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Hala Gorani Tonight
Polish Guards, Migrants Clash At Border; Germany Suspends Certification Of Nord Stream 2 Pipeline; Biden And Xi Hold Critical Talks Amid Rising Tensions; Chinese COVID-19 Workers Kill Quarantined Woman's Dog; France In State Of Alert As COVID-19 Cases Soar; Rittenhouse Jury Deliberates; Lekki Toll Gate Probe; Racism In Cricket. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired November 16, 2021 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Hello, everyone, live from CNN in London, I'm HALA GORANI TONIGHT. Tensions flare at the Polish border. Tear
gas and water cannon are used to try and prevent migrants from crossing into Poland from Belarus. We have the very latest. President Xi warns
President Biden that the U.S. is, quote, "playing with fire" over commitments made to protect Taiwan.
And that most quintessential of English sports, cricket, is mired in a racism scandal. We bring you the latest from an extraordinary day of
testimony in the U.K. parliament. And we start with that standoff at the Polish and Belarusian border which has escalated into full-blown
confrontation as the migrants' patience wore thin after days of camping in the freezing cold. Polish authorities sprayed the migrants with water
cannon and tear gas after they threw rocks at them.
Seven Polish police officers were injured, it's not clear at this stage if any migrants were hurt. Poland has accused Belarus of equipping the
migrants with stun grenades. Belarus says it's investigating the clashes. And later, the Belarusian border agency told CNN some refugees were now
being moved to a processing center around a kilometer and a half from the border with Poland. Officials say people can decide if they want to be
taken to be processed, given shelter and medical attention. They also told CNN a decision will be made on whether or not to deport them.
Our senior international correspondent Matthew Chance was there on the Belarusian side of the border when the clashes began.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): It's still very tense. The children and the women that were here last night when
it was a very peaceful scenario, with them sort of confronting, facing off against those border guards, has completely changed. The women and children
have been moved back. The men have been brought forward and they are angry. They are throwing stones, and you can see the Poles responding with water -
- with water cannon, covering us in water.
Sometimes that water is quite acrid, it has some sort of pepper component in it, and so it sort of stinging your eyes a little bit and making you
choke. But it's been successful, in the sense that it's pushed people back from those barricades which have been wrecked by the migrants over the past
couple of -- over the past couple of hours as this violence continues. You can see one of them here, a few people by me here. They're smashing rocks
on the ground to get smaller pieces.
And then they're using those rocks to throw at the Polish lines. The European Union, the west, the United States, accuses Belarus of
manufacturing this crisis to put pressure on the European Union, accuse them of driving these migrants towards the border on the false hope that
they were going to get access to the European Union, access to Poland. Many of them are from Iraqi-Kurdistan and they want to go to the European Union,
but that's clearly not happening at the moment.
The Poles have been absolutely determined and saying they're not letting these migrants through, and the Belarusians are also not backing down. And
so what we've got is a situation where there's thousands of migrants, very frustrated, living in awful conditions in these camps that have very little
in terms of facilities, the weather is getting increasingly sort of freezing. They're frustrated. They're angry, and you know, they want their
situation to be resolved.
GORANI: Matthew Chance there on the Belarusian side. Let's go to Fred Pleitgen who joins us now live on the Polish side of that same border.
What's the situation where you are now?
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Hala, as that was going on, as Matthew was reporting out there, there was really a
lot of commotion here on the Polish side of the border as well. We could see a lot of vehicles from the Polish military, also from the Polish police
coming through as well. And one of the things that we saw today that we hadn't seen so much in the past couple of days is actually those ambulances
that were coming through also, because, of course, as you've noted, seven Polish police officers were injured in those clashes that took place.
And from the information that we're getting, is at least two were actually seriously injured and needed some serious treatment. So certainly the Poles
came out earlier today and they said this was a really rough day for them. In fact, Poland's Interior Minister, that he congratulated, as he put it,
the police officers that, as he said, stood their ground there and called this another stage of the hybrid warfare, of course, that Poland is
accusing Belarus of waging against its country.
But, certainly, the Poles really making very clear that they're not going to back down in this situation. In fact, you could see that they were
bringing more reinforcements into that border area today, obviously saying that they are not going to be opening their border up. And they're also
getting some backing from the European Union as well. The German foreign minister late last night, he came out and he said that those migrants will
not be taken in by Germany.
He said the only resolution to all this could be that those people will be returned to their home countries, as he said. So it seems as though right
now, there is a bit of a de-escalation of that situation as at least some of those people who of course were really living under dire conditions
there out in the open seem to now be in a warehouse near that border check- point which is not very far from where I'm standing right now.
But of course, in the long term, a real solution needs to be found for those people and that seems to be something that right now the EU believes
is very much in the court of Belarusian strong man, Alexander Lukashenko, Hala.
GORANI: And is there popular support in Poland for this reaction to these couple thousand migrants?
PLEITGEN: You know, by and large, it certainly seems as though the decision to close the border and the decision to not cave in, if you will, or as the
Poles put it, to what they called the blackmail of Alexander Lukashenko, that does seem to enjoy a lot of popular support. One of the things that we
always have to point out when we speak about generally the situation here in Poland, this is, of course, a country that is extremely politically
And you could see that before this big standoff was going on, before that camp had sprung up, that there was a lot of support also within this area,
by the way, support for the migrants that were coming through. There were a lot of people who were helping them. There are still a lot of NGOs who are
helping them as well. And there were a lot who were actually quite critical also of the Polish government not taking more people in and also some of
those push-backs, of course, that allegedly were happening as well.
It seems as though, as the situation escalated, that there was more support and there is more support for the Polish government to keep the border
shut, and especially, of course, you have that element not just of Alexander Lukashenko, but of course, of Poland also blaming the Russians
and Vladimir Putin of being involved in all of this as well --
GORANI: Yes --
PLEITGEN: Of course, one of the things also about Poland is this is of course, a country, we always have to point out, that was invaded by
neighboring countries and its borders really disrespected by neighboring countries so many times that the Polish border certainly is something that
Poles do take very seriously, Hala.
GORANI: All right, and we're going to talk about the role potentially that Russia is playing in all of this with my next guest. Thanks very much, Fred
Pleitgen live on the Polish side of the Belarusian-Poland border. Radoslaw Sikorski is a member of the European Parliament and a senior fellow at
Harvard, he's also a former foreign and defense minister and joins us from London. Thanks, sir, for being with us. So --
RADOSLAW SIKORSKI, EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT MEMBER, POLAND: My pleasure --
GORANI: What do you think the end game is here for Lukashenko? What is the strategy exactly?
SIKORSKI: Well, if the EU cannot prevail in this one, then it's not much good. Lukashenko is trying to repeat what President Erdogan of Turkey did,
except that Turkey really had millions of Syrian refugees, and it really was a huge drain on Turkey's resources, and that EU agreed to pay some of
that cost. Mr. Lukashenko has imported his migrants on purpose.
He abolished visa requirements and encouraged those people to come. Imagine if the Mexican border guards were pushing migrants from all over Central
America across the U.S. border and you have an equivalent of what's going on.
GORANI: Yes, and Vladimir Putin in all of this, a lot has been said about the potential role of Russia, of how Vladimir Putin may be supporting
Lukashenko, even though the two men don't necessarily have a good personal relationship, in order perhaps to distract from some of his longer-term
plans in countries like Ukraine and elsewhere. Do you think that, that analysis is the right one?
SIKORSKI: It's partly the case. Remember, Lukashenko stole a presidential election, he is an imposter, internationally isolated and under sanctions.
So the fact that he is receiving calls from Chancellor Merkel is already a success for him, and Russia would like the EU to pay him tribute
essentially so as to lower the cost of its domination over Belarus. President Putin is in the process of swallowing up Belarus. As you say, he
may also be trying to create a decoy for the concentration of Russian troops around Ukraine.
GORANI: And so where does this crisis go from here? Because, of course, we can't forget that we're talking about very vulnerable, the most vulnerable
probably category of people, refugees fleeing in some cases war zones, small children, women, all spending nights in freezing, dank, damp, muddy
forests on the doorstep of the EU.
Where do we go from here?
SIKORSKI: OK, the ethics of it are horrible. I'm a former refugee myself, not in those conditions, obviously, but those people are victims of the
Lukashenko strategy and of those people smugglers to whom they paid thousands of dollars on the promise of being able to get into the EU. But
you know, the -- in the EU, we have the so-called Schengen zone of free travel. Once you --
GORANI: Yes --
SIKORSKI: Cross the border, you can go anywhere in the EU. For that system to exist, the perimeter has to be controlled. You know, you need visas to
cross into countries.
SIKORSKI: The Polish government took some time to ask -- to agree to be helped by the European Union, but this is working now. So Iraq has closed
down Belarusian consulates and airlines all over the Middle East have been warned that if they continue to ship those migrants to the east, European
skies will be closed to them. So the supply --
GORANI: Yes --
SIKORSKI: Of migrants is drying up, and they're getting through, but in small numbers. And I think eventually, Lukashenko will have to conclude
that it's a bigger problem for him than for the European Union.
GORANI: As you mentioned, if it's the Erdogan strategy he's trying, Erdogan in 2015 used millions of migrants that came into Europe and we remember
those scenes. This is just a couple of thousand. What about the United States here? I know you often talk with counterparts in the United States,
sir, earlier this year that you spoke to the House Foreign Relations Committee members and various senators, et cetera. Where is the Biden
administration, do you think, on this particular crisis?
SIKORSKI: Well, we wouldn't expect U.S. help any more than the U.S. needs us on its southern border. But the U.S. and NATO and Poland is grateful for
the supporting -- supportive words from the White House, from Tony Blinken. You know, it's -- the U.S. stands in reserve in case someone made a mistake
and this became a hotter confrontation, God forbid --
GORANI: Yes, all right, well, Radoslaw Sikorski, thank you so much for joining us, really appreciate --
SIKORSKI: Glad --
GORANI: Having you on the program this evening. Well, there are fears that the tensions at this Polish-Belarusian border could destabilize a wider
area. On Monday, the EU announced a new round of sanctions against Belarus. Minsk is backed by Moscow, as we've been discussing there, which controls
40 percent of EU's natural gas imports. Earlier today, Germany paused certifying a controversial gas pipeline known as Nord Stream 2, sending
already high natural gas prices soaring.
The pipeline links Russia with Germany while bypassing Ukraine, which has recently seen a build-up of Russian forces near its border. So, there's a
lot to discuss here with our international diplomatic editor Nic Robertson. So, the suspension of Nord Stream 2, the pipeline, what should we make of
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: It's sort of a broad agreement across Europe that at the moment Russia is in a phase of
manipulation and it's not quite clear where that's going, either through proxy Lukashenko or indirectly exploiting that situation potentially. Or,
you know, directly by building up troops on the border of Ukraine, using material, heavy equipment that they left behind the year before when they
withdrew the year before.
And in this sort of uncertain circumstance, Germany's read on whether or not Nord Stream 2 can be allowed to operate, and it's a technical legal
ruling that has provided this position, certainly comes at a moment of sort of diplomatic drama with Russia, for want of a better expression. Europe is
short on gas supplies. Russia would like to -- would like to provide gas through Nord Stream 2, would like to see that go ahead.
But you know, we've heard from the British prime minister just yesterday, calling on the Europeans to stand firm on Nord Stream 2, to stand up for
Ukraine on this issue. So at the moment, I think you're seeing a unified position.
GORANI: Right. But really there is so much at play here. There is the sphere of influence of Vladimir Putin, there is energy supply. There is the
fact, also, that Germany relies heavily on Russian gas, and this is something that complicates its own foreign policy with regards to Vladimir
ROBERTSON: And, indeed, the U.K., you know, relies on Russian gas as well. And when the U.K. has been short of gas in recent years, despite what Boris
Johnson said last night, you know, Russia has been the provider, you know, to get Britain out of that shortage in the past.
So gas coming from Russia doesn't have to come down Nord Stream 2. It comes down the old Nord Stream pipelines as well. The -- by using Nord Stream 2,
you bypass Ukraine. Ukraine misses out on money for the passage of the gas through their territory, and this money is important to Ukraine.
And the absence of that money, which is what Putin is pushing for, weakens Ukraine. It's interesting today that the British defense secretary is in --
has been in Ukraine and met with Ukraine's president to discuss the security situation there, and also hear the Ukrainian president again say
it's important for Ukraine to be admitted into NATO.
GORANI: All right, Nic Robertson, thanks very much. Still to come tonight, the leaders of the United States and China promise competition and not
conflict at their first virtual summit, but there are tensions. Taiwan, for instance, will that dampen that relationship? We'll bring you that story
next. Plus, police in Uganda say threats are still active after two deadly suicide attacks in the nation's capital.
GORANI: It was the first summit, virtual summit between the leaders of the world's largest economies, and it's being described as a healthy debate.
The U.S. and Chinese presidents have known each other from their time as vice presidents, and Joe Biden says he spent more time with Xi Jinping than
any other world leader. But the tensions over Taiwan and other issues are straining that relationship.
National security adviser Jake Sullivan spoke after the meeting, and he said the two leaders will try to intensify their engagement on Taiwan.
David Culver has more on the high-profile and also high-stakes summit.
DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A pandemic-style face-to-face meeting.
XI JINPING, PRESIDENT, CHINA: (SPEAKING IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE)
CULVER: The first time President Joe Biden, speaking virtually with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The conversation lasting more than three hours,
covering a range of issues that have brought relations between these two countries to an all-time low. A senior U.S. administration official calling
the talks respectful, straightforward and open, a healthy debate in which Biden was clear and candid on a range of human rights concerns.
In response, Xi telling Biden that China is ready to have dialogues on human rights on the basis of mutual respect, but we oppose using human
rights to meddle in other country's internal affairs. On trade, Biden also pressing Xi to uphold China's commitments to the phase one trade deal
negotiated under former President Trump. They also talked Taiwan, China's so-called red line. China has been putting military pressure on the self-
ruling democracy, firm and believing it should be reunified under Beijing control.
Xi stressing that on Taiwan, the U.S. is playing with fire. Following the media, Chinese state media immediately reporting their version, tweeting,
"Biden reiterates that the U.S. government does not support Taiwan's independence, but the White House had a different take. In a statement,
stressing, "the United States strongly opposes unilateral efforts to change the status quo or undermine peace and stability across the Taiwan strait.
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: To ensure that the competition between our countries does not veer into conflict.
JINPING (through translator): China and the United States need to increase communication and cooperation.
CULVER: The meeting, as expected, yielding no major outcomes.
PAUL HAENLE, FORMER WHITE HOUSE NSC CHINA DIRECTOR: The sort of the long- term structural challenges between the U.S. and China have really yet to be addressed. This could be the start of a process for that to happen.
CULVER: Perhaps the warm gestures a sign of progress in countering the frigid relations. David Culver, CNN, Beijing.
GORANI: And to Africa now. An Islamist rebel group is being blamed for two suicide bombings in Uganda's capital, Kampala. Police say at least three
people were killed. The first explosion happened near the central police station and a second blast went off just a few minutes later near
parliament. CNN's Larry Madowo joins us now with more on that story. Larry?
LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hala, today's attacks in the heart of Kampala speak to the growing threat of terrorism in Uganda which
traditionally has been very proud of being one of the safest countries in the East African region. It forced the Ugandan parliament to cancel
sittings today, and Ugandan police released harrowing video of the moments after that attack.
And in one of them at least at central police station, it shows a motorcycle used for public transport, they're called border-borders in the
region, and this man appears to drive off just moments before the suicide bomber detonates, and that's action of driving away just moments appears to
save his life. However, police are warning Ugandans to stay vigilant because there could be more.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FRED ENANGA, SPOKESPERSON, KAMPALA POLICE: The bomb threats are still active, especially from suicide attackers. We believe there are still more
members of these domestic terror cells, especially the suicide bomb squad that has been created by the ADF. And this calls for the public vigilance
of the community.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADOWO: Hala, the ADF that the police spokesman in Uganda there was referring to is the Allied Democratic Forces, this is an Islamic State's
affiliate that operates in parts of Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. And that's why there's this call for vigilance. But police are very
proud of the fact that they say they pursued a fourth suicide bomber from today's attack.
They arrested him, and when they searched his home, they say they recovered two other bombs that they detonated safely, and that speaks to what they
say they have neutralized a lot of other would have been similar incidents.
But these attacks came 22 days after two other attacks in Kampala, one on a bus, one at a bar that killed two people as well that were blamed also on
the Allied Democratic Forces. So still, a major concern in the Ugandan capital, Hala.
GORANI: All right, thanks Larry. The American journalist Danny Fenster is back in the U.S. after spending almost six months in a prison in Myanmar.
Fenster's family greeted him with big hugs when he landed in New York just a short time ago, hugs of relief.
He was released Monday after Myanmar's military government negotiated with former U.S. diplomat Bill Richardson. Myanmar convicted Fenster of visa
breaches and spreading false information as he covered a military coup in the country earlier this year, convicted him and sentenced him to 11 years
So imagine just how happy his folks are there. Fenster says that despite the isolation of prison, he knew that his family was working to get him
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DANNY FENSTER, JOURNALIST: I was able to get little hints of what was going on occasionally throughout the experience. If I was outside of the prison
in court, maybe some police aide that could speak a little bit of English would flash a picture on his phone of my entire family wearing T-shirts
with my face on it on CNN, which was a pretty bizarre thing to see sitting in a courtroom there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Well, Fenster says he was not physically mistreated while he was in prison. Still to come, in Europe, the pandemic of the unvaccinated is
leading to new restrictions, but not for everybody. Plus, a shocking story out of China. the way some coronavirus prevention officers have treated
animals is sparking horror and outrage. We'll bring you that story as well.
GORANI: Welcome back. We'll have an update for you on what's happening in Europe with regards to COVID. But first, I want to talk to you about
China's quarantine rules. As you know, they're strict, but this next story goes beyond any reasonable public health measure. Chinese coronavirus
prevention workers are entering people's homes and killing pets while their owners are in quarantine in other places. A warning, this report has video
that is disturbing and upsetting. Here is Will Ripley.
WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Even in China with some of the world's harshest pandemic protocols, what you're about to
see crossed a line. Security footage from southeast China Friday sparking outrage on Chinese social media, shared by a devastated dog owner. Some
viewers may want to look away. COVID prevention workers forced their way into a locked apartment, one with a plastic bag, the other a crowbar.
"Did the leader say we need to settle it right on the spot? One says.
"Yes," the other replies before taking a swing at the head of a small quirky cowering behind a table. The dog whimpers, runs to another room and
the workers off camera finish the job.
ASHLEY FRUNO, DIRECTOR OF ANIMAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS, PETA: Absolutely heartbreaking, shocking and totally brutal.
RIPLEY: And in your view completely unnecessary.
FRUNO: There is no justifiable reason why this should ever be done to a companion animal.
RIPLEY: The dog owner in quarantine. No pets allowed. A handful of people in her building tested positive for COVID. She tested negative. Her dog was
never tested. Some Chinese cities like Shanghai allow people to quarantine with their pets.
In many places, pet owners are forced to leave their animals behind. A local government statement confirms the Corgi was killed as part of a need
to thoroughly disinfect homes in the area. The workers safely disposed of the dog, the statement says.
They apologized for failing to fully communicate with the owner. Both no longer on the job. CNN reached out to the dog owner and authorities, so far
no response. Other pets have died in China's zero COVID crackdown including these cats in September, killed without their owner's consent. She was in
the hospital with the virus.
FRUNO: There's no scientific evidence that dogs and cats can spread COVID to humans. There is a risk if an infected person were to touch or handle a
cat or a dog but that would be exactly the same risk as if you were touching a doorknob after an infected person.
RIPLEY: Less than three months before the Winter Olympics in Beijing, China accused of extreme measures to fight a fresh outbreak. Millions of people
under mandatory lockdowns. Just over 1,300 reported cases nationwide.
Chinese authorities under tremendous pressure to eliminate the virus. Some call this a heartbreaking example of unchecked government power in the name
of public health -- Will Ripley, CNN, Taipei.
GORANI: That is just awful, absolutely awful.
European leaders are using targeted measures to encourage more people to get vaccinated against COVID. Germany may be the next country to put
stricter rules on people who haven't gotten their shots.
A proposal from the prospective new government would require Germans to provide vaccine proof or a negative test to ride public transit. We're
already seeing an unvaccinated lockdown in Berlin. People can't enter bars, restaurants and entertainment venues without proof of vaccination.
The U.K. is trying to focus on boosters. Prime minister Boris Johnson says the government may soon have to change what it considers, quote, "full
vaccination" from two shots to two and a booster.
Soon France will require boosters of seniors, who want to renew their so- called green pass. Right now, the country is in a state of alert after a sharp rise in cases, though officials say there's no lockdown planned yet.
Melissa Bell is in Paris for us.
Melissa, France has a relatively high percentage of fully vaccinated people, compared to Germany, for instance. COVID health passes have been in
effect for a while now and yet we are seeing this big uptick.
Why is that?
MELISSA BELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Exactly, Hala. I think that's is what is so worrying to authorities. As you mentioned a moment ago, some German
regions now introducing the COVID passes. Essentially you need them to show them to get into cafes, restaurants, bars and so on that you have been
vaccinated or PCR negative.
That's been the case in France for several months. Despite these fairly stringent measures here in France, essentially if you want to go about your
daily life and do anything here in France, you have to have been vaccinated.
Despite, as you say, that vaccination rate nearly 75 percent of the population, still those figures worryingly high.
We've been hearing from the French government spokesman, who said, over the course of the last week there's been a 50 percent rise in contaminations.
That gives you an idea of just how contagious this Delta variant is, just how fast it is spreading, despite all of the measures that are already in
He's also ruled out, Hala, any further lockdown. But we've heard tonight there are two regions of France that are bringing back mandatory masks in
outdoor spaces. It gives you an idea just how worried they are.
Elsewhere, of course, as you said, the targeted measures -- since it is a Europe-wide phenomenon -- the World Health Organization has been warning,
for the last couple of weeks, Europe is once again the epicenter of the pandemic.
The Netherlands, Austria, Germany, all bringing in targeted measures; in Austria, particularly harsh, there's 2 million people who haven't been
vaccinated, not simply not allowed to get into cafes, essentially made to stay at home, Hala.
GORANI: It is interesting. I was in Paris a couple of weeks ago. I had to show my health pass in restaurants and cafes. Pretty much everyone in the
Metro was masked.
GORANI: Unlike London, where, I would say on some days, 70 percent, 80 percent are unmasked, which I still do not understand.
But then, therefore, I'm having a hard time understanding why the uptick.
Is it among mainly unvaccinated people in France we are seeing more cases?
BELL: Absolutely, Hala. The incidence rates among the unvaccinated is much higher than it is amongst the vaccinated.
But listening to the Austrian chancellor over the last few days, announcing the new lockdown that came into effect on Monday, he explained, look, the
vector, the rise across the population, what is driving that rise is the unvaccinated population.
So of course, in some European countries it is larger than in others. But the fact that it is there is preventing these countries from moving on from
this pandemic altogether. Hence this push to get more and more people vaccinated.
But of course, at the very same time, Hala, as you target those populations, as you really try to drive down on them and force them to get
vaccinated or encourage them in some places, you are also going to meet greater and greater resistance.
We have seen it in Holland over the course of the last few days, protests over the fresh measures and masks and et cetera.
We have seen protests also in Athens by health care workers, even as governments try to convince those recalcitrant parts of the population,
those last 15 percent, 20 percent, 25 percent, 30 percent of the population that resisted vaccination so far, the more they try to target them, the
more difficult it is going to become.
GORANI: All right. Just as we are talking about boosters, we are still trying to convince, authorities are, the recalcitrant portion you mentioned
there, 15 percent, 20 percent, 25 percent, whatever it is, country by country, Melissa Bell, thanks very much, live in Paris.
Still to come tonight, a jury in Wisconsin deliberates in a controversial murder case. The latest from Kenosha in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse.
That's coming up next. We are live.
Plus, a bombshell report on last year's Lekki toll gate shooting in Nigeria. It sheds new light on what happened during the chaos and confirms
a CNN report from a few months ago. We will be right back.
GORANI: As we speak, the fate of Kyle Rittenhouse is in the hands of a jury in Wisconsin. The high-profile murder trial has courted public uproar from
the moment the shootings happened last August.
GORANI: Rittenhouse, who is now 18 years old, is accused of killing two white men during Black Lives Matter protests over the police shooting of a
Black man in Kenosha, Jacob Blake. Shimon Prokupecz is outside the courthouse awaiting this verdict.
Any indication on timing?
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE PRODUCER: No; no indication on timing. The court not indicating how long they're even going to allow the
jury to deliberate today.
We did get one note already from the jury; they were asking about -- they wanted to see the instructions that the judge gave them on the law
yesterday. And then they wanted -- specifically they were asking for pages 1 through 6 on the instructions. Some of that has to deal with the self-
defense law and also provocation instructions.
They also were asking for instructions on the focus of intent to kill. They wanted that instruction and that law and to read that as part of that.
They also asked questions about charges. They want the law and the instructions on the charges as they relate to Joseph Rosenbaum. He's sort
of the victim here, the person who was shot, that kind of set off the chain of events. He was the first person shot by Kyle Rittenhouse.
Of course, the defense has argued that Kyle Rittenhouse had to shoot Joseph Rosenbaum because Rosenbaum attacked Rittenhouse. But prosecutors have
argued, well, it is because Kyle brought this gun and, therefore, he provoked this attack.
So the jury now has been deliberating about four hours. They got a 40- minute break for lunch. They had some pizza. As far as we know right now, they're back to work and we haven't heard from them since early this
GORANI: And they can consider, you know, charges that can go down in severity, right?
I mean they don't have -- it is not a yes or no on the most serious charge here?
PROKUPECZ: Right, right. So there are -- the verdict sheet is 14 pages. There are a total of seven charges that they are considering. If it is five
counts, seven charges because the judge added two lesser included charges. So they're considering all of that.
The most severe is a first-degree murder charge, which Rittenhouse would face life imprisonment for, a mandatory life. The others carry various
sentences, not life sentences.
But yes, they can go in any order they want. They can look at this anyway they want. But they have to go through 14 pages of this verdict sheet
before they can announce a verdict here.
GORANI: Yes. But thank you very much, Shimon Prokupecz, live in Kenosha. Appreciate it. We will be talking again very soon, I'm sure.
A Nigerian judicial panel investigating the killing of unarmed protesters at the Lekki toll gate has finally released its own report. It calls the
shootings last year a massacre at the hands of the military, one that authorities tried to cover up at the time.
The incident has prompted protests and arrests of people demanding justice. In October 2020, Nigerian forces opened fire on peaceful protesters at the
Lekki toll gate in Lagos.
Afterwards, a CNN investigation found that the Nigerian army had fired live rounds into that crowd, killing and wounding several people. The government
has repeatedly denied that a shooting even took place.
The report took more than a year to produce and mentions CNN's reporting 37 times. So I want to show you just a bit of that incredible investigation by
my colleagues, Stephanie Busari, Nima Elbagir, Gianluca Mezzofiore, Katie Polglase, Barbara Arvanitidis, Muhammad Darwish and Oscar Featherstone, the
whole team that worked on it.
And a warning that you may find some of what you are about to see disturbing.
NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): People gathered at Lekki toll gate protesting against what they called systemic
police brutality and corruption.
What they don't know is that the army is already on its way.
This is Bonny Camp, a military garrison on the south side of Lagos. We know through analyzing footage they left at 6:29 pm, heading towards Lekki toll
We can see here the Nigerian government forces approaching. The protesters are gathered on the other side of the gate. As Nigerian forces get closer,
you can see shots. At 6:43 pm, we start hearing gunfire. We know this from the timestamp and data on this video.
Here's another angle.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're releasing fire. They're releasing fire.
ELBAGIR (voice-over): Nigerian authorities say they fired blanks into the air and not at protesters. But CNN obtained video that appears to show the
army shooting toward the crowd, here and at the top of your screen here.
ELBAGIR (voice-over): In the midst of the chaotic scenes is DJ Switch. A Nigerian celebrity and activist, she is broadcasting live on Instagram.
DJ SWITCH, CELEBRITY AND ACTIVIST: And I wanted people to see what was happening. I didn't want anybody to come and twist the story.
ELBAGIR (voice-over): Witnesses tell CNN ambulances were stopped from entering by Nigerian authorities. You can see here people at the scene,
trying to conduct CPR.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Well, our senior international correspondent Nima Elbagir joins me now live.
And interesting that it took a year but your report, yours along with your teammates' report, mentioned so many times in this official report here.
Does this bring some sort of -- not closure but just a sense of vindication at least, from those who suffered from this, what is now being called a
ELBAGIR: Well, those we've spoken to -- and what's been interesting is that actually a lot of the families of victims and the survivors, they weren't
given an opportunity to see this report before it became public.
But those we have reached out to say that, while there is a sense that at least they feel heard, they say, but they don't feel there has been justice
because, for justice to happen, one survivor told us, there needs to be accountability.
And that's what is unclear. This panel was put in place by the Lagos state government and it had the judicial powers to call in military and other
actors. But what it can only do is put forward recommendations.
So while it verified or corroborated our reporting, even though the Nigerian government accused us of being fake news and threatened to sue
CNN, what they can't do is force recommendations on the government, such as compensation for the victims and their families, a memorialization, as they
termed it, of the incidents at Lekki toll gate, the sanctioning of the police and military officers involved in this incident.
But possibly most importantly for those protesters and survivors, police reform and a human rights commission to oversee reports of violations.
But given this is the same government that was involved in a cover-up -- that's what this panel has found -- for over a year, there is a real worry
that it is the same criminal, as one survivor put it, who is being entrusted with trying to find restitution for the victims.
GORANI: Yes. So what options do they have then?
I mean could this report perhaps put enough pressure on the government, that they are forced to acknowledge that these incidents took place, as
they are described in the report and as your report uncovered last year?
ELBAGIR: What we have seen is that people have taken to the streets again. What this seems to have done is it seems to have reinvigorated the police
reform, anti-official corruption movement that was nascent when this massacre happened.
But the key is always with the willingness of international powers to pressure the Nigerian government and other governments around the world,
We have already reached out to the U.S. State Department but as yet have not received any response. We know that the secretary of state, Antony
Blinken, is going to be meeting with the Nigerian president and others in Abuja. He will be going to Kenya.
This is an incredibly embarrassing moment for the Nigerian government for this to come out, because journalists, us and others, will continue to ask
the U.S. State Department how they can partner in military assistance and anti-terror activities, for instance, with a military that has been accused
of a massacre of unarmed civilians.
GORANI: Nima Elbagir, thanks very much for that.
ELBAGIR: Thank you.
GORANI: Still to come tonight, a former cricketer breaks down as he explains how racism and bullying ended his career and broke his love of the
GORANI: Social justice and sports are colliding once again. It has been an ongoing issue in the United States for years, from American football
players taking a knee during the national anthem to protest police brutality, baseball teams changing their names so as not to offend Native
Americans and an Asian American Olympian revealing she was the victim of a racist attack.
Now one of the most popular sports in the United Kingdom is having its own reckoning. Today a player by the name of Azeem Rafiq spoke to British
lawmakers about the racial harassment and bullying he endured during his 10 years with Yorkshire County Cricket Club.
He said he lost his career to racism effectively and he became so emotional recounting his experience before MPs that the committee had to adjourn for
a few minutes to allow him to compose himself. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AZEEM RAFIQ, FORMER YCCC PLAYER: Pretty early on, me and other people from Asian background, there was comments such as, you lot sit over there near
the toilets, and elephant washers. The word "Paki" was used constantly. And there just seems to be an acceptance in the institution from the leaders.
And no one -- no one ever stamped it out.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Andrew Miller is the U.K. editor of ESPN's cricket info. He has covered cricket for decades and he joins me now.
Andrew, you, I'm sure, watched this testimony.
What was your reaction to it, especially the very emotional, obviously painful moments, that -- the pain that this is still causing Rafiq as he
recounts the years of racial abuse that he suffered?
ANDREW MILLER, U.K. EDITOR, ESPNCRICINFO: Well, I mean it felt like a day of reckoning really for English cricket. We have known this day was coming,
that he was going to speak, he was going to say his piece.
And he said it. And he said it eloquently, he said it emotionally, he said it without malice as well, which I thought was very impressive. He laid out
the facts. There was a lot of worry going into this, I think there was going to be a focus on naming names and settling scores and all the other
things you might think.
But actually, no. He was very insistent that one or two guys who have said things to him as part of an institutionally racist system, he wasn't
calling them out individually. He was saying the system is at fault here.
And I thought he was incredibly plausible, incredibly believable, likable, in fact. And I thought he said very, very important things that will
resonate throughout cricket, not just in England but around the world, I think.
GORANI: Yes. As I mentioned in the lead-in to this, cricket is just the latest sport having to deal with accusations of racism, discrimination,
sidelining players from minority -- of minority backgrounds. But you have been covering cricket for so long.
Is this something you have encountered?
Were you -- were you surprised when you heard some of the things he had to say?
MILLER: I think I'm surprised by the scope of it. I'm not surprised in the barest essence that it exists. I think that was always been a bit of a
given. Certainly where Yorkshire is concerned, there's a long history of Yorkshire, whereby, for many decades, up until 1992, it only accepted
players that were born in Yorkshire.
By definition, that, of course, excluded a huge diaspora from Asia, who lived in huge cities like Bradford and Leeds and make up about 40 percent
of the playing population of English cricket now is Asian.
MILLER: But for a long time they were excluded. I wasn't surprised. I have encountered the difficulties -- I wrote a piece about it several years ago,
in fact, about the difficulties of Asian players breaking into the coaching structures because that's really where it starts.
These kids coming from slightly poorer backgrounds can't afford equipment; therefore they get the opportunities, don't get the leg up and therefore,
the dressing rooms, they come in to, if they're good enough, are predominantly white essentially.
And as a consequence, it is institutional. It is, in fact, probably the very definition of institutional racism. A lot of these guys probably
didn't realize they were doing anything wrong. But clearly, the way it was spelled out by him today, they were.
GORANI: That's one of the things that struck me the most, listening to his testimony, is that it was so pervasive that probably the people who engaged
in this behavior might not even remember having said some of those things that wounded him so deeply.
You did point the finger of blame though at the governing body for not being responsive. This is what he said about the ECB.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAFIQ: I can't even imagine, as a parent hearing me speak now, why I would ever want my kids to go anywhere near the game. And I don't. I don't want
my son to go anywhere near cricket.
So -- but I think this is why it is the ECB and the counties to sure that they can actually use it as an opportunity for the change and get the
parents to understand and sure them that we've messed up but we're going to do this, this and this and make sure it doesn't happen to your kid.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: So I always think that, once a problem like this is aired, it gives it the oxygen, there's awareness. And people who are good people will
realize that, for too long, they weren't aware that, you know, these things were going on.
Do you think this will lead to change in the sport?
MILLER: I think it has to. I think, if this isn't going to change the sport, I don't know what will. I mean, this is so raw and some honest. And
it really did -- it went to the issues that speak to change as well.
You know, the ECB were there; they had Tom Harrison, the chief executive, who I thought, you know, he is essentially a good man with good intentions.
But he looked incredibly weak. He came across incredibly badly in front of this panel because he was talking in sound bites and talking in terms that
he could use in the board room very well.
But this is dealing with real issues on the ground. And I don't know if he has got the strength to deal with them directly. There's an awful lot at
play here. It is not just about the ECB. There are 18 first class counties in English cricket. All of them have been around for 150 years. There's a
lot of issues to overcome.
GORANI: Sure. Andrew Miller, we have got to leave it there. Thanks so much for joining us.
I'm Hala Gorani. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is next.