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All 100 Senators Brought to White House for North Korea Briefing; China Unhappy U.S. Missile Defense System Set up in South Korea; CNN Gets Rare Interview with North Korean Official; Record Low Approval of Trump Ahead of 100-Day Milestone; Turkish President Rounds Up Thousands, Suspends Security Forces Member. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired April 27, 2017 - 02:00   ET



[02:00:27] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: This is CNN NEWSROOM, live from -- well, I'm in Atlanta.

ISHA SESAY, CNN ANCHOR: At least you know where you are.


VAUSE: Hello, everybody. Great to have you with us. I'm John Vause, at CNN's world headquarters in Atlanta.

SESAY: And I'm Isha Sesay, in Los Angeles.

NEWSROOM L.A. starts right now.

VAUSE: After weeks of tough talk and military displays, the White House says it's now looking to tighten sanctions and diplomacy to convince North Korea to abandon its nuclear and missile programs. The president's national security team laid out its case to lawmakers on Wednesday.

For details, here's Jim Sciutto.


JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The White House taking the unusual step of bussing the entire U.S. Senate to the White House for a briefing on North Korea --


SCIUTTO: -- signaling growing alarm about the threat from the nuclear state.

SEN. CHRIS COONS, (D), DELAWARE: It was a sobering briefing and an important opportunity for the entire Senate to hear emerging plans from the Trump administration to confront what is a real threat.

SCIUTTO: Meetings led by the president's national security team, Defense Secretary James Mattis, Joint Chiefs Chairman General Joseph Dunford; Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats.

After the briefing, Senators from both parties stressed the seriousness of the threat and said no new information was given, raising questions about whether a trip to the White House was necessary or just for show.

(on camera): You were inside. What was the revelation?

SEN. CHRIS MURPHY, (D), CONNECTICUT: I think the White House wanted to convey to Congress they are serious about North Korea. They're clearly trying to put a lot of their cards on the table with China to try to get them to change their policy.

COONS: I didn't hear anything that is different from what was publicly reported about the threat level.

SCIUTTO (voice-over): The commander of U.S. forces in the Pacific told lawmakers Wednesday --


SCIUTTO: -- that he's taking the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-Un, at his word that he's developing a missile capable of hitting the U.S.

ADM. HARRY HARRIS, COMMANDER, U.S. PACIFIC FLEET: We have to look at North Korea as if Kim Jong-Un will do what he says.

SCIUTTO: In response, the U.S. is taking urgent steps.

HARRIS: My forces are ready to fight tonight if called on to do that.

SCIUTTO: Admiral Harris announced that a U.S. anti-missile system, known as the THAAD, will be operational in South Korea within days. The system intended to protect the South and Japan from a North Korean strike.

HARRIS: This week, North Korea threatened Australia with a nuclear strike, a powerful reminder to the entire international community that North Korea's missiles point in every direction.

SCIUTTO: Admiral Harris took the blame for confusion about when the "USS Carl Vinson" will arrive in the region. This, after President Trump touted its deployment last week. The carrier group, he assured lawmakers, is now nearby in the Philippines and ready to act if called upon.

HARRIS: As President Trump and Secretary Mattis have made clear, all options are on the table. We want to bring Kim Jong-Un to his senses not to his knees.

SCIUTTO (on camera): One option, we're told by a senior administration official, that the White House is considering is putting North Korea back on the state-sponsors of terrorism list. They were on that list before, taken off in 2008 by the Bush administration ahead of time when negotiations were under way to freeze North Korea's nuclear program. Of course, those negotiations, those agreements didn't work. And it shows the difficulty there is in finding new options that haven't been tried before, short of military action, to reign in North Korea's nuclear program.

Jim Sciutto, CNN, Capitol Hill.


VAUSE: Live from the region now, CNN's Paula Hancocks is in Seoul and David McKenzie is standing by life in Beijing.

Paula, first to you.

Along with tighter sanctions, the U.S. has left the door open a little for negotiations to try to resolve North Korea's nuclear standoff. Is it likely or unlikely the regime of Pyongyang would enter any diplomacy right now?

[02:04:56] PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's an interesting question, John, and it's one that's difficult to answer, certainly from the U.S. point of view. What we're hearing from the vice president and also the secretary of state, who have just been through, that it wasn't the time for talks. That's what they said in South Korea in recent weeks. Certainly, I don't think Pyongyang has been giving any indication up until now that the U.S. was willing to talk during the impasse of a couple of months or so. The rhetoric has been strong on both sides. Military drills continuing on both sides. At the same time, you have the U.S. missile defense system, THAAD, arriving here in South Korea, now being set up. What we're hearing from the U.S. military is it will be operational within days. That, of course, had its own confusion considering the South Korean defense ministry said it would be fully operational by the end the year. They have clarified that and said, since they have certain elements of it, the launchers and combat control stations and radar, they can connect those together make those parts at least operational in a sense for any immediate threat. But they still say the end of the year before full operation -- John?

VAUSE: All right, Paula, stay with us.

David, to you in Beijing, China is not happy about having the THAAD anti-missile defense system right on its doorstep. Now there's word it could be operational in days, much sooner than expected. How could that impact China's role in trying to resolve the issue with North Korea through diplomacy?

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: John, it certainly could complicate the relationship between the U.S. and China, and whether China will really turn the screws on the North Korean regime. This THAAD missile deployment has been slammed by China from the very outset of its announcement. Very recently, the ministry of foreign affairs saying it should be cancelled. There's been these unofficial embargo and boycott of South Korea goods, kind of dissuading Chinese tourists of going to South Korea. This has really impacted the economy in Korea and it has led to questions about what comes next now that this missile deployment becomes operational. The Chinese have said they're willing to work together with the U.S. and others to try and end the nuclear program of North Korea. But they've always said, and in recent days have also said, they will only work within the confines of U.N. sanctions. So anything the Trump administration wants to do, at least on China's public stance, they will have to go to the U.N. and negotiate and vote on tougher sanctions. It can't be a unilateral decision from China.

VAUSE: And, Paula, finally back to you, with regards to this sort of "everything is new again" position by the Trump administration when it comes to economic sanctions and diplomacy, it hasn't worked in the past. Why is there an expectation now it would be any different? Is China now the big player? David was saying there's certainly limitations on how far China is willing to push Pyongyang.

HANCOCKS: If you listen to Trump officials, you would not think that there's a limitation on what China could do. There's been some positive feedback according to those officials. Even from what we hard at that congressional hearing from Admiral Harry Harris. He said that it was good what China was doing at this point, that it's made some people within the administration at least believe that they are on the same page, that they are willing to try and counter the North Korean nuclear and missile threat. But of course, it's not known physically how much more China would do if there were sanctions just as they are at this point, whether they'd be tightened. We know the national security advisors of the U.S. and South Korea spoke earlier on the phone and they said they wanted to put more pressure on other international players, such as China, they said in a statement, to increase sanctions and make sure they're fully implemented. There does seem to be more of a positive attitude within the Trump administration that China is doing more.

VAUSE: OK. Obviously, a long time before this crisis plays itself out.

Paula in Seoul, and, David, in Beijing, thanks to you both.

SESAY: CNN is getting rare insight into the North Korea's government thinking.

Our correspondent, Will Ripley, is in Pyongyang, and sat down with one of the country's top human rights officials.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The North Korea army staging what it describes as its largest-ever military drill. North Korea's supreme leader, Kim Jong-Un, is seen ordering a barrage of artillery fire, 300 long-range self-propelled guns, submarines, bombers, masses of soldiers. All of it a direct warning to the U.S. and President Trump, says a North Korean government official given rare observation to speak to CNN.

"This exercise is a direct response to acts of aggression by the United States," says Sok Tol Wan (ph).

[02:10:11] UNIDENTIFIED NORTH KOREAN NEWS ANCHOR: (SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE) RIPLEY: A dramatic show of force shown triumphally on state TV. Far less provocative than what people were bracing for, North Korea's sixth nuclear test, a test the Trump administration warns would have grave consequences.

U.S. intelligence believe a nuclear test is no longer imminent, something North Korea won't confirm.

Sok (ph) said the timing has nothing to do with mounting international pressure.

"The nuclear test is an important part of our continued efforts to strengthen our nuclear forces," he says.

(on camera): So are you saying North Korea will conduct another nuclear test?

(voice-over): "As long as America continues its hostile acts of aggression, we'll never stop nuclear and missile tests."

I ask about the three Americans currently being held in North Korea, Tony Kim, Otto Warmbier and Kim Dong Chul. Sok (ph) cannot provide specifics on their cases but says they're living under the same conditions as other North Korean prisoners, even though they're kept in separate facilities.

A recent human rights report accuses North Korea of arbitrary detention, torture, even executions, claiming people are thrown in prison camps without due process.

(on camera): A lot of defectors are claiming inhumane treatment of North Korean prisoners.

(voice-over): "I strongly deny any statements made by defectors," he says. "Those people are criminals, who ran away. They are paid to lie and encourage by the U.S. and their followers."

(on camera): These are accounts from hundreds of defectors. And North Korea refused to cooperate with the U.N. investigation. If your country has nothing to hide, why not let inspectors in to see for themselves?

(voice-over): "The U.N. wants to politicize the human rights issue, use it to interfere with our internal affairs," he says. "There reports are nothing but fiction."

"Here," he says, "human rights means defending this Socialist society and its supreme leader at any cost, even if it could trigger a nuclear war."

Will Ripley, CNN, Pyongyang, North Korea.


VAUSE: Donald Trump marks 100 days in office on Saturday, traditionally, a milestone to assess the achievements of a new president.

And John King reports the latest poll numbers are not encouraging.


JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT & CNN ANCHOR, INSIDE POLITICS: Brand new CNN/ORC poll numbers show that Donald Trump at the 100-day mark is the most unpopular president in recent American history.

Lets' take a look at the numbers. Only 44 percent of Americans approve of the job he's done as president, 54 percent disapprove, 11 points lower than the previous low. That was Bill Clinton in 1993. Donald Trump struggling to win approval from the American people. The country is pretty evenly split on whether he's doing a good job or a poor job of keeping his main campaign promises. 52 percent say poor, but 48 percent say a good job keeping his promises. It's here on domestic issues that we see the president is in some political trouble right now. Only 49 percent approve of his handling of the economy. That's down a lot. Down from 55 percent from our last poll seven weeks ago. 36 percent -- the Obamacare repeal debacle has had an impact. 36 percent approve of how the president is handling health care, down from March. Immigration also down a little from March. That was interesting. The president has spent a lot of time on immigration in his early days. The American people not reacting favorably so far. Also questions of whether he's up to the job of being the president of the United States. A majority, 51 percent, of Americans say Donald Trump not working hard enough at the job of being president. Nearly six in 10, 56 percent, say he's done poor job assembling a White House team to help him run the government. Only 47 percent of Americans think he can manage effectively, and only 37 percent say the president of the United States is honest and trustworthy.

There are some bright sides in our polling, some signs for the president. 54 percent of Americans say things are going pretty well in the United States right now. 44 percent say badly. Take the president's name out of the question, just ask about conditions in the United States, a majority feels pretty good. This one, even better news for the president. Nearly six in 10 Americans say economic conditions in the United States right now are good. 41 percent say poor. That's the highest number. That good number, 59 percent, matches the high of 10 years ago, May 2007. Not since then have Americans felt this good about the economy generally. A good economy, good feelings about the economy lifts the president. Something to keep an eye on as we go to the second 100 days.

If you look closer at the numbers, it's like going back to November 8th, Election Day in the United States. Again, among all Americans, 44 approve, 54 disapprove of his job performance. Republicans are happy with their president. 85 percent approve. Democrats don't like what they see. 91 percent disapprove. Independents more split, but only 44 percent approve, 53 percent disapprove. These numbers look a lot like voting on Election Day, as do these. The president carried men on Election Day. 51 percent of men approve of his job performance. He lost badly among women on Election Day. 60 percent of women disapprove of his job performance as we approach the 100-day mark. White voters, majority support, but a pretty high disapproval. Non-white voters, 68 percent disapprove of his job as president. Younger voters, younger Americans, 67 percent disapprove of his job. On election day, Donald Trump's biggest block of support, voters over the age of 65. 53 percent now approve of the job he's doing as president, 45 percent disapprove.

Take a look at this, where we are now, and look back at Election Day, Donald Trump essentially stagnant with the American people at this key 100-day mark.



[02:15:48] SESAY: Let's dig deeper into this and other issues.

Joining me now here in L.A., political commentator and talk radio host, Mo Kelly.

Nice to see you, Mo.

MO KELLY, TALK RADIO SHOW HOST: Great to see you as well, Isha.

SESAY: A lot to talk about. Let's start with the poll numbers. Let's start with the first number we shared with viewers, only 54 percent approving of President Trump. 54 percent disapprove. I think it's interesting that it's the same as previous two CNN/ORC polls taken since the inauguration. That number basically hasn't moved. Are you surprised by that?

KELLY: I'm not surprised because his base has not moved. If you did a poll of his base, they would be 96 percent to 100 percent still in support of the president. That base is not the majority of Americans, but it would hold his polling numbers consistent. In this regard, he's doing what his base wants. He's not adding to the people who support him but, at the end of the day, the people who supported him before the election still do support him ultimately.

SESAY: If you are a Republican on the Hill looking at that number, what are you thinking to yourself?

KELLY: Well, I'm worried about the midterms, about whether this president will help me or hurt me in the next 18 months. Is he someone I can run with or do I have to start distancing myself from. That's what I'd be worrying about. Ultimately, if we talk about tax reform, talk about health care, if I'm a Republican congressperson, I have to decide whether I'm going to be standing with the president or standing opposite of him.

SESAY: We know, in these hundred days, the president has failed to pass any major legislation. We know that's a fact. But let's look how Americans view that. As we said in those numbers, six in 10 Americans disapprove of Trump's handling of two signature issues, health care and immigration. Let's start with the issue of health care. How much has he been hurt by the failed attempt by getting something passed on Capitol Hill?

KELLY: He's hurt tremendously, of only because he's the titular head of the Republican Party, a Republican Party that's staked its claim that we're here to repeal and replace Obamacare, anything short of that is a complete failure. They can try to get something through Congress and it may be something which will pacify the base but, ultimately, until they do that, people are not going to be sympathetic, empathetic or supportive of anything this president does, vis-a-vis, health care, until he delivers on his chief primary promise. That would be, one. And one would be immigration, because that was how we were introduced to the candidacy of Donald Trump.

SESAY: When it comes to health care, again, if you're a lawmaker, when you see that number six in 10, you're not going to want to compromise. This numbers don't fill the Freedom Caucus, the ideologically purist lawmakers, that doesn't fill them with confidence that this is the time they should be walking the plank and taking risks.

KELLY: No, but he hasn't left himself a lot of options. Ultimately, he had a bad bill that didn't go through and he realized I have to get something through. So you're going to have maybe a bad bill light, and you're going to try to push that through. Originally, he said health care is dead for now, and then, all of a sudden, he said, I can't let this die, I have to do something, at least on behalf of the party. Once again, they're trying to juggle health care in the same space and time as tax reform, in the same space and time as North Korea and Syria and Russia, and all these things are happening at the same time. You wonder where his focus is and what gets lost or dropped in this juggling of items.


SESAY: Our thanks to Mo Kelly for joining us there.

[02:19:32] VAUSE: With that, we'll take a short break. When we come back, a crackdown in Turkey ramps up. More than a thousand arrested for alleged links to an exiled clerk accused of plotting a failed coup last year.




VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. Turkey has detained more than a thousand people in dozens of raids across the country. It's the largest roundup of opponents since Turkey's president gained new executive powers in a recent referendum. 9,000 members of the security forces have also been suspended, all over alleged ties to a U.S.-based cleric accused of plotting last year's failed coup.

SESAY: Since that attempt, Turkey authorities have detained about 114,000 people they say are linked to the uprising. Many have been freed but others are still under judicial supervision. CNN's Ian Lee have more on the crackdown and how people in Turkey are

reacting to President Erdogan's newly gained powers.



IAN LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The beginning or last gasp of a political movement.


LEE: Protesters take to the street daily, rejecting this referendum, which increases the power of the Turkish president. But defying authority comes at a cost.

We met this man last week. He vowed to fight the results. We later found out the police detained him. He since has been released but his lawyer says he was arrested for inciting protests.

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: Encouraging (ph) people against the results of the referendum is not a crime. This is about freedom of speech.

LEE: Turkish authorities continue a crackdown on opposition, rounding up tens of thousands of people since last July's coup attempt.

[02:25:09] UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: The coup d'etat, a reason to eliminate all opposition.

LEE: The government insists it's to protect Turkey's democracy, but rights groups call it silencing political dissent. Protesters feel the referendum which President Recep Tayyip Erdogan won by a razor- thin margin, was stolen. European monitors saying it was neither free nor fair.

(on camera): There's a cloud of controversy surrounding this referendum, with allegations including 2.5 million suspicious votes, nearly 1,000 ballot boxes only had "yes" votes, and over 2,000 ballot boxes had more votes than registered voters.

(voice-over): Independent election monitors say these could be indicators of election fraud.

UNIDENTIFIED ELECTION MONITOR: All of these issues creates doubt in people's mind. We made a survey with our volunteers and they were very doubtful about how the process worked out in accordance with the legal framework.

LEE: Erdogan dismisses the accusations, saying the election is the will of the people.


LEE: So much state in a referendum that's poised to reshape Turkey.

(SHOUTING) LEE: Ian Lee, CNN, Istanbul.



SESAY: Time for a quick break here. "State of America" with Kate Bolduan is next for our viewers in Asia.

For everyone else, we'll explain why fears of nuclear conflicts with North Korea has led to a boom in underground shelters in Japan.


[02:30:08] SESAY: You're watching CNN NEWSROOM, live from Los Angeles. I'm Isha Sesay.

VAUSE: You're watching CNN NEWSROOM, live from Atlanta. I'm John Vause.


We'll check the headlines.


VAUSE: The growing nuclear threat from North Korea has helped start a new industry in Japan, fallout shelters, but the cost of security does not come cheap.

CNN's Amara Walker has our report.


AMARA WALKER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is no ordinary house. It's a display center for a Japanese company that builds nuclear shelters. The CEO takes journalists on a tour. His is one of several companies that have seen demands for nuclear shelters and radiation blocking purifiers surge in recent weeks, building out of a fear from potential attack from North Korea.

UNIDENTIFIED COMPANY CEO (through translation): After the ongoing North Korea missile issues after the presidency of Donald Trump, we've had several times more than in the past.

WALKER: This company CEO says his company has had over 500 inquiries and several orders for the construction of nuclear shelters. He says they received eight orders in April compared to just six the whole of last year.

Most shelters are built underground and take nearly five months to complete. Each is equipped with a radiation-blocking air purifier, like this one, an emergency food storage room, and you only have to generate a level to generate electricity.

But they don't come cheap. The director at another company says an average shelter that houses up to a dozen people costs about 25 million Japanese yen. That's nearly $230,000 U.S. dollars.

But some seem willing to make the sacrifice, given mounting tensions on the Korean peninsula.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe recently warned that North Korea may already have the capacity to hitch a panel of missiles equipped with deadly nerve gas, noting that, quote, "the security situation around our country is getting increasingly severe."

People here are also guided by history. There's the 2011 Fukushima disaster after a tsunami caused a deadly meltdown at the plant. And Japan is the only country to have only experienced an atomic bomb. So some are take nothing chances as they prepare for what may or may not come.

Amara Walker, CNN.


SESAY: British Prime Minister Theresa May says only she can lead a successful Brexit process. In her final question time in parliament before June's snap election, she clashed with opposition leader, Jeremy Corbyn.



THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: The right honorable gentleman is refusing to say he would strike against terrorism, refusing to commit to our nuclear deterrent, and refusing to keep control of our borders. Keeping our country safe is the first duty of a prime minister. The right honorable gentleman is simply not up to the job.


JEREMY CORBYN, LABOUR PARTY LEADER: Strong leadership is about standing up for the many, not the few. But when it comes to the prime minister and the conservatives, they only look after the richest, not the rest.


CORBYN: They are strong against the weak, and weak against the strong.



SESAY: All right. Now it seems Corbyn would need a huge shift in the polls to pull off a win. Some say the Labour Party is polling just half as well as the conservatives.

VAUSE: The F-35 Lightning II is the most advanced stealth air fighter in the U.S. Air Force, possibly in the world. Now it's being deployed to eastern Europe as a show of U.S. military might and to reinforce U.S. commitment to NATO.

CNN's Fred Pleitgen was given exclusive access as the F-35 began patrolling near Russia's western border.


[02:35:20] FRED PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): America's newest weapon, the F-35, in the skies over eastern Europe right where confrontations with Russia frequently happen.

CNN was given exclusive access to the U.S. stealth combat jet's first ever forward deployment. Training with allied air forces is essential experience for the crews, a pilot tells me.

UNIDENTIFIED AIR FORCE PILOT: We're continuing to forward ploy and it's our NATO allies. It's all about cooperation and bolstering our NATO alliance.

PLEITGEN: We rode along on a tanker plane refueling the F-35 as they transited to Estonia, a country right on the border with Russia, and worried about Moscow's aggressive posture in recent years.

(on camera): With deployment of the F-35, the U.S. is sending a very clear message, both to Russia and to its partner nation, that it's willing to put its newest and most advanced asset in this area to make sure its allies are safe.

(voice-over): Russia's air force is increasing flying planes like the nuclear-capable TU-95 bomber around this area. NATO jets often scrambling to intercept them.

President Trump has only recently stopped calling NATO alliance obsolete. Now, the F-35 deployment, another welcome sign of American commitment, Estonia's defense minister tells me.

MARGUS TSAHKNA, ESTONIA DEFENSE MINISTER: This is very important to send this message that this is the border of NATO. This is the eastern border. They are ready to protect us.

PLEITGEN: As part of its deployment, the F-35 crews get to know the contested airspace and practice cooperation with other NATO air forces.

As tensions with Moscow show no sign of easing, this plane could become a staple of NATO's eastern fringe.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, at the Amari Air Base in Estonia.


SESAY: After a recent P.R. disasters, United Airlines has just announced changes to its customer service. Among them, seated passengers won't have to give up their seats unless safety or security is at risk. And a new customers' solution team will help passengers reach their final destination using nearby airports, other airlines or ground transportation. And customers who volunteer their seat could get more compensation all the way up to $10,000.

VAUSE: And a promise they won't be dragged off the plane kicking and screaming.

Well, still to come on CNN NEWSROOM, it looks like science fiction, but this experiment with lambs could lead to a medical breakthrough for premature babies. Details in a moment.


[02:41:08] SESAY: Medical researchers in Philadelphia have created a device that could help babies survive outside the womb. The experiment with lambs offers some hope to human babies, but it's also raising ethical questions.

CNN's Lynda Kinkade reports.


LYNDA KINKADE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For decades, scientists have been trying to develop an artificial womb. This could be the closest they've come. It might look more like a plastic bag but it has key similarities of the womb of a mammal.

UNIDENTIFIED RESEARCHER: Sourced two major components. First is a circulatory system that goes through an oxygenator, so it's a connection through the umbilical cord vessels that allows blood to flow out of the fetus through the oxygenator and back into the fetus. The change acts like the placenta does. The other component is the fluid environment that surrounds the fetus and allows the fetus to swallow and breath the amniotic fluid like it's supposed to during development.

KINKADE: The research at Children's Hospital in Philadelphia tested the artificial womb on five premature lambs with the equivalent of five 23-week year old human fetuses. The lamb lives a full week, showing normal brain and lung development.

Across the world, it's estimated one in 10 babies are born prematurely. The chance of survival for babies born before 23 weeks is almost zero, and for that do survive, they often suffer severe problems. Doctors say much more work is needed to research the safety of this devise, but human trials could happen in about three years.

Ethical questions, though, are far reaching. Some worry science would allow babies a chance to stay alive long only to suffer rather than die peacefully. Other's speculate whether women in the future would use the artificial womb instead of carrying a child to full term. The last trimester is often the hardest, and given birth carries its own risks.

And then there's concerns about a baby raised in a machine being denied a human connection, the chance to hear the mother's heart beat and parent's voices. Well for now, doctors say the routine clinical use of a device like this is at least a decade away.

Lynda Kinkade, CNN.


VAUSE: It's the start of the grand finale to a nearly 20-year long mission. NASA expects its Cassini spacecraft to be able to beam new images of Saturn and its rings back to earth. This, just a day after it made its first dive between the planet and its stripped belt. No spacecraft has ever explored this region. Scientists expect Cassini to make 22 dives to gather more images before ultimately plunging into the planet's surface come September.

[02:44:52] Still to come, the continuing story of changing lives. A fresh set of clothes, just one way Pope Francis is making a real difference in Rome.




VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. When TED talks, the world listens. TED Talk, where the cool intellectual kids hang out with their 18- minute long video presentations delivered by the famous, the experts and the ordinary. Now Pope Francis is among those who have made the cut. He made a surprise talk at TED's global conference this week.


POPE FRANCIS (through translation): Please allow me to say it loud and clear, the more powerful you are, the more your actions will have an impact on people, the more responsibility you have to act with humility. If you don't, your power will ruin you and you will ruin the others.


VAUSE: Sounds convincing.

TED's European director, Bruno Giussani managed to get Pope Francis to sign on board.

Bruno, you are joining us from Vancouver, Canada. Thanks for being with us.


VAUSE: How did you manage the pope - where did that idea even come from?

GIUSSANI: It started a long time ago. More than one year of talking to the Vatican. Pope Francis is a unique figure. He's a moral leader. He's widely recognized, well beyond the confines of his community. I think booker in New York of a conference dreams of getting a talk from the pope. So we started discussing over a year ago. At the beginning, not many people at the Vatican of TED and what TED was. But after many discussion, we got (INAUDIBLE).

VAUSE: You are the envy of every guest booker around the world right now, I think.

GUISSANI: Thank you.

VAUSE: Pope Francis did his TED talk behind a desk. He doesn't walk around the state like many TED speakers. But in many ways, the tone and style, by relating personal stories, it was similar to other TED talks.

GUISSANI: Yeah. There's a tradition in the church, a secular homily, where the pope or other priests kind of don't preach in the classic way but to talk to the lay person. Somehow, at the beginning of the discussion of what this talk would be like, it came from there. But there were many other elements added to it. The pope is clearly very worried about the state of the world. There's an urgency in his actions and his words. You see them every day. That's really -- it comes down from that, what he said yesterday on our stage.

[02:50:30] VAUSE: So this was a surprise for the audience in Vancouver. They had no idea this was coming. What was the reaction when the pope --

GUISSANI: (INAUDIBLE) -- a standing ovation beyond one minute. We posted at 6:00 p.m. last night. It was the fastest talk in terms of views posted on our site. The reaction from the media has also been fantastic. So we're really happy and I assume the Vatican is, too.

VAUSE: The address is being subtitled into 20 different languages?

GUISSANI: 22 languages on the site. We'll had more in the coming weeks.

VAUSE: The audio version, the one we listened to on iPods or when we go running and stuff, it had to be dubbed. Where did you find an English speaker with an Italian accent?



VAUSE: That was you.

GUISSANI: We do have versions for pretty much every talk and we just did more podcasts and iTunes and things like that. It's easy. You just release the video and release the audio and maybe some tweets where the speaker says look at this. We have producers who said they wanted someone with an accent. I just knew I had to talk well. That's how we do that.

VAUSE: That's one for the resume, Bruno, voice of the Holy Father.

Good to speak with you.

GUISSANI: Thank you. VAUSE: And congratulations.

GUISSANI: Bye-bye. Thank you very much.

VAUSE: Thank you.

SESAY: Pope Francis often encourages people to help others, and he's leading by example, paying for one-year's rent on a private beach for people with disabilities to enjoy the sea and sun. The charity group Work of Love has rented a portion of the beach since 2012. Volunteers provide ramps, water vehicles to provide safe access. Work of love says hundreds of people with disabilities use the beach every year.

VAUSE: Pope Francis is also giving the homeless a little dignity, officially opening a free laundry in Rome. Living on the streets or struggling with poverty, clean clothes are a luxury.

Delia Gallagher reports.


DELIA GALLAGHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Inside this former hospital in the heart of Rome, Pope Francis has set up a place which offers a different kind of care, a free laundromat for the poor.

Kiro (ph) and Rosanna (ph), two of the estimated 7,000 homeless in Rome, have brought their clothes here where volunteers do the washing for them.

Kiro (ph) says he sleeps wherever he is, often in a hospital on a bench.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translation): In the summer, it's OK. In the winter, we are like popsicles, penguins.

GALLAGHER: Before the pope's laundromat, he said he would wear his dirty clothes until they were falling apart and then throw them away.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translation): For us, it's a very personal thing. I want to thank Pope Francis. It's really an amazing gift.

GALLAHER (voice-over): There are six washing machines and six driers here, as well as ironing facilities next door. The volunteers tell me they can do about 17 loads of laundry in a day. Most important for them is that the name of the person gets on their load of laundry so they can be sure, once it's washed, dried and ironed, it gets back to the right person.

(voice-over): The laundromat is the latest in Pope France's projects for the poor in Rome. He has already opened a dormitory for men and women, and showers, a barbershop, and medical facilities at the Vatican.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The bodies of the poor are taken care of by someone and it's beautiful because Pope Francis really understood that this is what they need. GALLAGHER: This man remembers one of the homeless smelling his freshly laundered clothes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said it reminds me of home. That's what we do here. This is a little like a family, which helps people to feel at home.

GALLAGHER: A home where doing the laundry is not a chore, but a gift, for which they are grateful.

Delia Gallagher, CNN, Rome.


[02:54:57] SESAY: A wonderful, wonderful gift.

We have incredible video out of China to show you now of a toddler who slipped away from her grandmother. Look at this. She somehow got only minor injuries after being run over by two cars. You can see she races across the road before she is gun over by that white care. Then another car drives over her almost immediately. A woman, apparently, the grandmother, rushes over to help. Doctors say she suffered minor bruising on her head and nothing else. She is a very, very lucky little girl.

VAUSE: She wasn't actually run over. I mean, she was far enough to duck underneath. Look. So the car still drives --


SESAY: So very traumatic.

VAUSE: Absolutely. But, you know, the kid was small enough to, you know, duck down and not be hit by the car. Wow. That is a very lucky little girl.

SESAY: Yeah. Let's focus on that.

VAUSE: She was smart.

SESAY: Yeah.

You're watching --


SESAY: OK. Time out.

You're watching CNN NEWSROOM, live from Los Angeles. I'm Isha Sesay.

VAUSE: I'm John Vause, at CNN world headquarters in Atlanta.

The news continues next with Rosemary Church.

We leave you this hour with some of the photos taken over the years by the spacecraft Cassini. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)




[03:00:09] ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN ANCHOR: Busloads of Senators get a classified briefing on North Korea at the White House.