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Pope in Final Hour of Visit to Cuba; European Nations Debate Refugee Quotas; German Intel Reveals Hardliners Recruiting Refugees; The Pope and Politics; Park Rangers Wage Rhino Wars; Xi Jinping Making First State Visit to U.S.; VW CEO Admits Company "Screwed Up"; Mysterious Disappearance in North Korea. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired September 22, 2015 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ROBYN CURNOW, CNN HOST: Hi, there, welcome to the INTERNATIONAL DESK. I'm Robyn Curnow at the CNN Center.
Pope Francis is now in the final hours of his momentous visit to Cuba.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CURNOW (voice-over): He celebrated his third and final mass this morning in Santiago in a revered Catholic cathedral. There you can see live
pictures of the reception Pope Francis is receiving from the people of Santiago.
In that mass, he urged the faithful to follow, in his words, "a revolution of tenderness." The pope there also in his Popemobile.
He will be heading to the U.S. in a few hours where he will spend the rest of the week. First he has a meeting with some local families. No doubt
this has been a very successful and warmly received visit by Pope Francis.
And of course our Patrick Oppmann has been following this entire visit. He joins me now live.
We have to talk as we see these pictures of the pope going through Santiago. He really is receiving an extraordinarily warm welcome. What's
important as well is that this is a pope who comes across as an ordinary parish priest, well, he tries to. He is simple and austere. And he kind
of kept to that message again, didn't he, in today's mass?
PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. It's a message that fits perfectly in Cuba, a country that is not a rich country. It does not have
a Catholic church that can support itself from Cuba. They receive donations primarily from overseas. It's a church very much in the street
here because it's not on the air waves because the government does not permit it to be.
The pope as well talked in the mass this morning about how the church endured years of poverty and disgrace, making some very interesting points
here as he wraps up his final few hours in Cuba. We understood he actually slept at this holy shrine for all Cubans in Pope Benedict's -- a house
built for Pope Benedict's visit. He had a good night living out at the cobrida sanctuary.
Then he is heading, of course, now to Santiago and then to the U.S. We expect, as he journeys, his last several hours in Cuba, we will see more
and more of these scenes, Cubans saying goodbye to the pope, who, during his brief visit, touched many people and has left a big mark on this
country -- Robyn.
CURNOW: No doubt the Cubans very sad to see him go. It's been a special time for them.
What has he accomplished?
OPPMANN: That remains to be seen. We know he met with Raul Castro, a one- on-one meeting, where, we were led to believe, of course, that he brought up many issues. And of course you saw Raul Castro throughout the visit.
He was at all three of his masses.
One of the top things the church has asked for and has been pushing hard for in the last months is to gain the right to educate Catholic children
here. That was taken away from them after the Cuban revolution.
Of course, the government demands that all Cuban children go to state schools here, where they receive a very revolutionary syllabus. The
Catholic Church would like to include, in addition to that revolutionary syllabus, include some sort of Catholic teachings and the government has
So that's one of the things Pope Francis, we are told, was pushing for here. We'll have to see. Sometimes we don't find out until weeks or
months afterwards if there have been any reforms or changes.
But again, we're told that what he most wanted to do was reach out, see the Cuban people and have these momentary stops where he shakes hands and be
very visible. At least, in that sense it's been a successful trip here -- Robyn.
CURNOW: As you were talking, he was doing exactly that, Patrick. A little girl held up to him, another one now. He kisses and blesses these
children. This is a pope that seems to have changed the tone of the Catholic Church, seems to have really emphasized the poor, the
marginalized, the disenfranchised.
He seems to have disregarded the trappings of the throne of St. Peter essentially, a man who seems comfortable in his position.
There you can see Pope Francis moving on as he completes his final hours in Cuba.
Patrick Oppmann, as always, thank you so much.
CURNOW: Later at the IDESK we'll talk more pope, the pope and politics this time. We'll look at some of the hot-button issues Francis will
address on his U.S. visit -- or will he. I'll speak to Paul Vallely, author of "Pope Francis: Untying the Knot." And let's see if we can do a
bit of that ourselves.
Right. Now moving on, European ministers are meeting in Brussels to discuss the surging migrant crisis facing the E.U. They're talking about a
proposal to resettle 120,000 refugees.
Several nations are pushing back against a mandatory quota system. That number is just a fraction of the people who have entered the continent.
The International Organization for Migration says nearly 475,000 refugees have crossed into Europe by boat so far this year.
Our Ben Wedeman is on the Hungarian-Croatian border.
But first, let's go to Nic Robertson in Brussels.
Nic, we have had meetings and conferences. This is not the first or the last.
Anything out of it that is concrete?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: So far nothing. The hope is that they'll find agreement on the quota system for those
120,000 refugees coming into Europe.
The idea here is that they help alleviate the problems of the front-line European Union member nations here. They're talking about Italy and
Greece, so they can also try and get some better cooperation in the Western Balkan nations, looking there at the tensions across the Hungarian-Serbian,
Hungarian-Croatian borders, looking as well to give financial assistance to those countries bordering Syria to help bolster the quality of life that
refugees can have in the refugee camps there and therefore slow the migration towards Europe but also looking at how they return economic
migrants rather than refugees who can claim asylum.
So it's a broad spectrum that they're looking at. But let's look back over the last four months. It was in May, the middle of May, when the E.U. said
that it would discuss what -- how to help or if they could help 40,000 refugees, Syrians and Eritreans. Well, it took them until last week to
agree to implement that decision.
So what we are seeing now are even deeper divisions. Germany really leading the way by opening its doors, though it's feeling very stretched
right now. Hungary, the prime minister, Viktor Orban, there, has allowed the army now, authorized them to use force, not lethal force, of course,
but water cannons, tear gas, rubber bullets on the borders there.
Germany with a much more open-arms policy but Europe is being stretched. Those are just some of the minor differences. Slovakia, the Czech
Republic, Poland, Hungary, all don't want to sign up for this quota mechanism. Britain is opposed to it. So these are the challenges that
these ministers of justices and interior will face right now -- Robyn.
CURNOW: Indeed, you make some excellent points there.
I just want to get Ben's reaction.
Thanks, Nic Robertson there in Brussels.
Ben, you have seen firsthand on the ground the difficulties, the sheer scale of this crisis. But we're also now hearing from the head of German
intelligence, who said that hardliners are recruiting new refugees. Now while this humanitarian crisis is front and center, no doubt, this has been
a concern for government, hasn't it?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it has because, keep in mind, when we're talking about almost 500,000 people, already
crossing the Mediterranean to Europe, that it doesn't take much in terms of numbers to be a problem in terms of the possibility of some radical
elements among them.
Now for instance, what we're seeing on the Hungarian border, something we didn't see when we were here on Friday evening is that now for one thing,
the military has been deployed. There's Humvees with 50 caliber machine guns on top. They're gone now because the refugees are all being loaded
But there were soldiers, Hungarian soldiers, in full combat gear with automatic rifles as well. And in addition to that, what we saw that we
didn't see on Friday evening is also that everybody who came in was searched individually, men and women. And their possessions, their bags
were searched as well.
So whether this is really part of Hungary's desire to show that it's not taking this issue lightly, that they're not happy with the flow of migrants
or refugees or this is a reflection of real concern about the possibility that there may be radical elements among the refugees and migrants, it's
But what we are seeing is definitely a different atmosphere here on the border today -- Robyn.
CURNOW: Ben Wedeman, thanks so much for that, as well as our Nic Robertson in Brussels. Thanks, guys.
CURNOW: Now Yemen's president is back in his conflict-torn country after six months in exile. That's according to the foreign minister. President
Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi fled to Saudi Arabia in March when Houthi rebels took over the capital, Sanaa. You can see him with U.S. Secretary of State
John Kerry earlier this year in Riyadh.
Mr. Hadi is now said to be in the southern Yemeni city of Aden, which is under control of the Saudi-backed coalition fighting the Houthis.
You're at the INTERNATIONAL DESK. Still to come, China's president visits the United States. Find out why he's not heading directly to Washington.
And shares of VW tank as a scandal over rigged emissions grows. All that and much more here at the INTERNATIONAL DESK.
CURNOW: There's a very warm reception in Cuba and Pope Francis will most likely get a warm reception in the U.S. That's according to a new CNN/ORC
It finds he's mostly viewed as favorable nationwide. Still, he could raise controversial topics in his address to Congress and his meeting with the
president, and there are some who think his whole trip is far more political than spiritual. CNN's Jim Acosta looks at White House efforts to
counter that perception.
JIM ACOSTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): When Pope Francis arrives in Washington for his first visit to the U.S., President Obama will be
welcoming a powerful political partner. But with the next presidential election heating up, the White House is rejecting the notion the pope's
trip is all about politics.
JOSH EARNEST, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: There's no plan or strategy that's been put in place to try to stage an event that will advance
anybody's political agenda.
ACOSTA (voice-over): That's a tough claim to make, considering the pope's positions. As the White House led the charge for same-sex marriage, Pope
Francis has softened his own stance on gay priests.
POPE FRANCIS (through translator): If a person is gay and seeks God and has goodwill, who am I to judge him?
ACOSTA (voice-over): On climate change, the pope says it's a global problem with great implications. The Earth, our home, is beginning to look
more and more like an immense pile of filth.
And he slammed trickle-down economics, saying this opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naive trust in the
goodness of those wielding economic power. Then there's the president's policy on Cuba, a change the pope helped broker in secret.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: I want to thank His Holiness, Pope Francis.
ACOSTA (voice-over): Conservatives have dubbed it the Obamafication of Pope Francis and GOP presidential candidates have had enough.
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), N.J.: I just think the pope was wrong. The fact is that his infallibility is on religious matters, not on political ones.
ACOSTA (voice-over): It's not the first time a pope and U.S. president have joined forces. Ronald Reagan --
ACOSTA (voice-over): -- and Pope John Paul II were close allies in the fight against Communism during the Cold War.
FATHER EDWARD BECK, CNN FAITH & RELIGION COMMENTATOR: When John Paul II kind of went against Polish communism, and aligned himself with the
solidarity movement, I didn't hear a lot of uproar. He was lauded for that advancement.
And so I just think it's interesting that this pope, when he wades into those waters, seems to get criticized, stay out of politics.
ACOSTA (voice-over): Some Republicans are also steamed that the White House is inviting pro-choice and pro-gay rights advocates to the pope's
Mike Huckabee dubbed that a new low for an administration that will go down as the most anti-Christian in American history. The White House insists
the pope deserves a diverse audience.
EARNEST: There's no theological test that was administered prior to giving out tickets to the South Lawn Wednesday morning.
ACOSTA: Even with these two leaders on the same page on so many issues, White House officials can see there could be moments when the pope publicly
disagrees with the president, for example, on the subject of abortion.
Aides of the president says they have some clue as to what the pope plans to say this week. But they're also bracing for plenty of surprises -- Jim
Acosta, CNN, the White House.
CURNOW: What else can we expect when the pope visits the White House?
Later on in the U.N., Paul Vallely is the author of two prominent books on Pope Francis, in particular, one of them just out, "The Struggle for the
Soul of Catholicism." He joins me now from CNN Washington.
Thanks so much, Paul, for speaking to us. You heard Jim Acosta saying the White House perhaps expecting some surprises. This is a pope who can go
But is he as radical as some believe or hope?
Well, he's not radical in terms of church teaching. He still sticks to the main teachings of the church. What he's radical in is his approach. And
he wants, as he puts it, the church of yes, not the church of no.
So instead of a church which is about setting out rules, making judgments, condemning people, he wants to affirm people when they do the right thing
and to embrace them and to say, everybody is welcome here. That's why he won't be fazed at all by the kind of people that the White House have
invited to that reception.
He's met gay people. He's got gay people on his staff. He's met transgender people. He said, "Who am I to judge?"
As far as he's concerned, it's all about embracing the world, getting the message out to the world, of the gospel. It's not about the church or
CURNOW: Which, of course, is pretty radical for some people within the Vatican. So this is a pope who doesn't want to waggle his finger, he wants
to give everybody a hug instead.
But he has now, also you heard Jim Acosta saying there, he's been criticized for being political, but really that's no difference to John
Paul II. He took a very firm anti-Communist stance, didn't he?
Both John Paul and Benedict took an anti-Communist stance and also an anti- capitalism stance. So 100 years of Catholic social teaching has looked for a middle way between Communism and capitalism to produce a kinder, more
And the pope sees his views on climate change and on economic inequality as growing directly out of the gospel because the basic message of the gospel
is one of touching the marginalized, the people who are not included.
He sees that there are people at the bottom of the social and economic heap who need to be helped in their struggle to get a better life and, at the
moment the system just disregards them. He talks about our throw-away culture, consumerism doesn't just throw away goods we don't need anymore,
we throw away people we don't need.
CURNOW: Yes. You talk about that; there is some expectation that there will be a bit of tough love when he speaks to the American audience in
particular about rampant capitalism, as you say, or consumerism.
VALLELY: He'll have two messages for the people of America. He'll have -- for the ordinary people, he'll have this kind of warm, the image that he
exudes, everybody's favorite uncle. He'll be embracing.
But to the politicians, the church leaders, the U.N. world leaders, he'll have some hard words to say, I think.
CURNOW: He'll have some hard words to say. This is a pope -- does he surprise you, the way he's responded? In many ways those who know him say
exactly this is who he was 30, 40 years ago and the fact he's a Jesuit makes all the difference.
VALLELY: If you know about his background, a lot of what he does isn't a surprise. Even then, he's still capable of doing things which are
And the biggest transformation has been from when he was in Buenos Aires, he was very long faced, people called him Horse Face. He was a dutiful man
but a very glum man.
Now he's transformed into this smiling pope, a man full of joy. And it seems like being made pope has finally --
VALLELY: -- liberated him to be the man that he always wanted to be.
CURNOW: Indeed. He said he didn't really want to be pope, but he really seems to have seized this opportunity, created a space for himself.
Thank you so much. And of course will are maybe going to come back to you to analyze his message throughout the next week. Paul Vallely there,
VALLELY: OK. Thank you.
CURNOW: Well, Kosovo's prime minister is getting resistance about a controversial new agreement with Serbia.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CURNOW (voice-over): Opposition lawmakers began pelting him with eggs during an address in parliament. They're upset over a deal that gives
local powers and funding to minority Serbs in Kosovo. A security team had to shield the prime minister with an umbrella.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CURNOW: Next on the IDESK, heavily armed poachers are wiping out rhinos in Africa. So rangers are going to war to stop the slaughter. Our reporter
is inside the Kruger Park on this story. Stay with us for that report.
CURNOW: Welcome back. Large-scale poaching driven by demand from Asia is wiping out Africa's rhino population. The magnificent animals are being
hunted by poachers. And rangers are often outgunned and outmanned.
David McKenzie joins us from the Kruger National Park in South Africa. It's World Rhino Day.
Dave, thanks so much for joining us on the IDESK. I understand you've been out with an anti-poaching team.
DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Robyn. This right now is a war. It's a rhino war, they're calling it, and these groups are
increasingly heavily armed that are coming into the national park and the private reserve behind me to take out the rhinos and take their horns,
mostly to Asia.
It's a battle that they're losing.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Heavily armed rangers in South Africa looking for rhino poachers, but searching everyone. They've come to lay a trap.
MARK PRESTON, ANTI-POACHING RANGER: As far as I've been told, they're going to be chased this way and I'm going to box them in.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Here conservation is looking a lot more like a bush war.
VINCENT BARKAS, OWNER, PROTRACK: We've always got to look and try to put ourselves into the poachers' shoes and try and think like a poacher.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): To do that, rangers like Josias Malloy (ph) train for months to read the signs of the bush.
MCKENZIE: He's saying that anything out of the ordinary, it's important to look out for it and call it in because this is out in the bush. Litter,
footprints, broken branches, it all could mean that poachers are around.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): Poachers normally work in small groups with a heavy caliber weapon to shoot the rhino, small arms to protect against rangers.
Sometimes they hack the horns while the rhino is still alive. Those horns are more valuable than gold, fueled by Asian demand, where they are falsely
believed to have medicinal qualities. And the poachers are moving deeper into South Africa. No longer confined to the country's eastern border, the
war is now coming from within.
BARKAS: Unfortunately, the feet on the ground with the gun that kill a poacher, I believe is the wrong way forward. We are causing more
resentment, more hatred towards our wildlife, towards conservation as a whole, than we are any good.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): But he says all they can do now --
MCKENZIE (voice-over): -- is train like a military force and fight fire with fire. But they're outmanned, outgunned and often outmaneuvered.
PRESTON: There are times that the information is good and you can knock the guys. But it doesn't happen every day.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): No arrests tonight but no rhinos taken.
MCKENZIE: Robyn, they really are taking extraordinary measures to try and save the rhino. They're cutting off the horns. At some point, they're
poisoning the horns of these rhinos to stop the poachers. They're putting CCTV cameras all around the bush at these private reserves and they have
military cooperating with these paramilitary groups.
Nothing it seems, Robyn, is actually stamping out this poaching. And to really stop it they believe they have to get into the communities and
change attitudes here and, of course, at the demand site in Vietnam and China, where people still highly prize these rhino horns -- Robyn.
CURNOW: Indeed. I mean, I've also covered the story for years. There were suggestions that drones could be used. Nothing seems to work.
I mean, and there has been engagement between the South African government and the Vietnamese government; there have been advertising campaigns.
What else can be done to stop the killing?
Because this is organized crime and desperate villages and it really does seem like this war is being lost.
MCKENZIE: It is being lost, I have to say. There's no real other way to look at it otherwise. More than 700 rhinos have been killed in the iconic
Kruger National Park just this year. Every eight hours a rhino is killed.
And now it's not just about rhinos, Robyn. If they manage to take out the species in the next few years -- and that's all it would take -- then
really it's a stepping stone to the next vulnerable species like elephant and others.
So really this is a test case to see whether conservation can even work in countries like South Africa. They need to engage the communities and it
needs a sea change of opinion.
You know, rhino horn is medically proven to be completely useless; it's like the nail or your hair, its keratin. It has no medicinal properties at
all. So it's changing attitudes, particularly in Vietnam. Not enough is being done to save this animal -- Robyn.
CURNOW: OK, David McKenzie, great stuff. Thanks for coming to us there from the Kruger National Park.
You're at the INTERNATIONAL DESK. Coming up, China's president comes to the U.S. with some cyber security on the agenda. We'll have a preview of
Xi Jinping's visit.
And it could cost Volkswagen billions of dollars to mop up a massive scandal involving its diesel cars. We'll take a look under the hood. Our
CNNMoney correspondent joins us next.
CURNOW: Hi, there. Welcome to the INTERNATIONAL DESK. I'm Robyn Curnow at the CNN Center. Here's a check of the headlines.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CURNOW (voice-over): Pope Francis is in the final hours of his momentous visit to Cuba. He celebrated his third mass in Cuba this morning in
Santiago, calling for, in his words, "a revolution of tenderness."
He next heads to the U.S., where he'll meet President Barack Obama and address the United Nations General Assembly.
E.U. ministers are in Brussels for talks on the migrant crisis in Europe. They're trying to reach a compromise on a plan to resettle 120,000
refugees. Several countries are against the mandatory quota system. E.U. heads of state will hold an emergency refugee summit on Wednesday.
And a quick check of Wall Street; the Dow is still down over 200 points, reflecting how it started off the trading day. One analyst tells CNN
investors are feeling a bit confused over everything, from the strength of China's economy to the Volkswagen scandal.
China's president is making his first state visit to the U.S., but he's not directly heading to Washington. Xi Jinping is kicking off his visit with a
stop in Seattle, Washington, to meet with tech and aerospace leaders.
Later, he'll meet with President Obama and then head to New York for the 70th anniversary of the U.N.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CURNOW: The issue of cyber security will be high on the agenda when the two presidents meet. Let's get more on that now. Our business
correspondent Samuel Burke joins us from Seattle.
Hi, there. I know that there's been a big focus on business and cooperation, collaboration between the Americans and Chinese.
Before we get to that and the cyber espionage issue, I really want you to talk about this interview Xi Jinping gave to "The Wall Street Journal."
Tell us about that.
SAMUEL BURKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Just ahead of his trip here, this monumental trip, where they've already closed off the streets here in
Seattle, Xi Jinping gave a very rare interview to "The Wall Street Journal." He talked about the cyber espionage and the cyber hacking.
And it looks like some good news for both sides because it looks like there could be an agreement. He gave some very positive language. But of
course, he was pressed in this interview about the woes that he's facing with the economy back at home.
I want to share with you just one line from this interview that he gave to "The Wall Street Journal," in which the president said the following,
quote, "Any ship, however large, may occasionally get unstable sailing on the high seas."
He gives a few of these proverb-sounding quotes to "The Wall Street Journal." Of course, no one at home will be reading that interview, Robyn,
at least not on "The Wall Street Journal" website, Robyn, because it's blocked, just like so many other foreign entities' websites, like Facebook,
Google, and Twitter back in China.
CURNOW: Indeed. It was a very highly vetted conversation but still a conversation, no doubt, giving us a sense of some of his thoughts on wide-
Let's now talk about that cyber breaching, cyber espionage, hacking, whatever you want to call it. There is expected to be an agreement between
the U.S. and China on cyber security during this visit. Tell us more about that.
BURKE: It's fascinating that President Xi chose to come here to Seattle, one of the most important tech hubs, not only in the United States but in
the world. So much of this trip is going to be about tech. He's traveling with the heads of some of the most important Chinese tech firms, Tencent,
for example, Jack Ma of Alibaba.
They'll be meeting with the heads of possibly Amazon, Apple and other big tech firms. They want a bigger piece of the Chinese pie for their
portfolios but they have major security concerns. The Chinese government has been tightening its grip around the Internet there.
And what the Chinese say is, look, we know that the United States does cyber espionage. We know all this from the revelations from former NSA
contractor, Edward Snowden. But what the Americans say is that the Chinese are doing something different.
They're doing corporate hacking. That's where they say they want to draw the line.
But it looks like an agreement could come after this trip when Xi goes to Washington and possibly announce to New York some type of cyber agreement
that would really look at trying to block each other from attacking critical infrastructure infrastructure.
So not corporate espionage, not government espionage, but saying, look, let's just stay away from the banking system, the power grid and hospitals.
So we'll be looking for some type of agreement of that nature.
CURNOW: Some sort of early arms control agreement in this area that still doesn't have a lot of legislation. Samuel Burke in Seattle, thanks so
CURNOW: Well, a scandal involving rigged emissions has wiped out --
CURNOW: -- a third of Volkswagen's value on the global market.
Now the president of VW America is admitting the company violated its mission by manipulating software to make its diesel cars appear cleaner
than they are. Here's some straight talking.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL HORN, PRESIDENT, VOLKSWAGEN AMERICA: So let's be clear about this. Our company was dishonest with the EPA and the California Air Resources
Board and with all of you. And, in my German words, we have totally screwed up.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CURNOW: I'm joined from New York by Peter Valdes-Dapena. He writes about the auto industry for CNNMoney.
You were there last night.
Admitting that you screwed up, is that an apology?
It's a pretty big one.
PETER VALDES-DAPENA, CNNMONEY CORRESPONDENT: That was a pretty distinct apology, very distinct apology. But of course it's not going to undo what
Volkswagen did. This is a huge mess that is going to be very, very difficult to clean up.
CURNOW: A huge mess, difficult to clean up and I think that is going to be an indication of particularly this company, how they deal now with fixing
VALDES-DAPENA Yes. Because this is different from any safety recalls out there. This wasn't a case where a company or someone in a company simply
made a mistake. This was a deliberate action. It's almost inconceivable that this software wasn't created this way on purpose to lower emissions
only when cars were actually being tested for emissions.
And the rest of the time they emit 10 to 40 times the legal amount of noxious emissions. This wasn't an accident. This was a company doing
something that was clearly done on purpose and it was wrong. And it's going to be very, very hard to undo.
We don't know yet how Volkswagen is going to fix these cars and make them both drive the way their owners have expected and still meet the emissions
that evidently they weren't able to meet without cheating.
CURNOW: The scale of this is also unclear. As you say, there's one point in trying to technically fix it, but what about the brand, too?
VALDES-DAPENA: Yes. The brand is clearly damaged. And VW, by the way, had a very, very good brand. They were known for being a trustworthy,
straightforward company concerned about the environment.
I've driven experimental VW cars that mix diesel with hybrid technology to get extremely high fuel economy. They make electric cars and sell them
here. So this is a company that has an image of being concerned about the environment, has an image of being a caring company.
And this completely turns that idea on its head. And a lot of VW consumers, particularly people who bought diesel cars, thinking they were
doing something good for the environment by grabbing clean diesel, they are very, very upset with Volkswagen right now.
CURNOW: Indeed. Paul Valdes-Dapena, thank you so much for your analysis. We'll of course have to see what the effect is on the auto industry on a
wider scale. But thanks so much in the meantime for your analysis.
Coming up next here, North Korean parents mourn the loss of their daughter, who disappeared four years ago. They refuse to believe she may have
defected. Our Will Ripley reports from Pyongyang. That's ahead.
CURNOW: Welcome back.
A U.N. commission says it's found evidence of crimes against humanity in North Korea and is urging the world to take action. The head of that
inquiry says it's the world's duty to not turn away and to fully investigate the allegations of abuses which --
CURNOW: -- North Korea denies.
But for now, we want to take you inside North Korea. Will Ripley has the story of one woman, who is suspected of defecting but her parents find that
impossible to believe.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Speaking foreign language).
WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Sightseeing, yes.
RIPLEY (voice-over): This room could belong to any young girl, full of stuffed animals, figurines.
RIPLEY: She loves Snow White, obviously.
RIPLEY (voice-over): Memories most would share on Facebook today, kept the old-fashioned way here in North Korea, a nation mostly without Internet,
where kids still write letters home.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking foreign language).
RIPLEY (voice-over): Like this one Moon Su Keung (ph), a young waitress at this state-owned restaurant in Cambodia, now closed, telling her parents in
Pyongyang she was just weeks from coming home, her last letter before she disappeared.
"I couldn't believe it," her mother says. "I wouldn't believe it when I first got the news because I strongly trusted and still trust her."
Only the most loyal North Koreans are selected to work abroad at state- owned businesses, often for three or four years, without coming home.
Co-workers say Moon (ph) was kidnapped by regular customers who befriended her, South Korean spies, who forced her into a car and drove away. CNN
can't independently verify the claims, which a South Korean government official called completely groundless.
RIPLEY: Does it ever cross your mind that she may have left willingly?
RIPLEY (voice-over): "Absolutely not," her father says. "She was only 20 when she disappeared. She wasn't fully independent."
Moon's (ph) parents say she must have been abducted or deceived, a claim we often hear from the families of North Koreans that disappear. Tens of
thousands of defectors have fled south since the late 1990s, many telling horror stories of persecution and abuse in the North.
The North Korean regime says they're criminals covering up their past or victims forced to lie about their homeland to survive.
But those claims are at odds with the findings of the United Nations, which cites hundreds of defectors in a scathing report on human rights abuses in
RIPLEY (voice-over): How often do you come to your daughter's room?
RIPLEY (voice-over): "Every day I come home from work and I go to her room to see if anything has changed," she says, "if she's come home."
Moon's (ph) parents haven't heard from her in four years. They still keep her university uniforms pressed and ready, just in case.
"I strongly believe you were deceived into going down there. I trust you," she tells her daughter. "Your parents will be here, waiting for you, until
the end of our lives" -- Will Ripley, CNN, Pyongyang, North Korea.
CURNOW: You can see some more of Will's exclusive reports on North Korea and his conversations with North Koreans at cnn.com.
Well, that's it for us here at the INTERNATIONAL DESK. Thanks for watching. I'm Robyn Curnow.