Return to Transcripts main page

One World with Zain Asher

Russia Brokers A Ceasefire In A Territory Inside Azerbaijan Controlled By Armenian Separatists; U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres, Says Russia's War In Ukraine Aggravates Geopolitical Tensions; Britain's King Charles And Queen Camilla Kick Off A Three-Day State Visit To France; CNN Investigation Uncovers Compelling Evidence That Ukrainian Forces Have Struck Wagner-Backed Fighters Inside Sudan; Six Palestinians Killed By Israeli Military Firing; Agreement Reached For Women Players in Spain To End Their Boycott; The Annual Global Citizen Festival Set For This Saturday In Central Park. Aired 12-1p ET

Aired September 20, 2023 - 12:00   ET




LYNDA KINKADE, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Hello, I'm Lynda Kinkade live at CNN's World Headquarters in Atlanta. Good to have you with us. Welcome to

One World. Russia has brokered a ceasefire, not in Ukraine but in another part of the world, a territory inside Azerbaijan, which is controlled by

Armenian separatists.

One day after Azerbaijan launched what it called an anti-terrorist campaign in Nagorno-Karabakh, Baku has now agreed to suspend military operations.

Armenian separatist forces have also accepted the proposal and talks are set to happen Thursday although the terms of that discussion remain

unclear. Dozens of people were killed and hundreds of others wounded in Tuesday's fighting.


KINKADE: Thousands took to the streets in the Armenian capital to protest the military assault, some of them smashing windows and scuffling with

police. Nagorno-Karabakh is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, but it is home to tens of thousands of Armenians and has been

on the front line of conflict between the two nations.

Well, CNN's Nic Robertson is following the developments and joins us now live from London. Good to have you on the story, Nic. So, Azerbaijan has

agreed to stop this so-called anti-terror campaign in this Armenian- controlled breakaway territory. Just explain the ceasefire, the deal, and what can we expect from these talks going forward?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yeah, I don't think we're going to get a full understanding of what's involved in those talks,

the specific details. But I think the broad terms of them are going to look something like this. There's been a call by the Azerbaijanis for the

Armenian military to pull out. They say they're not there.

But it seems that the Azerbaijanis want the military forces inside Nagorno- Karabakh to disarm, to put down all their weapons, to get rid of their heavy weapons as well, for the political establishment there, for it to

essentially -- to end its governance of the area. This is what Azerbaijan says that it wants to do. It wants to bring Azerbaijani government to the

whole of the Nagorno-Karabakh area, including all those ethnic Armenians who live there.

This situation, however, it has been building for some time. And for the Armenians, they really feel that it is something that Azerbaijan has been

planning, that it has been getting ready for this military offensive.


ROBERTSON (voice-over): Casualties from Azerbaijan's deadly artillery assault rushed a hospital in the majority Armenian enclave of Nagorno-

Karabakh. The Armenian death toll growing as a historic foe's fragile peace explodes into dangerous warfare with potentially disastrous consequences.

JENS STOLTENBERG, NATO SECRETARY GENERAL: We are concerned, and it is important that both parties now de-escalate.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): A ceasefire agreed Wednesday, but they've been here before, two wars in the past 30 years over the disputed region. But in

June, Azerbaijan began blocking the strategic Lachin corridor, the only link between Armenia proper and the 120,000 people living in the enclave.

Internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, humanitarian aid convoys were denied access. Russian peacekeepers couldn't or wouldn't get them

through. Food and fuel in the enclave were in short supply.


ROBERTSON (voice-over): Respected International Lawyer Luis Marino Ocampo wrote a legal opinion, calling the blockade genocide. Azerbaijan disputes

his analysis. And in recent weeks Armenians claimed Azerbaijani forces were massing weapons readying for a new offensive. Tuesday their fears of attack

were realized. The enclave's de facto capital, Stepanakert, echoing to gun and artillery fire, frightened women and children cowering in the street.


OLGA GRIGORYAN, STEPANAKERT RESIDENT (through translator): You don't know how to live in such a situation, how to raise your children when you

constantly live in stress, tension and no one wants to help you.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): Civilian homes smashed, as Azerbaijani officials claim they've launched an offensive against terrorists, demanded the

Armenian army leave, and the Nagorno-Karabakh government disband and depart. Armenia denies it's the aggressor.

NIKOL PASHINYAN, ARMENIAN PRIME MINISTER: Armenia is in no way involved in any military operation and I reiterate that the Republic of Armenia has no

army in Nagorno-Karabakh.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): E.U. politicians while calling for calm also calling out Russia's peacekeepers in action and Azerbaijan's intransigence.

ROBERTA METSOLA, EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT PRESIDENT: Full condemnation of the actions that we saw earlier today, but also a recognition that this is

Russia at play. We are seeing yet another conflict, a one-sided attack.


ROBERTSON (on-camera): This is a real feeling from the Armenians, at least, that what's happened here, these Russian peacekeepers that have been in

place since the war in 2020 haven't really done their job properly and are effectively taking sides at the moment with Azerbaijan. That's the sense

from the Armenians now.

The Azerbaijanis say look all we want to do is have the peaceful integration of the Armenian people inside Nagorno-Karabakh and this does

seem to be an effort by them to completely take control of it again. And the test is really going to be as you as you ask that question what -- what

are going to be the precise terms of the ceasefire that will be discussed on Thursday.

Because if they are really unpalatable for the Armenian people, if they really feel that this this takes away some of their freedoms or their

rights, then for a lot of them they will likely feel that they will have to leave the enclave and they are describing if that -- if that situation were

to happen, they're describing that as ethnic cleansing.

KINKADE: We will continue to follow this and those talks in the coming days. Nic Robertson, good to have you breaking it all down for us from

London. Thank you.

Well, from Korea to Croatia and Belgium to Botswana, world leaders are stepping forward to address the U.N. General Assembly this week. But the

conversation that is getting the most attention right now is happening on the sidelines of the UNGA, where Joe Biden and Benjamin Netanyahu are

sitting down for talks.

It is significant that the Israeli Prime Minister did not get an invite to the White House on his visit to the U.S., perhaps a sign of the U.S.

disapproval at Netanyahu's efforts to overhaul the Israeli courts.

Well, the U.N. Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, says Russia's war in Ukraine is aggravating geopolitical tensions and creating deep seizures in

a multi-polar world. The U.N. Security Council is holding a high-level meeting on that war. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressing the

Council a short time ago, calling Russia's invasion criminal.

A day earlier, Zelenskyy addressed the General Assembly accusing Russia of terrorism and genocide. He spoke about the war's progress with CNN's Wolf



WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Is a major breakthrough on the military front possible this year?

VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT: I think nobody knows, really. But I think that we will have more success. And really, we see it now on the

east direction. We didn't want, you know, publicly to communicate this, some successful steps previously because we didn't want you know, Russia to

understand what we do and what we really prepared.

But it's really difficult direction south because of the mining, totally mining, you know, fields, you know that our farmers, they lost legs, arms.

A lot of people were killed just on the farmer lands because Russians, they totally mined everything but we go slowly, but we go forward. Very

important information, that initiative in our arms, in all the direction. It shows how it's changed.


KINKADE: And the fallout from Russia's invasion of Ukraine may be spreading far beyond Ukraine's borders. An exclusive scene and investigation is

coming up later this hour. India is advising its citizens and students in Canada to exercise utmost caution, warning of growing anti-India activities

in the country. This comes amid a diplomatic rally between the two countries over the June assassination of a Sikh separatist activist on

Canadian soil.

And now protests have broken out in India. Tensions spiked after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau suggested the Indian government may be

involved in the killing.


CNN's Vedika Sud has more on this story from New Delhi.


VEDIKA SUD, CNN REPORTER: Ever since this meeting between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau on the

sidelines of the G20 Summit in New Delhi, tensions between the two nations have escalated even further. Modi conveyed strong concerns over anti-India

campaigns and violence by Sikh hardliners in Canada, home to almost 800,000 members of the religious community, a significant voting bloc.

SUHASINI HAIDAR, DIPLOMATIC AFFAIRS EDITOR, THE HINDU: The first reason is obviously Prime Minister Modi's own political capital, which comes from him

being a tough leader, especially on issues involving terrorism and separatism.

The second part of it is the particular attacks, the targeting, the vandalism on Hindu temples, on Hindu community centers. And that is a real

worry, again, for his particular vote bank in India, but also in terms of taking care of the Indian community in all these countries.

SUD (voice-over): For decades, separatists have demanded an independent Sikh homeland, known as Khalistan, to be carved out of the Indian state of

Punjab. The Sikh fundamentalist movement launched a violent insurgency in the 1970s. After massive crackdowns and the deaths of thousands of Sikhs,

the government banned the movement.

Decades later, the most vocal supporters are still among the Indian Diaspora. One of them was Harbeet Singh Nijjar, a prominent Sikh leader and

Canadian citizen who was gunned down outside a temple he led in British Columbia in June. In a stunning accusation, the Canadian Prime Minister now

says there's credible allegations linking New Delhi to Niger's murder, a claim that the Indian government has strongly denied.

Saying such unsubstantiated allegations seek to shift the focus from Khalistani terrorists and extremists who have been provided shelter in

Canada and continue to threaten India's sovereignty. Relations between the two nations now at a new low.

HAIDAR: I think what you're looking at is not just a deep freeze, it's an open declaration of diplomatic war, and the next few days and weeks could

see more of that.

SUD (voice-over): And we have. In a rare move, both nations expel key senior Indian and Canadian diplomats. With a national election coming up in

months, Modi wants to be seen as a leader who talks stuff on terror and separatism. But for Trudeau the expectation back home from a sizable Sikh

diaspora is justice for Niger. This is one diplomatic route that allies will be watching closely. Vedika Sud, CNN, New Delhi


KINKADE: Well, happening right now, the U.S. Justice Department once again accused of political bias. The United States Republicans on the House

Judiciary Committee are grilling Attorney General Merrick Garland during a hearing.

Garland is pushing back against accusations of political bias in the Justice Department. He forcefully told lawmakers he was not the president's

lawyer and that the Justice Department works for the American people. Well, joining me now for more on this is our Jessica Schneider. Good to have you

with us from Washington.

So, Jessica, Merrick Garland was specifically asked about whether he or his department was directed to intervene in this Hunter Biden investigation.

What did he say? And what's the latest on that investigation?

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, I mean, really Lynda, throughout this two-hour hearing, Merrick Garland has repeatedly had to

deny that he or anyone within the Justice Department has interfered in any ongoing investigation, even though the Republicans here have really been

hammering him, not only when it comes to the Hunter Biden case, where, of course, Hunter Biden, the president's son, was just indicted on gun charges

last week, and more charges related to tax evasion could be coming.

But Republicans are also asking the special counsel -- they're asking about the special counsel investigations into former President Donald Trump. Some

of the Republicans today during the hearing have said improper procedures were followed during that search at Mar-a-Lago, the president's -- the

former president's home last August. Garland, of course, has disputed that or any wrongdoing when it's come to the special counsel's investigation.

And then when it comes to Hunter Biden, Republicans are contending that DOJ officials have interfered to benefit the current president, Joe Biden, and

his son in that investigation to Hunters' taxes, as well as improper gun purchase.

You know, Merrick Garland has repeatedly denied any interference, but at the same time, he hasn't been able to give any specifics about those

investigations. Lynda, he really has continued to press this message that he and his employees, all the officials of the Justice Department are not

working on behalf of anyone except the American public. So, here is what part of what is said during his opening statement.



MERRICK GARLAND, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: Our job is not to take orders from the President, from Congress, or from anyone else about who or what they

criminally investigate. As the President himself has said and I reaffirm today, I am not the President's lawyer. I will add, am not Congress'

prosecutor. The Justice Department works for the American people. Our job is to follow the facts and the law and that is what we do.


SCHNEIDER: So, the attorney-general continually -- continuing to defend his position, defend the Department of Justice as a whole and what is

interesting is that the attorney general actually got quite emotional on his opening.

He said the reason that he chose to go into public service because if course, before he was attorney general, he was a federal judge who actually

had a lifetime appointment, that he did choose to leave for his position -- a political position as attorney general.

And he said that he went into public service because his grandmother and his siblings fled Europe to escape persecution and that she two of his

grandmother siblings were actually killed in the holocaust.

So, Lynda, he actually teared up speaking about his family literally owe their lives to this country and that's why he's gone to public service.

But, we're seeing this hearing ongoing. It started around 10 A.M.

And we're seeing the Republicans were really hammering Garland with their belief that there has been political interference during Garland's time at

the head of the Justice Department and with the attorney general forcefully trying to push back while at the same time not being able to give any

specifics about particular investigations.

And of course, Lynda, we are at a very unprecedented time where special counsel investigations are ongoing, not only into the current President's

son, Hunter Biden, but also the former President, multiple special counsel investigations into him that have led to multiple indictments. So, there is

a lot swirling the attorney general has to contend with right now, in front of a very hostile group, House Republicans there. Lynda.

KINKADE: Yeah, certainly, an incredibly busy time. Jessica Schneider for us in Washington. Good to have you with us. Thank you.


KINKADE: Well, still to come. A mysterious ground operation and drone strikes inside Sudan are raising the question of who's behind them. An

exclusive CNN investigation indicates that it could be Ukraine. Plus, activists and musical artists raising their voices with a common message to

fight against extreme poverty. We'll have more on this weekend's global citizens festival when we return.



KINKADE: Welcome back to One World, I'm Lynda Kinkade. Britain's King Charles and Queen Camilla have finally kicked off a three-day state visit

to France, six months later than planned. And President Emmanuel Macron is pulling out all stops for his guests.

The trip was initially set for March but was postponed amid those nationwide protests over the French government's pension reforms. Earlier

Wednesday, the Royals were welcomed with a ceremony at the Arc de Triomphe followed by a procession down the Champs-Elysees to the Presidential

Palace. A lavish banquet takes place this evening at the Palace of Versailles.

Well, CNN Royal Correspondent Max Foster is covering the state visit from beautiful Paris. Well, it looks a little bit gloomy there today. Good to

have you with us, Max. So, the royal carpet -- the red carpet has been rolled out today by Emmanuel Macron. What have you witnessed and have many

people in Paris turned out to see it?

MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: There are some people turning out, but the security is unbelievably tight. I think that's also linked to the Rugby

World Cup and the fact that Pope is visiting later in the week and you also got the, you know, obviously the Olympics coming up, as well.

So, they -- you know, thousands of police officers are out and the roads are closed off and the public haven't been allowed terribly close, although

there was a bit of a walkabout earlier on. I think the key thing that we saw today was Emmanuel Macron and King Charles really -apparently getting

on and having a very warm relationship.

I was there at the Elysee Palace when King Charles arrived there and they were chatting away. And this is really what diplomats on both sides wanted

to see coming out of this trip. It's not really meant to be about politics. It's meant to be about celebrating the long-term relationship between these

two nations.

And Lynda, as you know, it's been rocked in recent years, ever since Brexit. Boris Johnson didn't really help that relationship because Macron

and Johnson just, you know, they didn't have a very close personal relationship.

It was quite awkward when you saw them in public, but that was a very different picture today. So, I think both sides really hoping that they can

build on this relationship and show they can heal those wounds for what are two key allies.

KINKADE: All right. We will continue to follow this trip over the coming days. Max Foster, good to have you there for us in Paris. Thanks so much.

Well, the fallout from Russia's invasion of Ukraine may be spreading far beyond Ukraine's borders. An exclusive CNN investigation has uncovered

compelling evidence that Ukrainian forces have struck Wagner-backed fighters inside Sudan.

Now, this comes as Russia tries to expand its influence in Africa, following the death of Wagner Chief Yevgeny Prigozhin. CNN's Nima Elbagir

reports from neighboring Chad.


NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Nightfall in a war-torn neighborhood in the Sudanese city of Omdurman. You are watching a thermal

imaging video depicting military forces equipped in high-tech gear, far more sophisticated than the Sudanese have demonstrated to date.

And here, a series of high-precision daytime strikes raining down from the sky in and around the same city, hitting targets backed by Russia's Wagner

mercenary group in Sudan.

A Ukrainian military source told CNN this is the work of a foreign military. Pressed on whether they would say unequivocally that Kyiv was

behind the attacks, the source would only say that Ukrainian special services were likely responsible, which would constitute a dramatic

expansion in Kyiv's theater of war against Moscow.

Previous CNN investigations exposed that the Sudanese paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, RSF, has been heavily backed by Wagner as they fight the

Sudanese army in a war for dominance. CNN obtained a series of videos of the operation showing 14 different strikes on RSF weapons and equipment

believed to be provided by Wagner.

We pinpointed seven different locations of the drone strikes in Omdurman. an RSF stronghold that has become a focal point of the conflict. And we

geolocated footage of the night raid to the same city by identifying the buildings seen here. The drone video obtained by CNN had already been

edited, but clues remain as to the identity of those behind the attacks. Text on the monitor of the drone controller seen here is in Ukrainian.

These commercially available drones are widely used by Ukrainian forces. They have a maximum video transmission range of around nine miles. That

means we can tell that the pilots of the drones were in Sudan close by. It's a common tactic in Ukraine, but not so much in Sudan. Drone experts

consulted by CNN said this is the first-time drones like this have been deployed in this fashion in Africa.


CNN shared the videos with a high-level source in Sudan's army for comment, who said they had no knowledge of the Ukrainian operation in Sudan and did

not believe it was true. Sudan became embroiled in Russia's war against Ukraine last year, despite being thousands of miles from the front line

when as we reported, Wagner exploited Sudan's gold resources to help finance Moscow's Ukraine war effort, circumventing U.S. sanctions on


After a plane carrying Wagner leader Yevgeny Prigozhin plummeted to the ground, late last month, many believed that Wagner's influence would

recede. But just the opposite has happened. Military whistleblowers in a number of African countries have told CNN that the Kremlin is consolidating

its power over Wagner's networks in the Central African Republic, in Sudan, in Libya and in Mali. And now that network has expanded further, this time

into Chad.

Chad has really been impacted by the fighting in neighboring Sudan, and yet it's emerging as a key transit point for supplies to the Rapid Support

Forces in Sudan, part of an expansion of Russia's influence in Africa.

Cross-referencing testimony from intelligence and military sources active in the region with satellite imagery, CNN has uncovered evidence that

Wagner arms crossed through Chad within the last two weeks to get to an RSF military base in Sudan. If you look closely, you can see over 100 vehicles,

including scores of trucks at the base. Proof the supplies provided by Russia, Wagner, continue.

A strike on Wagner-backed forces in Sudan would constitute a blow to Moscow. If it is Ukraine, they will have raised the stakes for those

willing to accept Wagner's backing in the future, a lesson illustrating the price they could be forced to pay for cooperating with Russia. Nima

Elbagir, CNN, N'Djamena, Chad.


KINKADE: Well, after the report was published, a representative of the Defense Intelligence of Ukraine told CNN that we can neither confirm nor

deny this. And in conducting the investigation, CNN also reached out to U.S. officials for comment. Multiple U.S. officials appeared unaware of the

alleged incident and expressed surprise at the suggestion that the strikes and ground operation may have been conducted by Ukrainian forces.

Well, still to come on One World, it may not have been the flashiest speech at the U.N. General Assembly, but Nigeria's new president raised some

eyebrows with his address. Find out why after the break.



KINKADE: Hello and welcome back to One World. I'm Lynda Kinkade. Let's catch you up on the headlines this hour. Six Palestinians were killed by

Israeli military firing three separate incidents over the past 24 hours. Dozens more were injured. That's according to the Palestinian Ministry of

Health. The ministry says at least four Palestinians were killed during an Israeli military operation in the Jenin refugee camp.

A bit of good news for consumers in the U.K. Inflation there finally slowing. The consumer price index, which measures inflation, was 6.7

percent last month. That's down from 6.8 percent in July. August marks the third month in a row where U.K. inflation has slowed. And it's way down

from the 9.9 percent it hit a year ago.

Well, it appears there has been a major breakthrough in the dispute between the Spanish Football Federation and its women players. Just days to go

until Spain is scheduled to play their first match as the Women's World Cup champions, an agreement has been reached for the players to end their

boycott playing for the national team.

Officials in Libya are considering whether to isolate some of the areas hardest hit by the devastating floods last week amid growing health

concerns. The health ministry there says it could be a lot of bodies trapped under the mud, and there is concern about water-borne diseases

being spread.

Officials have also restricted the number of journalists allowed into the city of Derna. However, among the small number allowed is CNN's Jomana



JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Bit by bit, they begin to clear what's left of Derna's battered streets and buildings. But for its people, it's

too soon to move on. It's all still so incomprehensible. What happened here residents say was a disaster of epic proportions. It was like a bombing, an

earthquake and a tsunami all in one. A wall of water as high as six stories submerged buildings and crushed almost everything in its path and split the

city in two.

Divers combed the Mediterranean for the remains of men, women and children swept away into the sea with their homes. It is now these waters that tell

the stories of lives ended too soon. Survivors still cling on to the hope their loved ones are just lost in the chaos. Outside schools turn into

shelters. People scour through lists with the names of survivors inside.

Salma's been searching for her parents and her brothers, but the gut- wrenching reality is starting to sink in. The single mother is now homeless living in this school. What happens to them next keeps her up at night.

Salma says it feels now that life has no meaning anymore, that life is over, she says.

For the youngest survivors, life goes on, makeshift swings enough to distract them and help them forget. But Derna's nightmare is far from over.

Warnings of a looming health crisis have everyone on edge. Access to the disaster zones now restricted as they fumigate the area to wash away the

stench of death and the ills it may bring.

The once bustling streets around Derna's old city now almost deserted. Defiant residents who've returned to their homes are now being asked to

leave. Muftass survived ISIS that once ruled his city. He's also been displaced by civil war just a few years ago.


He refuses to live through that again. I would rather die here than leave, he tells us. He doesn't trust the same powers that failed him to now

protect them. Shock and grief have turned into anger with calls for accountability for a calamity brought by Mother Nature compounded by man.

Its years of negligence, neglect, mismanagement, corruption and a failed state they blame. A resilient Derna and its soul have been crushed. No one

knows how they or their city will ever heal from this. Jomana Karadsheh, CNN, Derna, Libya.


KINKADE: Well, still to come as world leaders call for climate action, Britain is planning to roll back some of its net zero pledges. We'll have a

live report from London ahead.


KINKADE: Welcome back. The U.N. General Assembly has seen a parade of world leaders take the stage this week. Each one spends about 15 minutes in the

spotlight, but we wanted to take a little extra time to highlight a compelling address by the President of Nigeria. It was Bola Tinubu's first

speech to the U.N. since taking office earlier this year.

But rather than just focus on Nigeria, he has spoke to the important issues facing the entire continent of Africa. He called on the United Nations to

do more to support democracy in the region and fight against the wave of coups in West and Central Africa.

He urged nations to do more to fight the violent extremists who have plagued some African countries. And he said Africa's rich natural resources

must be protected from exploitation while also praising his continent for its efforts to fight climate change.


Failures in good governance have ended Africa. But broken promises, unfair treatment and outright exploitation from abroad have also exerted a heavy

toll on our ability to progress.


KINKADE: Well, time now for the exchange. Joining me now is Ambassador Johnny Carlson. He has been U.S. Ambassador to Kenya, Uganda, Zimbabwe, and

is currently the U.S. Special Presidential Representative for U.S. African Leaders Summer Implementation. And if you're confused a little bit about

that very long title, it means that when the U.S. says it's going to do something in Africa, he makes sure that it actually gets done.


Ambassador Johnnie Carson, good to have you on the program.


KINKADE: I would love if we could, Ambassador, to first get your reaction to that address by the Nigerian President to the United Nations General

Assembly. What did you make of it?

CARSON: I thought it was a very good, wide-ranging speech by Nigeria's new president. Nigeria is, of course, Africa's most populous country. It's its

largest economy and its largest democracy. And I think that whenever a Nigerian president speaks, I think, the African community and the global

community should listen.

I think he outlined a number of the major challenges facing his region and Africa today. Democratic backsliding, issues related to climate change, and

issues also related to humanitarian problems.

KINKADE: And of course, Ambassador Africa with its 54 nations is one of the largest voting blocs in the United Nations. You represent the United States

to the African nations. Take us through the priorities for this United Nations General Assembly.

CARSON: I think, let me say that the United States is using this opportunity to reaffirm its close ties and deepening relationships to the

African continent. I'm here in New York to follow up on the very successful U.S.-Africa summit that occurred in December of 2022.

At that time, President Biden invited some 49 of the 54 African countries to attend. In that summit, the president made a number of wide-ranging

commitments. He committed the United States to provide $55 billion in assistance to Africa over the next three years.

There was also a trade and economic summit component there, and in that, some $15.6 billion worth of deals were made between American companies and

African governments and companies. There are also other commitments made that were also important. The president announced that he would work to

have the African Union and Africa brought into the G20.

That was successfully done just two weeks ago in New Delhi. And the president renewed his commitment earlier this week when he advocated for

Africa to have a permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council. I'm here talking to African leaders to find out how they believe we've done in

partnering with them to fulfill our pledges and commitments made in December.

KINKADE: Ambassador, I want to point out another comment by the Nigerian President today at the U.N. He said, to the rest of the world, I say walk

with us as true friends and partners. Africa is not a problem to be avoided or pitied. Africa is nothing less than the key to the world's future.

What does the United States make of that common, especially in light of the fact that so many countries within Africa have strengthened ties with

countries like China and Russia in recent years? How is the U.S. trying to further strengthen and develop those relationships?

CARSON: By building strong partnerships with those African nations who seek better and stronger ties with the United States. We recognize Africa's

growing influence. We recognize their 54 members in the U.N. General Assembly. We recognize the fact that Africa is the youngest and fastest

growing continent in the world.

Seventeen percent of all people living on the global community are Africans by 2050. One out of every four people on the globe will be African. We

recognize that Africa is growing as a leading trading and commercial center. It is a place for us to invest and trade.

And as we move increasingly towards a green economy, we recognize that many of the critical minerals that are required to transform us from fossil fuel

economy to a green energy economy rest in Africa. So, we see the need to be able to trade with Africa to buy minerals such as lithium, cobalt, nickel

and copper from the continent.


CARSON: These are all very important things. We need to look at Africa as a partner, as a friend, and as a place where we can do business and build

stronger relationships.

KINKADE: Ambassador Johnnie Carson, great to get your perspective. Good to have you on the program. Thanks for your time.

CARSON: Thank you.

KINKADE: We are going to take a quick break. We'll be right back. Stay with us.



KINKADE: Welcome back, I'm Lynda Kinkade. The British Prime Minister is watering down key commitments to tackle climate change. Rishi Sunak says,

although Britain remains committed to producing net zero emissions by 2050, he does not want to impose significant costs on working people.

Mr. Sunak announced a five-year delay to the ban on sales of new petrol and diesel cars. CNN's Anna Stewart is following the developments and joins us

now. Anna, even before this speech, the British Prime Minister coming under fire for watering down green policies that are meant to address climate

change. What is he saying in regards to that criticism today?

ANNA STEWART, ON X: Well, most importantly he said he's actually not changing the target, the net zero target by 2050 which is in legislation

actually had he changed that would have required a vote in Parliament. He's not changing that but he is changing some of the policies that were

implemented to get the U.K. there.

Now, in terms of the crises there, he is used to key reasons for doing this. Number one, he

says the U.K. is essentially overshooting on its carbon reduction plans, and it has done consistently. He says the U.K. is leading when it comes to

reducing greenhouse gases. Therefore, he argues that the U.K. almost has carbon headroom to be able to relax some of the policies that were

incoming. Secondly, he talks on heating homes.


This is regarding oil and gas boilers, which were due to be phased out. They're going to be phased out for over a much longer period. Exemptions

for as many as a fit of households, an increased grant as well for more efficient homes for new heat pumps to replace those boilers.

Also, a slightly bizarre list, I have to say, of things that weren't actually policy from the Prime Minister, but he took great care to go

through them all, stopping heavy-handed measures on taxes on eating meat, on discouraging flying, sorting your rubbish into seven different bins. He

spent a lot of time listing a few things that will play very well with voters, Lynda.

And you have to wonder how much of this is also gearing up, considering the next election. Rishi Sunak took the reins from Liz Trust. She took the

reins from Boris Johnson, who was actually the last elected Prime Minister.

KINKADE: Yeah, it certainly seems, Anna, like he is focusing very much on short-term political gain and ignoring the bigger problems. Good to have

you with us as always, Anna Stewart in London. Thank you.

Speaking of bigger problems, artists and activists are joining forces in New York this weekend with one goal in mind, to tackle the issue of extreme

poverty through music.



KINLADE: The Annual Global Citizen Festival set for this Saturday in Central Park featuring performances by these guys, the Red Hot Chili

Peppers, as well as Ms. Lauren Hill and plenty of other musicians.

Well, the event coincides with the United Nations General Assembly in New York and that's not by accident. Organizers have a message for world

leaders, urgent action is needed to tackle the poverty crisis. Well, joining us now to discuss more is Hugh Evans, the CEO and Co-Founder of

Global Citizen. Good to have you with us, Hugh.

HUGH EVANS, CEO GLOBAL CITIZEN: Thank you so much, Lynda. Thank you.

KINKADE: So, in the past you've had the lives of Beyonce, Jay-Z, Coldplay, Lady Gaga. What's expected at the festival this weekend and what's

different about it?

EVANS: Well, the thing that's different about the Global Citizen Festival is that this weekend, 60,000 people will join us on the Great Lawn of

Central Park, headlined by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Ms. Lauren Hill, Jung Kook of BTS, and Anita, all the way from Brazil.

But citizens have to earn their way in through taking action, acts of service, by downloading the Global Citizen app. And all of those actions

earn them points, and they use those points to come to the Global Citizen Festival for free this weekend.

KINKADE: Excellent. And we mentioned some of the artists. But you often have some world leaders on stage to make pledges. Can you give us any

insight as to who might be joining this weekend?

EVANS: Well, firstly, we're focusing on the issue, the urgent food security crisis. We know that one in five people across Sub-Saharan Africa face food

insecurity, and in 2023, that is absolutely unacceptable. So, we're calling on the French government, the Norwegian government, and my own home country

of Australia to step up and tackle the food security crisis and support IFAD in their replenishment to support small, hot agricultural farmers.

But the second thing we're fighting for is the climate crisis. And as you mentioned earlier in your program, Rishi Sunak, the Prime Minister of

Britain, has walked back the commitment on behalf of the British people to support sustainability and tackle the climate crisis and he did so under

the false pretense of being just honest with the British public.

I think that ultimately, the science and the climate crisis doesn't care about his false sense of honesty. What it cares about is are governments

taking action to achieve net zero targets?

So, we're calling on the British government to walk back their unfounded and misguided statement today and ultimately follow the lead of many other

governments who are committing to net zero to tackle the climate crisis.

And finally, we're calling on the Canadian government to step up in support of maternal and child health. We know that still 800 women die every single

day during childbirth, which is absolutely unacceptable through the lack of access to basic obstetrics or a midwife in the event of an emergency.

And the Canadian government, Trudeau, has declared himself a feminist foreign policy leader. So, we want to see action, not just words, and then

commit to support the UNFPA in their urgent efforts.

KINKADE: It's so good to see you holding these leaders to account. You have, of course, been running this festival for over a decade. I remember

going to one of the first ones back in 2014. Just take us through what you've achieved in that time.

EVANS: Well, what the movement has achieved is that, and I'm pleased to tell you this year, we actually broke the record in the number of actions

taken, three million actions taken just in the last few months by global citizens.


And over the last 12 years, that's resulted in over $43.6 billion pledged on the global citizen stage that has now been deployed to impact the lives

of over a billion people on the planet. That's more kids in school, more kids having access to life-saving vaccines and immunizations, more girls

that are now, you know, able to read and write and live productive lives. That's what the movement is all about, working for the eradication of

extreme poverty within our lifetime.

KINKADE: And, Hugh, I had a quick look at the forecast before you popped on. It does look like there is rain expected in New York this weekend. Will

it go ahead no matter what?

EVANS: Well, you know, I'm of the belief that, you know, the global citizen movement isn't going to stop for a little bit of rain. And I also know that

some of the greatest performances of all time, whether it's Diana Ross or Taylor Swift, as we saw recently, have occurred in the rain.

So, we are a rain or shine event. We want to encourage everyone, bring your ponchos, bring your gumboots. We're going to be going this Saturday, 60,000

people, no matter what.

KINKADE: We will be tuning in. Good to have you on the program. As always, keep up the great work. Thanks so much Hugh Evans. Good to have you.

EVANS: Thank you, Lynda.

KINKADE: And thanks so much to all of you for watching One World. I'm Lynda Kinkade. Amanpour is up next. You're watching CNN. Stay with us.