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British Police Shoot Alleged Terrorist Suspect in Subway

Aired July 22, 2005 - 05:00   ET


It is Friday, July 22.

People in London are saying not again.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I work here. I live here. We have no choice. We just get on with it.


NGUYEN: And they are getting on with it. But, after two terrorist incidents in two weeks, rush hour in London just isn't the same.

Also, London's fear is rippling to the U.S. All you New York City commuters, well, you'd better get ready to open up your bags.

And will Mideast peace efforts fall apart? Not if Condoleezza Rice can help it.

From the CNN world headquarters in Atlanta, I'm Betty Nguyen in for Carol Costello.

Good morning, everyone.

We'll have more on the situation in London in just a moment.

Also ahead, it's been quite a final ride for Lance Armstrong in the Tour de France. Later, we go live to France for a preview of stage 19.

And some are questioning the goodness of Clay Aiken's charity. But the numbers, well, they don't lie. We'll take a closer look a little bit later on DAYBREAK.

But first, now in the news, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will make a surprise visit to Lebanon today. That word comes from diplomatic sources. Rice is currently in Israel trying to shore up a shaky truce between Israelis and Palestinians.

About 100 people plan to protest President Bush later this morning when he talks to seniors in Atlanta about Social Security and Medicare. The protesters are from civil rights, labor and anti-war groups. Look at this. Firefighters in Utah are feeling the heat as they face those flames. Wildfires in northern and southern Utah have threatened homes, knocked out power to about 3,000 people, and prompted some evacuations. Now, on top of all of that, firefighters are working in 105 degree heat in some of those spots there -- Chad, Mother Nature really needs to give those firefighters a hand.

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, and, you know, another problem, when it's 105 degrees outside in the afternoon, yes, the fire is going crazy, and it's even warmer by the fire. But the relative humidity near those fires yesterday was 2 to 3 percent. So that's sucking any moisture that might be in any of those plants completely out. So that's not helping at all.

Guess what we have? We have tropical storm Franklin. Less than seven hours after the Hurricane Center stopped issuing advisories on Emily, now we've got Franklin. They flew the storm yesterday. They put the hurricane hunter in the storm and they found the spin not that far from the Bahamas, actually, right over the Bahamas, not that far from Nassau. This storm is not forecast, not forecast to affect the United States. It turned out to be a fish storm as it moves out toward -- it does forecast it, though. The models do forecast it. It's going to be a very strong storm, 70 miles per hour, by the time it gets out into the Atlantic Ocean. Only one, only one computer model turns it to the left and takes it over Florida. That's one out of about 12, but we'll keep watching in case it's right.


NGUYEN: Well, we lead this morning with a frightening case of deja vu for the people of London. Once again, terrorists placed bombs on three subway trains and a double-decker bus. Here's the latest for you.

This morning, two London subway stations remain closed and the entire rail line has been suspended. No casualties are reported from yesterday's attempts. And that's because some of the bombs did not explode.

Meanwhile, the London rush hour is much more subdued this morning. Subway and bus riders are keeping their mouths shut and their eyes peeled.

So let's go straight to London right now.

CNN's Jennifer Eccleston is at one of the major hubs of the city's subway system.

She joins us with a look at how commuters are dealing with the day after -- good morning, Jennifer.


That's right, I'm at the Oxford Circus tube station, one of the busiest and one of the largest in Central London. It's also one of the tube stations that has a major crossroads for many lines. many of those disrupted, some of them closed. So there was a great deal of expectation among commuters that there would be delays, that the time getting into work would take a little bit longer today.

We've spoken to a number of travelers who came in by the tube today. There weren't many people traveling today, perhaps taking the day off. It is a Friday.

Those who were on the tube, it was a greatly deal of anxiety, people looking around, checking out their fellow passengers, also making sure that anybody who brought rucksacks, backpacks or large bags were actually the owners of those bags.

But most people telling us look, we have to get about our daily lives. And they were echoing the words of the British prime minister, Tony Blair, and also London's mayor, Ken Livingstone, who yesterday pleaded with Londoners to not give in to the terrorists, who failed yesterday to cause major disruption here in the capital city, and go about their daily lives.

And let's get a little snapshot of what it's like to be a commuter here in London and the daily grind that is going to work. And I'm just going to go over here and talk to this gentleman and ask him what was the commute like today?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pretty good. And I'm not scared. No one's going to put me off. No one is going to stop me from traveling in Central London. Nobody.

ECCLESTON: We've heard from British Prime Minister Tony Blair, pleading to Londoners, and, of course, people across the country, saying don't let them win, go about your daily lives.

We have now a second attack. This one was not successful.

What does it make you feel, sir? Do you feel confident that you're protected by your government's work?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I do. I feel totally confident and nothing can stop me, as you just said earlier. Nothing is going to stop me coming from my home city, where I work, where I live. No one's going to stop me. I don't care who they are, how hard they try, no one is going to stop me.

ECCLESTON: And it must be said -- and I spoke to some other commuters who had a little bit of anxiety this morning, hoping that the July 7 attacks were a one time experience, like in the United States on September 11 and also last year in Madrid.

Now we have a second attempt. People are a little nervous and I understand that, you know, you've got these feelings of resolve that you're going to go about your daily life. But there must be some anxiety.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, as you said in your report, I watch everybody now, whereas I never used to. (UNINTELLIGIBLE). But now, yes, I watch everybody and look at the bags. And if I see a bag anywhere, I'll stop a policeman or get one of the security guards and say look -- maybe more so now. But, they aren't going to stop me, though. They're not going to stop me.

ECCLESTON: Well, good for you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: London is going to go on. Nothing's going to stop us.

ECCLESTON: That really is, Betty, the sentiment across London today from the people that I've spoken to. Yes, there is a little bit of fear. There is a little trepidation and there's a great deal of sorrow that they actually have to live this way, that this is the world they live in. But, again, they're going about their daily lives and they've really tried to make the best effort to live a normal life now after this second attack on the London transport system -- Betty.

NGUYEN: And seem very resolved that the terrorists will not win.

Jennifer, thank you for that.

Don't blame Pakistan -- that is what President Pervez Musharraf says about the July 7 London bombings. In a televised speech, Musharraf urges Pakistanis to fight Islamic militants in their midst.


PRES. PERVEZ MUSHARRAF, PAKISTAN: We very strongly condemn this act of terrorism. I don't think the perpetrators of this act can be called human beings. We stand together in the struggle, in the fight against terrorism right to the end. We will emerge victorious against them and will eliminate them.


NGUYEN: Musharraf also denies that Pakistan is a breeding ground for terrorists.

At least three of the four wanted bombers have links to Pakistan, but Musharraf tells ABC News that the blame does not lie with his nation. He says Britain has its own problems with extremists.

Well, London police now have a much broader investigation on their hands and London residents have a lot more fear and worry on theirs.

Where does the probe go from here?

Well, joining us now is "Newsweek's" London bureau chief, Stryker McGuire.

"Newsweek" says authorities investigating the July 7 bombings are focusing on an elusive suspect.

And, Stryker, let's get right to it.

Who is this suspect? STRYKER MCGUIRE, "NEWSWEEK" MAGAZINE: Well, his name is Haroon Rashid Aswat and he's been connected to previous terror incidents. It was reported, not only by "Newsweek," but by other news organizations, that he was arrested earlier this week in Pakistan. That has now been denied not only by the Pakistani government, but also by the British high commissioner in Pakistan, which is to say, the British ambassador to Pakistan.

It's, you know, it's -- this is a very murky story. This man's name keeps surfacing and then going under again. What there doesn't seem to be any doubt about is that there is a Pakistani connection.

NGUYEN: Well, what do we exactly know? Let's take it apart. What do we know about this Haroon Rashid Aswat? What exactly do we know about him and what he is connected to?

STRYKER: He's been connected to a couple of -- one thing in the United States, which is -- which was an attempt to set up a terrorist training camp in Oregon. That's number one.

Number two, he has been linked to an operation, a police operation in the United Kingdom last year called Operation Crevice, which was a case which involved ammonium nitrate, a fertilizer substance which can be used to make bombs.

Aside from that, though, he's -- what we don't know is where he is right now and whether the authorities have him or don't have him.

There does seem to be some confusion among the authorities as to his identity in the sense that his name is actually quite common. This, even the three names put together are quite common. So we're not sure exactly what we're dealing with at this point.

NGUYEN: A lot of questions.

One last thing for you before we've got to let you go, is there an al Qaeda link to him, as well?

MCGUIRE: There is, and that also, that also goes back to Pakistan. I mean the one thing that seems quite clear at this point is the al Qaeda link in what happened in London on 7/7. And almost certainly -- we'll know better soon -- but almost certainly what also happened in London yesterday.

NGUYEN: But we just don't know where he is at this moment?

MCGUIRE: Exactly.

NGUYEN: OK, well, thanks for bringing us up to date with that.

Of course, we'll be following it.

Stryker McGuire, the London bureau chief for "Newsweek."

MCGUIRE: Thanks.

NGUYEN: Thank you.

Here at home, the London attacks are prompting greater security measures from mass transit systems. Starting this morning, if you ride the subway in New York City, you may be the subject of a random search. And the increased security efforts are by no means limited to New York.

CNN's Dan Lothian has the latest.


DAN LOTHIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A public warning across Boston's transit system.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you see something, say something.

LOTHIAN: It's been part of a security campaign since the first London bombings triggered an orange alert.

JOHN BLANCHARD, TRANSIT PASSENGER: I keep my eyes open a little more just because, you know, I'm worried.

LOTHIAN: Now, a stepped up effort.

DAN GRABAUSKAS, MASSACHUSETTS BAY TRANSIT AUTHORITY: We have deployed, at this point, additional personnel. If you want to think of it as sort of orange alert plus.

LOTHIAN: In New York City, starting today, police will begin conducting random searches of bags and purses carried by passengers entering the subway system.

RAYMOND KELLY, NEW YORK CITY POLICE COMMISSIONER: For every certain number of people will be checked. It won't be done on a, certainly no racial profiling. It is primarily focused on the subway system, but we reserve the right to also do it as people get on buses, as well.

LOTHIAN: There's a heavier than normal law enforcement presence on the water, streets and around subways. MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG, NEW YORK: We just live in a world where, sadly, these kinds of security measures are necessary. Are they intrusive? Yes, a little bit. But we're trying to find that right balance.

LOTHIAN: In the nation's capital, extra sweeps of trains and buses. And defiance from subway passengers unwilling to surrender to terrorists.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If you don't take the ones that we have, you let them win. That's just not right.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm not going to let it affect my life.

LOTHIAN: Federal, state and local officials are trying to reassure Americans.

GOV. MITT ROMNEY (R), MASSACHUSETTS: And we don't have any reason to believe that our transit system is under threat.

LOTHIAN: Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney hopped onto the so- called T line in Boston to reassure some nervous commuters that public transportation is, indeed, safe.


NGUYEN: And that was CNN's Dan Lothian reporting.

And all of this, Chad, brings us to our E-Mail Question today.

MYERS: It sure does.

Does that make you feel better, random bag checks? Is that making you feel any safer? Mass transit security -- will random bag checks make us safer? Will it make you feel safer? Hey, do you have a different idea or a better idea? E-mail me that, too. -- Betty.

NGUYEN: I think we're going to get some interesting answers to that one today, Chad.

MYERS: I hope so.

NGUYEN: All right, talk to you soon.

On the heels of the London attacks, the House voted late last night to extend the Patriot Act. Now, the anti-terror initiatives were about to expire. The House vote would make all but two provisions permanent. Those two provisions -- roving wiretaps on phones and the government's ability to search your library or medical records would be limited to 10 years.


REP. RICK BOUCHER (D), VIRGINIA: I think most would agree that the breadth of many of these provisions creates, at a minimum, the potential for abuse. And we therefore have an obligation to conduct rigorous oversight to ensure that civil liberties are protected.

REP. JAMES SENSENBRENNER (R-WI), JUDICIARY CHAIRMAN: I think that the question that we ought to ask ourselves today is whether we should weigh the potential for abuse of this law against the actual record of abuse. There is no actual record of abuse with all of the oversight that we've been doing.


NGUYEN: Now, President Bush praised the House vote and says he wants Congress to finish the job of re-authorizing the Patriot Act. The Senate is working on a similar version.

Still to come on DAYBREAK this hour, hot, hot and more heat -- the mercury keeps raising. Air conditioners are running on high and sweltering cities are trying to cool people down.

Also, the Tour de France pedals into the final stretches. We will talk to the man who calls the race.

And some people are singing the blues about Clay Aiken. They say he isn't putting his money where his mouth is. We'll check that out.

But first, here's a look at what else is making news this on this Friday morning, July 22.



NGUYEN: Your news, money, weather and sports.

The time, 5:18 Eastern.

Here's what's all new this morning.

New York City bus and subway riders are getting some extra scrutiny. Starting this morning, police will start random searches of passenger bags and backpacks. The move follows yesterday's attempted bombings in London.

And speaking of London, London commuters are heading back to work this morning after another terror incident. Yesterday, bombs were placed on three subway trains and a double-decker bus. But some devices did not explode.

In money now, U.S. officials are praising China, which says it will no longer peg its currency to the dollar. The U.S. says that system kept China's currency artificially weak and gave Beijing an unfair price advantage in trade.

In culture, you knew this was coming, right? Cybill Shepherd will play Martha Stewart in a second TV movie. Look at the resemblance. "Martha Behind Bars" will air on CBS this fall. Shepherd played an over the top version of Stewart in a previous NBC movie.

Now to sports. Today, the Tour de France goes into its 19th stage and its final weekend. Lance Armstrong still holds a comfortable lead. In our next half hour of DAYBREAK, the race's commentator joins us live.

But first, weather -- Chad, hot across much of the country.

MYERS: You bet.

And now a new tropical storm, tropical storm Franklin. You say wait, I don't recognize that name. That's because Floyd was retired. Remember that, Floyd, that caused so many headaches across parts of North Carolina and obviously deaths, as well? That's why they retire names. And they came up with a new name that starts with an F. This is Franklin, a tropical storm, 45 miles per hour. There it is to the east of Miami. It is not forecast, though, to go to Miami or to Florida. The forecast officially is to head out to the ocean.


NGUYEN: Hey, Chad, we want our e-mail inbox to heat up, as well today.

What's the question today?

MYERS: The question is, you know, they're starting up there in New York City a bag search, random bag search -- mass transit security, like trains and planes and automobiles and all that. But now we're talking trains and buses. Will random bag checks make us safer? Will it make you feel safer?

E-mail us at

NGUYEN: All right, we'll check it out.

Thanks, Chad.

MYERS: You bet.

NGUYEN: Well, CNN will continue the safety theme into this evening. Are we safer is the focus of a special "NEWSNIGHT TONIGHT" with CNN's Aaron Brown. You don't want to miss it, at 10:00 Eastern, 7:00 Pacific.

Still to come this morning, a serious scorcher. It is hot, hot, hot from coast to coast. We will show you the worst spots in the country and how people are coping.

Plus, you've got to see this one to believe it. Oh, yes. A 360- foot cross border tunnel and you won't believe where it leads.

You're watching DAYBREAK for Friday, July 22.


NGUYEN: "News Across America" this morning.

Relatives of John Couey say he molested his estranged wife's 6- year-old daughter and fondled a 7-year-old niece, but they never told police. That is according to newly released court documents. Couey is the convicted sex offender accused of kidnapping, sexually assaulting and killing 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford Florida. Couey has pleaded innocent.

Well, Cuba has lost a popular dance troupe. Forty-nine singers, dancers, musicians and other members of the Havana Nightclub Troupe have been granted asylum here in the U.S. The group defected eight months ago while in other countries and eventually made their way to the States. When news of their asylum status was granted, the group, they broke down in tears. Two troupe members, though, did return to Cuba.

Massachusetts Congressman Edward Markey says we should all feel sunnier next year, and that's because the House and Senate have agreed on extending daylight savings time by three weeks next spring and one week in the fall. Daylight savings time will begin on the second Sunday in March. It will extend by one week to the first Sunday in November. Are you jotting this down?

The changes are part of an energy bill which still must be passed.

And, another big story across America this morning is that deadly heat wave. From coast to coast, the temperatures are soaring into at least the 90s and it has prompted cities to take action.

Here's CNN's Rick Sanchez.


RICK SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It is oppressive heat and it's clamping down on most of the country. But the Southwest seems to be suffering the most.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Excuse me, sir. Would feel like a water today?

SANCHEZ: Here in Phoenix, volunteers bring bottles of cold water to people on the streets. Eighteen have already died of heat related causes, almost all of them homeless, prompting Phoenix officials to open air conditioned shelters during the day, something they haven't done in years.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's just been a little bit overwhelming these last many days as people have come here for relief from the heat, for water, for food and for shelter.

SANCHEZ: Yes, they're used to the hot weather here. But for weeks, temperatures have been above average. For 10 straight days, they've soared to 109 degrees or higher. And that isn't the only problem. There's little respite from the scorching heat, even at night, when lows still hover in the 90s. And the drenching downpours that occur almost daily and normally help cool things off a bit this time of the year just haven't been happening.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I had no idea that it could be so intense. I mean the air is even hot when the wind blows. That, I mean you feel like you're cooking.

SANCHEZ: And people who make their living predicting the weather say they're not surprised.

JEFFREY SCHULTZ, CLIMATOLOGIST: We're absolutely having a hotter summer than normal. This is something that we actually saw coming for a while thanks to, one of the key ingredients is the amount of drought, or lack of precipitation.

SANCHEZ: Whatever the cause, the crushing heat is causing havoc from coast to coast, and north of the border. In Las Vegas, temperatures have hovered around 115 degrees every day for a week now. Illinois has had more 90 degree days this summer than in the past two summers combined. Los Angeles feeling the heat, as well, with temperatures reaching from the high 90s to 104. And there seems to be no end in sight.

Even the East Coast is baking, with temperatures in Boston and New York hovering in and around the 90s. And with high humidity, making it even more uncomfortable.

And in parts of normally cool Canada, officials have had to import power to help keep up with demand.

So what can we do to keep cool?

Follow the same advice your mother probably gave you years ago.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stay out of the sun, plenty of fluids, you know, eat regularly, that's about it.

SANCHEZ: Rick Sanchez, CNN, Phoenix, Arizona.


NGUYEN: That is some good advice.

And here's what's all new in the next half hour.

He is living strong and going strong. Cycling superstar Lance Armstrong looks ready for win number seven in the Tour de France.

Plus, we are asking you what you think this morning. Will random bag checks on mass transit make us safer? Let us here from you,



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