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See You in Court; Another Cabinet Member Confirmed; Sales Pitch; Mixed Emotions; Iran's Revolution Day. Aired 3-4a ET

Aired February 10, 2017 - 03:00   ET



[03:00:00] GEORGE HOWELL, UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is CNN breaking news.

CNN HOST: It is 3 a.m. on the U.S. East Coast. Welcome to our viewers here in the United States and around the world. I'm George Howell at CNN world headquarters in Atlanta.

MAX FOSTER, CNN HOST: And I'm Max Foster in London. And we are following breaking news for you this hour.

HOWELL: Max, it's good to be with you. A big loss for the U.S. president and his controversial travel ban. The decision came down Thursday. A panel of three judges on a U.S. appeals court ruled to keep the travel ban on hold.

And as a result, people from seven mostly Muslim countries can continue coming to the United States.

The president signed the executive order two weeks ago. He says it is necessary to keep terrorists out of the United States. Mr. Trump reacted to the decision almost immediately on Twitter. You see the reaction here. "See you in court. The security of our nation is at stake," he says.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It's a political decision and we will see them in court, and I look forward to doing it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you believe the judges made a political decision?

TRUMP: We have a situation where the security of our country is at stake. And it's a very, very serious situation, so we look forward - as I just said - to seeing them in court.


HOWELL: The background here, Washington State and Minnesota challenged the travel ban. Washington's Attorney General Bob Ferguson called the appeals court ruling a complete victory. Listen.


BOB FERGUSON, WASHINGTON STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL: Well, we have seen him in court twice, and we're 2 for 2. That's number one. And in my view, the future of the Constitution is at stake.


HOWELL: It is a big decision. Where do we go from here? CNN's Dan Simon is at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco with this report for us.

DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Following the ruling, we did not see any anti-Donald Trump protesters outside of the 9th circuit, but had the ruling gone the other way, this plaza would be full of protesters.

As for the ruling itself, the fact that two of the judges were appointed by democratic presidents should be no surprise what the end result was. But I think what is striking was the tone that this was a clear rebuke of this executive order.

In full, there were questions about the constitutionality of the order. There were also questions whether or not there are threats around the world in these seven predominantly Muslim countries that would justify this kind of order.

It's almost as if part of the ruling was written by former Secretaries of State John Kerry and Madeleine Albright. They themselves wrote a declaration to this court said, they were not aware of any specific threat anywhere in the world that would justify this kind of executive order.

From here, of course, this ruling is most likely going to head to the Supreme Court, but given the ideological split 4-4, what happens there if in fact you have a tie, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal will be the default ruling that will be the law of the land.

Dan Simon, CNN, San Francisco.

HOWELL: Dan Simon, thank you so much. Let's get some context now on this big ruling. Bringing in CNN legal analyst and civil rights attorney Areva Martin, live with us in Los Angeles, and former assistant chief deputy at the U.S. Justice Department, Ron Bamieh.

It's good to have you both with us this hour. Let's start with the first logical question here, the question that many people will be asking, given this ruling. What will the Trump administration do next given what happened? We saw the tweet that we showed just a few minutes ago, "see you in court," and his adviser Kellyanne Conway had this to say just after the ruling came down. Let's listen to it and we can talk about it on the other side.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you see this as a setback?

KELLYANNE CONWAY, DONALD TRUMP SENIOR ADVISER: He sees it as what he's always seen as which is a statute that provides a president, in this case President Trump, with great latitude and authority to protect the citizens and to protect the nation's national security.

This was not argued on the merits. Now they'll have an opportunity to argue on the merit, we look forward to do it now. We look forward to (Inaudible) And I think his tweet was perfect when he said "we'll see you in court.".


HOWELL: So, the president is saying "we'll see you in court." This is a president who likes to talk about winning. In this case, he certainly lost in court. Ron, you used to work at the Justice Department. Where do you think the administration came up short in this case? What should be their line of attack moving forward if they want to win?

[03:05:07] RON BAMIEH, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, a couple things. First of all, their only one of attack -- well, there's two possible. One is to go to an en banc hearing which means that bigger panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal would hear the case, but that's a loser because three of those 10 judges who would hear the case on en banc panel are the three that just heard it.

And so the odds are you're going to lose there. And that's just to go back the district court the district court litigated there in front of Judge Robart. But that doesn't seem to be a very optimistic result for them.

There's also the third option which is to -- and a fourth option. The third option is to appeal to the Supreme Court after Judge Robart makes a final ruling on the TRO. You mentioned that, you know, permanent order. Then you can appeal to the Supreme Court when you have a final ruling.

Or you could do what I would recommend, and that's withdraw your executive order as it is now written and rewrite it to address some of the concerns that were raised by the district court and make it more bullet proof for future review.

HOWELL: So, Ron laying out a couple of scenarios there. Areva, leaning on your expertise here, what are the risks should the Trump administration take this to the Supreme Court?

AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL COMMENTATOR: Well, we know that the Supreme Court is short one justice, so we're talking about an eight-member court at this time. Four of whom are likely to vote in favor of Trump because of their backgrounds, but four who are likely to vote against him. And if he loses at the Supreme Court, there's a tie between these eight justices, then the decision by the ninth circuit becomes the binding decision.

Trump is in a very, very difficult position. He's talked about the risks that the country faces from these seven countries, but he hasn't presented one shred of evidence, and the court, the ninth circuit court in its opinion, called Trump out. They called out the administration for failing to present any credible evidence to justify this threat to our national security.

And to date, we keep hearing about it in tweets. We keep hearing about it from his representatives. But it wasn't presented as evidence to the court. And courts are very different.

You can't make these preposterous statements or these ambiguous statements without backing it up with documentation and evidence. And he failed to do that. His administration failed to do that. And if they don't have that evidence, they're going to continue to lose in court. So, I don't see that he has very many options at this point.

HOWELL: The U.S. system set up with checks and balances and we're seeing that play out in this case. The president has gone after judges in the past, calling them "so-called judges," specifically talking about a judge in Washington State who ruled against the travel ban, suggesting that the decisions of those who disagree, these judges who disagree with him, that they could be politically motivated.

We heard from the governor of Washington State, and he had this to say. Let's listen.


JAY INSLEE, WASHINGTON STATE GOVERNOR: This president has an alarming attribute, if you call it that, or characteristic, that when he loses he tries to undermine respect for the judicial system. I have never seen that in my lifetime.

Richard Nixon never even stooped that low. It's very important and there's nothing wrong with disagreeing with a court decision. But to try to undermine it and to call them "so-called judges," to argue that their motivation is political rather than they're judicial decision- making, that's way out of line, and it's dangerous to our democracy where we do have to maintain a separation of powers.


HOWELL: So Areva, first to you. Governor Inslee suggesting here that the president trying to delegitimize his opponents, which, in this case is the judicial branch. Is there a danger in what's happening here or does the president have some ground to stand on here?

MARTIN: Well, he has no grounds to stand on. And it's absolutely absurd that the president of the United States is issuing statements and making statements to suggest that the judiciary is not doing what it is called upon to do.

We've seen this, though, with Donald Trump. Throughout his campaign, if he didn't like something that a judge did, he would make some kind of disparaging remark about that judge.

And there was a poll that came out tonight that I think is very interesting. It was a poll amongst Donald Trump supporters, and they said overwhelmingly so that Donald Trump shouldn't have to follow the orders of a judge or decisions that are issued by a court. And the more he undermines the integrity of the judiciary, I think

it's throwing red meat to his base. And the more they make statements such as he somehow is above the law and doesn't have to follow legitimate orders from the court, I think this is very dangerous.

And hopefully, the new Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, will take a different approach and will start to show the kind of respect for the judiciary that you would expect from the President of the United States.

HOWELL: Ron, same question to you. This is a president who has been called a counterpuncher. You punch him, he punches back hard, is what the critics say.

[03:10:03] But in this case, the punches don't seem to be landing when it comes to the judicial branch.

BAMIEH: Well, I just listen here, I think it's Areva to what's her comments. She's totally wrong on everything. First of all, President Obama criticized the Supreme Court in Citizens United Case. Nobody complained about that. The threat or the fear of somehow nobody following the rule of law, well, I don't hear people complaining about the sanctuary cities who are disregarding federal law.

So, I don't find those arguments very compelling. The court in this case, when they ask for evidence of the dangers of this country, that's not their place. That's not their role. As a matter of fact, the law is very clear that's not their role. It's the executive branch's decision to make that call, not the courts.

And when you have the courts overstepping as the 9th circuit did, and as Judge Robart did, that's when you have chaos. We have risen of power, we have separation of powers. When we try to write laws as judges or when judges try to write laws, people should be speak out. And people should be upset by that. That's not the way the country is supposed to work.

The law is clear that the president has this authority over this immigration. The Congress gave it to him. Now they bent over backwards to find ways, to find jurisdiction for the State of Washington, which when you read the opinion it's kind of ridiculous.

To say that because of the University of Washington may have some students that would be affected, that gives them standing. That's a big stretch. And only when you get a court that wants to be activists, in this case like this court does, as the 9th circuit, then you get these rulings like this.

So, the president has the legal footing. He has all the right in the world for the lack of this, but unfortunately, for him he's in the wrong forum. He's not going to win in this forum.

HOWELL: Hey, Ron.

MARTIN: George, can I respond to that? First of all, my name is Areva. And to equate what President Obama did with respect to comments about judges with what Donald Trump has done is ridiculous. President Obama never made personal attacks on judges the way that President Trump has. So you can't even equate those two.

And to say the court is wrong, we have two decisions by two courts, judges that have been appointed by republicans, saying that the ban basically, although we haven't gotten to the merits, but have not withheld or upheld the ban by President Trump.

So when you say that the court's wrong, you're essentially saying that both federal courts got it wrong and there's only one right here is President Trump.


BAMIEH: They did, yes.

MARTIN: No, there's no evidence to support that.

BAMIEH: No, it's both.


HOWELL: That is -- I have to stop you both there. Certainly, we've seen the decision of two courts now. If this goes to the Supreme Court, we would have to wait to see what that decision is.

Also important to point out to our viewers that the ruling that came down today is not based on the merits of the case. It's simply based on the temporary restraining order. So again, we can certainly get into the conversation about the merits of the case, but that has not been decided by the courts.

It's good to have both of you and your opinions on this.

MARTIN: Thank you, George.

HOWELL: We'll stay in touch with you both.

BAMIEH: Thank you.

HOWELL: Max, back to you.

MARTIN: Thank you, George.

FOSTER: Yes. George, we're going to look at some of the politics at play here with Donald Trump's travel ban. Then Peter Conradi is the foreign editor of the Sunday Times. He joins me here in London.

So, it's a test, isn't it. It's an interesting test for Donald Trump there. Because he came into office very much on that ticket on immigration, his immigration policy, he's now trying to put it into force and he's facing resistance. So it's an interesting process to see how he responds to this.

PETER CONRADI, FOREIGN EDITOR, THE SUNDAY TIMES: It is. I mean, this is really the first reality check, isn't it? This is Donald Trump coming up against the realities of the American political system, the separation of powers, the executives separate from the judiciary.

And you know, he's fall on the first test and he's not happy about it as one would expect.

FOSTER: But then we got a taste of how he responds to that as well. He's basically going to go all the way to the Supreme Court, obviously.

CONRADI: He is going to do that. And I mean, he's going to -- he's going to bluster about it. We've had this very sort of explosive tweet. He's going to go to the Supreme Court. But how long is that going to take and also when he gets to the Supreme Court, is he actually going to win there, because at the moment, we've got -- his nominee for the court hasn't yet come in.

So we've got a court that's evenly split before four liberals and four conservatives. There's no guarantee he's going to win there either. And then what does he do if he doesn't win there?

FOSTER: Yes, how does he set himself up for a possible loss in that? Because he would have been thinking about that surely?

CONRADI: I think so. But I think, I mean, we saw a little bit of an indication of this that he made some comments yesterday, I think, suggesting that he has actually wanted a delay.


FOSTER: Ask for delay.

CONRADI: He ask for delay. I mean, come on. You know, how plausible is that?

FOSTER: Then he complained the rollout of the policy as for its failure.

CONRADI: He can. And I think, I mean, in a sense he's in a sort of a win-win situation, I think. Because even though, he as crazy as that sounds, even if he actually loses ultimately in the Supreme Court, he can appeal to his base, he can say look, I wanted to protect your country. These judges, these unelected judges, are not allowing me to do that. If anything bad happens, it's their fault, it's not my fault.

FOSTER: It did on theological sense, didn't he say, you know, this idea that America is under threat, I'm trying to protect you. Will he not let his base down, though, if he loses this case? Because it looks as though, he hasn't been able to protect them.

[03:15:02] CONRADI: I think that will only happen if something terrible happens. You know, if God forbid, there were to be a terrorist incident and it were in the U.S. and it were too, involved someone that came from one of those countries. But then again, you know, what can he do?

He will say he will have tried his hardest but the judges stopped him. But I think the reality is no doubt he will move on to another issue. You know, this is the way that Trump works. Something seems to be a huge issue for 12 hours, 24 hours, then thing, another tweet lands and we've moved on to something else.

FOSTER: Your expertise obviously international relations. We have this interesting conversation overnight, our times as well between the White House and Donald Trump's Chinese counterpart. He's stepped back from his opposition to the one-China policy it seems. He seems to accept that that's a thing now.

You've written a book about you know, U.S.-Russia relations. On the international stage, the big test is going to be how he handles China and Russia, right.

CONRADI: He is indeed. It is indeed. Yes, I mean, we're trying to, we've seen this sort of this throwing back. With Russia, we really don't know what's going to happen. Because as ever with this administration, there are just completely contradictory signals coming out.

You know, we have this broad impression that Trump likes Putin, as everybody talks about this kind of great 'bromance' between the two of them, even though they've never met. But then you got other people within his administration who are saying we've got to be tough on Russia. You know, Russia is an aggressive power we've got to contain them.

FOSTER: And that's going to be tested when?

CONRADI: Well, we've got a NATO summit in May that Trump is going to be at. And there's a lot of speculation there's going to be a summit with Putin maybe around that time or maybe in July.

FOSTER: OK. Peter, thank you very much, indeed. It's a fascinating process. We are really getting a sense of this new presidency now on how he puts this policy into practice.

U.S. Senate confirmed Tom Price as the next Secretary of Health and Human Services a short while ago. Democrats fought to stop Price over hardline, his hardline on repealing Obamacare. And altering Medicare, as well as ethical concerns. Republicans hope that he will be one of the primary architects of the replacement plan for Obamacare. George?

HOWELL: And still ahead, as CNN Newsroom rolls on, President Trump agrees to honor the one-China policy. We get reaction from Beijing and a live report. Stay with us.


HOWELL: Welcome back to CNN newsroom.

The President of the United States, Donald Trump, has indicated to the Chinese President Xi Jinping in a phone call that he will honor the one-China policy. Under that policy, the United States recognizes Beijing as the only Chinese government, and cuts official ties with Taiwan.

Before taking office, Mr. Trump questioned whether the U.S. should maintain this long-standing agreement.

Let's go live to Beijing for reaction. David McKenzie is standing by this hour on the story. David, good to have you. This is quite a 180 from the series of tweets that we saw from the U.S. President before he took the oath of office. Do we have any indication of why this about face?

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think the reason why is because fundamentally he cannot have any kind of relationship with mainland China, with China proper, without accepting the one-China policy. So it would have been the nuclear option if Donald Trump had really carried through with his threats to use the Taiwan issue as a negotiating chip.

But certainly they've taken the more steady route, the policy that's been in place since 1979, which allowed the U.S. and China to establish a relationship. That's been really the mainstay of that relationship.

And in describing the phone call, both the U.S. and Chinese officials said there was a cordial discussion between the two leaders. This, perhaps Donald Trump's most important bilateral relationship going forward with the Chinese, and with Xi Jinping.

The Chinese saying that the one-China policy is an abiding policy, and Xi Jinping, according to the readout, saying that was a critical one to really form the basis of their relationship.

So going forward, they will be able to discuss these thorny issues like trade, the South China Sea, climate change. But really had to get this out of the way from the Chinese perspective before they moved forward at all. George?

HOWELL: Reminding our viewers of course, there was a point where president-elect Trump took a phone call from the president of Taiwan, and what has been the response of Taiwan given, again, what has been an about face?

MCKENZIE: Well, they just had word from the presidential office in Taipei, saying that Taiwan will continue to maintain a close relationship to the U.S. and develop those ties. Of course, from Taiwan's point of view, the relationship with the U.S. is very important, even if Washington doesn't recognize Taipei as the government of Taiwan, there are close ties and that includes military ties with Taiwan.

It's a very difficult balancing act always between the U.S., Taiwan, and China. But overall, the relationship with Beijing is so critical on so many fronts that really they would have felt compelled to stick with the one-China policy. George?

HOWELL: The U.S. president again saying that he will recognize, honor the one-China policy. David McKenzie, live for us in the Chinese capital. Thank you so much for your reporting.

FOSTER: Now President Trump is hosting the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for a summit at the White House on Friday. Then they'll head to the president's estate in Florida for a weekend round of golf.

But of course, Mr. Abe may offer to invest billions in the U.S. economy, potentially creating thousands of jobs.

And the White House is responding to the latest string of ethics concerns about a Trump administration's relationship with the family's businesses.

Press Secretary Sean Spicer says one of the president's top advisers, Kellyanne Conway, has been counseled after making a sales pitch during a live TV interview.


[03:25:05] CONWAY: Go by Ivanka's stuff is what I would say. I hate shopping. I am going to get some of it myself today. It's a wonderful line. I own some of it. I fully -- I'm just going to give -- I'm going to give a free commercial here.


CONWAY: Go buy it today, everybody. You can find it online.


FOSTER: Well, politicians on both sides of the aisle are now calling for an investigation into her comments, with one prominent lawmaker saying they appear to be a textbook violation of government ethics laws and regulations.

Meanwhile, Conway says she has the full support of the president.


MARTHA MACCALLUM, FOX NEWS HOST: So you spoke about that matter and he is not -- doesn't have any intention to suspend you?

CONWAY: We spoke about a range of matters and he supports me 100 percent. In fact, it was a very heartening moment.


FOSTER: Now, just one day earlier, the president used Twitter to attack Nordstrom department stores for dropping his daughter's product line.

Anger over the president's business conflicts is boiling over for some Americans, meanwhile.


It's doesn't exactly a happy homecoming for U.S. Congressman Jason Chaffetz when he return to Utah. Angry crowds confronting the republican at his town hall in Salt Lake City on Thursday night. Besides the potential business conflicts, protesters want Chaffetz to investigate Russia's interference in the U.S. election. HOWELL: Still ahead, President Trump loses big on his controversial

travel ban. We take a closer look at the appeals court ruling what happens next.

Live from London and Atlanta, to our viewers in the United States and around the world this hour, you're watching CNN Newsroom.


HOWELL: Welcome back to our viewers here in the United States and around the world. You're watching CNN Newsroom. Thank you for being with us. I'm George Howell in Atlanta.

FOSTER: I'm Max Foster in London. A reminder of our breaking news this hour.

U.S. Appeals Court has ruled unanimously to keep President Trump's travel ban on hold. That means people from seven Muslim majority countries covered by his executive order can continue to travel to the U.S.

Mr. Trump tweeted almost immediately "see you in court."

HOWELL: And Max, the three U.S. judges rejected the Trump travel ban in only a matter of two days, very quickly, in a unanimous opinion.

CNN's Laura Jarrett says the judges found no merit in any of the administration's arguments against the temporary restraining order.

LAURA JARRETT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: In a huge blow for the Trump administration, three judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals have ruled that the travel ban will remain suspended.

In a 29-page opinion, the judges rejected each and every one of the arguments the Justice Department used to try to justify a reinstatement of the ban, saying the government failed to prove why the travel ban was necessary as an urgent national security matter.

The judges wrote that "The government has pointed to no evidence that any alien from any of the countries named in the order has perpetrated a terrorist attack in the United States. Rather than present evidence to explain the need for the executive order, the government has taken the position that we must not review its decision at all. We disagree," the court wrote.

Essentially, the court there is saying that while it does give deference to political branches on immigration and national security issues, it has every right to review this case. Unlike what the government argued on Tuesday.

In the end, the judges said that the government did not meet its burden in this case, and therefore, the travel ban must remain on hold. The government had previously suggested that the court should limit the ban to those people from the seven banned countries who had never stepped foot on U.S. soil. But these three judges rejected that option, as well. Right now, the

Justice Department is reviewing the opinion and weighing its options on what will happen next, which could mean an appeal to the Supreme Court.

FOSTER: Well, the Middle East wasn't one of the primary targets of the travel ban, with Iraq, Iran and Yemen all on the list. The reaction there has been a mix of anger and disappointment, but the latest ruling is offering some faint hope.

Our Arwa Damon reports.

ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The fact that this temporary halt is being maintained does, yes, allow for a little bit more breathing room, especially for those who are hoping to go to the United States and are close to the end of the application process and have the opportunity to be able to travel within the next few days.

But for so many it has been such an emotionally training process, especially those who are hoping to start a new life in America, who are hoping that America would be welcoming them, as they expected it to, and instead, are being faced with the reality that it might be closing the doors in their face.

But even if this ban is not reinstated you do have as the president of World Relief brought another issue, and that is the dramatic reduction of the number of refugees that are going to eventually even be admitted to the United States. That number dropping from 110,000 to 50,000, which is really just a fraction of the global numbers, if one even takes into consideration that Turkey in and of itself is home to around three million refugees from Syria alone.

Now incidentally President Trump did also speak to his Iraqi counterpart, Haider al-Abadi and among the many issues that were brought up, which of course that include Iraq's ongoing fight against ISIS, the broader need to collaborate when it comes to war on terrorism.

The Iraqi leader also brought the issue of visa regulations for his country citizens, something which the Iraqis say President Trump did promise to address.

But all of this has really put a sour taste in the mouth of those citizens from those seven predominantly Muslim countries, and in fact, from citizens throughout the Middle East and the broader Muslim world, who really believe that America had a reputation of being a country that welcomes immigrants.

[03:35:04] And to a certain degree, being a country that at the very least did the bare minimum to help those in need. And they're finding this current back and forth very difficult. One that is potentially going to do irreparable damage to America's reputation and image in the Middle East and beyond.

Arwa Damn, CNN, Ankara. HOWELL: Arwa Damon, thank you for the reporting. The man who ran U.S.

intelligence under former President Barack Obama, James Clapper, is no fan of the Trump travel ban. Clapper tells CNN's Jim Sciutto that the ban was unnecessary and may have done more harm than good. Listen.


JIM SCIUTTO, CNN'S CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Does the terror threat necessitate the ban from these seven countries?

JAMES CLAPPER, FORMER UNITED STATES NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE DIRECTOR: Well, I don't believe we in the I.C. were aware of any extraordinary threats that we weren't already dealing with. And we're using, I think, some very rigorous vetting processes, which we constantly improved on.

SCIUTTO: Does a ban like this in your view, is it damage U.S. image but also counterterror partnership?

CLAPPER: Yes. I do worry about those countries in question with whom we do deal and who are reliable partners. I also worry about this creating a recruiting tool for the extremists, that they -- that they will point to this as proof there is, in fact, a war on all Muslims.

SCIUTTO: And you're confident in the vetting that the U.S. is already doing for the travelers in this country?

CLAPPER: I am. And we have improved that process as we've gone.


FOSTER: Well, many international leaders, including traditional U.S. allies have spoken out strongly against that U.S. travel man.

The U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May again voice her concerns during a news conference at Downing Street on Thursday.


THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: In relation to the executive order that President Trump signed now nearly two weeks ago with the various movement bans, we thought that was wrong. That was divisive, it is not a policy that the United Kingdom would adopt.

What we did do when it became clear that there was concern among British citizens that it might affect them, we worked with the President Trump's -- the United States government with his administration to ensure that it was not going to affect British nationals and British Jew nationals.

FOSTER: Well, shortly after the U.S. travel ban was introduced, Angela Merkel's office let it be known that she had reminded President Trump of U.S. obligations to refugees under the Geneva conventions.

But the recent statement opposing the ban, Merkel said, "The necessary and decisive fight against terrorism in no way justifies a general suspicion against people of certain beliefs. In this case, people of the Muslim faith or from a certain origin. These actions according to my belief are against the core idea of International Aid for Refugees and international cooperation."

More on British and European reaction, I'm joined by the Peter Westmacott, he's a former British ambassador to the U.S. And ambassadors around the world, or particularly in Washington, D.C. right now, must be really struggling with this, because so many countries have a problem with this ban, but they've got to keep that relationship with Washington and Donald Trump.

PETER WESTMACOTT, FORMER BRITISH AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED STATES: That's true. And of course, we saw that Theresa May worked hard to get a very early visit to the Oval Office, which went well. Although the travel ban was announced just a few hours after she left.

FOSTER: Then there was a backlash to what she promised in Washington.

WESTMACOTT: And then there was a backlash to hat she promised in Washington, particularly here in the United Kingdom. People didn't like the guy to have a state visit being offered to somebody who had instituted this travel ban.

So yes, it's complicated relations with many European countries. The European Council where all the heads of the government came together a few days ago in Malta was critical of a number of Trump approaches and Trump policies.

But at the same time, people realize that they've got to do business. The U.K., particularly because Trump has been very supportive of Brexit, and of course, the British government, which is on its way to leaving the European Union, is very keen to ensure that one of the earliest successes of that new policy is a new free trade agreement with the Trump administration.

Trump has been very supportive so the U.K. government is particularly keen to get that relationship going well. But everybody else has to deal with Trump. And actually, a number of traditional foreign policy areas, Trump has begun to moderate some of the more worrying positions that we've seen on Twitter from him, as members of his administration get into the detail of policy and start looking at how best to manage a relationship with different countries around the world.

FOSTER: So a good example of that was overnight when he spoke to President Xi of China and said, you know, we do support the one-China policy which he had been firmly against before. But how might he do something similar with this refugee ban to try to appease international concern, but also that sort of base of support that got him through the election?

[03:39:55] WESTMACOTT: Well, you're right about the China change of policy. I think now would have gone well, clearly choreograph with Beijing these things are, they've moderated their line on Russia. The new U.S. ambassador to the U.N. have said, well, actually we're not going to lift sanctions as long as the Russians remain in Ukraine and Crimea as they are. They've modified their view on Israel which was you know, essentially

whatever Israel wants, he said OK, and now he said settlements might not be helpful. He has moderated some of the language on NATO.

Earlier he was talking about it being obsolete and if people didn't pay their dues, America wouldn't be there if people called on the guarantees. And now it's a softer line.

Now with the travel ban, of course, he's not going to go down quietly. I don't think. He said, "see you in court." He doesn't like the fact that the judges have weighed in and said this is not legal. Whether he can do something with that to try to build up relationships, which were a bit frayed as a result of the travel ban, well, let us see.

Of course, many countries, the U.K. was one, but there are lots of others, got immediate bilateral assurances from the White House that actually the travel ban didn't apply to their dual nationals and people in their country and that calmed some people down.

But it looks as though the travel ban probably isn't going to remain in place at all. So, I think that is something which will be helpful, will be reassuring. And if they want to, it means that the Trump administration can work on it. But at the moment, he still seems to be very angry.

FOSTER: Yes. If he wins in the Supreme Court and the travel ban stays, you know, the likes of Angela Merkel are in a difficult position. They -- you know, it goes against their principles, doesn't it, so what sort of backlash might there be on America from countries like Germany?

Because at the moment, it's seem as a very domestic issue actually, but what sort of impact might there be internationally on Americans if this travel ban stays in place, do you think?

WESTMACOTT: We'll have to see where the courts go, of course. And one of the most important things about the way American politics work, is that there are checks and balances. So there is an independent judiciary. Donald Trump sometimes doesn't like that.

So, the travel ban may go or it may survive when there's a further appeal. I think if it survives, then there obviously will be concerns in many European aspects. Angela Merkel has come out firmly against it, Theresa May has come out against it. The French government don't like it either.

I think it will remain a difficulty for many countries, even if we've got bilateral assurances that, you know, it's going to be OK in terms of our dual internationals. Where does that go in the future? Well, I think that it means that managing many of the Middle Eastern issues, dealing with counterterrorism, dealing with refugees from a number of the crisis countries will be more difficult.

FOSTER: OK. Peter Westmacott, thank you very much indeed.

WESTMACOTT: Thank you. HOWELL: One of the nation's that's part of that ban, Iran. And let's

take live images now in Iran, that nation celebrating Revolution Day. Crowds lining the streets sending a message to Washington.

CNN Newsroom is back live next.


KATE RILEY, CNN WORLD SPORT ANCHOR: I'm Kate Riley with your CNN World Sport headlines.

We start with confirmation that Barcelona will play in the Copa del Rey finals against Alaves without striker Luis Suarez. That's being sad. The one match ban was upheld and the forward is now picked up a two match tournament ban after he is sending off to missed semifinals second leg and then for taking took too long to leave the pitch and staying in the tunnel.

Barce have confirmed they will continue to appeal.

From the pitch to St. Moritz, Switzerland for FIS Alpine World Ski championships to where one of the biggest names from the sport is struggling to return to winning form.

The American Lindsey Vonn said she may be force to go to such extreme length said to duct tape her pole to her hand in order to compete. On Tuesday, the 32-year-old failed to finish after she lost grip on her pole in the super G. The four-time World Cup winner is still recovering from surgery she had on a broken arm back in November. She is still optimistic heading into the weekend's events duct tape or not.

And someone else who should have used duct tape is the Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who is still hoping to get his hands on the jersey he wore during Sunday's Super Bowl after went missing during post-game celebrations. He may be in luck, though, a law enforcement official told TNT Sports they were hopeful that it was packed up right after the game and headed back to Boston now.

And that's a look at all your sports headlines. I'm Kate Riley.

FOSTER: Now Iran is celebrating Revolution Day. The anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Parades are lining the streets of capital Tehran and the President Hassan Rouhani addressed the nation just a short while ago.

HOWELL: And he's live in Iran. Fred Pleitgen is live in Tehran this hour. Fred, there has been fiery rhetoric of course against the United States, specifically regarding the new Trump administration. But there have also been images of support for Americans.

I was looking at your Instagram account just a short time ago. You posted this image, young children holding a sign, "thanks to American people for supporting Muslims." Important to point out the fact that there are many different voices coming to get -- together, I should say, on this day, this very important day in Iran. FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes,

you're absolutely right, George. And I think one of things that the folks that you see here at these demonstrations, is obviously they do have some pretty vicious rhetoric towards the U.S. government.

But they always make the differentiation between the American people and the American government. And they always say, look, we have nothing against the American people, it's the policies of the U.S. government that the folks who come to demonstrations like this one say they don't like. And that specific kid that was holding up that sign.

Look, on the one hand, it was obviously in reaction to the verdict that came down yesterday not allowing that travel ban to come back in place, but also of course at the public uproar that was taking place in the United States when that travel ban, when that executive order came into being.

Nevertheless, there is a lot of a very vicious anti-American rhetoric here, anti-Trump rhetoric here, as well. In fact, the supreme leader of this country, Ayatollah Khamenei told people to come out here today in force and give Donald Trump an answer.

And that's certainly something that we're seeing here. There were literally hundreds of thousands, if not over a million people here at this demonstration who came and went.

Obviously, a lot of them holding anti-Donald Trump signs and many of them saying that they're quite angry at some of the things that have transpired from the U.S. administration the first days that Donald Trump has been office, especially of course, those sanctions levied against Iran, but then also of course, the travel ban, as well.

Which we have to keep in mind, George, hits Iranians harder than pretty much any other group, because there's so much travel back and forth between Iran and the U.S., George

HOWELL: Just to talk a bit more about that, and also making the point that you rightly point out, a lot of images there. We showed that image a moment ago and then there was another image we just showed that said "down with America." This ban affects many people between the United States and Iran. Just talk to us, Fred, more about what you're hearing, what has been the reaction, given what came out of San Francisco.

PLEITGEN: Yes, you know, many people obviously here are very happy that the travel ban has not been reinstated. And one of the reasons that you stated is absolutely true. There's so much travel back and forth between Iran and the United States.

People visiting their families, obviously especially in the California region. There's a lot of Iranians who live there and a lot of folks who come and visit them. Also, a lot of Iranians who go to study in the United States. Who study here and then go work in the United States. So, for them this was really, really tough, and of course, it hit them

pretty much out of the blue when it happened. And there is a lot of anger at that, there is a lot of anger at the new administration in Washington.

But there's also people that we've been hearing who say look, Donald Trump, they say, is not unlike they believe other American politicians. They believe that they've had this antagonism towards themselves in the past.

[03:50:01] And one of the words that you hear here at this demonstration a lot is resilience, the Iranians saying that no matter what the U.S. does, they're not going to give up their positions.

But at the same time, again, making that differentiation always between the American people and the American government, George.

HOWELL: Fred has traveled extensively throughout Iran bringing us reporting and context this day, on Revolution Day in that nation. Fred Pleitgen, thank you so much for the reporting.

FOSTER: George, people in the northeastern U.S. will have to start digging out after a snowstorm dumped snow across the region. Airlines canceled almost 2,000 flights along the storm's path on Thursday on three major cities shut down schools, as well. Bus services were shut down in some cities.

And New York's mayor urged people to stay off the roads. There was one death, a doorman, in New York who slipped and fell while shoveling the snow.

HOWELL: There's a great deal of snow. And more on this let's bring in our meteorologist Julie Martin to talk more about the situation. Julie, so, is there more on the way? What's the situation?

JULIE MARTIN, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Well, the good news is, the snow is now offshore. It has moved out to sea and we're not going to be dealing with any more of that at least for the next couple of days. Still cold in the northeast, so that's going to be something to contend with. Still a bit blustery this morning, George, as folks are waking up, so that could be a concern with all of the drifting snow and transportation issues as well.

But what's really impressive are these snow totals. Take a look at some of this, 50.8 centimeters here in Perry, Maine. I mean, looking at East Hartford, Connecticut, more than 48 centimeters. And Faure Bush, New York that's near Albany, 45.7.

By the way, Central Park picked up about half of that amount. But that is still quite impressive, given that that is the heart of the city.

So the snow is over, and I want to take you down under now where we had quite a different situation earlier this week. An actual fire tornado. Take a look at this incredible video. This was coming out of the Western Australia Coast. Some of these flames reached about 60 feet tall. Now keep in mind fire bans are in place in Australia, and the heat is

the big story here. In fact, Australia likely to set many more records in the coming days. And so not only the fire is a concern, but power loss a concern in this -- in the country, as well.

Taking you out now to the satellite. You can see high pressure certainly in control here, and all of the moisture really kind of skirting around the heart of Australia, which is where they really could use some much-needed rain, not going to be the case, so very shot here, above average temperatures for the coming days.

In fact, we're looking at temperatures well above average. Look at some of these numbers here. In Sydney, the average high temperature, just 24 degrees. We're looking at highs at 37 for Saturday. Sydney, by the way could break a 121-year record for the hottest temperatures.

Melbourne also looking very hot at 26. A little bit cooler as we get into the beginning of next week. Still though, going to be very rough for the folks here over the next couple of days.

So we're looking at the heat continuing here. And some more cold air actually for the U.S., particularly the eastern U.S. at least for another day or so. Then we'll see a big temperature turn around, George, places like Atlanta, Georgia, we could be in the 70s by the weekend.

HOWELL: Seventies in Atlanta, snow in New York.

MARTIN: Fahrenheit.

HOWELL: I've got a friend of mine she said, you know, it's the first snow, big snow they've had all year, so they welcome it.

MARTIN: Yes. It's kind of fun, it's kind of a novelty, because there hasn't been a lot of snow.

HOWELL: Thank you, Julie.

MARTIN: All right.

FOSTER: George, exciting night on Sunday night here in London. Movie fans will be tuning in for the annual British Film Awards. This year's BAFTAS have singled out the Hollywood musical "La La Land" for 11 nominations including best film. Also nominated for best film is "Moonlight," it won best drama at last month's Golden Globes.

Our CNN's Neil Curry spoke with one of its stars.

NEIL CURRY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The British actress Naomie Harris has walked the red carpet on some of Hollywood's biggest block busters from the "Pirates of the Caribbean" to the "Bond" movies where she appears alongside Daniel Craig as Ms. Money Penny.


NAOMIE HARRIS, ACTRESS: Turn your head. I'm going to lose them.

JUDI DENCH, ACTRESS: Can you get into a better position?

HARRIS: There's no time.


CURRY: But it's a much lower budget movie "Moonlight" which has secured her the holy trinity of award nominations Golden Globe, BAFTA, and Oscar.


HARRIS: I definitely think the movie as a whole is incredibly important, because ultimately, the best thing is you've got to get people to see the performances to nominate them. So, to really entice people, you know, you have to be part of a great movie.

What happened? Why you didn't come home like you're supposed to, huh? And who is you?


CURRY: Breaking out from a global press tour of "Spectre", Harris had a mere three days to shoot the role as a drug addicted mother of a boy discovering his true sexuality in its tough urban community.


[03:55:08] HARRIS: I think it has to be -- it has to be as realistic as possible so that it touches something inside people, and because I think that's why you go to the movies is to be moved.


CURRY: The actress say she's encouraged by the greater diversity among this years' award season nominees following last year's Oscar so-white controversy.


HARRIS: You want to have a conversation with me?


HARRIS: So diverse this year, and I think that's even fantastic, because I think we want, as an audience, to see diversity. You know, we want to see -- life is incredibly diverse. We, as people are incredibly diverse. I think, you know, art is supposed to reflect life, right, so that's what we want to see on screen, too.


CURRY: Harris says she has an easy way to keep her grounded in the place of her recent success.


HARRIS: What works for me is my family. I'm really, really close to my family and I live, I'm lucky I live on the same street as them, they're just eight doors away. So whenever I'm feeling down, I go to my family. They usually, you know, it's a lot of insults in my family, that's how they get through, like that's their sense of humor. But it always gets me laughing and it puts life in perspective as well.


CURRY: With "Moonlight" nominated for eight academy awards, Harris says she's proud to be part of a film which is moved both critics and audiences alike.

Neil Curry, CNN.

FOSTER: Well, you can probably tell, George, we're all pretty much rooting for Naomie Harris at the Oscars, as well. I'm Max Foster in London

HOWELL: And I'm George Howell. The news continues here on CNN. Stay with us.