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Priest Killed in Terror Attack in France; Japan Knife Attack; Bernie Sanders Pushes for Party Unity; Michelle Obama Delivers Rousing Convention Speech; MH370 Captain Simulated Route; Vatican Condemns Murder of Priest; Rio Games Revitalize City. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired July 26, 2016 - 10:00   ET

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


[10:00:00]

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LYNDA KINKADE, CNN HOST (voice-over): Ahead at the INTERNATIONAL DESK, a French priest brutally killed in a terror attack.

Japan (INAUDIBLE) worst massacre in decades.

And Hillary Clinton about to make history at the Democratic National Convention.

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KINKADE: Hello and welcome, I'm Lynda Kinkade.

We begin with more bloodshed in Europe and growing fear across the continent that no place is safe from violence. In the latest incident,

terrorists targeted a church in Northern France, killing an elderly priest.

This follows recent attacks in France and Germany, where assailants used guns, bombs, knives, even a truck. The seemingly daily violence is wearing

on the psyche of many Europeans who're left wondering when and where the next attack may happen.

Our team across Europe is following the developments. Our Jim Bittermann is coverage the church attack from Paris; Atika Shubert is at the site of

Sunday's suicide bombing in Southern Germany.

I'll start with Jim.

Jim, France's president has traveled to the scene of this brutal attack. And he's linked the killers to ISIS.

JIM BITTERMANN, CNN SR. INTL. CORRESPONDENT: He did, indeed, Lynda. In fact, he said that. He said these are two operatives from daish, which is

the French way of saying ISIS, basically making the link. Then I think they must have had some indication almost immediately after this attack

this morning that this was, first, a terrorist attack and that the identity of the assailant may have been known right away because the president and

the interior minister departed from Paris very shortly after the attacks and went on their way to Rouen, which is the biggest town nearby this

church.

The church is a few miles away from the center of Rouen and a town of about 28,000 people, working class town with a large Muslim population. And the

closeness, the proximity of the church to Rouen, was, in fact, something that helped the police bring this to a quick end because, the -- after the

many attacks here over the last year and a half, the French have decided to place their SWAT teams within 20 minutes' operating time of every part of

the country.

And so the SWAT team was able to get from Rouen to this church quite quickly and confronted the assailants as they came out of the church, is

they way we understand it happened and shot them as they came out, brandishing knives, which they had used to slash the throat of the elderly

priest you were talking about and do grave injury to one of the other people in the church at the time.

There were apparently two sisters, two nuns that were there, and two churchgoers there for an early morning mass this morning.

KINKADE: And Jim, we are finding out that one of the attackers was known, at least one of the attackers was known to police.

What have you found out?

BITTERMANN: Well this is something that may have helped the president and others decide that this was a terrorist event right away because, according

to a police source, one of the attackers had tried to go to Syria last year, was stopped by Turkish authorities, was turned back to France.

And in France, he served time in prison, left prison and was wearing an electronic bracelet at the time of the attacks apparently. We don't know

exactly where the -- where things went wrong here.

But, in fact, the one attacker was meant to be wearing this electronic bracelet to keep track of his whereabouts at all times. If he was indeed

wearing that, somebody slipped up not monitoring his whereabouts because he was able to commit this attack -- Lynda.

KINKADE: That's right, a huge slipup there. Jim Bittermann, thank you very much.

I want to go to Germany now, a country on edge after four attacks in a week, the latest, a suicide bombing Sunday at a music festival in Ansbach.

We're learning more about the bombers' ties to ISIS.

Atika Shubert is following those developments.

Atika, the failed Syrian asylum seeker had pledged allegiance to ISIS in a video on his phone.

But is there any evidence that he had been in contact with the group?

ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is what investigators are looking at. What we know from police, from the

prosecutor's office, is that he had a video on his phone, in which a man wearing a scarf pledges allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Baker al-Baghdadi and

vows revenge upon German victims here.

SO police believe that is him. And at the same time --

[10:05:00]

SHUBERT: -- ISIS, through their Amaq news agency, also put out a video that certainly looks similar. But we can't confirm whether that's the

case.

Now trying to prove that there's a direct link between the two and that they were in communication beforehand is what investigators are going to be

looking at. That's going to take some time looking at all of this mobile phone logs, looking at his computer and trying to figure out who he was in

contact in the days before.

I think what's important to note here is that not only did he have these in his phone but he had a history of mental illness. He had, police say, had

made two suicide attempts in the years that he was here in Germany. He had been here for two years.

And in the last two weeks, he had just been notified that he would be deported back to Bulgaria, which is where he entered the E.U. for the first

time, in the next 30 days. So I think that gives us a bit of a fuller picture of the attacker.

But investigators still need to figure out exactly who he was talking to and how he was able to assemble the explosives that he used in the attack.

KINKADE: And fortunately, in this attack, he wasn't able to claim any other lives, although many were injured. We are hearing from a security

guard, whose efforts may have saved lives.

SHUBERT: Absolutely. In fact, a music concert was going on that very day in that direction there. There were about 2,000 people there. We spoke to

the security guard, who actually turned the attacker away. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I saw a person about 20 yards from me and who was watching me. He made several phone calls. He seemed hectic

and nervous and kept looking left and right and behind himself to see if someone was watching him.

He then kept looking at me to see if maybe I would leave my post so he could get in. I turned my back to him for 20, 30 seconds and then looked

back and he was gone. And then the explosion happened.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHUBERT: Now that explosion happened actually right there. He sat down there, stood up and then tugged at his backpack. That's when it detonated.

They're now cleaning up the scene, trying to get back to normal life here. But that will be tough -- Lynda.

KINKADE: Yes, no doubt. Atika, great to have you there on the scene. Thank you very much.

We go now to Japan: 19 people are dead in what's being called one of the worst mass killings in the nation since World War II. Our Ivan Watson is

in Sagamihara, Japan, and joins us now.

Ivan, the deadliest massacre Japan has seen in decades.

How did it unfold?

IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It began before dawn on Tuesday, when a former employee of this disabled persons' home that I'm

standing in front of right now, broke in, evidently, according to Japanese authorities, and then began murdering some of the patients, disabled people

inside, people that he himself had taken care of for years, with a death toll the likes of which really this country hasn't seen in generations.

At least 19 people killed, dozens of people injured, at least 13 of them seriously injured. The ages of the victims ranges from about 18 all the

way up to 70 at this disabled persons' home here in a sleepy, quiet town, about an hour's drive out of Tokyo in the hills. This is popular hiking

country for people coming out of the Japanese capital.

This disabled persons' home had been home to about 149-150 patients. This attacker, who has been identified as 26-year-old Satoshi Uematsu, he then

turned himself in to police within about an hour of this predawn carnage -- Lynda.

KINKADE: And, Ivan, I understand, we're hearing from a childhood friend of this attacker.

What have they said?

WATSON: The friends of this young man say that he was a clean-cut, optimistic, cheerful guy. But we're hearing a very different story from

Japanese authorities, one that suggests a history of psychiatric problems.

He had worked at this location for years up until February. And it's in mid-February that authorities say he tried to deliver a letter that he had

written to the chairman of the lower house of the Japanese parliament.

And in that letter, according to the public broadcaster, NHK, he was basically calling for killing disabled people in Japan -- or euthanasia, as

NHK put it. Evidently it caused enough concern that police several days later detained the suspect and took him to a psychiatric hospital, where he

remained for some time but then was released in March, reportedly, when his condition improved.

Just four months later, before dawn, he shows up at his former place of employment --

[10:10:00]

WATSON: -- and carries out the deadliest massacre that Japan has arguably seen since World War II.

Some real questions now to be raised about why it was that he was released; was there any type of follow-up to check up on somebody who clearly had

some real problems?

And this incident has come as an incredible shock to this sleepy community, to Japan as a whole and also just points out that, when it comes to the

specter of just kind of blind, deadly violence, no country, no ethnic group, no religious group has a monopoly on this. He does not appear to

have had any political affiliations, this suspected killer -- Lynda.

KINKADE: OK. Ivan Watson, we'll come back to you as this story continues to develop. Thank you very much.

Well, still to come, it's time for party unity. That was the theme as the Democratic National Convention gets off to a chaotic start. We'll go live

to Philadelphia for a wrap-up of all the action.

Plus: an embarrassment for Democrats has become a political nightmare. Now It's a foreign policy issue. We'll tell you how Moscow is responding

to allegations that it's behind the hack into the Democrats' e-mails.

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KINKADE: Welcome back.

A raucous Democratic National Convention kicked off Monday night with one goal: uniting the party behind presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Hala Gorani joins us now live from Philadelphia.

Hala, it might be Hillary Clinton's convention but it was certainly Michelle Obama's night.

HALA GORANI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. There is no doubt about that, regardless of whether you support Hillary Clinton, the Democrats or the

Republicans. There's no denying that Michelle Obama, the first lady of the United States, stole the show.

Now Bernie Sanders tried his best to get his supporters on board for Clinton. And as you mentioned, the first lady, Michelle Obama, spoke. She

outlined the importance of this moment in history. Here's a wrap-up with our Manu Raju.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MICHELLE OBAMA, FIRST LADY: Don't let anyone ever tell you that this country isn't great.

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Michelle Obama, bringing down the house on night one of the Democratic convention.

MICHELLE OBAMA: This, right now, is the greatest country on Earth.

RAJU (voice-over): The first lady, leading a powerful list of headliners, including Hillary's Democratic rival, Senator Bernie Sanders.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I), VT.: Thank you.

RAJU (voice-over): After a hard-fought primary, Sanders welcomed to the stage amid deafening cheers in a three-minute standing ovation before

delivering a full-throated endorsement of his former rival --

[10:15:00]

RAJU (voice-over): -- in the most important political moment of the night.

SANDERS: Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her tonight.

RAJU (voice-over): Sanders emphasizing the stakes of this election.

SANDERS: If you think you can sit it out, take a moment to think about the Supreme Court justices that Donald Trump would nominate.

RAJU (voice-over): While comforting disappointed supporters, many getting emotional during his remarks.

SANDERS: We have begun a political revolution to transform America and that revolution, our revolution, continues.

RAJU (voice-over): The speeches aimed at uniting a party, still simmering over the primary fight, the division on display throughout the day, both

inside and outside the convention hall as Sanders delegates shouted in favor of their nominee and interrupted speeches with loud anti-Clinton

boos, despite efforts by Clinton and Sanders officials to quiet the outburst.

These protests drawing an unscripted rebuke from Sanders supporter and comedian, Sarah Silverman.

SARAH SILVERMAN, COMEDIAN: To the Bernie or Bust people, you're being ridiculous.

RAJU (voice-over): But the discord quieting, as Michelle Obama took stage.

MICHELLE OBAMA: In this election, I'm with her.

RAJU (voice-over): The first lady casting the presidential race as a decision about who would create the best future for America's children

while delivering resounding praise for her husband's former rival.

MICHELLE OBAMA: In this election, there is only one person who I trust with that responsibility, only one person who I believe is truly qualified

to be President of the United States and that is our friend, Hillary Clinton.

RAJU (voice-over): Ms. Obama, choking up while touching on the historical significance of Clinton's nomination.

MICHELLE OBAMA: Because of Hillary Clinton, my daughters and all our sons and daughters now take for granted that a woman can be President of the

United States.

RAJU (voice-over): And highlighting the challenges overcome throughout history that brought her to this stage.

MICHELLE OBAMA: Generations of people who felt the lash of bondage, the shame of servitude, the sting of segregation but who kept on striving and

hoping and doing what needed to be done so that, today, I wake up every morning in a house that was built by slaves.

RAJU (voice-over): The first lady making an unusual foray into partisan politics, to knock Donald Trump, without mentioning him by name.

MICHELLE OBAMA: The issues a president faces are not black and white and cannot be boiled down to 140 characters.

When you have the nuclear codes at your fingertips and the military in your command, you can't make snap decisions. You can't have a thin skin or a

tendency to lash out.

RAJU (voice-over): Candidly talking about the lessons she has tried to instill in her daughters.

MICHELLE OBAMA: We urge them to ignore those who question their father's citizenship or faith.

RAJU (voice-over): And criticizing Trump's rhetoric.

MICHELLE OBAMA: We insist that the hateful language they hear from public figures on TV does not represent the true spirit of this country.

Our motto is, "When they go low, we go high."

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GORANI: Well, we're joined now by Zach Wolf, managing editor of CNN Digital Politics.

I don't know what speaker can top Michelle Obama at this stage.

ZACHARY WOLF, CNN POLITICS DIGITAL, MANAGING EDITOR: That's right. She had this crowd electrified. It was really a marquee moment. People are

talking about it as one of the best convention speeches they have seen in recent memory.

So it will be hard, I think, going forward in the week, we have two notable speakers, President Obama. People think he can give a pretty good speech,

and Bill Clinton, another good speaker. But everybody will be wondering if they can top that. It's quite a bench of orators that the Democrats have.

GORANI: What about Michelle Obama's speech resonated so much, not just with people here in this arena, but across the country?

WOLF: I think part of it is that it sought to be inspiring about the way the country is.

If you look at what Donald Trump said last week, it was all about what's wrong with the country, how he's going to fix the country, how it's going

off the rails.

And she was talking about what's right with the country and saying things have come a lot further than they were, on racial issues. And that's

something people would discuss. But she was saying that, pointing out, she wakes up in a house, that was built by slaves, every day. And now her two

daughters play with their dogs on the lawn.

So it was this inspiring message about where the country is.

GORANI: And another powerful moment, was when she said essentially her daughters and other children, her daughters and her children's age are

taking for granted now --

[10:15:00]

GORANI: -- the idea, the very idea that a woman can become President of the United States. She in fact got emotional when she said that. And

again, this is something that I think across party lines people can relate to because whether you're Republican or Democrat in the United States, that

is the truth.

A woman can become President of the United States. And that wasn't true not so long ago.

WOLF: Right. But what's interesting is that people take it for granted and it hasn't happened yet. So you have this kind of thing.

And Hillary Clinton tonight, when she's accepts the -- or when she is officially nominated, when they do the roll call vote, it will be an

historic moment because it's never happened.

GORANI: All right. And we'll be on the floor, by the way, reporting on that.

But let's talk about Bernie Sanders because not all his supporters were playing nice yesterday here.

WOLF: That's right. We saw some booing earlier in the day. We had them chanting, even when came out during his convention speech earlier in the

day, when he was talking to a state delegation, I believe, they were sort of talking over him. They talked during Elizabeth Warren.

So they brought this energy. You could feel it. When he was giving his speech, there was so much screaming for him, so much -- but at the same

time, the way they talked over people like Elizabeth Warren, that you can still feel the lack of unity over Sanders amongst Democrats.

GORANI: But still nothing like what we saw at the RNC, where really you had Ted Cruz intentionally come out and not endorse Donald Trump, making a

point of not endorsing --

WOLF: Making -- and last night, we saw a full-throated endorsement by Bernie Sanders, rallying against Donald Trump and saying Hillary Clinton is

your option to do that.

GORANI: OK. And quickly, this evening, who are we expecting?

WOLF: Tonight, it's Bill Clinton. He's known for giving great convention speeches. He did it for Barack Obama four years ago. This is a chance to

do it for Hillary Clinton.

GORANI: We'll see if he comes close to Michelle Obama. Thanks very much, Zach Wolf.

Lynda, as we mentioned tonight, we will be broadcasting that President Bill Clinton speech here at the convention stage. And the delegates will

officially nominate Hillary Clinton as the party's nominee. We'll be on the floor reporting on that as well.

For now, back to you at the CNN Center.

KINKADE: All right, thanks so much, Hala.

Turmoil in the Democratic Party has reached overseas. An investigation into who is behind the hack into the Democrats' e-mail points to Russia.

But Moscow is brushing off those allegations.

Our Matthew Chance is following this story and joins us from Moscow.

Matthew, Russia's foreign minister gave a very short but sharp response.

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, he did. He kind of laughed it off, actually, saying that he wouldn't answer the

response because he didn't want to use a four-letter word. And so that's the kind of tone that's been -- that we've been hearing from Russian

officials when it comes to responding to this allegation that it is the Russians that were behind the hacking of the DNC e-mail accounts and their

leaking as well, causing a significant amount of embarrassment to the presumptive candidate for Democrats, Hillary Clinton.

There's been other reaction as well. The Kremlin, the spokesman for the Kremlin, Dmitry Peskov, saying, this is just more usual fun and games that

you often get, he says, during the U.S. election campaign. He said he expected it to pass over but it is not good, he said, for U.S.-Russian

relations, the bilateral relations.

So in essence, the Russians are trying to just laugh this off; they're trying to brush it away. But the allegations that President Putin or that

the Kremlin could have been behind the attempt to influence the U.S. presidential election obviously is a very serious allegation indeed.

KINKADE: Absolutely. Well, the FBI is investigating. So we'll wait to see what comes out of that. Matthew Chance, thanks for joining us.

Now to the latest of the Malaysian flight MH370. It's been 2.5 years since the plane disappeared and now a new theory has emerged, suggesting pilot

suicide. The sister of the chief pilot is slamming that theory.

CNN's Asia editor, Andrew Stevens, has been following this closely. He joins us from Kuala Lumpur.

Andrew, you have spoken to the sister in a very rare interview.

What did she tell you?

ANDREW STEVENS, CNN ASIA PACIFIC EDITOR: Yes, I did indeed, Lynda. She had been very, very reluctant to give interviews to the media. She in fact

told me that she had never given an interview to local media here and just a couple of international outlets.

And she was absolutely determined to clear her brother's name. She was very, very clear that they did have a close relationship, that they are two

of nine children. She was the oldest, he was the second youngest. So 17 years separated them.

But she said he was a scapegoat, pure and simple, and has been a scapegoat from day one in the absence of any key facts about what actually happened

to Flight 370. And she said -- she repeated a line that I've heard before. And the allegation was or the suggestion is that he had, on his home flight

simulator, plotted --

[10:25:00]

STEVENS: -- a course down to the Southern Indian Ocean in the weeks before the plane went missing. She said that that flight simulator had not been

working for more than a year and that this was just another example of him being used as a scapegoat.

It's interesting, though, Lynda, because it's actually very difficult to get key information. We have attempted to get in touch with the Malaysian

police, who are reported to have handed that simulator over to the FBI for expert analysis.

They are just not so -- they're not so much refusing to comment but refusing to just to answer our calls, if you like.

The only thing we're really hearing is from the Australian transport safety board. And they're hinting that there was some data on that simulator that

suggested there was a flight plotted down to the Southern Indian Ocean. But they're being very, very clear to say, we're not saying, in any shape

or form, is this is a suicide theory.

All we're saying is that the FBI has found a piece of information, they say, to the best of their knowledge -- this is the Australian transport

safety board -- to the best of their knowledge, they are searching in the right area and the best information they have so far comes from these

satellite handshakes I have been talking about now for 2.5 years, the pings which where the satellites identified the aircraft as it flew past them.

But still, such a lack of information and the sister, Zakina (ph), is very, very vigorous, very, very tough and very emotional about protecting her --

what she calls her baby brother.

KINKADE: No doubt. Really, really tough for all the families, who had loved ones on board the plane. Andrew Stevens, thanks so much for joining

us.

What you're about to see is not from Guantanamo Bay or Abu Ghraib. It's a juvenile detention center in Australia. And a warning that these images

are disturbing.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KINKADE (voice-over): You're looking at a teenage boy in the behavioral management unit of a youth center in Darwin. He has a spit (ph) hood over

his head. His ankles, neck and wrists were shackled after authorities say he threatened to hurt himself.

(INAUDIBLE) broadcasting corporation reports the chair he's sitting on is on a list of approved restraints that was recently widened by the northern

territory government. The disturbing image featured in a lengthy expose on alleged abuse and torture at the center.

The (INAUDIBLE) broadcasting corporation also aired footage showing even younger prisoners being stripped, assaulted, teargassed and locked in

solitary confinement.

This investigation has caused shock nationwide, the Australian prime minister ordering a national inquiry within hours of that story airing.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MALCOLM TURNBULL, AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER: The abuse of young people in the Dondale (ph) youth detention center in the northern territory back in

2014 has shocked and appalled the whole nation.

I have announced that we will establish in cooperation with the northern territory government a royal commission to inquire into those events, to

inquire into the system of youth detention, the management of youth detention centers in the northern territory.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KINKADE: Other members of parliament are also expressing their shock, saying the abuse amounts to child torture. We are following the reaction

in Australia to this story and we will have more on this in the coming hours.

Well, after the break, the Vatican weighs in to condemn the French church attack. Pope Francis calling for an end to what he calls absurd violence.

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KINKADE: Welcome to the INTERNATIONAL DESK. I'm Lynda Kinkade. Here are the headlines we're following.

(HEADLINES)

KINKADE: We're back now to our top story. The Vatican has weighed in on the killing of the priest in France, saying Pope Francis shares the pain

and horror of what he called "absurd violence."

We're joined now by CNN's senior Vatican analyst, John Allen, via Skype from Poland.

John, it appears this is the first attack we've seen by ISIS on a church outside Syria and Iraq. Just tell us a little bit about the Catholic

community in this area.

How will they pull together?

JOHN ALLEN, CNN SR. VATICAN ANALYST: Well, Lynda, the reality is that, although France is, of course, a traditionally Catholic nation, it is known

in Catholic traditions the eldest daughter of the church, you know, these days, the numbers of those who are actually engaged in the practice of the

Catholic faith in France are relatively reduced.

It's a smaller people. It is, in effect, a subculture. And they will undoubtedly be enormously scarred and frightened and horrified by this

incident because, although there was absolutely nothing new about ISIS and ISIS sympathizers striking Catholic targets say, in Iraq, in Syria or in

other parts of the Middle East, say, in Libya, it is somewhat new that this is happening in the heart of Western Europe.

And no doubt that is going to create a climate of fear and apprehension that will hang over the church there for some time.

KINKADE: The pope, of course, is reacting with love rather than hate, as you would expect.

What can he do to connect with disaffected people?

ALLEN: Well, I think that's a really good question. On the one hand, Pope Francis has called upon all religious believers to come together in

opposition to acts of (INAUDIBLE) and violence.

He has insisted that Islam is fundamentally a religion of peace and, therefore, that the kinds of terrorist acts we saw today in Rouen are an

aberration of what Islam actually stands for.

On the other hand, he has also spoken out forcefully against anti-Christian persecution. He has made the point that there are more Christian martyrs

today --

[10:35:00]

ALLEN: -- that is, people who are losing their lives for reasons related to the faith, than at any previous point in church history.

And I think the open question here is, how do you put these two things together?

How do you, on the one hand, insist that vulnerable Christians must be protected, in that extremist elements in Islam must be suppressed?

And the others say we also have to remember that the vast majority of Muslims are no more in favor of this kind of violence than anybody else is.

I mean, I think all of us know that those things are true. But I think Pope Francis will be pressed in a particularly intense fashion to try to

explain how you make both of them work at once -- Lynda.

KINKADE: Yes, certainly raises some tough questions. John Allen, good to have your perspective on all of this. Thank you.

A spate of attacks is spreading fear across Europe as people grapple with the new reality that terror can strike anyone at any time. CNN terrorism

analyst Paul Cruickshank joins us now from Washington.

Paul, we are learning more about these attackers behind the church incident. We understand that at least one had been under police

surveillance.

PAUL CRUICKSHANK, CNN TERROR ANALYST: One had been under police surveillance, had tried to travel to Syria to join the jihad there some

time ago, had been supported from Turkey, spent some time in prison in France, was on the radar screen of French security forces. But of course,

more than 11,000 extremists, (INAUDIBLE) extremists in France are on the radar screen. So very difficult to monitor all but a small fraction 24/7.

But this was a very deliberate targeting here ,Lynda, of a church. ISIS in the French language magazine recently have called for attacks on churches

in Europe, in France.

There was an ISIS-directed plot back in April of 2015, that was thwarted in Paris, to attack a church by a Parisian student of al-Jiri (ph) in

December, linked up with French ISIS operatives in Turkey and came back and discussed targeting with them online on his return.

And they wanted him to go and massacre people at a church. ISIS have essentially declared war on Christianity. And, really, the moment they did

that was in February of 2015, when they beheaded 21 Coptic Christians in Libya right on the Mediterranean, sending a message that they were at war

with Christianity.

And the U.S. State Department has described ISIS' actions in the Middle East against Christians as a genocide. This is very deliberate from the

group encouraging their supporters to launch attacks against Christians.

They want this to be a holy war. They want a reaction from the far right in France, others in France, against Muslims, to drive towards Muslims

toward supporting ISIS. This is a very deliberate strategy being propagated by the group. It's deeply alarming and coming at a time when

we've just seen a string of terrorist attacks across Europe, including very recently in Germany.

KINKADE: Paul Cruickshank, would love to continue the conversation but we have to leave it there for now. Thanks so much for joining us.

Well, still ahead, the road to Rio games hasn't all been bumpy. It's also brought a much-needed facelift to much of the city. That story just ahead.

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KINKADE: Welcome back.

The Olympics flame will blaze over Rio at the opening ceremony in just 10 days. The leadup to the games has been plagued with a series of very well

publicized setbacks. But the event has also brought some positive change and revitalization to much of the city. Our Shasta Darlington reports.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Designed by renowned street artist, Cobra, using 3,000 spray cans and more than 200 gallons of

paint, a massive graffiti mural underway.

"There are a lot of problems in Brazil in equality, politics, health services," he says. "But it's important to have the on here. It brings a

legacy. It changes the city, improves it."

It started with a bang, wiping out a highway overpass along the port. A sketchy place to avoid at all hours, now transformed for the 2016 Olympic

Games into a cultural hub in the heart of Rio.

"The reforms have improved the city," she says. "But I'm not sure it was a top priority for society."

There's the eye-popping museum of tomorrow and, in place of cars, a new tram.

DARLINGTON: The train was built to help get around downtown but it's really turned into a tourist attraction in and of itself.

DARLINGTON (voice-over): But the transformation has been overshadowed by the collapse of a seaside bike lane, also meant to be part of the Olympic

city legacy, killing two people.

And the new metro line still unfinished, far over budget.

Also concerns that the poorer suburbs were left out of the big Olympic plan.

The mayor insists the games can't solve all the problems. But Rio is not the same city it was eight years ago.

MAYOR OF RIO: It has brought great change to Rio, if you compare Rio to Rio.

DARLINGTON (voice-over): An hour's drive north to a working class suburb with few frills and even fewer public spaces, but here, an empty lot has

been turned into a park ahead of the games.

Kids cool off in the shadow of the Olympic rings.

During the games, they're going to turn it into a live site with giant screens. For these boys at the skate park, it's been a game-changer.

"Before, a lot of people just stayed at home," he says, "or got involved in things they shouldn't."

Now they've got their own games going on -- Shasta Darlington, CNN, Rio de Janeiro.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

KINKADE: Some good news out of Rio.

Well, that does it for us here at the INTERNATIONAL DESK. I'm Lynda Kinkade. I'll be back in just over an hour with more news. So don't go

anywhere. And "WORLD SPORT" is up next.

END