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Legal Fight Over Termination of Trump-Era Border Policy; China Relaxes COVID Restrictions. Aired 4-4:10a ET

Aired December 14, 2022 - 04:00:00   ET


COY WIRE, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. It is Thursday. So, happy Friday eve. I`m your host Coy Wire. Grateful to be right here with you on CNN 10.

We`re here to break down some top storylines in an upbeat and easy to understand manner. This is our penultimate show before we take a long

holiday break just today and tomorrow. So let`s make the most of them.

First up, government officials in the United States are preparing for a surge of migrants along the country`s southern border with Mexico. A

December deadline to terminate a public health authority known as Title 42 is coming up. The policy was created at the start of the coronavirus

pandemic and allowed officials to quickly turn away migrants at the U.S. southern border due to concerns over the spread of the virus.

Well, an end to that restriction is expected to lead to an increase in border crossings and members within both Democrat and Republican parties

are raising concerns over whether officials should consider a new policy. President Biden`s administration is already asking Congress for more than

$3 billion in assistance as it prepares for the end of the Title 42 policy.

And the influx of migrants has already started. U.S. border officials have been contending with thousands of migrants crossing the border daily and

expect those numbers to increase in the coming days and weeks. Let`s break this story down by the numbers.

Over the weekend, U.S. border authorities apprehended more than 16,000 people. In a single section of the border in El Paso, Texas, more than

2,400 migrants crossed into the United States each day. Many officials speculate that the end of the title policy could overwhelm an already

strained system.

We`ll hear now from CNN national correspondent Ed Lavendera in El Paso, Texas, with the latest.


ED LAVANDERA, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): As the sun fades away over El Paso, a large group of migrants stand on the borders

edge waiting to be processed by border patrol agents. While a few others tiptoe across a short path through the Rio Grande.

These migrants are part of a major surge of border crossings seen in El Paso in recent days, and it is happening as the projected and of a Trump

era restriction draws closer, ending the policy to swiftly expel migrants at the U.S. land borders.

U.S. border authorities interacted with more than 2 million migrants in the last year, up from the previous year. But in recent days, an average of

almost 2,500 migrants a day have been moving across this border, between Mexico and the U.S. through El Paso.

CLAUDIA RODRIGUEZ, EL PASO CITY COUNCIL MEMBER: Title 42 is only going to make that situation worse, they`re going to have more apprehension, so we

are going to see a lot more releases into the community, and we`re not prepared for it.

LAVANDERA: Just three weeks ago, according to Customs and Border Protection, the seven-day rolling average was fewer than 1,700. Thousands

of migrants are now coming from Central and South America as well as Cuba, according to U.S. immigration officials.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m helping them get food, whatever they need. This is not even about politics. It`s about humanity. These people are here and

they are cold.

LAVANDERA: Some have been camping out across the border in Ciudad Juarez, in Mexico, raising concerns they will cross in mass if Trump era border

restrictions end about a week.

Still, others have already been boarded into buses to be processed or turned around under the provisions of Title 42.

JAKE SULLIVAN, NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR: We are taking steps to be able to manage the expiration of Title 42 and to put in place a process that

will be orderly and humane. We believe that in doing so we can protect our national security concerns.

LAVANDERA: Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas arrived in El Paso today, and says he is meeting with Customs and Border Protection,

local officials, and organizations.

For now, the immediate problem is housing, and managing a large influx of migrants.

RUBEN GARCIA, DIRECTOR, ANNUNCIATION HOUSE: If the court cases get resolved, and the courts allow Title 42 to be lifted, we are going to see

thousands of refugees for whom there isn`t shelter.

LAVANDERA: The director of a local El Paso shelter says border patrol recently dropped a busload of migrants at his doorstep. And he is worried

he will soon have to turn people away.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re going to have to say no, not because we want to, but simply because we don`t have space. The reality is, there`s just too

many people.



WIRE: Ten-second trivia:

What is the most populated country in the world?

Russia, China, United States or India?

With an estimated 1.4 billion people, China edges out India as the most populated country in the world.


WIRE: As we`ve discussed, China is reopening its doors after three years of its zero COVID policy, the last country on the planet to do so.

While the policy did keep spread of the virus low, it stressed the daily lives of citizens inside the country, with mandatory tests and quarantines.

But now that many of the restrictions in China have been removed, by many accounts, the streets feel more empty than when`s restrictions were there.

Why? Because fear of the virus remains, in large part because coronavirus is spreading quickly in China.

More now from CNN international correspondent Selina Wang who`s on the scene in Beijing.


SELINA WANG, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: China is starting to unravel its zero COVID policy. But instead of crowds out celebrating, this is how

reopening is going in China -- close shops, empty streets, people avoiding each other because for the first time since the start of the pandemic,

COVID is spreading like wildfire in Beijing. People now either have COVID or they`re scared to get it.

So I just spoke to the shop worker in the store and he told me that he`s the only employee without COVID which is why he can still come to work and

he says, I am the only customer who has come into this store all day.

The only crowds I`m seeing in Beijing outside of hospitals like this and pharmacies.

So he says his fever`s gone down but he still has a cold, hoping to buy medicine but he`s worried they don`t have any stock because there`s these

long lines forming outside of pharmacies across the country people are trying to stock up but stuff is selling out.

You know, for years, China has been demonizing COVID, playing up the risks of long COVID and now suddenly state media is publishing headlines every

day saying COVID is not a big deal. It`s whiplash for a lot of people because just weeks before, if you got COVID, your whole community would

have gone into hard lockdown. This is such a major and sudden change.

So China is finally opening up. How do you feel about it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I feel is pretty great. I wish they could have opened up earlier.

WANG: Has business been very slow or difficult?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, you can see, there -- there are not that many customers. A lot of people just got the virus.

WANG: Are you scared about getting COVID?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m worried about my parents and my grandparents a little bit.

WANG: People are relieved though that you no longer have to go to a quarantined facility if you get COVID. Getting sent to one of those rundown

facilities was such a big source of anxiety before.

And these health QR codes that have been used for years to track and dictate where we can go -- well, the government is now saying that you

don`t need them to enter most public places.

So I don`t need to scan my code. It feels surreal though that I can literally just walk in.

So she said I can only do online delivery. So you can`t even sit inside or order inside in Shake Shack.

So outside the Starbucks, they have a sign saying you need to show a 40- hour COVID test, even though the national rules don`t require it, in Beijing, you still need a recent PCR test in order to enter restaurants,

gyms and entertainment venues.

There are way less places now to get COVID tests in the city, and the lines are short because most people are just staying at home. But just a week

before, at this exact same location, this was packed with people waiting in line.

So behind me is a graveyard of COVID testing booths. It`s like almost overnight in Beijing, they removed all of these testing locations and

here`s the remnants.

After years of harsh lockdowns, the government is finally letting people manage their own health. But people don`t feel ready and experts say the

country isn`t either. The country hasn`t vaccinated enough of the elderly population and has it improved the health care capacity enough. So this

reopening it`s going to continue to be messy and uneven.


WIRE: For today`s 10 out of 10, a family from Gretna, Virginia, is an enlightened bunch who really know how to conduct themselves at Christmas

time. Mike Clay says he used more than 30,000 lights to decorate his house and it lights up the entire street.

Inspired by the movie "National Lampoon`s Christmas Vacation", he says he decorates in memory of his grandfather. His light bill jumps up by a

hundred dollars though during the month but he says it`s total really worth it. If loving Christmas is wrong, Mr. Clay don`t want to be light because

he loves Christmas a lots.

Shout out to Clark Middle School in Anchorage, Alaska. Thanks for subscribing and commenting on our CNN 10 YouTube Channel.

Lovely people, keep letting your light shine bright for all to see. Lift someone up today. Lend a helping hand or simply give a smile. You are more

powerful than you know.

I`m Coy Wire. This is CNN 10.