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Four Killed, 40 Wounded in London Terror Attack; Police: London Attack Likely Islamist-Related Terrorism; Attacker Stabbed Officer On Grounds Of Parliament; Injured Woman Pulled From River Thames After Attack; U.S. Officials: Info Suggests Trump Associates May Have Coordinated With Russians; AP: Manafort Linked To Russian With Close Ties To Putin; Intel. Chair Trump Communications Possibly Collected; Intel Chair: Surveillance Was Legal But Alarming; Intel Chair: Wrong To Say Trump Was Wiretapped; Trump Says He Feels "Somewhat" Vindicated. Aired 1-2a ET
Aired March 23, 2017 - 01:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[01:00:00] HANNAH VAUGHAN JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT AND ANCHOR: Hello, thanks so much for joining us. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones, live here in London where it's just turned 5:00 a.m. this Thursday morning.
ISHA SESAY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT AND ANCHOR: And I'm Isha Sesay, live from Los Angeles where it's 10:00, Wednesday night.
JONES: Well, London is in mourning today, mourning for the four innocent lives lost in a brutal terror attack. The suspects, shot and killed by police. It all started across mid-afternoon, around half to 3:00 yesterday when the man mowed down pedestrian - innocent pedestrians on Westminster Bridge in the heart of the City of London. Three people were killed there, dozens more were wounded and their condition is still unknown to us. But many people being treated in hospitals, in and around this capital city.
The video shows, one woman jumping from Westminster Bridge into the river tensed, she was later pulled from the water alive but seriously injured. And from there, the attacker crashed his car into a fence, outside parliament itself. He got out of the vehicle, and then fatally stabbed and unarmed policemen. One witness described the chaos:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're just walking out to the station and there was a little bang, the guy - someone crashed the car and it's like took some pedestrian. And they were just lying there, and then the whole crowd just surged around the corner just below the gates, just saw that there's a bang then. And the guy came past my right shoulder with a big knife, I just punch again to the policeman. I just - I've never seen anything like that. I just can't believe.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: If you see that, just a shock on everyone's faces, the people who've actually witnessed this. Well, the policeman who was killed was a 15-year veteran with the Metropolitan police forces. His name is Keith Palmer, as you can see him there. The Prime Minister Theresa May, has called this attack "sick and depraved".
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THERESA MAY, UNITED KINGDOM PRIME MINISTER: The location of this attack was no accident. The terrorist chose to strike at the heart of our capital city, where people of all nationalities, religions, and cultures come together to celebrate the values of liberty, democracy, and freedom speech. These streets of Westminster, home to the world's oldest parliament, are ingrained with the spirit of freedom that echoes in some of the furthest corners of the globe. And the values our parliament represents: democracy, freedom, human rights, the rule of law commands the admiration and respect of free people everywhere, that is why it is the target for those who reject those values. But let me make it clear today, as I have had caused to do before, any attempt to defeat those values through violence and terror, is doomed to failure.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JONES: The Prime Minister Theresa May, speaking last night in the aftermath of this attack. But we are covering this atrocity across London; Nina dos Santos and Isa Soares joining me now. Nina, to you first, the latest on the investigation, if you will, a fast-moving investigation with many more leads still to track down.
[01:04:57] NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: And many actual police officer who've been assigned to the case as well, Hannah. Now, this is the closest you can get to the crime scene, and about a quarter of a mile down the road from Westminster Bridge. And as you can see, it is completely deserted in this area, the police are still continuing to give a very wide cold - in a very wide radius cold and duff from the public and indeed members of the media as well. You can see the sign there saying that Bridge Street is closed until further notice.
And you can see, also, if I step-back, the flashing lights of forensic teams, we've also got boats in the rivers as well cordoning off this area from traffic, that's passing through in the waterways. So far, what we know from the Metropolitan police is that, they've said overnight that they have a fair idea of who the attacker was, but they have not named him yet. They do say that he was inspire by Islamist- related terrorisms, so this continues to be a terrorist investigation. So far, remember, that there will be forensic teams - forensic teams got on the scene quite quickly yesterday afternoon. When I was here in Westminster, there's a very large forensic presence further down the road.
Remember that, of course, there is a vehicle that'll probably have fingerprints and various other forensic evidence, we'll be pulling through all kind of detail as well. We're also getting, as you mentioned before, a picture as well of the police officer who tragically lost his life there. This is the only victim that has been named so far, as you mentioned, 48-year old Keith Palmer, a father, a husband, with 15 years' service inside the Metropolitan police. Remember that, to the extra officers were on-duty across the streets here in London, this is also a somber and tragic day. And it should point out that outside the offices of new Scotland Yard,
the flag is flying at half-mast. The Queen was actually, supposed to be visiting those offices in a ceremonial day to try and have a look at the day in the life of the Metropolitan Police. But that visit, has been postponed until further notice, as of course, this investigation continues at place. Hannah.
JONES: Nina, thanks very much indeed. Isa Soares is live for us in Whitehall at the moment, with the political response. Isa, we heard just a little earlier from Theresa May as she was speaking on Downing Street last night. And Parliamentarians in this country, don't know if get a good wrap when it comes to the press and like, but with regards to this particular incident, some real acts of heroism and not the first time they've come under-attack.
ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT AND ANCHOR: Message today from Theresa May - Prime Minister Theresa May, words one of defiance, one of resilience. Despite the fact that we are still seeing areas - part of London - and as Nina pointed out on her side, but also where I am - square. We're also seeing - behind me, Whitehall leads the House of the Parliament, and that is still closed off. But, as you pointed out, the biggest act of defiant will come today.
The biggest show, of course, will be Theresa May, she will be speaking in Parliament today. We do not know the time, she will no doubt talk about the horrors that unfolded right here in the heart. But also, both Houses will sit at the House of Lords, effectively at 7:00; the House of Commons, at 9:30. And that is the biggest show of defiance. Then saying, despite what happened here yesterday, no one can stop us -
JONES: Isa, my apologies, we are going to just interrupt you right now because we don't have the best communications with you. My apologies there, for interrupting Isa Soares, my colleague, who's just down the road for me in Westminster. Nina dos Santos, Isa Soares, many thanks to both of you for joining me this morning.
I want to now take you over to Los Angeles, the Director of this Center for Study of Hate and Extremism, Brian Levin, is there for us; also from the Netherlands, Security Management Consultant, Glenn Schoen; and from Tokyo International Security Director for the Asia Pacific Foundation, Sajjan Gohel, joining us again this hour. Many thanks to you all three of you for joining us on the program.
Brian Levin, if I can come to you first, no group has claimed responsibility yet for this attack, despite the fact that the authorities here - do you believe that they know who the assailant was? Just if have though, all of the hallmarks of say, ISIS?
BRIAN LEVIN, CENTER FOR STUDY OF HATE AND EXTREMISM DIRECTOR: Oh, sure, and not just ISIS, by the way. Back in 2010, the Department of Homeland Security came out with a warning about using vehicles for ramming. But most recently, in Ramya Magazines for instance, there were sections related to do-it-yourself terrorism where they discussed using vehicles to run people over, and then previously to that, they discussed using knives. So, yes, as many have speculated, this is a signature of dice for ISIS.
And also, let's not forget that this has occurred on the one year anniversary of Brussels. And what is so interesting, is this happening at the very time when ISIS has lost 62 percent of its territory. Its internet reach has been truncated to off-shore into these like telegrams and others. Yet, even with all that and the death of Allad Nani, who a couple of years ago, in 2014 for instance, urged people to use rocks or vehicles or knives. And he's dead, that they're still inspiring fellow travelers even if they're not necessarily members.
Let's see where the forensics take us, but my guess would be, is this a someone who's more likely to be someone who's inspired by ISIS, as supposed to someone who's been directly orchestrated and trained. But let's see where the evidence takes us, as this investigation continues.
[01:10:41] JONES: Glenn Schoen, I'm wondering whether you think that there was a particular security breach. And whether the fact that, Westminster here in the heart of London is very well open to the public, if you like, is that something that the security forces are going to be looking at now and saying, right, we've just effectively need to close this off from the public.
GLENN SCHOEN, THE NETHERLANDS SECURITY MANAGEMENT CONSULTANT (via Skype): I don't think they'll look at that sharply. I think security works in this instance. And pretty sure they don't allow at work meetings I've held last year, year before with Mr. Rowley. It was clear, these kinds of incidents worsening as a potential. Think, looking back at how it was handled yesterday, we see sort of the strength in the British in dealing with that situation. When we look at the police intervention against the suspect, when we look at communication, when we look at the medical services, how quick and orderly, speedy the right numbers, the right locations, and the initiation of the investigation, all of that taken together I think worked fairly well.
When you look at the area around parliaments, possible that will have some rethink here on barriers to protect sidewalks, so people walking, obviously, the big sort of new developments here is, this is the first time within Europe. We've seen a vehicle attack outside of the context of an events. Nice and Berlin was both during a major celebration, this is the first time where we've met and open incident as we have at Ohio State, so as Israel have suffered. People simply marking in an open area, so there'll be some reasoning for that, there will be the major overhaul of measures.
JONES: Sajjan Gohel, live for us in Tokyo as well, listening into this conversation. The international response has been quite swift, what kind of lessons can the rest of the world learn from what happened in London?
SAJJAN GOHEL, ASIA PACIFIC FOUNDATION TOKYO INTERNATIONAL SECURITY DIRECTOR: Well, it's very hard because this is being discussed. Now, the fourth vehicle attack in the last eight months; Nice, on Bastille Day; there was the incident at Ohio State; the Berlin marketplace; and now, unfortunately, London. And there've also been a number of other plots that the authorities disrupted, where the intention was to use a vehicle attack. And ISIS using its social media platform, it's propaganda material, they are now issuing messages on what they called "just kill tactics," where it's not sophisticated, it's not elaborate, it's not about hijacking planes, it's simply using vehicles as lethal weapons.
And I hate to use this terminology, but it's effectively now becoming the "new normal," where these types of plots will keep happening. The authorities will not necessarily be able to disrupt them, because there's no intelligence or leakage of information. Very often, these individuals that are being radicalized, haven't even left their home countries but they have been recruited, nurtured, and cultivated online by what's called the ISIS's emny, effectively their intelligence operators. And we've seen those examples in France, in Germany, and possibly maybe even in the United Kingdom as well.
One can only try and create measures to disrupt and make it harder for the terrorist from operating. We're talking about maybe putting in barriers, but that's also going to create disruption for ordinary people. And that is the goal of the terrorist, remember that, that the first objective is to kill in main, the second is to create disruption, and they always seem to achieve that.
JONES: Sajjan Gohel, Glenn Schoel, and Brian Levin, gentleman thank you very much for joining me at this very cold Thursday morning here in London. And that is the question that so many people are asking now, and Sajjan just mentioned there, "the new normal." Is this what we have to now put up with on a regular basis and just get used it as well. We're going to be covering this story all day here on CNN, from the heart of London, the heart of British democracy. This is the story of course of that terror attack. Just ahead, a moment by moment look at the chaos that unfolded in an iconic part of this British capital.
[01:16:58] JONES: Welcome back to our special coverage of the London terror attack on the Houses of Parliament. Just a couple of 100 meters down the road from where I'm standing, investigators of Scotland, I do believe that they know who the suspect is behind this attack that cost four people their lives. But they are not releasing the assailant's name just yet or indeed any possible motive. What they are saying though, is that the attack appears to be intimate inspired. Meanwhile, in a show to find, British MP's, are returning to parliament. They will be doing, though, later in the coming hours and business as usual for Thursday.
SESAY: Well, all right. Hannah, thank you so much for that. And we will have much more on the attack in London coming up. But now, the deeply political controversy over surveillance and possible ties between associates of President Donald Trump and Russia. Our own Pamela Brown and Evan Perez had this exclusive report with Anderson Cooper.
(BEGIN VIDEO TAPE) ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANDERSON COOPER 360 ANCHOR: Evan first, what have you been learned?
EVAN PEREZ, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well Anderson, U.S. officials tells CNN that FBI has information that indicates associates of President Donald Trump communicated with suspected Russian operatives to possibly coordinate the release of information damage and to Hillary Clinton's campaign. Now FBI Director James Comey made his bombshell announcement on Monday before Congress that the FBI is investigating the Trump campaign's ties to Russia. The FBI is now reviewing that information which includes human intelligence, travel business and phone records and accounts of in person meetings. But this information is what was raising the suspicions of FBI intelligence investigators that the coordination may have taken place, though some officials caution that the information was not yet conclusive and if the investigation is still ongoing. But the FBI has not commented nor with the White House, though Trump officials have denied that there is any evidence of collusion.
COOPER: And Pamela, I mean this does gives us more insights in to what Director Comey knew when he spoke on Monday.
PAMELA BROWN, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yes it certainly does, Anderson. If you recall, in addition to Comey saying the investigation includes looking at connections of Trumps associates, he also explained what it means that the investigation is being down in the first place.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKE TURNER, UNITED STATES HOUSE REPUBLICAN: Don't you need some action or some information besides just attending a meeting? I mean, then paid the teleconference that a picture was taken or that you travelled to a country before your open to investigation for counter intelligence by the FBI?
JAMES COMEY, FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION DIRECTOR: The standard is, I think there's a couple of different in play. A credible allegation of wrongdoing or reasonable basis to believe that an American maybe, acting as an agent of a foreign power.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BROWN: And one law enforcement official said the information in hand suggest, quote, "People connected to the campaign were in contact and it appeared they were giving the thumbs up to release information when it was ready." but there are other U.S. officials we have spoken with who say it's premature to draw that inference from the information gathered so far since it's largely circumstantial and the FBI cannot yet prove that collusion did in fact take place but the information suggesting collusion is now a large focus of this investigation, Anderson.
COOPER: And what sort of coordination is under investigation, Evan?
[01:20:08] PEREZ: Well mostly, the FBI's focused on the stolen and published e-mails by WikiLeaks including those from the DNC and from John Podesta, the Clint campaign Chairman. U.S. officials said that the information being investigated was not drawn from the leak dossier upon verified information compiled but at former British intelligence official who compiled it for Trump's political opponents. Though we should know that the dossier also suggested that there was this con- coordination between Trump campaign associates and Russian operatives.
COOPER: And Pamela doing no - who's being investigated at this point?
BROWN: So our sources would not say who connected to Trump was being investigated but - on this information, but we do know the FBI has already been investigating four former Trump campaign associates, Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, Roger Stone and Carter Page for their contacts with Russians known to U.S. intelligence.
All four have denied improper contacts. And what are the obstacles here Anderson, were told through officials. Is that the FBI and trying to find conclusive intelligence is having a tough time because communication between Trump associates and Russians have scenes in recent month given the public focus on Russia ties to the Trump campaign. In fact, some Russian officials have even changed their methods of communications, making monitoring more difficult, Anderson.
SESAY: Well, there are fresh questions about the connection between President Trump's former campaign Chief and the Russian billionaire. Paul Manafort confirmed working 10 years ago with Oleg Deripaska, a magnet with close ties to Russian President, Vladimir Putin. The associate's press report, Manafort made millions of dollars for a plan to, quote, "Greatly benefit the Putin Government". Manafort denies his work would aim at advancing Mr. Putin's political interest.
Well finally, the House Intelligence Committee Chairman revealed that communications of President Trump and associates may have been intercepted during legal surveillance of foreign target. Devin Nunes, a Trump transition member, briefed the President on what he found.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DEVIN NUNES, HOUSE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: The President needs to know that this intelligence reports are out there and I have a duty to tell him that. What I've read, seems to me, to be some level of surveillance activity, perhaps legal but I don't know that it's right and I don't know that the American people would be comfortable with what I've read.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SESAY: Well this comes after the FBI chief said there was no evidence to support President Trump's claim, former President Barack Obama ordered his phones tapped.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you feel vindicated by Chairman Nunes from I mean over there?
DONALD TRUMP, UNITED STATES PRESIDENT: I somewhat do. I must - you somewhat-do I very much appreciate it. The fact that they found what they found.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SESAY: Well Nunes talks to the President and reporters without sharing the information with the Democratic counterpart on the committee.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ADAM SCHIFF, HOUSE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE RANKING DEMOCRAT: The Chairman will need to decide whether he is the Chairman of an independent investigation to conduct which includes allegations of potential coordination between the Trump campaign and the Russians, or he's going to act as a segregate of the White House. Because he cannot do both.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SESAY: Well, back for more. Radio talk show host Ethan Bearman and James Lacy. He is the Author of Taxifornia and a Trump supporter. Gentlemen, thank you for coming back for round two. Ethan, to start with you. This new reporting by Pamela Brown and our own Evan Perez about this information suggesting coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. Listen, let me first of all say the investigation is ongoing by the FBI We don't want to pre-judge the outcome but it does keep alive this question of, if there is so much smoke is there fire here?
ETHAN BEARMAN, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Yes and actually now confirms what FBI Director Comey said on Monday which was that there was an active investigation during the campaign about these connections between Trump's campaign and Russia. This is very disconcerting. It is interesting to me how many people don't want to discuss the fact that we have Russia, a regime with which we are not close friends, which they are not an ally of ours. And there are apparently attempts to influence our election, whether it changed the outcome, that's not even what we're saying about but if there is - there are actual attempts to influence our election, we need to get to the bottom of it.
JAMES LACY, AUTHOR: Well you know, I mean, I think it's to be advantage of the Democrats to try and bring this for some sort of a big issue. But this is substantively a very little, you know. This is not a case where the Russians are found to have influence actual voting machines. There isn't any evidence at all that the Russians put money into political campaign or bought ads. As a matter of fact, the FBI is said that the only intervention that the Republicans - that the Russians were engaged in, was this hacking at the DNC and some hacking of --
SESAY: You make it sound as if the hacking is irrelevant, is not of -
LACY: Just to talk, and the fruit of the hacking was to reveal that the - that journalist and the Democratic Party colluded and cheated and the journalist violated their journalistic ethics in order to help Hillary Clinton.
[01:25:25] SESAY: So you are not in the end of itself, troubled by the hacking in of itself?
LACY: Donald Trump won 30 states, Hillary Clinton won 20. That's 60 percent of the States in the United States. Now, one of those States outcomes have anything to do with revelations and these e-mails of John Podesta.
SESAY: All right.
LACY: It's an interesting story but it didn't have - didn't have anything to do with the election.
SESAY: We will not go down that rabbit hole. Instead, I will ask you about Chairman Nunes and what happened on Wednesday with his revelation about intercepted communication which may have picked up the President and its associates. Let's take a listen to President Trump's reaction to this. Of course he was briefed personally by Chairman Nunes. The president saying that he was very satisfied and he feel somewhat vindicated and some would say, why do you feel vindicated? This is a no way of indication of the tweet you put out regarding wiretapping, James.
LACY: Well he said somewhat vindicated and I think he put a much similarly closed off the discussion at that point. You know, perhaps we'll see a tweet about it, I don't know if we will or if we won't. But there is I believe some vindication in the fact that there has been evidence now given to the head of the Intelligence Committee that our intelligence services were engaging in surveillance of people associated with Donald Trump and Donald Trump's campaign. And that this surveillance had absolutely nothing to do with foreign intelligence. And again, what's really bad about this isn't the fact that it just occurred with bad --
SESAY: Well, because it was legal.
LACY: It was legal to do it. But what's - yes I don't deny that and Nunes doesn't deny that but what's really bad, is this that even knowing that there was no foreign intelligence value, the Foreign Intelligence Services disseminated widely information -
SESAY: We do not know -
LACY: And that's what Nunes said -
SESAY: That's what we need.
LACY: At his press conference today. SESAY: We need to get to the bottom of it.
LACY: That dissemination within the intelligence community of that information as a policy issue, is a big -- Edward Snowden, big brother issue that must be address.
SESAY: Ethan, let's give you a chance to response to that because of course we don't know why that happened. We don't know really the nature of this unmasking and in fact, that we were able - according to Chairman Nunes that it was clear that it was President Trump and his associates. Response to James.
BEARMAN: Well first off, President Trump tweeted that President Obama wiretapped his phone, very clearly said that - that is not the case. There is zero evidence of it. Well we do have some evidence of it which is why it's still being investigated and I find it absolutely shocking how there's this continuing denial of the fact that a foreign power goes after our political infrastructure with hacking and who cares because it's just the other side that got hacked. It's absolutely mind boggling to me.
SESAY: All right gentlemen, we'll leave it there. You'll be back this time. We'll talk about health care and the upcoming vote in the coming hours on Capitol Hill. And of course, after this quick break we'll have more on that terror attack in London with my colleague Hannah Vaughan Jones. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[01:31:44] UNIDENTIFIED WITNESS: All I could hear is bang, bang, bang, like loud. I thought it was probably a tourist or someone just firing something. People started running. And I said, why are people running. Then I moved forward and I could see there was a car smashed in the parliament wall.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNAH VAUGHAN JONES, CNN ANCHOR: Those comments from one witness of this terror attack here in London that took place yesterday afternoon. British officials have been warning for some time that an attack was possible, indeed, even likely, and Wednesday, it struck here at the very seat of British power, the British parliament.
Police say the attacker was Islamist inspired. He drove through a crowd of people on Westminster Bridge, wounding dozens before crashing into a fence near the parliament building, as we just heard from the witness. The assailant then got out and managed to get into the confines of the parliament itself and then stabbed an unarmed policeman. That office was 48-year-old Keith Palmer, a 15-year veteran of the Metropolitan Police force here in London, a force mainly responsible for counterintelligence across the U.K. Keith Palmer, you can see a picture there. He died in the attack, along with three others. The suspect himself was shot dead by officers at the scene. British politicians are responding to the attack. Prime Minister Theresa May urged Britain to send a message of defiance.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Tomorrow morning, parliament will meet as normal. We will come together as normal. And Londoners and others around the world, who have come here to visit this great city, will get up and go about their day as normal. They will board their trains, they will leave their hotels, they will walk these streets, they will live their lives.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUGHAN JONES: Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson tweeted, "Heartbreaking. This is not the first attack on London or, indeed, on our parliament, and won't be the last, but our values will prevail."
And the former U.K. Independent Party leader, Nigel Farage, the man behind Brexit, he's also taken to Twitter, to say, quote, "Very upset and depressed by the terrorist attack in Westminster. Unfortunately, not surprised.
Well, "Politico, Europe" reporter, Silvia Borrelli, is with me.
Silvia, Nigel Farage's tweet there saying he's not that surprised. I know you yourself were in London when it happened. And you've got experience as swell from the Brussels attack. Your reaction to what we've seen on the streets of London.
SILVIA BORRELLI, REPORTER, POLITICO, EUROPE: Well, definitely not unexpected. I mean, the terror threat has been severe in London and will remain so. Like the Metropolitan Police said, this was something expected. Of course, we didn't hope for it, but everyone was sort of prepared, both the public and the police. The police reaction was quite swift and the public, from what I can tell, reacted calmly. There were no panic scenes, and life really carried on as usual. Last night, when I got on the Tube to get home, people were calm, reading their paper, and I didn't really feel like anything had happened. Although, of course, everything was different because during the day, the news flow, and all the things that were happening in Westminster and the fact that the parliament was on lockdown, and all the streets in this area were closed. Clearly, you know, the traffic crazy and people trying to understand what was going on. There was very little information at first.
[01:35:21] VAUGHAN JONES: Now there's an overwhelming view that security forces were on the scene so quickly and that the situation was handled very well, indeed. Would you say that is better perhaps than we may have seen in continental Europe?
BORRELLI: Well, yesterday, for example, I was a few blocks away in the city and I tried to get over here to report because my colleagues in Westminster were on lockdown so they couldn't get out. But can assess the roads surrounding this area up to the Embankment, which a few blocks back. So it seems like the reaction was very quick and very effective.
In Brussels, last year, it was different. There were bombs involved. There were multiple attacks. I think it was a bit harder for the police to coordinate at the time of the attack. But of course, last year in Brussels or even Paris, probably the fact that the attack was happening with something that the police and the intelligence service had managed as well.
VAUGHAN JONES: This is, of course, a murder investigation and a terror investigation. So we want to be sensitive when talking about politics as well. But Theresa May, the British prime minister, is due to be triggering Article 50 and starting this long and possibly painful divorce from the European Union next week, next Wednesday. Do you think Britain's security could be imperiled by a divorce from the European Union given these sorts of attacks taking place?
BORRELLI: There are people who actually say the contrary. They say open borders and the current immigration policy is what has made Paris flood into Britain. I really think it depends on the coordination of intelligence services, despite the presence of the U.K. within the E.U., and you know, the police carrying on with their jobs and the intelligence services doing what they're actually already doing. But of course, this is going to part of the talks on security and making sure the public in secure and these threats can be somehow managed is something that is going to be part of the talks.
VAUGHAN JONES: Silvia, thanks very much. I know you'll join me again later on in the next couple of hours.
And it's going to be an interesting topic to throw in the mix, if you like, with politics here in London, given the fact that Theresa May is due to be triggering Article 50 next week. Will she still do it within the time frame now that she has terror atrocity on her hands as well.
Plenty more coming up on what is going on in London, including all the political fallout from it as well.
Do stay with us. After a short break, we'll be back.
[01:40:55] VAUGHAN JONES: Hello. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones, live for you in London.
We are covering the terror attack outside parliament yesterday. The man behind that vicious attack is dead. The police are not naming him publicly, even though we understand they do believe they know his identity.
Now witnesses say this individual mowed down pedestrians with his car on Westminster Bridge right in the heart of the British political scene. One woman had to be pulled from the River Thames itself. The assailant then went on to crash into the metal fence around the houses of parliament, where he then fatally tabbed a police officer. In all, four people are dead. At least 40 others were wounded, and many of them are still being treated for serious injuries at hospital. Police have called the attack, quote, "Islamist related" terrorism.
I want to bring in Dal Babu. He's the former chief superintendent for the Metropolitan Police here in London.
Dal, thank you very much for joining us this morning.
DAL BABU, FORMER CHIEF SUPERINTENDENT, METROPOLITAN POLICE DEPARTMMENT: Good morning.
VAUGHAN JONES: Your reaction, first of all, to what we start of the streets of London yesterday?
BABU: Shocking news. Really disturbing that he happened so close to parliament. My sympathies go out to all the families.
I was a police officer at the House of Commons some years ago. I used to run a team, a security team. Those officers, particularly the palace gates, would know who the M.P.s are. Because that's an open gate. And I think the individual then made his way in through the open gate. So it's a really, really sad day.
VAUGHAN JONES: You mention and open gate. Are you surprised that this sort of thing has happened?
BABU: If you look at the road, where we are now, it's adjacent to parliament. It's is in the heart of democracy. It's an open democracy. And so I think you have to make a decision about how much access people have. And people do -- members of the public will walk by as M.P.s go in and drive in and drive out.
VAUGHAN JONES: It's been described as an Islamist-related terror attack, though we don't yet have any claim of responsibility from any particular group or individual. What does that do for somebody like you and the work that you do in trying to counter religion extremism? How does this kind of terrorist atrocity affect the work that you're trying to do?
BABU: I think what we need to do is understand how diverse London is. Almost half of London is from one or two backgrounds. One in 12 of the London population are Muslim. And by and large, people get along very, very well. It's an incredibly safe place to be. I think, Mark Rowley (ph), the assistant commissioner, said yesterday that it's important that we work together. Sadiq Khan -- we have a Muslim mayor -- has said exactly the same. And I think the individuals trying to perpetrate these crimes do it to try and drive us apart. And as the prime minister said that won't happen. It didn't happen in the attack we had just prior to the Olympic announcement, and I'm sure it won't happen now. We just need to make sure we're no complacent.
VAUGHAN JONES: It was just last weekend that they had a terror training session within London as well. How prepared is the Metropolitan Police force, compared to other forces, not just across the country, but across Europe and the wider world as well, dealing with this kind of incident.
BABU: Yeah, the training exercise, it happened behind you on the Thames. Prior to that, there's been several exercises at tube stations and mass open areas. So the Metropolitan Police is probably the best police service in the world. It's well prepared. People in London should be very, very confident. Tourists should be very confident. I'm afraid if someone has mental health issues comes along and does what they do, then that's a very difficult thing to contend with, particularly if they drive a car. But I think the police are very well prepared. And they will now be looking at reassurance patrols. Everywhere you go in London you'll see additional police officers. Sadiq Khan has announced, prior to this attack occurring, there will be additional neighborhood officers. And the neighborhood officers will be the key to making sure people feel safe and secure.
VAUGHAN JONES: The area around us immediately is locked down at the moment and will probably stay like that for the coming hours. Do you think Westminster itself, the Palace of Westminster, will be more secure now going forward? Will it be left open to the public as a result of this?
[01:45:10] BABU: Well, I mean, you have to remember this is not the first time that Westminster has been targeted. Airey Neede (Ph), almost 40 years ago, was actually killed by the Irish Republican Army actually inside Westminster when a bomb was placed on his car. And the IRA in the past have planted a bomb inside Westminster. So unfortunately, it's an iconic site, Westminster, parliament, and it will continue to be a target for individuals. But it's a safe place, incredibly safe. When I was running a team here, we were an unarmed team. And if you look at how things have progressed now, you have armed officers there. And I know they're -- quite rightly, they are able to deal with individuals once you get into the palace yard.
VAUGHAN JONES: Just briefly, Keith Palmer, the police officer who was killed in this incident, he was unarmed. Your thoughts on that?
BABU: Well, I mean, I just feel incredibly sorry for his family. I think when you leave, as a police officer, you expect to go back home. And I think he has made the ultimate sacrifice. I think it's really important to understand, when we criticize police officers, just how incredibly tough their role is. And my thoughts go out to Keith's family in his tragic loss.
VAUGHAN JONES: All of our thoughts are with his family as well.
Dal Babu, many thanks for joining us.
BABU: Thank you.
VAUGHAN JONES: We appreciate it.
And we will be back here, live from London, with this ongoing investigation. Plenty more of this breaking news story after this terrorist struck at the heart of the British parliament.
(WEATHER REPORT) [01:50:33] VAUGHAN JONES: As the sun rises here in Westminster, London, residents are having to come to terms with another terror atrocity on their streets.
This is the latest that we know on yesterday's events in the heart of Westminster. British police are not yet naming the man behind the deadly terror attack. He plowed his car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge before stabbing an unarmed police officer. In all, four people are dead. At least 40 others are still wounded. The police shot and killed the suspect in the aftermath of the attack. They've called the, quote, "Islamist related terrorism."
More coming up this hour and in the coming hours as well.
For now, over to you, Isha?
ISHA SESAY, CNN ANCHOR: Hannah, thanks very much.
It could be the beginning of the end for Obamacare. Republican-backed legislation to roll back the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, is up for a vote in the U.S. House Thursday. Republicans need at least 216 votes and, so far, dozens of them have signaled they will vote against it. To win more support, House leaders now want to eliminate an Obamacare provision that requires insurers to cover maternity care, mental health treatment, prescription drugs, and other so-called essential services. According to the Congressional Budget Office, 24 million Americans would lose their health care under this Republican plan. The bill would eliminate the individual mandate that requires everyone to have health insurance or pay a fine. It would dramatically restructure Medicare, the government health program for the elderly and disabled. But some popular parts of Obamacare would stay in place, including coverage for pre-existing conditions and allowing children to remain on their parents' health plan up to the age of 26.
Let's bring back our guests, radio talk show host, Ethan Bearman; and Trump supporter, Jim Lacey.
Guys, thanks for staying with us.
Ethan, to start with you, it's unclear whether this will actually pass, whether the White House and Speaker Ryan will get the victory they so desperately needed.
Listen to what White House spokesman, Sean Spicer, had to say about basically what it all means if it fails.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOIUSE PRESS SECRETARY: There is no Plan B. There's Plan A and Plan A. We're going to get this done.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SESAY: Plan A, Plan A and no Plan B. That's all guaranteed if they succeed. ETHAN BEARMAN, TALK RADIO SHOW HOST: There are real questions. The conservative wing of the Republican Party, the House Freedom Caucus, for example, the majority of members have come out against this bill, the Trumpcare bill, the Ryancare bill, whichever term you want to give it. The American Health Care Act, 22 of them, if they say no -- and the last number I checked was still 23, of them saying no. If 22 of them say no, this bill will fail. Plus, you still have the Senate to deal with, let alone the House.
I think this is -- this was not the right move. They didn't go far enough for the actual Republicans and conservatives.
James, to you now. Massie, Congressman Thomas Massie had a stark warning for the president, should this bill actually pass. Take a listen to what he had to say earlier on, on CNN.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. THOMAS MASSIE, (R), KENTUCKY: We're afraid he's a one-term president if this passes. We are trying to save him. The phone calls to my office are running 275 against versus four. Only four votes from my constituents are in favor of this. So this -- and electorally, voting for this is bad today and it's going to be really bad in two or three years when the changes start kicking in and health insurance prices are going through the roof.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SESAY: James, is he right? Does this carry huge risks for the president down the line?
JAMES LACEY, TRUMP SUPPORTER: No, I don't think it is, because Donald Trump campaigned for a year and a half before he was elected president to do exactly this. What's going on now is Donald Trump is delivering on his campaign promises and that interest converges with the interests of Paul Ryan and congressional Republicans, who have been saying for seven years that Obamacare is wrong. You know, not one House Republican, seven years ago, voted for Obamacare. So this is a fulfillment of a campaign pledge to the American people.
I think what some of the congressman, perhaps this congressman is missing is that Donald Trump really had coattails that maybe those in -- some of the commentators in the media don't want to recognize. If you go back and do an analysis, Donald Trump won 230 congressional districts. In other words, he was elected president in 230. Hillary Clinton only 205.
LACEY: He probably beat Massie in his own congressional district.
SESAY: You're point being, he carried all these districts so he has in these districts for this health care bill. But is this the bill the American people were expecting? That's the question.
[01:55:07] LACEY: Yeah, I think that that's a fair question because it's such an enormous bill. Obamacare, as put in place by the Obama administration, involved in billions and billions of dollars and pages and pages of regulations. So, of course, deconstructing it is going have many, many moving parts. And it's fair to say that there can be argumentation. But the bottom line is this, this is the bill that Paul Ryan supports and --
LACEY: -- the President Trump supports.
SESAY: We'll let Ethan get a word in here.
BEARMAN: And Speaker Ryan had six years to prepare this repeal and replace bill and he didn't get it right, and he upset conservative. Clearly not a single Democrat is going to vote for this. And by the way, it's going to be done on the backs of those who have the least economic means and those who are the most sick, and that is going to hurt them in 2018.
SESAY: We're counting down to the vote. We shall see if it passes.
I think one thing we can all agree on is the White House needs this win.
Ethan Bearman, Jim Lacey, thank you so much for being with me.
SESAY: Thank you.
And I'm Isha Sesay.
VAUGHAN JONES: And I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones, here in London.
We'll be back with plenty more of our breaking news coverage after this.
[02:30:12] SESAY: Hello, everyone. I'm Isha Sesay, in Los Angeles.