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Cyberattacks Used in Political, Military Strategy; Polluted Fog Engulfs China; Family Remembers Mother Killed in Brussels Attack; Amazon Echo at Center of Murder Mystery; Manhunt For Shooter Who Killed 39 People; Expelled Russian Diplomats Arrive Back In Moscow; North Korea Close To Testing Long-Range Ballistic Missile; Indonesia Boat Fire Kills At Least 23 People; Queen Misses New Years' Service Due to Heavy Cold. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired January 2, 2017 - 01:00   ET



[01:00:00] ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN ANCHOR: Police in Turkey are looking for the gunman who killed dozens of an Istanbul nightclub, in the first terror attack of 2017.

Donald Trump boasts of insider information over U.S. election hacking and promises to share it soon. Plus.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We did, because of her. I live every day for her.

CHURCH: One family struggled to return to normalcy after losing a loved one in last year's Brussels airport attack.


CHURCH: Hello and welcome to our viewers all around the world. I'm Rosemary Church, and this is CNN NEWSROOM.

A massive manhunt in Turkey for the shooter who killed at least 39 people celebrating the New Year. The gunman has not been identified. This security footage, appears to show the attacker shooting his way inside a popular nightclub in Istanbul, around 600 people were inside that club which is well known to expats. Most of the victims were foreign nationals, so far there's been no claim of responsibility. CNN's Ian Lee joins us now from Istanbul with a live report. So, Ian, how much closer are authorities in Turkey to the possible capture of this gunman, and did they believe he worked alone or do they think he may have had connections to a larger network?

IAN LEE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, right now, Rosemary, that massive manhunt is underway. They're looking not only for the gunman but they're looking for anyone who possibly could have helped him. Although, they haven't said who they believed was responsible for it or if they believed he was working alone. They're just hovering they're bases but we are hearing from the Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, saying that he will be found soon and that there is strong coordination among the security forces. We're also hearing this morning, from a pro-PKK website, this is the Kurdish militant group, saying that the PKK was not behind this attack and that they strongly condemn it. Now, the PKK has been one of groups carrying out attacks here in Turkey, the other group being ISIS. And a lot of expert right now believed that this was the - all the hallmarks, it was bearing of an ISIS attack. Although, the government here is not saying whether it was ISIS or whether this was a lone gunman, or really, who was behind it.

CHURCH: Of course, Ian, there have been a number of attacks in Turkey. So, what impact might this latest attack have on security measures there going forward?

LEE: Well, Rosemary, the security was - has been tight here in Istanbul, really, and across the country over the past year because of the large number of attacks that this country has bear. Now, just before this on New Year's Eve, we were walking around the city, we were searched, we were - our bags were checked. A strong security presence just down the road from where we are right now, within the Reina nightclub behind me just down the road, 250 meters is a police station.

There's a police officer out front of this nightclub when it happened -- when this attack happened. Also, we are hearing from the owner of nightclubs saying that in the key previous weeks leading up to New Year's Eve, that there were tense, there was police surveillance, there was - the coast guards has stepped up patrol as well. So, they were preparing for New Year's Eve celebration. That's what the gunman was looking for - was looking for a soft target and apparently was able to slip in and slip out after killing 39 people and injuring about 70.

CHURCH: The details are horrifying. Ian Lee, joining us there live from Istanbul just after 9:00 in the morning. Lee, many thanks to you.

CNN Intelligence and Security Analyst, Bob Baer, joins us now from Colorado, via Skype. Bob, a very good and happy new year to you, always great to get your analysis and perspective on these matters. Now, the manhunt is still under way for this gunman but no claim of responsibilities as yet. Knowing what we do so far, what's your sense of who might be behind this, or do you think it has all the hallmarks of a lone wolf attack?

[01:04:50] BOB BAER, CNN INTELLIGENCE AND SECURITY ANALYST: Rosemary, I think it's probably Islamic state, somebody affiliated, the very least, it was a nightclub, it was New Year's highly symbolic, for the philosophy, the ideology that drives the Islamic state. I think that if it were the PKK, the Kurdish Worker's Party, they would have gone after military targets. That's traditionally what they do.

You look at the tactics of the attack, coming in with speed, surprise, maximum violence shooting the police at the door, tells me - this is a guess, that somebody who's fought maybe in Syria or Iraq and has turned his guns on Turkey now. CHURCH: So, do you think he's a lone wolf attacker with some sort of

connection to ISIS? Or you feel that this has been planned by the bigger group?

BAER: This is another guess, I'd say planned. Simply, because the guy - this wasn't an act of martyrdom, he got away, he did kill 39 people and managed to get out of the area. And it was right next to a police station. Did he have some sort of help? He very well could have. This was, in their terms, a very well-planned, tactically smart attack and it's - it's unnerving for the Turks as well that he did get away. I mean, that entire city, Istanbul was locked down on the first and yet he disappeared.

CHURCH: So, when you look at this security footage from this, it appears to show that gunman blasting his way inside. What all can be learned, when you look at that sort of footage and of course, when you combine that with the various witness accounts.

BAER: Trigger control. Amateurs that would spend a lot of time around automatic weapons, tend to spray the whole building. And this guy went after police, he gets in. He, you know, reloaded a lot of times and people have had no battlefield experience. They can't get the magazines back in the gun. Very cold-blooded, probably experienced. But I hope we catch the guy soon. He's - I hope the guy is caught and we can figure out what was in this.

But, frankly, Rosemary, I worry about Turkey these days. I am in touch with the Presidency there, they are panicking, in general, about the violence whether it's PKK or the Islamic State or of course, they're blaming Gulan. The distant - it doesn't really matter, this isn't the Turkey, you know, we knew a couple of years ago.

CHURCH: Yeah, and I did want to talk to you about that. Because of course, when you're talking about at least 39 people killed and almost 70 others wounded. What does it say about security measures in place at soft targets like this, following days, and of course other attacks in Turkey? What needs to happen now to protect people, Baer?

BAER: Well, the Turks are doing the best they can to get a ceasefire. That's a start. Stop the flow of refugees, seal the border but that border between Syria and Turkey is not sealable and that's really the problem there. So many loose weapons, there's so many people fighting with a cause, there's so many people - there's so many Syrians in particular, and Jihadists that are angry at Erdogan for going after the Islamic State. And, you know, sharing a border is catastrophic for Turkey and I can't emphasize that enough of what it is doing to this regime.

CHURCH: All right, Bob Baer, always good to talk with you. Appreciate your perspective on this.

And we are learning more about some of the nightclub victims, at least 27 of the 39 people killed were foreign nationals including from left there. A film producer from India, a 19-year-old woman from Israel, a Jew Belgian-Turkish citizen who was 23-year-old, and a woman and a man from Lebanon. At least 11 Turks were also killed including the young man you see there on the lower right.

And new this hour, France's President is in Iraq, visiting French troops. The Presidential palace says, Francois Hollande, will also salute Iraqi forces who are battling ISIS in Mosul. The Palace says, Mr. Hollande will recognize the progress made since his visit to Baghdad back in 2014.

Well, 35 Russian diplomats and their families are back in Russia now. U.S. President Barack Obama expelled them and imposed sanctions on Russia for the hacking of political groups during the presidential campaign. U.S. intelligence officials say, Moscow was behind the hacking but Russia denies it. Russian President Vladimir Putin is not taking any actions just yet, instead waiting to see what will happen when President-elect Donald Trump takes office. And Mr. Trump meanwhile, is not fully on board with the Intelligence Community's conclusion. The hacking will be the focus of a briefing he's set to receive as well as a Congressional Committee hearing later this week. Ryan Nobles, has more on the week ahead.


[01:10:16] RYAN NOBLES, CNN NEWSOURCE NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: President-elect Donald Trump will have a busy start to the New Year. This week will be filled with meetings at Trump Tower, including a high-level intelligence briefings, where the President-elect is expected to learn more about the alleged Russian hack of U.S interest. Now, Trump continues to down play the significant of Intelligence Community's conclusion that the Russian government is behind the hack. This, despite statements from members of Congress both republicans and democrats who've been briefed on the matter and described the evidence as overwhelming.

During Trump's posh New Year's Eve gathering at his Mar-a-Lago estate, the President-elect told reporters, that he remains skeptical of their overall assessment.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Well, I just want them to be sure, because it's a pretty serious charge and I want them to be sure. And if you look at the weapons of mass destruction, that was a disaster and they were wrong. And so, I want them to be sure. I think it's unfair if they don't know and I know a lot about hacking, and hacking is a very hard thing to prove. So, it could be somebody else, and I also know things that other people don't know. And so, they cannot be sure of this situation.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (reporter): What do you know that other people don't know?

TRUMP: You'll find out on Tuesday or Wednesday.

NOBLES: Now, in addition to Trump's private intelligence briefing. We could learn more about this alleged hack during a highly- anticipated hearing of the senate armed services committee. Republican, John McCain, who has a much different view than the President-elect of the alleged hack called for the briefing. Meanwhile, Trump has just three weeks to go to round out his staff before taking office. A few major Cabinet positions are still open including the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and the Secretary of Agriculture. Ryan Nobles, CNN, Washington.


CHURCH: A top aid, says Mr. Trump will repeal a lot of President Barack Obama's executive actions on his first day in office. It's not clear which policies the President-elect Trump will change, but Mr. Trump has been critical of Mr. Obama's moves on immigration, energy regulation and foreign policy. Here's what the incoming White House Press Secretary told ABC.


JONATHAN KARL, CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT FOR ABC: What is the one big thing we are going to see after he takes the Oval Office.

SEAN SPICER, INCOMING WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Well, it's going to be not one big thing, it's going to be many big things. On day one, he's going to sign a series of executive orders to do two things; one, is repeal a lot of the regulations and actions that have been taking by this administration over the last eight years that have hampered both economic growth and then 60job creations; and then secondly, do the same on a forward-thinking thing. He's going to implementing things, he's going to bring a new brand to Washington, he's going to institute a lobbying ban - 5 years since very forward thinking. What did we had in the past that people have looked in the rear-view mirror. This time we're thinking forward -


CHURCH: And with less than three weeks left in his term, U.S. President Barack Obama, took to Twitter, Sunday to reflect on his legacy. He wrote from realizing marriage equality to removing barriers to opportunity. We have made history in our work to reaffirm that all are created equal. He continued, it's been the privilege of my life to serve as your President. I look forward to standing with you as a citizen, happy New Year, everybody.

And you're all watching CNN NEWSROOM. North Korea says, it's close to testing a long-range missile. We will take a closer look at the nuclear ambitions and capabilities that's still to come. Plus, Queen Elizabeth misses a second holiday church service due to a heavy cold. We have the latest from London, coming your way.


[01:15:00] KATE RILEY, CNN WORLD SPORT ANCHOR: I'm Kate Riley, with you CNN WORLD SPORT headline.

Things are heating up on the English Premier League. At the moment, everyone is chasing Chelsea who's being strong this season. Including Arsenal, who host the Crystal Palace on Sunday.

The Emirates witnessed (INAUDIBLE) goal thanks to Olivier Giroud, his back heel (INAUDIBLE) is perhaps the contender for goal of the season. The Gunners lead within double by Alex Iwobi 2-0. It ends in North London.

Now, also an action on Sunday where Tottenham they were visiting Watford, but have not won their last four games. In their last two away games, though, they've scored four times as well. Harry Kane scored twice and so did the team's other big star, Dele Alli. They were on fire, but they could have caused more damage but both would sub before the end because their next game is of huge importance.

And we head to the NBA where James Harden of the Houston Rockets ended his 2016 in historic fashion. On Saturday, the 27-year-old scored a great high 53 points, with 16 rebounds, and 17 assists. He's the first person in the NBA history to have at least 50 points, 15 rebounds, and 15 assist in a game. Harden's monstrous night lead the Rockets past the New York Knick's 129 for 122. And that's a look at all your sports headlines, I'm Kate Riley.


CHURCH: Welcome back everyone. Well, the U.S. is cautioning North Korea to refrain from provocative actions and inflammatory rhetoric after leader Kim Jong-un claimed the country is close to testing an intercontinental ballistic missile. CNN's Saima Mohsin, is following the story from Seoul in South Korea she joins us now live. So, Saima, what all do we actual know about North Korea's real nuclear capabilities, and what could the consequences be if it persists with its plans?

SAIMA MOHSIN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Rosemary, hello, it's important to separate rhetoric from reality, isn't it? We've got a lot of posturing from North Korea in the past, but just how close as you say, are we to seeing them test flying an intercontinental ballistic missile which would be, of course, a huge concern for the entire world. Well, we do know that they have nuclear warheads; we know that they've carried out nuclear tests - two in fact, 2016 alone. And then, we know that the fifth and largest one was carried out in September, but crucially, to this point, about the ICBM, Rosemary, is that in February 26 date North Korea, launched a satellite.

Now, that is seen by many experts it's a template if you will to launching a long-range missile which then of course - if they have the right technology to attach a miniaturized warhead to it, could be then the next step to intercontinental ballistic missile. I also know, of course, from a very high level diplomatic defects of who spoke here in Seoul a few days ago, that Kim Jong-un is determined to complete his Nuclear Development Program by the end of 2017, this year. This is his timeline, so, what can be done to stop him?

Well, apparently, Kim Jong-un has carefully choreographed and planned this schedule. The time width - the transition of power of the White House with President Donald Trump moving into the White House in Washington, D.C., a Presidential election here in Seoul. Kim Jong-un has apparently, calculated that there will be two new administrations that simply won't be able to carry out any kinds of reactions in terms of military ways of stopping the North from carrying out these attacks. [01:19:59] That, of course, then means the only thing that remains its

sanctions which we've been seeing since way back in 2006 and continuing sanctions, of course, Rosemary, has failed to stop Kim Jong-un. And again, this high-level diplomatic defector privy. Of course, to some very important information.

Tae Yong-ho, has said that Kim Jong-un doesn't matter how much money you offer him, it doesn't matter how many sanctions you slap on North Korea. He is determined to progress with his nuclear ambitions and we may well be seeing more nuclear provocations in the year ahead. Rosemary.

CHURCH: All right. As you point out, the timing here very significant. Saima Mohsin, reporting there from Seoul in South Korea, about 3:20 in the afternoon, many thanks to you for the live report.

And joining me now to discuss more about North Korea's nuclear capabilities is Bruce Bennett, a Senior Defense Analyst at the RAND Corporation. Think tank, thanks so much for being with us.


CHURCH: Wonderful, so, North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un claims his country's close to testing an intercontinental ballistic missile. What are your thoughts? How likely is that?

BENNETT: Well, you usually develop missiles in stages. First stage is a short-range missile, then more medium-range, and then an ICBM. His intermediate range missile - just below an ICBM, he tested eight times in 2016, seven of those tests including the last two were failures. So, he's got problems with his missile program. He's probably, not really ready for an ICBM test but he did 35 missile tests last year. So, he could turn up the pressure and move quickly into that position.

CHURCH: All right. So, your thoughts are he may be over stating the capabilities of North Korea. So, how concerned should countries like South Korea, Japan, China, even Russia be with the progress North Korea, is apparently making so far with its nuclear capabilities.

BENETT: Well, in 2016 some of those many missile tests were short and medium range missiles that could reach China, Japan, South Korea, Russia, and they worked - they worked very well. And it appears, even this week, there were several organizations in South Korea tied to their intelligence facilities that said, that North Korea had a nuclear weapon that could go on those missiles.

But we have to remember, with all of China's complaint about the sad missile defense system, we are trying to put in South Korea. China has a look-a-like that they've deployed years ago, they are worried about North Korea. Even if they're complaining that we shouldn't be defending against them.

CHURCH: Now, it's interesting you say that because, of course, China is a very close ally of North Korea's. But you're clearly saying, perhaps thinking, that they're not so sure about what North Korea is likely to do going forward even in terms of China.

BENETT: Oh, absolutely. Well, formally, they're allies - they never train together, they never plan together, and in reality, they don't really like each other. I mean, Kim - or I should say Xi Jinping, the leader of China has had eight summit meetings with the South Korean President. He has had zero, with Kim Jong-un, the leader of North Korea. To give you an idea of where he fits in that relationship.

CHURCH: All right. Bruce Benett, we will, of course, watch this very closely as the international community is doing. And as Saima Mohsin, pointed out the timing of all of this is pretty incredible with the power transitions in the United States and in South Korea. Many thanks to you sir, for talking with us.

BENETT: Thank you.

CHURCH: Indonesian police have detained the captain of a ferry that caught fire, killing at least 23 people near Jakarta. He's being held amid allegations, that he was the first to jump ship. The boat, reportedly caught fire because of a short circuit power in a generator. Hundreds of people were heading to an island in North Jakarta at that time. Rescue workers, saved most of the passengers on board - one survivor described the chaos.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Thick smoke suddenly emerged, blanketing the cabin. All passengers panicked and ran up to the deck to throw floats in the water. In a split second, the fire became bigger. It was coming from where the fuel is stored.

CHURCH: And 17 people are still missing. Well, South Korea's President is denying any wrong doing in a corruption scandal, that has put her position in jeopardy. Park Geun-hye, met with reporters on New Year's Day, almost a month after parliament impeached her. A constitutional court will decide whether to uphold that vote. Ms. Park says, the accusations against her are quote, "distorted and false."

[01:25:05] In Hong Kong, thousands of protesters opened the New Year demanding democratic reform. They are also defending for pro- democracy lawmakers, who are popularly elected. The government, with Beijing's support, is trying to disqualify them saying they gave in valid oaths. Critics are accusing Beijing of a political crack-down. Activists say, disqualifying the lawmaker would undermine the one country, two systems agreement.

Britain's Queen Elizabeth, did not attend a new year's church service due to a heavy cold. It's the same illness that kept the 90-year-old monarch from Christmas services last week. Phil Black, has the latest now on the queen's health.

PHIL BLACK, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A nasty, persistent cold, but nothing to worry about that. That's what we've been told about the queen's health after she missed the traditional New Year's Day church service. Other royals did attend including Prince Philip, her husband, he was also struck down by a cold around the same time, but he appears to have bounced back. While the queen is still recovering after almost two weeks indoors, out of site, the same cold of course, forced her to miss the Christmas Day church service. These absences are not insignificant. She is the head - the titular head at least of the church of the England, something she takes very seriously. So, we can only assume she has been feeling terrible.

But, her advisers in Buckingham Palace are going out of their way to tell journalists that the 90-year-old monarch, is doing OK. They're stressing that she is still in residence at the Sandringham Estate, she hasn't been moved for medical or any other reasons. And they say she is up and about, and they stressed she's working and still receiving the documents - the briefing papers that she has to stay on top of, as part of her official role as Britain's head of state. Now, they're doing this to ensure there isn't any unnecessary speculations or perhaps, exaggerated concerns about the queen's health. They want everyone to know that it's just an awful cold, but she is battling through it. Phil Black, CNN, London.

CHURCH: We'll take a short break here but still to come. The threat of cyber warfare around the globe, while some are concerned it could escalate into uncharted territory. We'll be back in a moment with that.


[01:30:46] CHURCH: Welcome back to our viewers all around the world. You are watching CNN NEWSROOM. I am Rosemary Church.

Want to get you updated on the main stories we are following at this hour.


CHURCH: 35 Russian diplomats and their families are back in Moscow. Russian state media reports the plane carrying them landed Sunday. U.S. U.S. President Barack Obama expelled the diplomats and imposed sanctions on Russia in retaliation of the hacking of U.S. political groups. Russia denies the accusations.

Well, accusations of cyber war involving political and military targets have been raised before.

Ivan Watson reports on the major attacks in the past and concerns of what could happen in the future.



IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The war in eastern Ukraine. For more than two years, Ukraine has been fighting separatists supported by its eastern neighbor, Russia, in a conflict that claimed more than 10,000 live and displaced more than two million people. A shaky cease-fire is barely holding.

(GUNFIRE) WATSON (on camera): But this isn't just a conflict being fought with bullets and bombs. Ukraine says it has recently survived at least 10 major cyberattacks that targeted organizations like the state railroad company, the ministry of finance, the ministry of infrastructure, agencies that a society needs to function normally.

(voice-over): So far, Ukrainian officials are not publicly blaming the latest cyber assault on anyone. But Ukrainian and American investigators did blame Russian hackers for a separate attack on an electric company in December 2015. It cut power completely in more than 100 cities across the country.

Officials in other former Soviet republics, like Latvia, say they, too, are frequently targets of their Russian neighbors.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are facing those challenges on whole fronts. Information warfare goes on, on a daily basis, and we're facing Russian propaganda and information warfare and even psychological warfare.

WATSON: It's not easy to pinpoint the source of a cyberattack. But experts here argue they appear to be state sponsored.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Some of the programs that we have seen it's very evident that no commercial criminal sector of hacktivist would be ready to invest time and resources to such an elaborate program.


WATSON: When the former Soviet republic Georgia went to war in 2008, the deadly battles were accompanied by hackers attacking Georgian government websites.

The former Georgia president, Mikheil Saakashvili, accuses Moscow of further meddling during elections four years later.

MIKHEIL SAAKASHVILI, FORMER GEORGIA PRESIDENT: In 2012, they were heavily involved in Georgian elections. They have done cyberattack over different periods, time period. They've done all kinds of media provocations. They have spread rumors and sent operatives to do all kinds of dirty tricks.

WATSON: But Russia does not the monopoly on cyber warfare tactics. A computer virus called Stuxnet was discovered in an Iran nuclear facility in 2010. It caused centrifuges to spin out of control and destroying themselves.

Though government officially claimed responsibility for it, many experts accused the U.S. and Israel of carrying out the attack.

The threat of a possible cyber war could take our interconnected, highly computerized society into uncharted territory.

Ivan Watson, CNN, Kiev.

(END VIDEOTAPE) [01:35:29] CHURCH: All right, I want to check the weather now across the globe.

Pedram Javaheri joins me now.

A very hazy start to 2017 for China. What's going on there?

PEDRAM JAVAHERI, AMS METEOROLOGIST: The fog we see so frequently, Rosemary. And what's incredible about this is the images going from one day to the next are spectacular. And, two, the state media across this region is seeing online sales of surgical and face masks, 15 million of them in the last five days. It tells you what's going on out here, the severity. People that haven't had those masks in the past are now taking that into consideration. Look at this. This photograph was taken on December 23rd showing you what is typically the set up when it is clear across Beijing. New Year's Day, look at that comparison. Absolutely incredible to see this. And we know what these particulates are made of. It is life threatening when you think about constant exposure to the elements across this region. But the particulates themselves, considerably smaller than a grain of sand or dust particles as well. It is 30 time smaller than the diameter of human hair. That, of course, is what makes up the combustion particles. But, here is the air quality index. Look at the colors. The color green there indicates that it is considered fit to breathe. Anything in the purple are unhealthy and hazardous. Sensors across much of Beijing and pointing southward are reporting air quality levels that are 10 to 15 times above fit to breathe.

Here in the past week, and you see why the sales of face masks were in place. When you go from Thursday to Friday to Saturday, above 500, it is beyond index and it is remarkable. Looks like it is going to continue a couple of days. The culprit becomes coal. This time of year, the winter season, a lot of heating from coal. And factories begin producing this tremendous amount of combustion particles as well. If nothing is done, we know what the charts are going to indicate. As time goes on, the pollutants will continue to rise because the population is rising, a net positive of four million people every single week on our planet. You increase the population, you increase pollutants. Renewable energy and driving restrictions you seeing being in place, factor restrictions implemented as well. If that happens, it begins to stabilize and potentially begin the drop long term.

An example, an incredible example is what the city of Los Angeles did. People often forget that Los Angeles had some of the dirtiest air in the world in the 1950s and 1960s. Rosemary, they used to 200-plus days of polluted days for years, up until 1975, when they had driving restrictions, catalytic converters were required on vehicles. And from 1975 to the now, about 80 or 90 days are considered polluted versus 200. So, it can improve but it takes a lot of effort.

CHURCH: Yeah, that's the thing. You have to want to do it, right?

JAVAHERI: Absolutely.

CHURCH: Thanks so much, Pedram. JAVAHERI: Thank you.

CHURCH: Appreciate it.


CHURCH: You are watching CNN NEWSROOM.

Coming up --


KIANNI MARTINEZ, LOST MOTHER IN BRUSSELS TERROR ATTACK: The real world slapped me in the face on March 22.


CHURCH: -- a family's struggles to heal after a devastating terror attack. It is a heart-wrenching story.


[01:41:36] CHURCH: As the new year begins, many people will remember 2016 as a year of terrorism across the globe. Attacks claimed by ISIS in Brussels last March killed dozens of people, including the wife and mother of one U.S. family.

Her husband and children recently spoke to CNN's Barbara Starr about the massacre that changed their lives forever.


KIANNI MARTINEZ: I am pushing through it every day. It is difficult to go through the pain. You have to look forward.

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For 18-year- old Kianni Martinez, her brother and sisters, there is utter devastation beyond the pain of burnt shrapnel and broken bones.

Their mother, Gayle, was killed. All four children and their children, Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Cato Martinez, were among the Americans critically wounded in the March ISIS suicide bomber attack on the Brussels airport


STARR: Lieutenant Colonel Martinez was just back from Afghanistan and they had been waiting to check on a flight to go on a vacation.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Local media are reporting an exchange of gunfire. And they're reporting that this is a bomb blast.

STARR: 35 people were killed and 300 wounded when ISIS attackers detonated bombs --

(EXPLOSION) STARR: -- hidden in suitcases at the airport departure area.

In in their first interview ever, the family wants the world to know what ISIS took from them when Gayle died that day.

(on camera): Tell me about your mom. What do you want people to know about her?

KIANNI MARTINEZ: I live every day because of her. I live every day for her and to remember her and to honor her.

STARR: Kianni says her mother was everything to the family. This young teenager is unflinching.

KIANNI MARTINEZ: I think it is important for me to talk about this. At 18 where you are supposed to be going to college and becoming independent, having been prepared for everything by your parents, and then trying to learn for yourself what the real world is like. The real world slapped me in the face on March 22. I am not going to forget that.

STARR: Kianni was supposed to be in college by now.

KIANNI MARTINEZ: When I had news that I was awarded an Air Force scholarship, the first person I told was momma. And she was so proud.


STARR: Lieutenant Colonel Martinez is now raising four children on his own, remembering his wife and recovering from his own injuries.

Photos with happier time with Gayle in Europe while Lieutenant Colonel Martinez held a NATO job.

CATO MARTINEZ: I later learned that I took most of the shrapnel to all of the shrapnel, because my son took the second air wave and he got the burn, the flames.

I did not lose consciousness. I was blasted forward. I knew I was bleeding because I felt blood coming from my ear.

STARR: Martinez instantly feared the worst.

[11:45:07] CATO MARTINEZ: My first instinct was to look for my children and wife. I could not find my son or my two youngest. I heard screaming and I found Kianni. The fact that she's screaming means she's alive, she's coherent.

I went to go look for her mom. I said, I'll be right back. And I went to look for her for a while. And I know I was bleeding out and my body was going into shock. So, I closed my eyes and welcomed it. I figured I'd join my wife and my three kids. But, as I was slipping away, I heard a girl calling out to me, Daddy, don't you go, don't you leave me. And that's when I heard her voice and decided to come back.

STARR: Then the unimaginable. Gayle, the love of his life, was gone.

CATO MARTINEZ: The stories that I got from one of the first responders regarding my baby, the youngest one, was that they found her in Gayle's arms. When they got to her, they told her, we've got the baby now, she's going to be OK. And that's when they looked up -- she looked up to them, smiled, and close her eyes for the last time.

STARR: Lieutenant Colonel Martinez would not learn the rest of his family's survived until he woke up in a Belgian hospital. Initially, he could not be moved out of bed to even see them. Military buddies came to the hospital to make sure the children were never alone.

CATO MARTINEZ: They did it in shifts on the clock, making sure that my children were taken of. And there was always a funny face there.

STARR: Now, home is Texas. The family is very slowly getting through its days. The two youngest, seven-year-old Kylanni (ph), and her nine-year-old sister, Nolanni (ph), recovering from their injuries, now, tiny master chefs in the kitchen.

KYLANNI (ph) MARTINEZ, LOST MOTHER IN BRUSSELS ISIS ATTACK: We are waiting on the rice so we can put it on top, smooch it down to straighten it.

STARR: At physical therapy, 13-year-old Kimmo (ph) loosens his burn- scar tissue that covers his lower body so he can play sports again.

This American military family grief stricken, but honoring their mother killed by terrorists by recovering and regaining the lives they know she wanted for them.


CATO MARTINEZ: I see her in the faces of my children. I see her in this house. I see her in the people that come to help us. I see her in all the thing that have been done for us to support us, to help us, all the good things that happen.

STARR: It is more than just physical therapy to climb this wall.

For the Martinez family, total determination --


STARR: -- to get to the mountain top and ring that bell.

CATO MARTINEZ: That's what I am talking about.

STARR: Barbara Starr, CNN, San Antonio.



(WEATHER REPORT) [01:52:25] CHURCH: One of the hottest gifts this holiday season was the Amazon Echo, a voice-activated speaker that can answer questions, read news aloud or order products. But the digital assistant is at the center of a murder mystery in Arkansas and an ongoing debate over privacy rights.

CNN's Martin Savidge reports.


MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Alexa, what did you hear?

ALEXA: Hi, there.

SAVIDGE: Is it possible the digital assistant in Amazon's popular Echo device witnessed a murder inside this Arkansas home? That's what police in Bentonville are wondering.

But they're not asking the device. They're asking Echo's maker, Amazon. So far, the tech giant is saying no to a police warrant seeking data and recordings the always-on gadget may have picked up.

NATHAN SMITH, BENTON COUNTY, ARKANSAS, PROSECUTOR: It was a lawfully issued search warrant by a judge. Amazon's position, they simply don't have to comply.

SAVIDGE: 47-year-old Victor Collins was found dead face down in a hot tub late year. Authorities say there were indications of possible foul play, arresting 31-year-old James Bates on suspicion of murder.

Bates' attorney says the death was nothing more than a tragic accident, and her client is innocent. She applauds Amazon's refusal to comply with police demands, calling it chilling that a Christmas gift could be used against people.

KIMBERLY WEBER, DEFENSE ATTORNEY FOR VICTOR COLLINS: It scares me, our criminal system is coming down to technology that's supposed to help our daily lives, and now used against us for an innocent crime.

SAVIDGE: In a statement provided to CNN, Amazon seemed to imply it could change its willingness to cooperate, saying, "Amazon will not release customer information without a valid and binding legal demand properly served on us." The company went on, "Amazon objects to overbroad or otherwise inappropriate demands as a matter of course."

Amazon did give police Bates' subscriber information and authorities have analyzed the information contained on the device itself but believe more Echo evidence is stored in the Cloud, controlled by Amazon.

The case calls to mind the 2015 mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, pitting Apple against the FBI, as authorities wanting to access information contained in the locked iPhone of one of the shooters.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Alexa, what time it is? ALEXA: It's 1:56.

SAVIDGE: The always-on voice-activated technology is showing up more and more in our lives, from thermometers to cameras, even toys. But the modern wonders are also creating some modern worries over private, suggesting what happens at home may no longer stay at home.

Martin Savidge, CNN, Atlanta.


[01:55:09] CHURCH: A pyramid uncovered in central Peru could change the way researchers have thought about the area's importance in Incan society. Researchers believe it was used by ancient Incan rulers for important religious ceremonies. They say evidence, like ceramics and stone towers, found at the site, also point to its significance.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translation): According to what we have seen, which is the first level that's been worked on, it is pretty much what would have been the center of the place. Veushnu (ph) is always in the center because it plays a legitimate role as far as ideological dominance, as well as a role in astronomic observations.


CHURCH: And archaeologists say they have to do a deeper excavation to prove their theory.

And that wraps up this hour of CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Rosemary Church. Remember to connect with me any time on Twitter, @rosemaryCNN. Would love to hear from you.

And the news continues with Natalie Allen right after this very short break. Stay with us.


[02:00:08] NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: A frantic search continues for the gunman behind a deadly shooting rampage in Istanbul. We're learning more about the victims --