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Hala Gorani Tonight

Black England Players Become Targets of Racist Online Abuse After Narrow Loss to Italy; Cubans Protest Over Lack of Freedom and Worsening Economy; Police Arrest Man Accused of Orchestrating the Assassination of Haiti's President; Macron Addresses France As COVID-19 Cases Rise; Jordan Royal Family Member & Ex-Aide Sentenced To 15 Years; British PM Confirms Easing Of COVID-19 Restrictions. Aired 2-3p EST

Aired July 12, 2021 - 14:00   ET



HALA GORANI, CNNI HOST: Hello everyone, live from CNN London, I'm HALA GORANI TONIGHT. Three black English sporting heroes facing hate. Why is

racist abuse still so common in football? Then Haitian police claim to have arrested the mastermind of the president's assassination. How they say he

recruited mercenaries to carry out the raid. And later --


DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Up ahead if we can push in, that is mostly private security, some of them with live firearms.


GORANI: Chaos in South Africa, CNN is on the ground as political protests turn to looting. Police struggle to gain control, and private security take

matters into their own hands. We'll have a report from South Africa this hour. One day after England narrowly lost the Euro 2020 Championship to

Italy, the story today should be about Italy's win and England's historic push to the final. But instead, unfortunately, it's not about that. It's

about racism. Three young black England players all stepped up to take a penalty kick and all missed.

After the match, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka were targeted with racist messages on social media. This mural of Rashford with

-- was defaced with racist graffiti. U.K. media report that the online abuse included offensive emojis and the use of racial slurs that I shall

not repeat on television. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson reacted on Twitter saying, "this English team deserved to be lauded as heroes, not

racially abused on social media." Prince William tweeted in part, "I'm sickened by the racist abuse aimed at England players after last night's

match." Here is what England's manager had to say.


GARETH SOUTHGATE, COACH, ENGLAND NATIONAL SOCCER TEAM: For some of them to be abused is unforgivable really. I know a lot of that is coming from

abroad, you know, people that track those things have been able to explain that, but not all of it. And it's just not what we stand for. We -- I think

have been a beacon of light in bringing people together and people being able to relate to the national team. And the national team stands for



GORANI: Well, CNN's Salma Abdelaziz is live in London, she's been covering this angle of this story. And obviously, we don't want to repeat -- we

don't want to read any of these horrific tweets, but how bad did it get after these three players missed their kicks yesterday online in terms of

the abuse that was directed at them?

SALMA ABDELAZIZ, CNN REPORTER: Hala, it was really vile and disgusting language that was being used online to be frank. Twitter, the company, has

told CNN they had to remove over a thousand tweets. They've also had to suspend several accounts for engaging in this very abusive behavior. I want

to point out that Saka is just 19 years old.

He is a 19-year-old man facing this type of abuse for playing for his country, for taking that kick for his country. Sadly, though, Hala, I don't

think you or I or even these players were surprised by this type of racist abuse online. It is very sadly something that we expected, I think, last

night, and I think that those players were really bracing for after this defeat.

Still, of course, condemnation has been swift. It's come from a lot of corners, from football associations, but also from the top. Take a listen

to what Prime Minister Boris Johnson said just a short time ago.


BORIS JOHNSON, PRIME MINISTER, UNITED KINGDOM: To those who have been directing racist abuse at some of the players, I say, shame on you, and I

hope you will crawl back under the rock from which you emerged, because this entire team played like heroes.


ABDELAZIZ: Very performative, very flowery language as we expect always from the prime minister. But I feel, Hala, like I could see a million eye

rolls around the country.


And that's because critics, anti-racism campaigners will tell you that Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his government are a part of the problem.

This is an administration that refused to condemn fans when they were booing players for taking a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter

movement. This is an administration that denied systemic racism exists in the U.K. and touted it as a become of multi-culturalism. This is an

administration that has essentially used very tough language, very difficult language to try to push Brexit, some would say populist language,

has been very divisive.

This is an administration that has largely ignored the demands of the Black Lives Matter movement and some anti-racism campaigners will say have made

this country more divisive, have increased those racial tensions. So, what these players faced is not in a vacuum, Hala.

It absolutely comes within the context of this very vocal, very defensive backlash that we're seeing across the U.K. against this Black Lives Matter

movement. And these players did thrust themselves in the middle of this cultural war.

They understood that there was a racial reckoning happening, Hala, and they wanted to present a more inclusive, a more diverse, a more tolerant and

progressive form of nationalism with their advocacy work and with how they performed and played on the field.

GORANI: All right, Salma Abdelaziz live in London, thanks very much. "CNN WORLD SPORT" contributor Darren Lewis joins me now live, he's also in

London. Darren, the England team took the -- any sort of the Italian team, and we've seen this in many sports around the world where professional

sports men and women are saying, enough with the racism.

And as Salma was mentioning, the Boris Johnson government did not condemn those who booed players for taking the knee. So, now when Boris Johnson

comes out with these very strong statements as seen by some as a bit hypocritical, why is this still so much of a problem, Darren, in this


DARREN LEWIS, CNN WORLD SPORT CONTRIBUTOR: Well, first of all, Hala, I want to give Salma a round of applause really because I think she's

articulated the context around Boris Johnson's rhetoric, I won't call it condemnation, I wouldn't even call it a finger wagging. It's -- they're

just words for him because they're the right things to say at the right time.

He's a very populist prime minister who basically plays to the gallery when the occasion demands it. And as Salma was saying, there is a long, well-

documented history of offensive language from Boris Johnson that completely undermines any suggestion that he may be pushing back against the racism

that the young men, young black and brown men continue to receive.

I must just also point out, Hala, that this isn't a regular occurrence if you're black and you are brown in this country. This hasn't happened, as

Salma was saying in a vacuum. And I think there are a number of agencies that are culpable where this is concerned. Salma mentioned social media


And I kind of roll my eyes when they talk about removing 1,000 pieces of hate speech because do you know what? If you posted misinformation about

COVID, you can be shut down, you're not able to do that. They can remove the president of the United States from social media. They can do all sorts

of things if they really want to -- surrounding copyright infringement.

So, I cannot sit here and believe for one second that there will exists to stop racist abuse. It should not be the case that they are having to remove

pieces of hate speech. Hate speech should not be able to appear on their platforms, full stop.

GORANI: Yes --

LEWIS: I'm sure, Hala, you've heard the word "exhausting" around this debate.

GORANI: Yes --

LEWIS: It's exhausting having to say this all the time because it's not difficult. But the problems -- this abuse for these young players, it's a

symptom of something much bigger. The world does not exist with the social media companies to address the issue. That's why they are too scared to

speak to people like yourself, Hala, on CNN because they know that they have questions that they do not have the answers to.

GORANI: Yes, so, what appears on social media is a reflection of some sort of sickness, something that still exists there, a racism embedded in the --

not everyone. We saw thousands and thousands of supportive messages, but as Gary Lineker said, it's a minority, but a loud and embarrassing one. Why

does it still exist? And what needs to be done to combat it, do you think?

LEWIS: I'm quite -- love to use the word minority, Hala, because, you know, the players were taking the knee largely because they are in a



Outside, away from the pitch, there is no role for them in British sport. In administration, in management positions, in coaching positions, the

numbers are shameful. It's our dirty secret here in the U.K. where in sports, you're only good enough to play. So, part of the reason they take

the knee is to try and highlight those issues. But nobody is interested unless you do well on the field. And then there's this great trump --

GORANI: And Darren, when you don't do well -- this was -- it reminds me of the French team that had lots of Arab and black players when they won the

World Cup. There was this joke going around, oh, today, we're French, when we lose, we're Arabs.

LEWIS: Absolutely.

GORANI: And I think what you're saying is something similar.

LEWIS: It is. And you know, I feel this personally. You know, my parents came to this country from the Caribbean in the '70s and they worked hard to

integrate into British society. There are lots of people like myself, like my parents who came to England to integrate into British society. But what

became very clear to us all over several decades is, no matter what your contribution to society, you are only useful if you provide something. So,

we see all these narratives about good immigrants, such and such saved someone from a burning building, so they were --

GORANI: Yes --

LEWIS: Rewarded with citizenship. You have to prove yourself to actually be taken if you are black or you are brown in our society. And sadly, Hala,

I would say that exists on both sides of the Atlantic. We have big problems, and this situation surrounding these three young black

footballers is a microcosm of that big problem.

GORANI: And by the way, the goalkeeper wasn't getting any abuse and he took some goals. The white goalkeeper for the England team. So, last

question, I guess, and I know this is, you know, a tall order in terms of coming up with a sound bite solution, but where do we begin to try to fix


LEWIS: It's structural, Hala. And we need to start with the social media companies. We, as an organization at CNN, we have the power to be able to

hold social media companies to account. I have heard in the 20 years I've been a sports journalist, condemnation coming out of my ears, it's all

smoke. It's meaningless. What I'd like to see is action. What I'd like to see is the social media companies explain why they allow racist abuse on

their platforms before it's removed because once we get to the bottom of that, then we can actually address this problem properly.

GORANI: Darren Lewis, thanks so much for joining us this evening.

LEWIS: Thank you for having me --

GORANI: To Cuba now, the president -- the president is blaming the U.S. for provoking rare anti-government protests across the island. Miguel Diaz-

Canel says American sanctions have caused an economic downturn which fueled the unrest this weekend. In a speech on TV, he also took aim at the

protesters themselves.


MIGUEL DIAZ-CANEL, PRESIDENT, CUBA (through translator): Yesterday's protests weren't peaceful. There was vandalism. They broke into the stores

and stole many items. And by the way, food isn't what was stolen the most, if they were so desperate for food. What they stole was expensive

equipment, home appliances. Yesterday, they stoned the police force, damaged cars, a behavior that's completely vulgar, completely indecent.


GORANI: CNN's Patrick Oppmann is in Havana, and he explains what the protests are all about.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Take -- in Havana.

PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In front of police, the crowd yells "fatherland and life", a new opposition slogan that has gotten

people who say it in public, arrested in Cuba. But Cuba on Sunday seemed a very different place as thousands of people in cities across the island

took to the streets and took the government by surprise.

These are the largest mass protests in years, perhaps decades. Usually any anti-government activity leads to immediate arrest. Protests criticizing

the state are simply not allowed here. But on Sunday, though, thousands of people voiced their anger openly, and many people told us they simply had

lost their fear.

Police surrounded the protesters and arrested some of them. But for the most part, they did not or could not stop the demonstrations. The protests

are only the latest sign of the unprecedented crisis facing the communist- run island. Even as Cuba produces its own home-grown vaccines, the number of COVID cases has skyrocketed. On Sunday, health officials announced the

highest single day increase in new cases and deaths.


For months, the Cuban economy has spiraled farther and farther downwards. The island has been hard hit by increased U.S. sanctions under the Trump

administration, which have continued under President Biden. The pandemic has cut off tourism and the ability to receive help from relatives abroad

for many Cubans. Lines for food now stretch around the block and can last for hours. For many in Cuba, waiting for scarce food and medicines has

become their life.

Every day, there are people out here for whatever there is. Some days you don't even know what products they're going to be selling, Rachel says. You

have to be out here if you want to have food.

The economic misery is already leading to desperation, as Cubans are now taking to the sea on rafts in the greatest number since 2017, when then

President Obama entered the wet foot, dry foot policy that allowed Cubans reaching the U.S. to stay. Cuba is confronting the worst crisis in decades

without a Castro at the helm. As Raul Castro stepped down from his last leadership role in April. On Sunday, Cuba's new leader, Miguel Diaz-Canel

blamed the island's economic troubles on the U.S. and vowed to crack down on the protesters.

The order to combat has been given, he said. Revolutionaries need to be in the streets. As Cuba edges closer to the edge, neither side appears they

are backing down.


GORANI: Well, Patrick Oppmann joins me now from Havana with more. I mean, what's next? People are angry and they're desperate.

OPPMANN: Absolutely. And we've heard very little today about further protests just because there's something of an internet blackout going

across all of Cuba. It appears the government as they've done so many times in the past when there is this kind of crisis, when there is opposition

group's activities, they've taken down the internet.

But that is not confirmed, they're not saying that. But it's very hard to get online. And we're simply not seeing those pictures whether or not

protests are happening or not. But what continues and will continue for some time to come are the conditions that people are living in that have

over the last year have become intolerable.

You know, we -- few foreigners that live in Cuba, we constantly ask each other, you know, how long can this go on? How long can people put up with

hour-long lines for food, energy cuts in the middle of the night where you're sleeping in sweltering room without any electricity?

And many people think that Cubans are somehow able to just deal with this interminably. But yesterday, we saw really for the first time thousands of

people say they have had enough, that they are simply -- want to hear something different from the government rather than the excuses that

they've heard for most of their life now.

GORANI: All right, Patrick Oppmann, thanks very much. Now to Haiti. Police there have arrested a 63-year-old U.S.-based Haitian-born man who they say

helped orchestrate the assassination of President Jovenel Moise. Officials say the man arrived in Haiti by private jet last month with the intentions

of becoming president himself.

The suspect was allegedly in touch with a Florida-based Venezuelan security firm to recruit 26 Colombian mercenaries and two Haitian-Americans. Are you

following? Because this story is getting complicated. CNN's Matt Rivers is live for us in Port-au-Prince with more on what we know about this suspect,


MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Hala, that's a good way to put it. Every day that goes by, this story just seems to get more and more

complicated. The latest information coming on Sunday night when Haitian authorities had a press conference to announce the arrest of that -- the

arrest of that 63-year-old Christian Emmanuel Sanon.

Now, what we know about him is relatively limited at this point, but the government does believe that he has played a central role in the

assassination of President Jovenel Moise. We know that they raided his home here in Port-au-Prince not that long ago, within the last few days. They

say they confiscated multiple boxes of ammunition, they confiscated targets for shooting practice, they confiscated multiple pistol and rifle holsters.

Of course, none of that necessarily means that he is the mastermind of any assassination, but that is the evidence that's been presented by

authorities. We have tried to reach out to any legal representation for this man, it appears there is none, at least publicly so far.

We don't know what he has officially been charged with. But that did not stop the government from saying that Sanon allegedly came to this island

to, quote, "seize power". But they didn't elaborate on exactly what that meant. And because of this lack of detail, we've talked about it over the

last few days, Hala, because of the lack of detail, that leads many people to believe that this is not where this ends.

This man, you know, and so the theory goes, is not the actual mastermind behind this, that there are more Haitians involved, that all these foreign

nationals with all these arms and all this equipment did not just come here on the whim of one man.


He worked with a Venezuelan security firm based in south Florida. How do they work into all of this? Who contracted their services? Was it Sanon

himself or were there others? There are so many questions. So, yes, this was a big update in this investigation. It does appear that authorities

have identified a relatively central figure in this, but does it go higher than him? Does it go from side to side? How many more people on the island

are going to be implicated? Those are the answers that we simply just don't have.

GORANI: Right, and we've been discussing over the last several days that these assassins stormed the palace without really injuring or firing any

shots at security. And so, another conspiracy theory or at least another question out there, is that did they have any inside help? And we know U.S.

investigators are also on the ground helping the investigators in Haiti to try to get to the bottom of this. Are we hearing from them at all?

RIVERS: No. And I think what we've seen from the United States is that at least so far, the public sign is that this presence from the Department of

Homeland Security and the FBI, they're not going to be leading any investigation here.

We haven't seen giant planes of FBI agents hit the ground here. It seems that if they're going to be here, it's going to be in a, you know, an

assistance capacity. Frankly, what we've heard more about is the United State presence on the diplomatic side in terms of the political crisis that

is continuing here in Haiti in this power vacuum that's essentially been created with the assassination of the president.

We know that a U.S. delegation on the ground here yesterday met with leaders of two different competing factions, both political factions think

that they should be running the country, that they should be the ones to set up new elections at some point down the road, not only to elect a new

president, but also to elect a whole bunch of new members of parliament. The U.S. said that they had constructive meetings. What they did not say in

their statement from the White House which is where the readout came from, is that they came to any sort of political consensus between both sides.

Both sides ended up tweeting the opposite of consensus last night. So, that is to say without getting too deep in the weeds, that the political crisis

here in Haiti is continuing. There is no consensus over who should be running the country in the long term, and that happens that could spark

protests here. We haven't seen any today, but we have heard rumors that they might start over the next few days. Very speculative at this point,

but that's what we're going to be watching for here. It's kind of a two- track crisis, the political crisis and the crisis surrounding the investigation into the assassination.

GORANI: All right, thanks very much for that. Who's running Haiti, and what is this Venezuelan mercenary firm allegedly hired by a Florida-based

Haitian man? So many questions. Matt Rivers, thanks so much. Still to come tonight, protests and looting ramping up on the streets of South Africa.

Police are overwhelmed in some cases. Ahead, a live report from Johannesburg on the unrest. We'll be right back.



GORANI: There's been some pretty shocking looting and violence in many parts of South Africa today. It began as protests against the imprisonment

of a former president, but since it's all spiraled completely out of control. CNN's David McKenzie reports from Johannesburg.


MCKENZIE: Here in Johannesburg, there has been scenes of chaos all day. The firefighters are trying to put out a store that was set ablaze in these

protests and looting. Throughout the country, specifically in this province and KwaZulu Natal Province, there has been looting, police have had little

impact on stopping people from doing this. Up ahead, if we can push in, that is mostly private security, some of them with live firearms. We were

at a mall south of the city where it was just total scenes of chaos.


Three or four police trying to hold the line. Already that mall was looted. There is a sense that this protest action, the worst that South Africa has

seen for many years, and this looting is getting totally out of control. They have said the military will be deployed onto the streets.

It started because of President Jacob Zuma, former President being put in president for contempt. But then it seems to have gone beyond that, people

taking advantage of the chaos in this country and looting in many malls and shops, often near poorer areas of KwaZulu Natal and Gauteng. These are the

scenes here. Private security trying to stem the looting, but so far, they are having limited success.


GORANI: Well, David McKenzie joins me now from Johannesburg with more. Why did it get so bad and where was this exactly where you were, where all that

looting was taking place?

MCKENZIE: Well, that was in Johannesburg just behind where I'm sitting now. Just a short time ago, helicopters were circling over the city. So, it

definitely isn't calmed down, there might be some respite overnight. But Hala, across the country, particularly in these two provinces, large-scale


It's because -- and you asked why? Well, it seemed that the police were either caught unaware as this all happened and certainly stretched thin on

the ground. There have been vigilante groups and community groups and private security, as you saw there, banding together in some cases to try

and stop the destruction of property.

Today, there was a court hearing at the constitutional court where former President Zuma's lawyers were trying to argue that he should get out of

jail. But very little coming from Zuma's camp and from his foundation to calm the violence. Very little at all. We expect South Africa's president

to speak momentarily. He'll have to show that he's in charge. Hala?

GORANI: All right, thanks very much for that. David McKenzie live in Johannesburg. Still to come tonight, the French president addresses the

nation as one of Europe's hardest hit countries faces a potential fourth COVID wave. Details on new measures just announced ahead in a live report

from Paris.

And maskless and shouting. Was the Euro final a super-spreader event? And how bad will the COVID case spike get as the U.K. prepares to lift all

restrictions? That's coming up. We'll be right back.



GORANI: The French President, Emmanuel Macron, just addressed the nation. He says his country is in a race against the clock when it comes to the

Delta variant. In an address to his country, Mr. Macron just announced new restrictions to combat the virus, including mandatory vaccination, not for

everybody, but for healthcare workers. CNN's Melissa Bell joins me now live from Paris. Do you think healthcare workers would be jumping at the

opportunity to get vaccinated? Why does the President need to introduce mandatory vaccination for them?

MELISSA BELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, this has been an extremely touchy subject here in France, and it's been debated for some time, it has proven

quite controversial so far, Hala. So it's taken this far in a presidential announcement on live TV to get it passed. This is a country, of course, and

we've been talking about this a lot these last few months together, famous for its vaccine hesitancy, something we see Europe-wide but that was

particularly concerning here in France.

Now what we're seeing, as we're seeing elsewhere, we heard from the British Prime Minister, of course, earlier on announcing that despite the fear of

rising cases in the face of the Delta variant, that the view -- that he would be announcing that reopening the country, the lifting of those step

four restrictions for England from next Monday, and yet encouraging people to go out and get vaccinated. That is what all of the European leaders here

in the E.U. are also facing that wall of vaccination that they need to prevent those variances, specifically that Delta variant, which is proving

so contagious.

We expected to represent 90 percent of cases here in France by the month of August. That's according to the French Health Secretary, how they can get

that wall vaccination up in time to stop having to announce fresh restrictions to deal with new variations. And that was very much at the

heart of his speech.

So that mandatory vaccination of healthcare workers, not just healthcare workers, people also work in care homes, anyone who's in contact with the

fragile. The elderly population in the country will have, Hala, to be vaccinated by September 15th. It was controversial, but he's put it through

adding -- and I think this is probably one of the interesting parts of the speech, that if this situation continued where vaccine hesitancy remained

at high levels in the face of variants that were spreading more quickly, there was also the possibility of the question of mandatory vaccinations

for all coming up. Now that is not yet the case. He starts with healthcare workers, but interesting that that is already a topic of conversation here

in France, Hala.

GORANI: Right. Interesting. And logistically, how would that even work to force people to get vaccinated? Thanks very much. Melissa Bell is live in


Pro-U.K. unionists are marching through the streets of Northern Ireland today for their traditional 12th of July parades.


The annual event marks the anniversary of this 1690 Battle of the Boyne when Protestant -- the Protestant King, William of Orange, defeated a

Catholic King. This year's parades and massive bonfire is lit over the weekend in a similar tradition come amid tensions over post-Brexit trade

disputes. Nic Robertson reports from Belfast.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: A narrow escape, a metaphor for a weekend of pro-British Northern Ireland tradition

historically primed the potential violence. Irish Protestants celebrating a 331-year-old victory over Irish Catholics.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is just what we do, like, it's just the same every year so.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a good family event. It gets a lot of bad press, but as you can see, there's a lot of family, kids here. This is part of our

culture and we'll continue to celebrate it every year.


ROBERTSON: Mostly families having fun, teenagers getting a little drunk. But underlying the festivities, frustrations, they are losers in Northern

Ireland's piece. Compounded by Brexit, a new customs regulations called Protocols, they fear threatened their constitutional ties to the U.K.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Protocol has caused a lot of anger in our community and it's all one side of the peace process, it's all one side of -- and

often enough, there's nothing else to give.


ROBERTSON: Of the 250 bonfires to be lit over the weekend, police say only two or three are contentious. In recent years, tensions around this annual

event have been subsiding. But this year, frustrations, underlying everything, are high. At peaceful parades through Protestant neighborhoods,

all part of the same annual loyalist commemorations, families laying the road bonding in their shared heritage haunted by a common perception. Pro-

Irish Catholics are making games at their expense.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's always issues and I don't know if it's always going to be resolved. Hopefully it can because I would like my kids to grow

up in a nice friendly country, you know what I mean? But in the meantime, you wouldn't want them forgetting their heritage.


ROBERTSON: Brexit and the Protocols are straining Northern Ireland's peace, that the parades and bonfires went off largely without incident this

weekend is significant, but it's not by chance. Behind the scenes, organizers have been working hard to defuse tensions.


MERVYN GIBSON, GRAND SECRETARY OF THE ORANGE ORDER: Here, we decided to do the Protocol after 12th of July. We want our members and supporters to have

a good day.


ROBERTSON: The concern now, until the Protocol issue is resolved, another flashpoint is just around the corner.


WINSTON IRVINE, COMMUNITY WORKER: We saw very serious violence spill on the streets here in April this year. Yes, there's every chance that those type

of scenes could return again.


ROBERTSON: A bullet has quite literally been dodged this weekend. A source told CNN guns were being readied to stop police moving this contentious

bonfire. Local organizers deny the claim, but the worry now, the guns could come out again. Nic Robertson, CNN, Belfast, Northern Ireland.


GORANI: Still to come, Jordan's former Crown Prince Hamzah was initially accused of being part of a plot to destabilize the monarchy yet he was not

among those sentenced today to prison. Why? We'll explain ahead.



GORANI: Well, you all remember the crisis at the palace in Jordan? Well, today, two prison sentences were handed down in connection with an

unprecedented crisis at the Royal Palace earlier this year. A court ordered a former top adviser to King Abdullah and a member of Jordan's royal family

to 15 years behind bars. Let's get details now from Jomana Karadsheh. She's in Istanbul, but Prince Hamzah, who -- there were some allegations that

these two people who were convicted of this crime of sedition, that they had colluded with him. So why is he not being prosecuted?

JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Well, Hala, The King, King Abdullah, made it clear in April that he wanted to deal with Prince Hamzah,

he said, at the time within the framework of the Royal Family. There was Royal Family mediation and following that, we saw this letter released by

the royal court where Prince Hamzah pledged allegiance to the king. We know that the government security services had recommended that Prince Hamzah,

along with others be referred to the State Security court, but the government said that The King had decided to deal with this within the

framework of the royal family.

This is a Royal Family that really does tend to, or had in the past, deal with its differences, its rifts, these kinds of issues behind closed doors.

So this was extremely unusual when it comes to this trial, Hala. This was an expected sentence. Sharif Hassan bin Zaid, a distant cousin of The King,

and Bassem Awadallah -- once one of the most influential officials in Jordan, a former Royal Court Chief of Finance Minister were both found

guilty, as you mentioned, by the State Security courts. They were sentenced to 15 years.

Three months after this drama unfolded in Jordan, we still know very little about this case and this trial, where defense witnesses were not even

allowed to testify in a trial that wrapped up in six sessions.


KARADSHEH (voice-over): Behind the walls of Jordan State Security court, a trial like no other this kingdom has ever seen unfolded over the past three

weeks, some dubbing it Jordan's Trial of the Century. The trial centers on the so called sedition case, a royal and political intrigue that sent

shockwaves across the region and beyond.





KARADSHEH: It all started in April with this.


BIN HUSSEIN: To try to explain what's happened.


KARADSHEH: Jordan's former Crown Prince Hamzah bin Hussein, King Abdullah's half brother, released a dramatic video message telling the world he was

effectively under house arrest.


BIN HUSSEIN: And now being cut off.


KARADSHEH: And lashed out at the country's leadership.


BIN HUSSEIN: I am not the person responsible for the breakdown in governance, for the corruption, and for the incompetence that has been

prevalent in our governing structure for the last 15 to 20 years, and has been getting worse by the year. I am not responsible for the lack of faith

that people have in their institutions.


KARADSHEH: More than a dozen people, including a former Royal Court Chief and Finance Minister, Bassem Awadallah, once a close confidant of King

Abdullah were rounded up. In a letter to his nation, King Abdullah described the crisis as the most painful he's ever faced, telling them

"This tradition has been nipped in the bud. Sedition came from within and from outside our home, and nothing compares to my shock, pain, and anger as

a brother, and as the head of the Hashemite family."

The government accused Prince Hamzah of conspiring with foreign entities to destabilize the country, a claim the prince denied.


Jordanians have been told very little about this alleged plot left to speculate amid rumors and leaks. Following Royal Family mediation, Prince

Hamzah pledged allegiance to the king in April and was spared prosecution. And most of those detained were released by The King, leaving Awadallah and

a junior royal to face trial. Like the case, this closed trial has been shrouded in mystery. They're accused of conspiring with the former Crown

Prince to exploit rising economic and social discontent in the country to present Prince Hamzah as an alternative to The King.

Many have questioned the fairness of a speedy trial where the man at the heart of the case has been absent. And the judge rejected the defense's

request for witnesses.


KARADSHEH (on camera): You know, how not many people have been following this case. Not many people were sitting and waiting for this verdict today.

And probably a big part of it was the fact that it was taking place behind closed doors, all the secrecy around it. You know, I asked some Jordanians

today what they thought of that and, you know, one person telling me that they really were not following this, what they care about the most is

surviving, it's about paying their bills, the economic situation in the country.

You know, and no matter how Jordanians felt about this case, about this trial, that really divided public opinion in that country, there seems to

be a lot of people happy to see Bassem Awadallah in that blue jumpsuit behind bars. Right now, he is one of the most controversial officials in

the history of that country, really unpopular economic policies that many blame to have impacted the lives of many during the time when he was a

senior official in Jordan, Hala.

GORANI: All right. Thanks very much, Jomana Karadsheh. Back to COVID now, the U.K. is seeing a rise, a big, big rise in cases. But the British Prime

Minister, Boris Johnson, says England will move forward with lifting most remaining restrictions beginning next week, despite the fact that we saw a

doubling in case -- of cases in 11 days. Starting Monday, July 19th, face masks will no longer be legally required and social distancing measures

will be scrapped. But the Prime Minister said the single-most crucial thing anyone can do is to get vaccinated and he warned there will be more deaths.

Listen to Johnson.


BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: It is absolutely vital that we proceed now with caution. And I cannot say this powerfully or emphatically

enough. This pandemic is not over. This disease, Coronavirus, continues to carry risks for you and your family.


GORANI: Let's talk more about this. Ravi Gupta is a Professor of Clinical Microbiology at the University of Cambridge, Department of Medicine. And he

joins me now live. Thanks for being with us. Scientists have sounded the alarm over the last several weeks that loosening restrictions on July 19th

was reckless, some of them have told me. Do you agree? Why or why not?

RAVI GUPTA, PROFESSOR OF CLINICAL MICROBIOLOGY, UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE: Yes, I think that my personal opinion has to be that this is a reckless,

ill-thought out approach, mainly because it's a mixed message saying that we're going to lift all restrictions, but we're going to leave it to

individuals to make their own decisions, which it's inconsistent. And we know that once people are going, you know, once this -- once the

restrictions are lifted, you know, people will forget about the fact that there is a pandemic.

GORANI: Right. The technical lead at the World Health Organization put out a tweet yesterday about the big crowds, unmasked crowds, gathering for Euro

2020 matches. She tweeted, "Am I supposed to be enjoying watching transmission happening in front of my eyes? The COVID-19 pandemic is not

taking a break tonight. SARS, Delta variant will take advantage of unvaccinated people in crowded settings, unmasked, screaming, shouting,

singing. Devastating." I mean, now we're seeing about, what, 55,000 cases a day in the U.K. The prediction is we'll hit a hundred thousand cases a day.

When you look into the future, what do you see what? What scenario do you see unfolding?

GUPTA: Well, I mean, I do agree with the sentiment expressed there because on the one hand, people have been enduring, you know, continuing

restrictions and on the other hand, if you're at a sporting event, you can stand next to somebody for a few hours, shouting and screaming and yet that

seems to be permissible. So, yes, the football matches and the tennis matches have probably led to significant super spreading events, I would

not be surprised.


And those will feed into the communities and they will fuel large numbers of infections in those who are non-vaccinated, but also those who are

vaccinated because we know that the Delta variant can escape vaccination. Many of those people won't get very sick, but they will transmit to others

most likely. And so what I can see unfolding is particularly vulnerable people in the community who have underlying health conditions, who have

responded poorly to the vaccination will end up in the hospital, many of them will die. And that's the situation that we're going to be facing in

the next few months.

GORANI: So Israel and the U.K. are two good cases to analyze because they're very vaccinated countries. The health ministry in Israel said that

one-third of new infections in Israel are vaccinated people, as in fully vaccinated people. I mean, I was shocked when I saw that, I thought it

would be a much smaller percentage. What does that tell us about the vaccine?

GUPTA: Well, it -- the vaccine is there to protect you against severe illness and death. And the vaccine is still doing that in the majority of

people who can mount a good response after the vaccine. So the vaccines are doing their job fantastically well. They will not last forever, and we have

been calling for new vaccines to be in the pipeline that can deal with the Delta variants and the mutations that will arise on top of this. But, yes,

the virus is able to avoid some aspects of the vaccine and therefore infect people and transmit so it is not surprising to see what we have been

observing in Israel --

GORANI: It doesn't surprise you? Sorry. The 33 percent infection among vaccinated people doesn't surprise you?

GUPTA: No, because work from my own lab, preprinted and others published already, has shown that the Delta variant has -- is about eight times less

susceptible to the antibodies made by vaccination. So getting infected is eight times more likely -- getting infected, you know, is much more likely

with the Delta variant as compared to the virus to which the vaccines were designed against. So, that's why I'm not surprised.

GORANI: Well, that's depressing. Professor Ravi Gupta, thanks very much for joining us. We really appreciate your time and your expertise.

GUPTA: Thank you.

GORANI: Australia's government has released a graphic COVID advertisement warning people to protect themselves against the virus, but the ad has

sparked outrage across the country. CNN's Angus Watson has the story but a warning, some of the images are disturbing.

ANGUS WATSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A graphic advertisement meant to scare Australians into protecting themselves against COVID-19 has angered many in

this country who feel that the government has not done enough to help them get vaccinated. The 32nd advertisement shows a young woman in ICU gasping

for breath, presumably with COVID-19. She glances around for help, but there appears to be no one there to assist her. The advertisement ends with

an encouragement to get vaccinated.

Part of the reason this advertisement has caught so much controversy is because as its first airing, Australians under the age of 40 haven't been

widely eligible to get a COVID-19 vaccine. That's despite young people in ICUs right now in Australia's largest city, Sydney, as the city battles an

outbreak of the Delta variant.

Australia has administered just around nine million doses of COVID-19 vaccines for its 25 million strong population, that's one of the lowest

rates in the OECD. Critics of the government say they did not procure enough Pfizer vaccines, instead relying on domestically-produced doses of

the AstraZeneca vaccine. But as this advertisement is airing, Australians under the age of 16 have been told not to get that AstraZeneca vaccine

because of the very rare chance of blood clots associated with it. Instead, they've been told to wait for Pfizer, this all as the Delta variant moves

through Sydney, Australia's largest city on lockdown until at least July 16.

But speaking Monday, Premier of New South Wales, Gladys Berejiklian, said it's very unlikely that that lockdown will be able to lift this Friday.

Angus Watson, CNN, Sydney, Australia.

GORANI: Stay with us. We'll be right back.



GORANI: Well, the trophy everyone wanted his back in Rome, Italy is celebrating a European championship win after defeating England. We talked

about the negative fallout of this game earlier. But there was also joy, a lot of it.

That was one watch party in Rome just after England missed their third penalty kick handing Italy the win. Today's atmosphere in Rome was a bit

more subdued perhaps because of all the late night partying. At a ceremony honoring the all-star team, Italy's manager, Roberto Mancini, said their

victory shows that when you believe in yourself, "An unreachable dream becomes reality." All right. Thanks for watching tonight. Stay with CNN. I

will be with you next for QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.