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Giuliani Updates Death and Missing Toll

Aired September 21, 2001 - 17:01   ET


BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: The White House lining up international support to fight terrorism, and taking a hard line on Osama Bin Laden.

Also tonight, a one-on-one tour of the immense devastation at the site of the World Trade Center. It's five o'clock here in New York City. Good evening once again. I'm Bill Hemmer in New York. More coming up here from Manhattan. But first to Atlanta and the very latest developments with my colleague Joie Chen. Joie, good evening to you.

JOIE CHEN, CNN ANCHOR: Bill, good evening. It is Friday evening, and going into this weekend a reminder that federal law enforcement officials continue to warn of a possibility of a terrorist threat. Authorities are searching for a number of individuals still who are wanted in connection with the attacks last week. Officials are encouraging vigilance as people go about their business this weekend.

This afternoon, President Bush left the White House and flew himself to Camp David with the first lady. On the walk to Marine One, he made no comment. Before departing, the president met with leaders of the insurance industry, which stands to lose billions of dollars in claims connected to the terror attacks.

Earlier today, Afghanistan's rulers rejected Mr. Bush's demand to hand over Osama Bin Laden immediately. Afterward, the White House said the demand is non-negotiable. In his address to the nation last night, the president said that the Taliban must hand over Bin Laden and his followers, or risk military attack.

Today in New York, Attorney General John Ashcroft toured the trade center site with FBI Director Robert Mueller, New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Governor George Pataki of New York. Again today, the rescue work is being slowed by rain. On his radio program, the mayor said there could be still a chance of finding what he called "a few survivors." The mayor is about to speak live at a press conference in New York. Let's listen to Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

MAYOR RUDOLPH GIULIANI, NEW YORK: I'm very pleased to announce that seven residential buildings in Battery Park City's South neighborhood will be open to residents at 8:00 am tomorrow morning, Saturday, September 22nd. I have been down there quite a bit, and back and forth looking at all those empty apartments, and it's really wonderful that people will be able to get back. The people in Battery Park City North went in yesterday. I can't say all of them have been able to get in, but most have. And although it is somewhat inconvenient because you have to walk a circuitous route to get there, I think it is much better we were able to get Battery Park City north open. Now Battery Park City south hopefully will be open at 8 a.m. tomorrow morning. The seven buildings are: Liberty Terrace, Battery Point, Liberty Court, South Cove Plaza, River Wash, Cove Club and the Regatta. So people will be able to move back into those buildings.

A number of other buildings in the south neighborhood will be open within the next week. On Monday, September 24th, we are going to open the Soundings, which is 280 Rector, Liberty View at 99 Battery Place, and Hudson View East, which is at 300 Albany Street. On Tuesday, September 25th we are going open River Rows, 330 Rector Street. On Wednesday, Liberty House, which is at 337 Rector Street. And the Gateway Hudson Towers, Hudsonview and Park Place are not yet ready for occupancy. And residents should contact their building management for an update on that status. We will try to get them open as soon as possible.

So that should help to get some areas there back to normal. We also putting out a map which tries to identify the buildings that are -- that are -- buildings that are destroyed, the buildings that are partially collapsed, the buildings that have major structural damage and therefore no occupancy that have to be looked at very, very carefully before they are allowed to reopen. The buildings -- probably that's the largest number in the affected area -- which are the buildings that are damaged but stable, and that can be repaired and are being cleaned, but they are still going to have to be watched because they took some damage.

We have a big one. You will see on the chart those are the buildings in yellow. And then the buildings in white are the buildings that have not been affected at all. That will give people an overview of what was destroyed, and then -- that is better version of the maps. Also, the mapping capacity in this facility is really unbelievable. I showed it to Senator McCain this morning and he was very, very impressed with it. It's been enormously helpful in being able to figure out access and egress.

So that is -- that map will be given out to everyone, and that is the most complete version that we have of the buildings that are that are destroyed and the buildings that are affected. The numbers, which I'll try give you a further explanation of -- first let me give them to you, and then I'll try to explain them a little bit better. The total dead now are 252, of which we have been able to identify 183. The uniform service number is 39, 34 of them being fire. The reported missing persons remain at 6333, and the reported injuries are 6408.

Now, missing persons -- missing persons come from six different sources, so there are times in which we get it, it's entered as a missing person, and then we sort through the list and we find that missing person has been described two times or three times, and that is why the list goes down. It goes up because we get additional reports of missing persons. Probably the biggest fluctuation in the number has come about because of the numbers that we've gotten from foreign councils, who report numbers of people that are missing from their country who they believe might be in the World Trade Center. And what we found is that in many cases, those people are not in the World Trade Center, and are accounted for. But it takes a day or two to figure that out. So we have put those numbers aside now, and we are looking at those separately.

The missing persons, however, that we have registered as missing persons are now at 6333. They have not been totally sorted yet, so the number could change, but probably not dramatically. We've removed 5476 -- we have 5476 trucks that have moved out 76459 tons of debris. And the change in the weather all day today, obviously, has made the removal efforts much more effective today than yesterday, where we had to be more careful. And I think that covers most of -- the prayer service on Sunday.

The prayer service on Sunday will -- the actual official part of it will begin at 3:00. But I believe people will be let in to Yankee Stadium starting at noon, is that correct? Is it noontime? At noon. The Yankee Stadium service -- prayer service -- will start at noon. At 3:00 the official part of service will start. People will be allowed in starting 11:00? OK.

The tickets are being distributed, the primary emphasis on tickets, in other words, something like 25 or 26,000 of the tickets are being given to the families who have either lost people or who have people who are missing. There will also be tickets distributed to as many of the rescue and relief and volunteer workers as we can give them to who are not working that day.

And there will also be tickets for Brooklyn, and tickets for Staten Island, and there will be tickets in New Jersey at the minor league baseball stadium in Newark. And those are all the places in which tickets will be given out to people in all those categories. I think that covers most of it. Bernie do you have...

BERNARD KERIK, CHIEF OF POLICE, NEW YORK CITY: One of the one of the things I wanted to get out. We have been working very hard with the Bereavement Center on collecting DNA samples from the families. There is a phone number that people can call if they want to submit their DNA sample or if they want to pick up a collection kit. That number is 646-710-6193, or 6120. So far we have taken 6063 samples from 2100 -- involving 2100 people.

We are working with Nassau County, Suffolk County, the New Jersey State Police, and in the Bereavement Center in the collection of the samples. People that live in New York City, once you have your kit, if you don't want to come back to the city, you can drop it off at a precinct and they will get it down here to the Bereavement Center. That is basically it.

CHEN: Latest information coming from the mayor and other city officials, there in New York. The mayor outlining continuing plans to try to return his city to normalcy. Also giving us the latest toll from the World Trade Center site -- 250 people have been found dead, 183 of them identified, 39 of those were emergency workers called in to assist and help. There are still 6,333 people missing. And to that end, you just heard additional information from the other city officials about trying to get more people to bring DNA samples so that continuing efforts can be made to match up those bodies that have been found but not identified.

The mayor also noting that a Sunday prayer service has been called at Yankee Stadium. This is going to be a very, very big service, officially going to begin 3:00, but ceremonies would begin at 11:00 in the morning. First priority was being involved at the Yankee Stadium memorial and prayer service will of course family members of the victims.



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