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America Under Attack: Mayor Giuliani Holds Press Conference on Search for Survivors

Aired September 13, 2001 - 10:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: We have to cut in and go to news conference that the mayor of city of New York is holding right now. Let's drop in there. Thanks for your time.

LEON HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: Let's go right now to that press conference. New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani speaking right now.

(JOINED IN PROGRESS)

MAY. RUDY GIULIANI, NEW YORK CITY: That is when the medical examiner is able to identify the remains as a body, then they will be identified -- they will be numbered basically for identification. We have 94 of those -- 94 where we have bodies, for identification. Forty-six of the 94 have actually been identified.

And then we have the gruesome and horrible situation that in many cases we recover only parts of bodies, and we have 70 in that category. So there's 94 bodies, 70 body parts. And I'm sorry I have to describe it that way, but that's unfortunately the situation that we're facing.

We have 4,763 on the missing person's list. That's a list as inclusive as we can make it. It includes the plane itself. The manifest. It includes people that have been identified to us by family members. It includes the information we've been able to glean from businesses, who are looking for people who they believed were working, and they haven't been able to make contact with. But that's the list we're working with right now. It could turn out that we recover fewer than that. It could be more. We don't know the answer to that yet.

We have set up now a permanent family center at the armory on Lexington Avenue and 26th Street. It began operating at 8:00 a.m. this morning, and we will continue to operate until midnight tonight, and then it will operate every single day. Yesterday we registered over 2000 families. And, therefore, if you are looking for someone that you believe is missing as a result of the attack on the World Trade Center, that's the place to come to register, to bring identifying data, and we'll do everything we can to help you.

The city is still closed 14th Street south. Our objective today is to try to get it open, a good deal of it open for midnight tonight, really tomorrow morning, and we will be working to open it down to Canal Street. And then to open also other selected areas so we can create corridors into the Wall Street area. We'll continue to keep West Street closed all the way down. We'll continue to keep probably a street parallel to West Street closed, and possibly the FDR Drive, we're not sure yet.

But tomorrow the city will be open certainly down to Canal Street and then selected portions further down, and obviously, a lot of the work today will be designed to try to get that done by midnight tonight. There are a number of other things that I am sure it will come up in the questions.

Again, I want to thank very much the governor, and the state, and the federal government. We finished our meeting this morning, and we're able to coordinate many, many things that would be impossible...

HARRIS: We've been listening to New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, who has been giving us some updated numbers right now that would show that the situation that the recovery workers there are now facing. It says now they are working with a list of 4,763 missing persons. That number includes the people who were on the planes, the people who were in businesses, and other family members calling in look for folks who they believe were in that area. They have recovered 94 bodies and they have them identified, or numbered to be identified. Ninety bodies numbered, 46 of them have already been identified. And they now have these, as he says, 70 different body parts that they are working with.

Those are grim figures to be sure. And we will keep an eye on and an ear open for the information as it comes out.

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