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UK Lawmaker Murdered. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired June 17, 2016 - 10:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:00:33] HANNAH VAUGHAN JONES, CNN ANCHOR: Hello and welcome. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones, here in London. Britain is in mourning after the
murder of a rising political star. And new details are now emerging about the man now in custody, accused of killing Jo Cox in Birstall in Northern
England on Thursday.
A short time ago, the British Prime Minister David Cameron and the labor party leader Jeremy Corbyn arrived in Birstall.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CAMERON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Here we are today commemorating her life that's been lost. And, of course, the most profound thing that's
happened is the two children have lost their mother, a husband has lost a loving wife, and of course, parliament has lost one of its most passionate
and brilliant campaigner.
Someone epitomized the fact that politics is about serving others. Today our nation is rightly shocked and I think it is a moment to stand back and
think about some of the things that are so important about our country, the fact that we should treasure and value our democracy where members of
parliament are out in the public accountable to the public, available to the public, and that's how Jo died. She died doing her job.
I think the second thing is that we should recognize that politics is about public service. People who go in to public life, they want to act in the
national interest, to pursue the national interest, to do things for other people, to make the country, make the world a better place. Politicians
disagree with each other. We often disregard what politicians say and we disregard each other and the rest of it but the end of the day that's what
it is about and that is what Jo showed it is all about.
JEREMY CORBYN, LABOUR PARTY LEADER: She was taken from us in an act of hatred in a vile act that's killed her. It's an attack on democracy, what
happened yesterday. It's the will of hatred that killed her.
She leaves behind a husband who made a truly wonderful statement yesterday, a statement saying that in her memory we would try to conquer hatred with
love and respect. She also leaves behind two young children who will never see their mother again. They will only be able to grow up knowing what she
was, what she stood for and what she achieved.
I've asked the Prime Minister and the speaker for the recall of parliament on Monday and they've accepted that request and parliament will be recalled
on Monday, so that we can pay due tribute to her. On behalf of everybody in this country, who values democracy, values the right of free speech, and
values the right of political expression, free from the kind of brutality that Jo suffered, that's why we all need to come together to understand
that everyone must have protection and security in order to function in a Democratic society.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: Well, A local official has told CNN that the suspect, the 52-year- old man who is still in custody lay in wait apparently before stabbing and shooting Jo Cox. Close to the city of Leeds in the town of Birstall. And
now it appears that he was linked to white supreme and prophetic movement.
Tommy Mair, the man pictured there, he the 52-year-old in police custody. He has not yet been charged. Jo Cox was leaving a meeting with her
constituents when she was killed. She was also campaigning over the course of the last couple of months and in the course of her time in parliament,
for Britain to stay in the European Union.
That's ahead of that crucial vote, that referendum due to take place next Thursday on the 23rd. It is unclear at this stage if her role in that
campaign for Britain remain played any part at all in her murder yesterday.
We go now live to Birstall in Northern England where our Richard Quest joins us now. He's been monitoring all the events in and around this
shocked town for us all morning. Richard, over to you.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Thank you, Hannah. Yes, the ramifications, I mean what we've seen today is quite extraordinary
political events and as the leaders of the two main parties came together along with the speaker of the house here in Birstall, but there's another
aspect to this, which of course surrounds Tommy Mair, age 52. CNN'S Nic Robertson is with me. You were outside Mair's home this morning and you
spoke to neighbors who had known him for some years.
[10:05:14] And you can judge, if you will, from the man's house and from the garden a little bit about him. And this was a man whose garden is well
kept, the bushes are well clipped. The neighbor said he liked gardening. That his back lawn was perfectly flat, she said this is a man she had known
since he was 8 years old, a quiet man, friendly to the, you know, local pets and local cats and dogs. No hint of politicalness about him at all.
But on the other side of the reporting, you've heard and reports that some white supremacist activities, the purchase online of Neo-Nazi memorabilia
in the light from an organization of the United States was one of the first to sign up to it.
A white supremacist organization, exceptionally right-wing Neo-Nazi material talking about how to make your own gun, how to make your own
bombs, chemicals, explosives these sorts of things.
QUEST: So when we heard that yesterday as the attack and just to put the perspective, the police -- you're much more familiar with this procedure
than myself having covered more of these, and at the moment they are -- we've had the fingertip search and now the drains drainage search.
NIC ROBERTSON, INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: And this is something that they're going to have to do to see -- we've heard that he was lying in
wait, had he left other material hidden there? We also know from the neighbors as well the said unusually when he left the house this time, this
is minor didn't have a car didn't drive, normally carried two plastic bags in his hands when he left the house, unusually yesterday neighbors say that
he was wearing a black backpack.
That was different, that was so different they noticed it and remembered it. But what the police will be looking for right now is did he stash any
evidence here? Was the ammunition here? Was there another weapon here? Had he got a knife here? How far in advance was this plan? Premeditation.
QUEST: Right. But this again squaring the circle, Nic, for me, they don't believe they're looking for anybody else. Localized is how the chief
constable of West Yorkshire described it yesterday.
ROBERTSON: He did, yeah, it was seen on the street saying that we didn't see yesterday police are not just with tasers but with live weapons that
carry live rounds. That's completely unusual. In a town of what told the plenty of people today said, have you ever seen this said this before? No,
never. Why are the police doing this because they are concern that this action could draw out others of a similar mentality from other parts of the
country who might want to come here and act tough in their own way.
QUEST: One of the guests I spoke to earlier talked about this movement, this Britain first movement. I'm not too familiar with but a far right-wing
ROBERTSON: On the fringes .
QUEST: On the fringes.
ROBERTSON: . of the lead campaign.
QUEST: But to be scrupulously fair about this, Britain first have denied any involvement. But Mair is believed to have shouted Britain first or put
Britain first when he attacked.
ROBERTSON: And you will find people around here as you have done today who will talk to you about right-wing extremism in some of the communities
around here. I talked to you a little earlier, my own family's experience, my sister who works not far from here in another town in her communications
through the nature of her work with the police, the right-wing extremism in areas where they're a little bit more affluent, more white communities,
that is the biggest concern for the police, right-wing extremism here in Yorkshire.
QUEST: Nic, plenty more reporting and investigating to be doing. I'll allow you to get back to your duties.
ROBERTSON: Thank you.
QUEST: Thank you very much indeed. Hanna, as we consider the full implications of what has happened, and we look at it, it is very difficult
although one tries, Hannah, to divorce the events of the last 24 hours from the ongoing referendum that takes place next Thursday on E.U. membership,
not Hannah, only because we do not know of any causal relationship between Mair, any organization, or whether the political motivation. But also,
what the effect on the voting is likely to be next week. It may be nothing at all, but we'll have to wait and find out. Hannah, back to you.
JONES: Richard, just one more question I wanted to ask you, as well. It's really about the reaction of the local community there. Jo Cox was of
course, a local girl, she was very proud to represent her constituents in Yorkshire where she grew up and went to school, as well. This must have hit
them so hard to see one of their own gunned down in broad daylight.
[10:10:03] Absolutely, not only to see somebody who has been affected by this. This is the sort of place that is a quiet, sleepy formerly
prosperous area in different times that has suddenly found itself in right slap bang center in the most extraordinary form of news.
I mean, you know, look. Birstall wants to be in the news for the right reasons as one of the local residents said to me earlier, most definitely
in the news for the wrong reasons and you do not everyday, Hannah, get the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom along with the leader of the
opposition and the speaker of the house all coming together to lay flowers and pay tribute. And that in its own right and tells us all we need to
know about the current situation Hannah.
Joining me here to talk a little bit more about this. And Dr. Omar Shaikh, good to see you.
OMAR SHAIKH, LOCAL DOCTOR: Nice to meet you.
QUEST: Thank you very much and for coming along and talk.
Now, you are a local resident here?
SHAIKH: That's right, yes, yes. It is a tragic day. We've really lost a gem.
QUEST: How people are saying this, people are saying that you've lost a gem and I can understand why in the heat of moment but as I understand it,
Jo Cox was more.
SHAIKH: Well, I never actually met Jo myself but she spoke to my mother when she was out campaigning last year and she spent time listening and
talking to her and in the end she gave my mother a big hug and that really connected with me.
QUEST: And your mom never forgot.
SHAIKH: My mother never forgot. My mother was out here yesterday. We both came to the vigil that here last night.
QUEST: How was that vigil last night?
SHAIKH: Well, we had members from everywhere from the community, from every member of the community. We had Muslim people, we had Christians, we
had everyone. And it was really good in the way that we all had a chance to reflect about Jo and we all had a chance to think about her. And it's
QUEST: I'm hearing one or two people talking to me about Britain first, about, you know, meetings of those sorts of things that have taken place in
the community. Is there anything that's as given you cause for concern in the last year or two?
SHAIKH: Well, I've lived here for 20 years of my whole life.
SHAIKH: I've got to say the community relations here in my opinion are really good. If you compare them to other parts of the country, for
example, London, other parts of the world. Relatively it's quite peaceful here. I have never experienced any of the racism. I mean obviously we have
a few idiots that do things. I work in my local hospital you get this now all the stages that can be abusive, but genuine racism from the community,
segregation? No, no.
QUEST: Good to see you sir. Thank you very much.
SHAIKH: Thank you very much , thank you.
QUEST: Now, one other point Hannah that is worth just making. And as we sort of pull the strands together today and it was very interesting if you
listen to what the Prime Minister said and the leader of the opposition, talking about more respect for politicians, more respect for the public
discourse, the coming together, the active decency in public life and you compare it to what we heard President Obama say yesterday in Orlando when,
of course, he and the vice president of the U.S. Visited those victims and those who are affected by the shootings, the mass shootings there.
In their own way, Hannah, both political leaders expressing exactly the same philosophy and sentiment that clearly political discourse has been
allowed to get out of hand and it is time to rein it back in to one of respect maybe not courtesy, but at least being disagreeing without becoming
JONES: Richard, thanks very much indeed, for updating us on the latest there in Birstall of course, where Jo Cox was gunned down in the middle of
the day, broad daylight yesterday, just over 24 hours ago now. That was Richard Quest for us there.
Poll leaders and lawmakers around the world are offering their condolences for Jo Cox and of course, their condemnation of the crime that took her
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANGELA MERKEL, GERMAN CHANCELLOR (through Hannah): The instance itself was dreadful, dramatic and our thoughts with the people which are involved, for
the late M.P.s, the politicians in general.
MALCOLM TURNBULL, AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER: This is a shocking crime and I convey my condolences on behalf of the government and people of
Australia, my condolences, our prayers and our strongest solidarity to the family of Jo Cox and to the people of the United Kingdom.
[10:15:08] NATHAN CULLEN, CANADIAN PARLIAMENT MEMBER: I rise to a tribute -- a mum of two -- excuse me, and a friend. A dedicated Labour M.P. in a
long -- for the human rights in Britain and around the world who was murdered today.
Excuse me. Jo used her voice for those who have none. She dedicated her passion to those who needed it most and she harnessed limitless love even
and especially for those who allowed hate to consume them. Her husband Brendan said it beautifully.
She would've wanted two things above all else to happen now that our children are bathed in love and we all unite to fight against the hatred
that killed her.
To Brendan, to Jo's beautiful children, we express our deepest condolences. Excuse me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: A huge amount of emotion there. You can see being displayed from our leaders, politicians, people across the world and of course,
expressions of shock of people who knew Jo Cox and of course, those who didn't know her, as well.
Penny Lawrence worked with Jo at Oxfam, the charity and she joins us now live from Oxfam, Penny, thanks so much for joining us.
And on what must be such an impossibly difficult day for those who knew and loved Jo. The country is obviously in shock. But the pain I'm sure for you
and all of those who worked with Jo in the past must go that much deeper.
PENNY LAWRENCE, DEPUTY CHIEF EXECUTIVE, OXFAM: Yes, no. It does it's a terrible shock and we had a moment where we all gathered here at Oxfam at
the office this morning and shared stories and about Jo and her amazing, bubbly personality, but also about all that she achieved here.
And how a very good to always together but yeah, I think the whole organization is in shock, yeah.
JONES: Penny, so much is being made of her humanitarian missions, the work she did. Tell us a little bit about what she did achieve while she was
working alongside you at Oxfam.
LAWRENCE: So, she achieved all sorts of things. She was I suppose sort of working on some of the most difficult issues that we face as a world and
what to do with half a million refugees in Sudan and how on earth to tackle the government on -- in Sudan on tricky issues around the war and what was
happening, the atrocities really is happening in Darfur.
The responsibility that we have to protect people, very difficult sort of international humanitarian law issues through to very personal issues of
domestic violence and violence from the war in the Congo for example.
So she was both out there in the field talking to affected women. She was talking a lot with U.N. and E.U. policymakers and lawmakers and focusing a
lot on the implementation of any laws or any new policies that got practiced, that got passed, rather, to make sure they made a difference to
the people on the ground.
JONES: She was obviously very outspoken then about the matters that she was passionate about both in her work with Oxfam before she joined
parliament and indeed in the short 13 months that she was in parliament as a member there. It does very much seem like she made her mark on whatever
she set her mind to do. Can you think though of any reason why anyone could want to cut short back her life? Would want to cut her down in her prime?
Any reason at all why she would have created any enemies around her?
LAWRENCE: No, not at all because Jo did this in a way that really engage people. She was also this bubbly, tiger-like effervescent person and she
had a very positive attitude so she was very solutions focused, so she wasn't a haranguing campaigner. She was a very positive person about how
things could be different and how the world could be better.
So no, I can't think anybody would want to challenge, you know, you might want to challenge issues around immigration and so on I can quite
understand but her a whole approach was very positive about how the world could be different and her smile and her positivity I suppose were things
that really disarmed whether issue with political leaders in Sudan through to E.U. bureaucrats, it was very disarming to have somebody who was that
high and quite tall about half my size and bubbling, enthusiastic with incredibly intelligent, very knowledgeable about her subject and very, very
committed to the voice of the voiceless, making sure that people had a voice in any positions of power.
JONES: And had she always wanted to have a role in political life or was this something that just developed as she got more involved with particular
campaigns with Oxfam?
[10:20:08] LAWRENCE: I think so. She started after she graduate, it is a - - as intern with MEPs and so on and I suppose working on poverty is essentially deeply political issue and agenda.
But I think, you know, she just wanted to make the biggest difference she could to the most vulnerable people, whether they with the people Berkley
or the people in Sudan. And, yes, you know, playing her part in that very powerful institution we have in the houses of parliament and just making
sure that it really is acting for and behalf of the people fitted very well with what she did at Oxfam, too.
JONES: Penny Lawrence, we very much appreciate you taking the time to talk to us here at CNN. I know you worked with Jo Cox on campaigns at Oxfam and
this must be a difficult time for you and your colleagues there. But we very much appreciate you taking the time. Thank you.
LAWRENCE: Thank you very much.
JONES: Now, still ahead on "The international desk" this hour, Russia hopes the Olympic ban on the track and field team for doping will be
lifted. We'll take you to Vienna just ahead of that decision.
JONES: Welcome back. Russia is about to find out whether its track and field team will be allowed to compete in the Rio games this summer. It was
banned back in November of last year a mid allegations of state sponsored doping.
Well, that ban expected to be either overturned or upheld in less than an hour now. Matthew Chance has the view for us from Moscow. But first, Amanda
Davies is in Vienna where the decision will be made. Amanda, any indication yet and to which way this is going to go?
AMANDA DAVIES, CNN WORLD SPORTS: Well, Hannah, I can tell you the IAAF council meeting is still going on at the hotel behind us. The Grand Vienna
Hotel and the word that we have been told from the IAAF is that no decision has been taken although the rumors, the talk very much coming out of the
council meeting is that the decision is being taken not to lift their suspension.
That's however, hasn't officially been confirmed. There's due to be a press conference here at the top of the hour in about 40 minutes time or so with
the IAAF president Lord Sebastian Coe. And you have to say that common sense would suggest that the ban should be kept in place.
You may remember this is a suspension that was handed out in November after that report which talked about widespread state sub sponsored and
systematic doping in athletics in Russia, and since then Russia have been working with an IAAF task force led by an independent anti-doping expert,
Norwegian Koruna Andersen, in order to try and meet some reinstatement criteria.
[10:25:18] The suggestion is that they haven't been met. And if you look at what is come out in just the last couple of days, a report from the
world anti-doping agency, talking about how their drug testers have been evaded, how drug tests have been missed, how that have been attempts to
cover up positive tests even since November. There have been lasted, as well, from various athletics federations around the world calling for the
IAAF to uphold this suspension.
And they have very much has been growing pressure on athletics world governing body. It's no doubt a crucial, crucial decision that will be
taken. This is seen as a real opportunity for athletics governing body to take a stand against doping in sports. Not just from an athletics
perspective but also for sport adds as a whole.
JONES: And Amanda, if, indeed, this ban is upheld, then what next for Russian athletes? Will they appeal or is this game over for them?
DAVIES: Yes. In sports, it's not going to be game over, is it Hannah? There's been lots of talk and speculation about what happens next. There
have been some athletes, the likes of Elena Isinbaeva who has said she would take her fight as she says a clean athlete to the court of human
Alternatively, there's the court of arbitration for sport that is the highest court in sport. She has said she would fight to clear her name to
be able to compete as a Russian athlete, a clean Russian athlete. There has been talk from the sports minister in Russia, Vitaly Mutko that he
would look at taking legal action from the Russian perspective.
But perhaps more importantly than that in the near future is the International Olympic Committee, the IOC, the body that governs the Olympic
Games has convened a meeting in those in next week on Tuesday. The suggestion is that they will be looking at options in terms of what
individual athletes could do because this is such a legal minefield to ban not just athletes that we know have been found guilty of doping but to
clean -- to ban clean athletes, as well, would certainly be a very big and controversial step and very much unchartered territory.
JONES: Amanda, we'll let you go as you can get into that conference and find out what that decision will be. That's due in the next half our hour
so. But thank you very much indeed, Amanda Davis there for us in Vienna.
We can get to Matthew Chance now, who's standing by for us in Moscow with the view from Russia. Matthew, nervous times for Russian athletes but for
the country as a whole, as well.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah. It's the athletes, the track and field athletes, talking about of course, sporting
officials, the Russian public at large, that'll be all be crossing their fingers. I expect hoping this country has done enough to convince the
IAAF, the world governing body for athletes that is happening tonight. Clean these anti-doping systems are in place. But, you know, it was always
gone to be a very tough sell. It was kind of be want anyway, given the report back in November from what is world's anti-doping agency that which
alleged a state sponsored program of doping. Not just individual athletes that were kept with double taking a ban substances. But all government-
controlled program is what the report alleges in which athletes were systematically doped in order to get better positions in lead tables in the
middle standings. And so that's the extent of the cheating effectively that has been alleged by Wada.
And I think that bad enough, just a few days ago so as the IAAF was sitting down to consider what they're going to do, another Wada report was raised
that was almost the equally damning talking about how athletes were obstructing the drug testing providing false information about their
whereabouts and avoiding drug testers act like tournaments.
There was this one astonishing case that would show what the Wada report. The latest one talks of us of an athlete attempt to, give a fake urine
sample using a container that she inserted inside her so, you know, enormous lengths that Russian athletes are alleged to have gone to, to
cheated, it's really this is an opportunity I think that we were just talking about this. But, you know, the IAAF has to send a strong message
that this kind of abuse is not going to be tolerated. And, indeed, you know, the rumors right there that indeed may be the kind of message they do
JONES: Matthew Chance, live for us in Moscow, we appreciate it. Thank you.
[10:30:03] Now still ahead, from the International Desk, Britain's parliament is being a called back from recess early to pay tribute to Jo
Cox. We're going to be live in Westminster after the short break.
JONES: People across the icy kingdom are paying tribute to Jo Cox, after the 41-year-old, member of Parliament was murdered on Thursday. It all
happened in the village of Birstall in Northern England and children has then laid flowers. They're the scene of the attack.
Also in London, memorials are being placed at Parliament Square, all flowers you can see there at Parliament Square in Westminster where Jo Cox
would have spent a lot of her time as a Member of Parliament. She was only an M.P., there for 13 months or so having won her seat in May 2015 in the
general election but her colleagues and constituents all say, that she left a very lasting impression, and here's to look at why.
(BEGIN OF VIDEO CLIP)
JO COX, MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT: You know I have decide that I'm going to reproach being a member from within a decent healthy children christianism
(ph) and humor. It's very humbling. It's an amazing building. And then I'm going to let it intimidate me.
COX: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. It's a great privilege to be called to make my maiden speech in this most important of debate. Can I congratulate many
of those who made outstanding maiden speeches today as well.
Many honorable and right honorable members will lay claim, I'm sure to the constituencies being constituencies there's two halves, on numerous
(inaudible) parts. I'm another in that respect and partly spending very much that kind of constituency and it's a joy to represent such a diverse
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just dreadful faith, poor girl. For the first time in many, many years we actually had an M.P. that was interested in Birstall
and interested in rules and interested in the people and the businesses here and for this to happen is just .
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: So many people still so shocked, of course at Jo Cox's murder. Our Will Ripley is in Westminster just outside of parliament at the moment
joins us there live.
Will, we heard Jeremy Corbyn in the Yorkshire just in the last hour or so saying he has requested that parliament be recalled and it does seem that -
- that's request has been granted now.
WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And Hannah as, you know, that this is a somewhat rare event to bring back all of the members of parliament. Many
of them though are expected to be here on Monday to pay their respects.
[10:35:06] Six hundred fifty offices inside the House of Commons, 650 M.P.s but there's one empty office, one name on everybody's minds, Jo Cox who
served for a short period of time but it's made a really big impression on many. I spoke a short time ago with Ed Miliband, he was the leader of the
labour party when Jo was elected back in May of 2015 and he spoke of how her politics is really a model for others in this country to follow him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ED MILIBAND, FORMER LABOUR PARTY LEADER: Look, I'm not going to trample myself in the mind of the killer and I don't think we can, actually,
because I think we'll find that in days, weeks and months ahead what motivated that person.
I think it's a moment of reflection for all of us on the tone of our politics. And I think in way we should be inspired by Jo's life. This is
not about her death. It's about her life and the way she conducted her politics which was to disagree without being disagreeable. To engage with
people and, you know, the lessons in that for all of us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
RIPLEY: And it is really politicians on both sides of the Brexit debate who are here, Ed Miliband, who was one of the most vocal supporters of the
U.K. leaving the E.U. that referendum coming next week. He came here just a short time ago and he laid a bouquet of flowers down here at this
memorial which just organically continues to grow. People placing their messages, cards, flowers, and if we walk over this way, a bit, of course,
the centerpiece of all of this is a very large portrait of Jo Cox, 41- years-old, a mother of two. World leaders have been sending in their condolences, talking about the legacy that this woman will leave behind, a
legacy of compassion for her constituents.
She was meeting with them listening to their concerns when she was attacked and killed and so this country even though divided over the issue of the
Brexit really united right now in grief.
HANNAH VAUGHAN JONES, CNN HOST: Yeah. Will, we appreciate your reporting. And, of course, as you said Jo at the time, Jo Cox have been conducting on
of her M.P.s surgery, which is really the bedrock of British politics and politicians on all side of the divide now is talking about this attack on
our democracy, not least on an M.P. - a young M.P. who's really making her mark in British political life.
Will Ripley, thank you very much. Stay with us here on "The International Death" here at CNN. We will be back here after this short break.
JONES: ISIS is steadily losing grounds in the battle for the city of Fallujah. Now, the terror group has suffered a major symbolic setback.
Iraq's federal police have recaptured the building housing the mayor's office in Fallujah and raised the Iraqi flag over the neighborhood.
[10:40:13] However, the fight for the city is still not over. Iraqi forces say ISIS snipers have taken up positions in Fallujah's main hospital. ISIS
has held Fallujah since January of 2014. There are thousands of civilians thought still be trapped inside that city.
Now, the picture of the Orlando nightclub shooter is becoming clearer with each day. CNN has learned the man who killed 49 people last weekend
displayed anti-social behavior ever since he was a child. This as the U.S. President Barack Obama is again consoling grieving families after a mass
Polo Sandoval has the latest now for us from Orlando.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Two hours into the three-hour Orlando shooting terror attack while holed up in a bathroom in a standoff with
police. Investigators say the killer exchanged text messages with his wife Nora Salman, asking if she had seen the news authority say she also tried
calling him several times during the rampage but he didn't answer.
This as chilling new video from inside the gay nightclub surfaces it was taken by a survivor as the killer passed inside one of the club's bathrooms
frightened club goers huddling together hoping they wouldn't be next.
Miguel Leiva recorded the great new video. He was shot in the foot and in the leg.
MIGUEL LEIVA, ORLANDO SHOOTING SURVIVOR: There was about 17 of us in there. Only like five or six of us made it out.
SANDOVAL: The captain Mark Canty describes the moment the SWAT team breached the wall to rescue the victims inside.
MARK CANTY, ORLANDO SWAT COMMANDER: While gun fire still going on, you know, just as our officers engaging him, other police officers are running
in there, you know, with no regard for their safety and they're pulling some of those victims out.
SANDOVAL: President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden spent the day in Orlando meeting with victims and their families.
BARACK OBAMA, U.S. PRESIDENT: I held and hugged grieving family members and parents and they asked why does this keep happening? And they pleaded
that we do more to stop the carnage.
SANDOVAL: Obama's presidency challenged by dozens of mass shootings forcing him to be consoler in chief. Many asking could this massacre have
been avoided? Investigators are now piecing together the killer's past. CNN has obtained documents showing that the killer had behavioral issues
dating back to elementary school.
Saint Lucy County's school record show he was disciplined 31 times between 1992 and 1999 for rude and aggressive behavior. A former elementary school
classmate tells CNN that the shooter once threatened to bring a gun to school and kill everyone.
ROBERT ZINIDE, ORLANDO SHOOTER'S SCHOOLMATE: Well, when I was a little out there, didn't really have too many friends.
SANDOVAL: Robert Circle and other classmates also told CNN in the days following 9/11, the killer claimed Osama bin Laden was his uncle and that
he also joked about the attacks.
ZINIDE: He was acting like a plane like he had his arms out, he was like making a plane noise like he would - he made like a boom sound or an
explosion-type of sound, fell on the seat and he was like, laughing about it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: CNN's Polo Sandoval reporting there from Orlando in Florida.
Well, that does it for us here at the International Desk. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones. But don't go anywhere, World Sport with Christina
Macfarlane is up next.