc was saying there, what does it actually feel like to visit the demilitarized zone? In March this year,

CNN's Richard Quest visited the area for his show, Quest's World of Wonder.


The media tour was organized by the U.N. Come on, take a look.


RICHARD QUEST, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): The two countries are separated by the DMZ, the Demilitarized Zone. A no man's border, two and a half miles

wide, stretching 160 miles. I'm heading to the very heart of the zone. The red placards indicate the presence of mines. The joint security area,

correctly called the Truss village. Oh, my God. Wow. Here, the U.S. and South Koreans maintain a major base with the North Korean military just

over there. Really surreal. Those gray stones actually mark the border. These gentlemen are really here to make sure we stay on the path. Let's put

it like that.

The South and the North are technically still at war. So, this is a real military border and despite the seeming quietness, one of the most tense

places on earth. Even this neutral meeting place, straddling north and south, is designed to make sure there are no misunderstandings.

UNKNOWN: These microphones are on and they are broadcasting to both sides at all times. Please don't lean on any furniture or touch anything, but

you're welcome to take some pictures.

QUEST (voice-over): When then President Trump walked across the line, he added his own bit of history to a border rife with symbolism. So, that is

the line of demarcation between the North and South that President Trump crossed. I can walk across in here because it's international agreement.

But if I was outside, that would not be allowed. There is just an absolute feeling of what if? What if I suddenly made a run for it? Would they stop

me? Or what if they came out and what if?

JOHN PAUL MULLIGAN, LIEUTENANT, U.S. NAVY: If you're running across, that'd be an incident for sure. So, they are well trained to stop that. And most

of the soldiers that are stationed up here are black belts in one or multiple martial arts because you can't be armed in the JSA, but you know,

hands only. So, I personally wouldn't risk it. For me, working up here feels very surreal, but I know the consequences of what we do are very



ASHER: I wouldn't risk it. You can say that again. For some perspective, let's bring in CNN Military Analyst, Retired Air Force Colonel Cedric

Leighton. Colonel, thank you so much for being with us. You know, we had our Correspondent Marc Stewart just sort of speculating on why and how this

U.S. soldier may have indeed crossed into North Korea. Obviously, there's still so much we don't know at this point. We understand that he may have

indeed been facing disciplinary action. We don't have details on that. But just walk us through the steps at this point, the negotiations that are

likely taking place behind the scenes in terms of securing his release.

CEDRIC LEIGHTON, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Yeah, Zain, it's a pleasure to be with you. Of course, these circumstances are a bit strange. The last time

we had a defector like whatever this might be, like this was in 1982. So, since the Korean War, since the armistice in 1953, seventy years ago, there

have been a total of six defectors that have left the United States military and gone over to North Korea. So, if this is a case like that, of

course, we don't know yet, but there's certainly a possibility that may be the case.

So, what would happen in a situation like this? Marc mentioned the hotline that is established between United Nations Command and Panmunjom, which is

that peace village that Richard Quest was at, and the North Korean command that is basically the U.N. counterpart over there. And so, they would be

discussing potentially whether or not to bring that soldier back to U.S. and U.N. control or, you know, perhaps handle some other aspect of the


This could potentially be a pretty long drawn-out process. And it's, I think, an open question as to whether or not the soldier would actually be

coming back to U.S. control. He may, you know, be in a bona fide defector, in which case the North Korean may very well keep him. So, it could be a

drawn-out process and it's not quite clear to me at least what the resolution will be.

ASHER: And as you point out, there's only been a handful of defectors and we don't even know if this is a defection. But as you point out, there's

only been a handful. What will the North Koreans make of this? I mean, this is not just an American crossing over into North Korea. It's an American

soldier. What would the North Koreans make of that, do you think?


LEIGHTON: Yeah, normally they would see this as a propaganda victory for them. They, you know, of course believe that not only are they a self-

reliant state, but that they are, in essence, what they want to portray to their people at least, is that they are a workers' paradise, you know, to

use their phrase. And they believe that, you know, anything that we do in the West, whether it's in South Korea or United States, that it is in many

cases inherently evil.

So, they see this, you know, as a possible coup for them. They see this as something that they can possibly exploit for propaganda purposes, because

their narrative, of course, is that the United States is the aggressor and that they are the victim. So, they will try to play that as best as they


ASHER: All right, Colonel, Cedric Leighton, live for us there. Thank you so much. Donald Trump's legal problems seem to be getting worse. Trump says

he's gotten a target letter from the special counsel, Jack Smith, investigating efforts to overturn the 2020 election. In recent weeks, many

of Trump's top aides and advisors have been called to testify before a Washington, D.C. grand jury looking into the post-election chaos. The

letter is seen as a strong sign that Trump could be indicted by the same prosecutor who's already indicted him for his mishandling of classified


And now, for us to break all of this down, let's bring in CNN Senior Crime and Justice Reporter, Katelyn Polantz. Katelyn, thank you so much for being

with us. So, A, does the signal an indictment definitely coming? And B, what will the timeline look like for that indictment?

KATELYN POLANTZ, CNN SENIOR CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: Yeah, Zain, I would never say definite because things always change in court and in things like

this. But this is the surest sign that we have had and that we would ever have in an investigation that an indictment is coming and that Donald Trump

may be charged with federal crimes related to what happened after -- excuse me -- the 2020 election and leading up to and on January 6th, when that

riot at the Capitol among his supporters took place and he did not call them off and have them keep the peace until much, much later in the


So, Zain, this is one of those situations where it is a formality often by the Justice Department to determine to send a letter like this to someone

that they have been investigating. In this case, they are notifying Donald Trump as of this Sunday that he is the target of the January 6th grand jury


So, that's a criminal probe led by federal prosecutors that were specially appointed to look into this working out of Washington D.C. and they have

told Donald Trump he has four days to report to the grand jury or rather that's his wording of it is very likely he is given an opportunity and he

can decline to testify on his own defense if he wanted to, but that is where the investigation stands.

And really, we have for some time, Zain, been aware that this investigation seemed to be nearing its end. There had been significant witnesses coming

in and speaking about not just what they witnessed generally after the 2020 election, but what they witnessed with Trump himself. Vice President Mike

Pence testified to the grand jury. Trump's Chief of Staff, Mark Meadows, testified to the grand jury and many, many others from the White House.

There have been multiple legs of this investigation.

And so, now, it appears it is all coming together. The Justice Department and the grand jurors themselves would be nearing the momentum -- the

momentous moment in this investigation where they would decide whether or not to charge the former President of the United States with a crime. And

at this point in time, it looks very likely that that may happen. Zain?

ASHER: All right, Katelyn Polantz, live for us there. Thank you so much. All right, we'll turn now to a dire warning from the U.N. that we have to

reverse climate change because what is happening right now is deadly, whether it be the blanket of smoke covering much of the United States from

wildfires in Canada or the heat waves across Europe featuring nighttime temperatures that are so high, the body does not cool down properly, giving

rise to more heart attacks or the storms and floods across Asia washing away entire villages or turning streets into rivers.

The U.N. World Meteorological Organization says that climate change is a rapidly growing health risk that is pretty much right now affecting all

corners of our planet. There's nowhere that is completely safe from climate change right now. I want to bring in CNN meteorologist Jennifer Gray with a

look at where we are seeing the most extreme. I mean, that looks right across the board, Jennifer, just looking at the board behind you. I think

the scary part of this is that this is really just the beginning. You know, what scientists are saying is that, yes, it's hot right now. Yes, we're

seeing 100 degrees Fahrenheit, for the Americans out there, in various parts across the globe.


But it's only going to get much more intense and much hotter. That is frightening.

JENNIFER GRAY, CNN METEOROLOGIST: It really is, Zain. And I think the takeaway here is because we normally will set records in the summer, we see

hot temperatures, but the longevity of this heat wave, especially in the U.S. and other places around the world, is what has been very alarming. We

have been on these very long streaks of very hot temperatures, record temperatures, and we're not seeing any end in sight, really.

We have these areas of high pressure that's creating these heat domes and you can see them basically all across the world. And so, that's what's

creating the very warm temperatures. You know, we've had globally, the hottest temperature on record back July 3rd. Well, every day since then we

have surpassed the old record and so we are continuing into uncharted territory here.

Look at these temperatures in the upper forties and fifties by Friday. Death Valley should hit 51 degrees. Palm Springs in the upper forties, Las

Vegas in the mid-forties and we're not going to see a cool down anytime soon. Those temperatures are going to remain hot throughout the weekend in

the beginning part of next week. In Phoenix, we have had 18 consecutive days with high temperatures at 43 or higher. We're going to break the

record of most consecutive days at that temperature or higher today. So, that record will go down, as well, and we're going to continue with this

streak with temperatures in the upper 40s to mid-40s all the way through the weekend.

Here are the heat alerts for the U. S. You can see across Texas. Southwest U. S., we have had 38 consecutive days with heat index exceeding 38

degrees. This is for Miami. You can see June into July, and then across Europe. Temperatures are very hot, as well. Madrid, 40 degrees. We're

seeing temperatures even in the 50s across the Middle East. Rome has had temperatures well above normal 38 degrees for today and not cooling off

much. Athens hitting the low 40s, as well.

Look at these forecast, high temperatures, but then when you factor in the heat index, Dubai 51 degrees. We have a little bit more moisture because it

sits closer to the water versus other places like Baghdad in a very dry climate where the heat index is not going to be much different than the

actual temperature. But Zain, these are alarming numbers when you look at how hot not only the U.S. has been but the entire world setting record

after record. We have set high temperature records across China as well, setting a record for an all-time high temperature across China.

So, it's not just the U.S., Zain, this is a global problem and as you -- we've talked about before, we've also been talking about the sea service

temperatures and unchartered territory, as well, and that's only making the air above it hotter as well.

ASHER: Well Jennifer, great, live for us there. Thank you so much. And talks to address climate change could foster broader cooperation between

Washington and Beijing. That's the hope expressed by U.S. climate envoy John Kerry as he met with China's top diplomat Wang Yi in Beijing. Anna

Coren has more. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: U.S. climate envoy John Kerry is hoping to accomplish a great deal while he's in Beijing, not just on the issue of

climate change. Meeting with China's top diplomat Wang Yi this morning, Kerry said that climate talks could provide a fresh start for the world's

two largest greenhouse gas emitters on other issues that have caused serious tensions such as Taiwan and trade. Take a listen.

JOHN KERRY, U.S. CLIMATE ENVOY: I hope that this could be the beginning of a new definition of cooperation and a capacity to resolve the differences

between us. We both know there are real differences, but we also know that from experience, if we work at it, we can find the path ahead in ways that

resolve these challenges.

COREN: Kerry, who also met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang, also had a message to convey from the U.S. President, saying Joe Biden values his

relationship with Chinese leader Xi Jinping and is very committed to stability in the U.S.-China relationship and achieve efforts together that

make significant difference to the world.

Kerry is not your average U.S. diplomat. He was a presidential Democratic nominee, U.S. Secretary of State under President Barack Obama. His

experience is valued by the Chinese. Wang described Kerry as my old friend, saying they worked together on a series of issues, including the Iran

nuclear talks. Wang said the world needs a stable China-U.S. relationship and that to cooperate on climate change has huge potential for the world.

Yesterday, Kerry met his counterpart, Xie Zhenhua, for nearly 12 hours yesterday. Afterwards, he tweeted, the climate crisis demands the world's

two largest economies work together to limit the Earth's warming and take urgent action on coal and methane pollution.


Climate experts have said any move to cooperate on methane, a greenhouse gas responsible for roughly 30 percent of global warming could provide a

way forward. This is Kerry's third visit to China as U.S. climate envoy and marks the formal resumption in top level climate diplomacy between the two

countries after talks stalled almost a year ago following then U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to Taiwan. Officials say the U.S. and China

hope to be on the same page ahead of the U.N. climate conference COP 28 in Dubai which starts at the end of November. Anna Coren, CNN, Hong Kong.


ASHER: And we know that climate change is of course affecting our present, it's affecting our future, but it's also affecting our cultural heritage,

as well. A new study released by Greenpeace finds that extreme rainfall is threatening China's ancient Buddhist murals and statues. They're in a

system of nearly 500 caves which date back to the fourth century. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is said to be an invaluable reference for

studying ancient China and Central Asia.

Russia is claiming revenge following a Ukrainian strike on a highly strategic and symbolic target, but the Kremlin warns further retaliatory

measures may still be taken in response to Monday's Kerch Bridge attack. Keefe says it's shot down the vast majority of enemy cruise missiles and

drones launched at Odessa overnight, but officials say infrastructure in the southern port city was damaged, as you can see by this photograph. It

comes less than 24 hours after a key bridge in occupied Crimea that serves as a major supply route for Russian forces was attacked.

And earlier, CNN's Alexander Marquardt spoke to the USAID Chief, Samantha Power, about the Kremlin's decision to pull out of the Black Sea Green Deal

on Monday, and just how much is at stake.


SAMANTHA POWER, USAID ADMINISTRATOR: The whole world needs to raise its voice, particularly the global south, countries in the global south, to say

that it's unacceptable to hold hostage, the hungriest people in the world because of some power play and aggression carried out by Moscow. The idea

that Putin would play roulette with the hungriest people in the world at the time of the greatest food crisis in our lifetimes is just deeply



ASHER: And still to come, we will have much more on Russia terminating the Black Sea grain deal in a moment, as Samantha Power was just talking about.

I'm going to be speaking with the chief economist from the World Food Program. That's next.




ASHER: When Russia invaded Ukraine, nicknamed the world's bread-basket nearly 18 months ago, it sent food prices soaring and magnified a global

hunger crisis. But in a rare diplomatic breakthrough last July, a wartime deal brokered by Turkey and the U.N. allowed for the safe passage of ships

in the Northwestern Black Sea. Much of that exported Ukrainian grain was sent to Africa and the Middle East, offering a lifeline to some of the

world's poorest countries. Many of them already on the precipice of famine, struggling with climate change, conflict and economic insecurity.

Those nations have landed in Russia's crosshairs. Once again, Western countries are accusing Moscow of weaponizing hunger, following the

Kremlin's announcement on Monday to suspend the grain agreement. The EU says the collapse of the pact puts the lives of hundreds of millions of

people in danger, particularly in the global south. And the U.N warns it will cause significant hardship and pain for those who are already hurting

the most.

Arif Husain is the chief economist at the World Food Programme. He joins us live now from Rome. I think the interesting thing here is that the

countries that are most affected by this, of course we know are in the global south, it's many countries in Africa, but it's also a lot of

countries that are actually on relatively good terms with Russia. It's a lot of Russian allies in Africa that are gonna be affected by this. Do you

think that means that perhaps, some of the leaders of these countries have some degree of leverage when it comes to putting pressure on Vladimir Putin

to renegotiate Russia's way back into this deal?

ARIF HUSAIN, CHIEF ECONOMIST, WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME: Thanks, Zain. Thanks for having me. A good question. I certainly hope so. I think that it's

really regrettable and sad that -- to say the least that this is happening. And it is happening at a time when in many of these countries, inflation is

in double digits.

I can tell you that, you know, of the 160, seventy countries that we follow, there are about 50 countries where food inflation year on year is

over 15 percent. There are about 15 countries with food inflation over 50 percent, and there are about four to five countries where food inflation is

over 100 percent.

So, in these types of circumstances, if for any reason, you know, international prices go up, that means food becomes even more expensive for

people who are barely making ends meet as we speak. Last year, World Food Program, we assisted 160 million people, which is a record. This year we

are meant to do 170 million people, but we have funding shortfalls, significant funding shortfalls. Just to put that in numbers, we need $25

billion this year to feed 170 million people. We are sitting at 10 billion. In that environment, anything which raises costs is a tough pill to


ASHER: When you think about the lessons we need to take away from this. You know, Ukraine and Russia combined provide about, what is it, 20 percent of

the world's grain. I mean, obviously, Russia is also a huge supplier of the world's fertilizer, especially ammonia. I mean, based on that, we all know

that Russia is not a reliable partner when it comes to this black sea grain deal.

We know that at a whim they could easily pull out. We know that they're capable of using hunger as a weapon of war. You know, what is the takeaway

here? Just in terms of really putting effort, we've had 18 months to get our act together, really putting more effort into diversifying the world's

food sources so that countries in East Africa are not, you know, virtually completely reliant on two nations at war.

HUSAIN: Right. I mean, you know, that's absolutely right. I mean, countries need to think of Plan As and Plan Bs in terms of their food imports. Now,

this is not to say that, you know, suddenly if food is not coming out of Ukraine, we are not going to have any food. The problem is that, you know,

countries will have to go to other places, like, let's say, to Canada for wheat or Australia for wheat or Argentina or Brazil. That means,

essentially, that to go to other places like let's say to Canada for wheat or Australia for wheat or Argentina or Brazil.


That means essentially that it will cost more in terms of transport and also in terms of time. So, back to the thing that food will be there but it

would become less and less affordable. Now, what we have also seen, you know, we need to see this in the context, right? So, countries, first we

dealt with COVID, then we dealt with the Ukraine war, now this.

So, it is shock after shock. And what has happened really is that if you look at the poorest countries in the world, they have high debt burden.

That means high debt servicing costs, particularly because of rising interest rates. I already spoke about high food inflation. You have

depreciation of currencies in upwards of 25 plus countries, and you have slow growth.

So, to put this in perspective, if, you know, you have all of this going on and on top of that you have to import your food and your fuel and your

fertilizer, you're in trouble. And the biggest problem here is that we are not talking about one, two, or 10 countries facing this. We are talking

about four to five dozen countries, meaning between 40 -- 48 to 60 countries which are in this situation. So, we need to help them out because

if we don't, there are consequences. And consequences are what we do.

ASHER: Yeah, I mean, listen, you touch on this already, but a lot of these countries are dealing with this awful sort of trilemma because, yes, they

can't rely on Russia and Ukraine. They're not really reliable partners for obvious reasons. On top of that, you've got inflation that has rocked the



ASHER: So, when food is accessible, it's extremely expensive for a lot of people. And we're seeing, you know, protests in Kenya, for example. Kenya

is not the only country, but that is the country right now, as I speak, where there are people protesting in the streets because ordinary goods and

food are simply far too expensive for ordinary Kenyans to be able to afford right now.

But then there's also the issue of climate change, as well. You've got droughts in East Africa. So, therefore, you have this whole, I guess,

trilemma of factors that are making it much harder for the most vulnerable nations to adequately provide food for their citizens. What does that mean

in terms of Africa becoming much more self-sufficient in terms of their own agricultural production?

HUSAIN: They have to. I mean, Africa has to rethink its agriculture policy. They are spending anywhere from 50 to $70 billion on the import of food. I

think these things are wake up calls. I think the most important thing over here is that, you know, we know the problem, we know what's wrong. We even

have the solutions. We know what needs to be done. We have the technology.

And I would go as far as saying we probably even have the money. The problem is staying the course, having the political will, because what we

are trying to resolve right now, if you're going to change your import sources, if you're going to become more self-reliant in terms of your food

security, that doesn't happen overnight. It takes time. And it's not going to happen in a month. We need to stay the course.

ASHER: Right, but you have to lay the groundwork now. You know what I mean?

HUSAIN: Exactly.

ASHER: You have to lay the groundwork now. That's -- I think that is the takeaway for everybody in all of this.

HUSAIN: Absolutely.

ASHER: Arif Husain, Chief Economist at the World Food Programme. Thank you so much. Appreciate it. All right. Still to come here, an important

battlefield victory in what is rapidly turning into a civil war in Sudan. A live report in just a moment.




ASHER: Hello and welcome back to One World. The paramilitary rapid support forces in Sudan have claimed a key battlefield victory. The RSF says that

they have taken the town of Kass in South Darfur. They claim to have overrun a Sudanese army brigade in the region, seizing combat vehicles and

dozens of cannons, as well. David McKenzie is tracking the story for us.

So, David, RSF making gains. No doubt the Sudanese military themselves are going to try to recapture some of these areas. How close are we to a civil

war in this country do you think? Well, two separate people I've spoken to just today, one a former ambassador of Sudan to the U.S., another one of

the most informed analysts of the country, both just called it a civil war without much prompting. So, I think we are there. If not, we are rapidly

approaching that scenario. If you look at the way that this conflict, which started in Khartoum but has spread in what many call a worst-case scenario

to many far reaches of that massive country, including in Darfur, we are likely in a civil conflict, possibly a civil war.

Now, that latest information coming from the Rapid Support Forces and independent sources to CNN that they have claimed battlefield victories in

the southern part of Darfur, this matches extensive reporting at this point that they are making gains in Darfur. In some ways you'd expect that the

Rapid Support Force grew out of the Janjaweed militia, which back then or around 20 years ago and now is being accused of multiple human rights

abuses and possible atrocities. Something they deny, but the evidence is piling up. And the worries from the international actors and Sudanese is

that this could just get worse.

The latest I am hearing from analysts is that the RSF seems to have taken a significant portion of Khartoum. They describe the situation now being a --

maybe a last window for some kind of negotiated peace settlement before this really becomes an all-out civil war that has the potential, of course,

for devastating consequences further in Sudan, but also to spill over to neighboring states, in particular, the warriors west into Chad in those

border regions.

But at this point, unclear that the mediation efforts by the Saudis and Americans, which have stalled now, and the proposals by the Egyptians, the

Ethio pians and others as part of the African Union will get anywhere.


So, the situation is not looking great, and the RSF, at least in the west of the country, appears to be consolidating its grounds. Zain.

ASHER: Yeah, and President William Ruto of Kenya also intervening, speaking with General Albahan, as well. With any progress as you point out, all

attempts at peace from, you know, so far, have failed obviously. David McKenzie, live for us there. Thank you so much.

Now, Sudan coverage continues after the break in war zones. Women and girls often bear the brunt of the violence that is happening in Sudan. We'll meet

a UNICEF goodwill ambassador who is fighting for the health and safety of women and girls across Africa.


ASHER: Earlier, we looked at heavy fighting in the Darfur region of Sudan. While Sudan's ongoing conflict is devastating the population as a whole,

women and girls especially hit hard. One U.N. estimates more than 4.2 million women and girls are at risk of sexual violence. Rape is often used

as a weapon of war, and you've got shame, stigma and fear of reprisal, often discouraging the reporting of such crimes.

The NGO Save the Children says that children as young as 12 are being targeted for their gender, for their ethnicity, and their vulnerability, as

well. Another key point for you, women are key to the food production chain. When they can't get to the farms, when they can't prepare food

because of fighting, their families go without. If the mother is pregnant or nursing, the malnutrition then affects yet another generation, as well.

Time now for The Exchange, getting girls and women the help that they so desperately need is crucial. We are joined by UNICEF's Goodwill Ambassador

Vanessa Nakate, who is in Rwanda for us. Vanessa, thank you so much for being with us. We know the statistics on violence against women on the

continent, especially during times of war. We also know how much war affects women and girls. But teenage girls are especially vulnerable.

That's something that you've been looking at. Just walk us through that.

VANESSA NAKATE, UNICEF GOODWILL AMBASSADOR: Yes, it's evident that, you know, the rights of adults and girls are in a crisis, especially in a world

unlike many young girls and young women, you know, are being exposed to sexual violence as a result of these, you know, wars.


And it makes me think about how, you know, young girls and young women, as well, we do not live single issue lives. And we find that in -- just like

walls, women and girls find themselves on the front lines. They -- disproportionately impacted by --

ASHER: Vanessa? Vanessa, can you hear me? I think we're having audio issues with Vanessa.

NAKATE: Yes, I can hear you.

ASHER: Okay, let me try and ask you one last question. We were having issues with your audio. We couldn't quite hear 100 percent what you were

saying, but I'm just going to try to ask you another question. Hopefully it works. We know that across the continent, there are pretty much double the

number of girls as boys who are not in any form of education or employment whatsoever.

Obviously, that is heightened. When there's a war going on, you have women trapped in a cycle of poverty, of violence, of war and of so much

uncertainty. What do we need to do as a whole, just in terms of the international community stepping up to the plate, to ensure that adolescent

girls in a place like Sudan, despite what's going on, have a future that they can fight for?

NAKATE: Well, first of all, it's important for the international community to understand that where there is war, where there is the climate crisis,

the lives of young girls and young women are definitely in a crisis. And like I said before, you know, young girls and young women, we do not live

single-issue lives.

You find that the same life of a girl that is being impacted, you know, by this war is the same girl who is not able to finish school or have access

to food. So, it's really important that the international community raises awareness about the impacts and you know, how the rights of girls and young

women are in a crisis, especially with a war like this.

ASHER: You're in Rwanda. On behalf of UNICEF, I mean, I've always thought Rwanda is quite an interesting case because you have, you know, Rwanda has

one of the highest numbers of women in political positions as a direct proportion of the population. So, that's certainly quite impressive. You've

also got Rwanda making a lot of strides in terms of reducing gender inequality, in terms of a decline in maternal mortality, as well.

So, there are good things happening on the ground in Rwanda. However, that does not mean that the work is over. There's still so much work to be done

in terms of gender parity in that particular country. Just walk us through what you've been doing in Kigali and what you're seeing on the ground


NAKATE: Well, in Kigali, I have been able to attend the Girls Deliver and also the Women Deliver Conference. And one of the key things that I have

been talking about is the need to increase resources for adults and girls across the world. We, like I said, girls don't, you know, live single.

ASHER: Vanessa, Vanessa, I'm so sorry, we have -- Vanessa, I'm so sorry, I have to interrupt. We do have some breaking news. Pentagon officials are

speaking now about the U.S. soldier who was detained in North Korea. Let's listen in.


UNKNOWN: --General Milley. There have been a recent increase in the number of very aggressive incidents over Syria involving Russia. What do you think

has caused this? Is this a result, do you think, of the Ukraine war, pressure on Russia? And does the U.S. need to send more assets to that


LLOYD AUSTIN, U.S. DEFENSE SECRETARY: Well, thanks, Lita. Good afternoon. Yeah, what I can confirm, and I would say up front, that we're very early

in this event, and so there's a lot that that we're still trying to learn, but what we do know is that one of our service members who was on a tour

willfully and without authorization crossed the military demarcation line. We believe that he is in the BRK custody.

And so, we're closely monitoring and investigating the situation and working to notify the soldiers next to kin and engaging to address this

incident. In terms of my concerns, I'm absolutely foremost concerned about the welfare of our troop. And so, we will remain focused on this.


And again, this will develop in the next several days and hours and we'll keep you posted. So --

MARK MILLEY, U.S. JOINT CHIEFS, CHAIRMAN: And later on the Syria piece, there is a bit of an uptick, but I wouldn't overstated too much. I think

that our forces have adequate rules of engagement and authorities provided to defend themselves. And the second thing is we have a de-confliction

channel. I think you're aware of that. We have a de-confliction channel that CENTCOM operates on a day-to-day basis in order to prevent any sort of

incident or escalation. We're monitoring it very closely.

As to the reason why, a little bit of an uptick, I'm not really certain. We've got analysts trying to figure that out. I don't know if it's

connected to Ukraine or not. Right now, there's nothing to suggest that it is, but we are adequately protected and our focus is always on our own

force protection.

UNKNOWN: Does the U.S. need to put more forces in that region considering a lot have been shifted to Asia?

MILLEY: We've got adequate capabilities to defend ourselves.

UNKNOWN: All right, thank you. Second question, we'll go to Idrees Ali with the "Reuters".

IDREES ALI, NATIONAL SECURITY AND FOREIGN POLICY CORRESPONDENT: Thank you. Chairman Milley, we're now entering the fifth week of the counteroffensive,

sort of going into the sixth week, and you publicly have talked about, as have others in the U.S. government, about how the counteroffensive is

growing slower than expected. I appreciate the realities of the frontlines, the mines, and the situation there, but has the counteroffensive stalled,

and how is this not a failure so far?

And Secretary Austin, you talked about the alliance and the contact group being together, but publicly there seems to be a bit of fraying. Defense

Minister Wallace, last week, said that he had told his Ukrainian counterparts that, quote, unquote, we are not Amazon, and that they should

show us some appreciation. Do you agree with the sentiments that Secretary Wallace expressed? And what exactly do the Ukrainians need to sort of break

the front lines in the security zone and make the progress that you had expected them to make?

AUSTIN: Well, first, thanks, Idrees. And I'll answer first, and then Chairman can chime in. You know, we're just off of -- just back from the

summit in Vilnius and what I witnessed in Vilnius was indeed unity and cohesion in every meeting that I sat in. And so, I would --it's the same

thing that I witnessed today as I talked to ministers of defense and chiefs of defense. That unity is still there.

There's no question that we have provided Ukraine a lot -- we, the International Coalition. Ukraine is in a fight. And we have to remember

that when you're in a fight, you want everything that you can get your hands on. And so, that's to be expected. Ben Wallace and I have worked

along with coalition partners over the last year or so.

ASHER: All right, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaking there, very briefly touching on the American soldier who crossed over, willfully

crossed over into North Korea and who they presume is being detained. He said that, listen, it's still early days, we're trying to gather

information and there's still a lot we don't know at this point in time, but he said essentially there was a U.S. serviceman who was on tour, who

willfully, willfully crossed through the demarcation line who they presume is in custody.

The U.S. government is in the process of alerting and notifying and engaging next of kin. He said he's most concerned about the welfare of his

troops, but that hopefully in the coming days and weeks they will have more information to be able to share with all of us.

All right, meantime, in Israel, protesters are holding yet another day of resistance across the country. They're venting their anger over the

Netanyahu government's moves to overhaul the judicial system.

ASHER: Thousands of people have been beating drums and marching on highways to get their point across. They're trying to stop the first part of the

plan from being voted into law next week. This, as Israeli President Isaac Herzog is in the U.S. for meetings with President Biden. The two leaders

plan to discuss regional security and the way Russia and Iran threaten that. Mr. Biden may also bring up concerns about recent Israeli military

action in the West Bank. It is worth noting that President Biden is welcoming Herzog amid ongoing tensions with Prime Minister Benjamin

Netanyahu's government.

CNN White House Reporter Kevin Liptak joins us now. It's important to note, Kevin, that the president of Israel, that role is largely ceremonial. Biden

is not meeting with Netanyahu, at least this time around. He's meeting with Isaac Herzog.


Given that the role is largely ceremonial and limited just in terms of power, how much will the issue of judicial overhaul in Israel actually come

up in conversations, do you think?

KEVIN LIPTAK, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Well, I think it will come up, because President Biden has been so forceful in saying how opposed he is to

this particular overhaul and how important he believes democratic institutions are to the U.S.-Israel relationship. But really, I think this

visit is meant to be symbolic.

The White House says it's meant demonstrate the United States' ironclad commitment to Israel's security. And it's also timed to coincide with the

75th anniversary of Israel's founding. But it really does underscore these tensions between President Biden and the man who he hasn't invited to the

White House, which is Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

That relationship has been under strain for several months, in part because of those judicial overhaul rules, but also due to settlements in the West

Bank. So, President Biden did speak to Netanyahu yesterday. There is some sign of warning -- of warming rather, but I think it will only underscore

that those tensions still do exist, Zain.

ASHER: All right, Kevin Liptak. live for us there. Appreciate you being so quick because we have to go. Thank you so much, Kevin. Thank you for

watching One World. I'm Zain Asher. More news is up next. Stay with CNN.