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Reports Of Multiple Attacks In Burkina Faso's Capital; Global Markets Fall Amid Trade War Fears With U.S.; China Blasts Trump Tariff Announcement; America's Pastor To Be Laid To Rest Friday; Investigators Question Israeli Prime Minister; United Kingdom Prime Minister Outlines Post-Brexit Vision. Aired at 8-9a ET
Aired March 2, 2018 - 08:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[08:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANNA COREN, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, I am Anna Coren in Hong Kong. Welcome to News Stream.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Well, threats of tariffs and possible retaliation. President Trump tweets trade wars are good. But U.S. trade partners disagree.
Plus, a peace mission, Reverend Billy Graham's funeral in the U.S. on Friday. More on how he spread his message as far as North Korea. And
questioning the Israeli prime minister -- investigators are talking to Benjamin Netanyahu in connection to corruption cases.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: First, we begin with reports of multiple attacks under way in the western African country of Burkina Faso. The French embassy says it's
being targeted along with the French institute. Well, the nearby U.S. embassy is also warning Americans to seek shelter. Let's get right to
CNN's David McKenzie who is in the region. David, what do we know?
DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anna, what we know, it is a fluid situation and the French embassy has rolled back that slack saying that
there was some kind of attack or attacks near the embassy.
There are a whole lot of locations that appear to be having -- have to be involved but they are all in a close proximity in the capital. There were
plumes of smoke rising from downtown at about midmorning in Ouagadougou, the capital.
And reports from witnesses of gunfire -- multiple gunfire, every few minutes. Now, it's unclear at this stage if this attack or attack is over.
But the U.S. embassy saying Americans should shelter in place.
The same goes for the French embassy, a lot of these locations tightly packed in this part of the city. There have been issues of security and
terror attacks in Ouagadougou in recent years. So far unclear who is responsible for this attack.
COREN: Yes, well, I just want to touch on that because the capital has suffered two major attacks by Islamist militants in the last two years.
Can you give us a little more background in relation to that?
MCKENZIE: Well, yes, there have been attacks from Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb and its affiliated groups in the last few years. Those attacks
have generally targeted soft targets -- so-called soft targets like restaurants and others.
Often were foreigners involved in the targeting. At this stage at least, it appears that this attack might have somehow involved the military
headquarters in Ouagadougou given that the explosions according to some witnesses were coming from that direction.
So unclear if this is a local issue relating to military or if it's a targeted terror attack which this region and the Sahel region has certain
suffered through multiple attacks in the capital in Ouagadougou and certainly in the border regions with neighboring countries. Anna.
COREN: David McKenzie joining us from Kano, Nigeria. Many thanks for that. Well, top U.S. allies and some of America's most important trading
partners are threatening to retaliate if necessary in response to President Trump's sudden announcement of tariffs.
Global markets plunged sharply on fears of a trade war as we can see with those very red arrows. The president said the U.S. will impose steep
import tariffs on steel and aluminum as early as next week.
While investors are clearly spooked, the president says trade wars are good. Well, here's what he tweeted a couple of hours ago.
When a country, the USA, is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good and easy
to win. Example, when we are down $100 billion with a certain country and they get cute, don't trade anymore. We win big, it's easy. Well, there
was strong reaction on Wall Street as well over the possibility of a trade war.
[08:05:02] Our Maggie Lake joins us from the New York stock exchange where markets are set to open very soon. Maggie, many of Trump's advisers tried
to persuade him not to do this.
Not to carry through on his election promise because of the potentially disastrous ramifications for the economy. But end of day, he chose to play
to his base. What will be the extent of the fallout?
MAGGIE LAKE, CNNMONEY ANCHOR: You know, Anna, I don't think we know because a lot of people don't -- aren't sure what this policy is. It was
released in a somewhat chaotic manner yesterday based on the responses we saw, it doesn't look like an awful lot of people were briefed about it.
And we don't have a lot of details other than the broad brush that he mentioned in the meeting on those numbers, 25 percent, 10 percent on
aluminum. We don't know if there will be countries that are exempted.
So everyone sort of trying to figure out what this is going to mean. There will be a portion of people, steel companies, that are happy about this.
Steel workers who believe this is going to help them get jobs.
But they are in the minority. Many, many others from the business world, economists, as well as politicians and diplomats believe this is a
disastrous move. Maybe the biggest blunder of the Trump presidency so far.
And that tweet will just underscore their concern about that protectionist rhetoric and whether they are really sure of the strategy. Trade is
extremely complicated in good times. Trade wars are very messy.
No one tends to win if history is any guide to go by. So there is a lot of concern about what is going on. And you know, the previous sell-off we saw
earlier this year that ruled the markets was trading in nature was about the fix and products related to that. This goes to the core of
Will this derail the economic recovery we've seen in the U.S., that's a major concern. And it explains why we're going to see the U.S. markets
head lower sharply. Once again, we're looking at an open of that 250 down on the Dow right at the start.
COREN: Maggie, Trump's tariffs, obviously designed to combat cheap metals sliding into the U.S. Like from China, he has said this in the past, but
it's actually going to hurt his allies. Why the blanket tariff rather than targeting specific countries?
LAKE: We don't know if it's going to be blanket out. This is part of the problem. I mean, maybe there will be exemptions that rule out some of the
allies. I mean, from the Trump -- it seems a lot of this is directed at China.
Will he carve it out and make this more targeted towards China perhaps? You know, are they the real problem of why we have this, you know, price
deflation in steel. A lot of economists are saying that this is not the answer.
This is not the way to resolve that problem. So we've really got to wait and see. That's part of why you're seeing this very sharp reaction.
Investors want to know how to quantify risk. If there's something negative coming, if they can understand it, then they can price it in. They can't
price this in yet.
There are no details. It's not clear that everyone on the White House think it's a good idea. Are they going to try to walk it back which is
President Trump just flying solo and off the cuff? We don't -- really don't know.
So a lot of people trying to get their head around this, we may not get any more details until next week. Perhaps they'll pull that up given the
reaction we're seeing in the world markets and the condemnation coming from so many allies.
You can imagine the phone has been ringing off the hook at the White House looking for clarification on this. So there are a lot of unknowns.
And when you have a situation like this and markets that are sort of prone to sell-offs right now, you're going to see an awful lot of angst in the
market and that is certainly what we're bracing for right now.
I just want to tell you, too, I believe actually President Trump is tweeting right now about this. So he knows this is going to be front and
center today saying we must protect our country and our workers.
Our steel industry is in bad shape. If you don't have the steel, you don't have a country. The problem is when we've seen this play out before, the
Obama administration slaps tariffs on tires.
Our colleagues at CNN Money have a fantastic article explaining all of this. It did bring back some jobs in the tire industry. But at the end,
prices went up.
Consumers paid higher and the overall net-net did not seem to actually try to address the underlying problem, which is much more complicated than
So a lot of people are concerned, even though the intent might be to help workers, that will not play out in real time in the economy -- unless this
time is different. But an awful lot of people are skeptical about that, Anna.
COREN: Maggie Lake joining us from the New York stock exchange. We really appreciate you breaking down this issue for us. Thanks so much.
LAKE: Sure thing.
COREN: Well the global backlash to President Trump's announcement came fast and furious. As we mentioned the European Commission said, it will
develop a plan to retaliate in the next few days.
Well, Germany's foreign minister, slam the move as incomprehensible. Australia warns this will distort trade and lead to a loss of jobs. South
Korea says, if the tariffs go through, it will review possible legal action through the world trade organization.
[08:10:04] And Canada who is the largest supplier of steel to the U.S., says any trade restrictions on their steel and aluminum would be absolutely
Well, China is also lashing out at the tariff announcement. Our Matt Rivers has more on Beijing's reaction as well as how it could potentially
hit back at the American industry.
MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anna, predictably, the Chinese have expressed their dissatisfaction with this. Spokeswoman at the ministry of
foreign affairs said this would harm what she called an already slow global recovery.
And the commerce minister of 2China says yesterday, the country should, quote, work with each other to explore solutions instead of taking trade
restrictions unilaterally. And profit one's self at the expense of their neighbors.
It's less about how they're reacting today, I think, and more about how the government here could choose to retaliate down the road. The government
has a lot of tools in its toolkit that it could use to hurt U.S. industry and the workers frankly that they employ back in the United States.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We'll be imposing tariffs on steel imports and tariffs, or aluminum imports and you're going to see a
lot of good things happen.
RIVERS: Good things happen. That's not what many U.S. Industries operating here in China are expecting. After the president's tariff
In fact, U.S. exporters that rely on the Chinese market are down right nervous. Start with the simple soybean. The U.S. is the world's top
soybean exporter and China is its biggest buyer by far. Billions and billions of dollars worth was unloaded at ports like this one last year.
The Chinese soybean processing industry is already the largest in the world, and it's going to keep getting bigger. And American farmers are
well positioned to take advantage of that growth.
The U.S. Soybean Export Council expects U.S. exports of soybeans to keep rising for at least the next 20 years. And it's not just farmers reaping
PAUL BURKE, U.S. SOYBEAN EXPORT COUNCIL: Your diner and your doctors and your -- and other companies.
RIVERS: Which is why all of this talk of a looming U.S.-China trade war is, Burke's, biggest concern. The newly announced steel and aluminum
tariffs, not to mention, recent tariffs on Chinese solar products and a looming investigation into Chinese intellectual property theft could signal
what many have long awaited -- hard-line rhetoric on the campaign trail turning into harder line policy.
But china will not take that lying down. The Soybean Export Council was told as much by Chinese officials during a September meeting.
BURKE: If there were increased trade tensions, if that soybeans would -- could likely be a potential target in any type of Chinese retaliation.
RIVERS: Restrictions on market access could devastate U.S. industry and it's not just soy. Other industries and companies could be government
targets, too. Think Apple or Boeing, or Cisco. Pawns in a potential trade war with lots of influence back home.
RANDAL PHILLIPS, AMERICAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, CHINA: So you understand very clearly the political pressure points in the U.S., whether it's in
Congress or in local statehouses an certainly to the White House.
RIVERS: A recent survey shows the majority of the U.S. companies in China think trade between both countries isn't fair. They want things to change,
but nobody wants a trade war. To achieve both, any new U.S. policies will have to walk a fine line as thin as a flake of soybean.
RIVERS: Here's the thing, Anna, if China doesn't want a trade war anymore than the United States does. Some analysts that we have spoke said the
China could actually be more exposed to potential damage in a trade war because the economy is slowing down here.
And it will need to rely on continued exports to the U.S. to make sure that there's no hard landing in its future. So because of that, a lot of voices
that CNN have spoken to today here in China predict that the government won't overreact to this proposed set of tariffs, especially because China
doesn't actually export that much steel and aluminum to the U.S. when you compare those products to others that china sends overseas.
All that said, though, China continues to say it will protect its interests and retaliate when necessary. So if the Trump administration continues
with these punitive trade measures, you can count on the Chinese government to respond in kind. Anna.
COREN: Matt Rivers joining us there from Beijing. And trade is the focus for the U.K. government as well. This hour, the British Prime Minister
Theresa May is to speak in London where she'll outline her vision for trade with Europe once Brexit takes effect. We'll bring you that speech in about
20 minutes here on CNN.
South Korea is taking another step toward thawing relations with the North. President Moon Jae-in is sending a specially envoy to North Korea. He told
U.S. President Donald Trump by phone, this visit will happen soon. It appears to be in response to a personal invitation from North Korean leader
[08:15:02] The body of the reverend Billy Graham has now been moved from Washington to North Carolina where the man known as America's pastor is to
Well, 2,000 people, including the American president, will attend. Graham's impact was felt far beyond the U.S. At the end of the Cold War,
he visited North Korea as a guest of the leader and even helped shape U.S. policy. CNN's Will Ripley has more on Graham's Korean legacy.
BILLY GRAHAM, AMERICAN EVANGELIST: In that terrible moment, God took your sins and your sins, and your sins.
WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: America's pastor Billy Graham drew the kind of crowds in Asia usually reserved for the Pope, famously preaching to
more than a million people in South Korea in 1973. But there's another story. A largely untold story of Graham's groundbreaking works in the
secret state of North Korea.
GRAHAM: Love one another.
RIPLEY: Billy Kim was Graham's translator during his massive crusade in Seoul, and even made headlines in the North Korean capital Pyongyang.
BILLY KIM, BILLY GRAHAM'S TRANSLATOR IN SOUTH KOREA: The North Korean response was the witch doctor from America came and performed a witch act.
RIPLEY: Two decades later, the anti communist pastor was invited to Pyongyang, Graham an honored guest of North Korea's late president Kim Il-
The nation was reeling from the collapse of the Soviet Union. Looking to improve ties with the U.S., Graham brought a private message from President
H.W. Bush and a bible for the North Korean leader.
GRAHAM: My wife went to school in North Korea. That was one of the reasons that they could get in and talk to the leaders that made it
possible for us to go.
RIPLEY: Ruth Graham's parents were Christian missionaries in Pyongyang, a city once called the Jerusalem of the East, today possessing a bible can
lead to criminal charges.
Graham was the first foreigner ever to preach at Pyongyang's Bongsu Church, one of the handful of Christian churches in North Korea. Human rights and
religious groups accused of being state propaganda.
RIPLEY: Graham's two trips in 1992 and 1994 helped shape U.S. policy. He offered insight to U.S. Presidents and peacemakers.
GRAHAM: And I said, Jimmy, what they're looking for is a friend.
RILEY: He paved the way for other Americans and aid workers to visit North Korea.
GRAHAM: We come as your friends.
RILEY: Including Graham's son Franklin whose charity Samaritan's Purse provided badly-needed aid. Graham's popularity in South Korea helped make
the Myungsung megachurch in Seoul, the largest Presbyterian Church in the world -- weekly attendance, around 100,000 people.
Do you think that there are lessons that we can learn today from what Billy Graham did in North Korea? "We certainly believe that we need to follow
the legacy of Billy Graham," says senior pastor Kim Sam-hwan. What he did in North Korea really pushed us to go to the people who are suffering.
GRAHAM: The bible says that he was...
RIPLEY: Billy Graham never realized his dream of bringing Christianity to the North Korean masses, but he did crack open the door of a closed
society, allowing aid and perhaps faith to trickle in. Will Ripley, CNN, Seoul, South Korea
COREN: Israeli investigators have arrived at the prime minister's home. It's believed they are questioning Benjamin Netanyahu over two additional
corruption charges. Coming up, we'll take you live to Jerusalem for the very latest.
Plus, the Hollywood award season is ending with the Oscars on Sunday. But it seems the Me Too movement has only just begun. We'll take a look back
at how the stars and big names have influenced the conversation.
[08:20:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
COREN: Welcome back. It's been almost week since U.N. Security Council voted for a cease-fire in Syria. But on the ground, nothing appears to
According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, nearly 80 people have been killed there since last Saturday's vote. The U.S. president discussed
the situation over the phone with the leaders of Germany and France.
German officials say Angela Merkel and President Trump agreed to hold the Syrian government to account for the violence in Eastern Ghouta.
In Israel, a corruption probe involving the country's prime minister has started digging even deeper. Investigators were seen entering Benjamin
Netanyahu's home in Jerusalem.
They're believed to be questioning him over two new corruption cases in addition to the ones he's already been link, to. Well, Mr. Netanyahu says
he's done nothing wrong.
Well, CNN's Oren Liebermann has been staying across this developing story and joins us now from Jerusalem. Oren, police, obviously questioning the
embattled prime minister and his wife, how serious is this?
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's incredibly serious because these two newer cases that may be part of this investigation are much
bigger than the first two cases in which he's already been named a suspect.
We did, Anna, and I want to point this out, just get a statement from police after the investigation of the prime minister and his wife wrapped
up. But that statement didn't say too much.
Essentially only saying that the investigation has concluded after each was questioned separately for a number of hours here. Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu was questioned as official residence in Jerusalem while his wife, Sara Netanyahu was questioned at a different anti-corruption unit which is
near Tel Aviv, essentially near the airport.
But as to how they were questioned and what specific cases they were questioned, that was not part of a very short police statement.
So fortunately at this point, we don't know if they were questioned as witnesses or as suspects, which would be a much bigger development and much
bigger blow to the prime minister.
Whether that comes in a future statement we'll have to wait and see at this point. But that case continuing, growing at this point.
Police did say earlier today, a ninth suspect has been questioned and detained in what's known as case 4,000 in which prosecutors said just
recently that Netanyahu was directly involved in, Anna.
COREN: Oren, police have recommended indicting the prime minister on corruption in two other cases. He, we know has denied any wrongdoing,
dismiss the accusation as a witch hunt by the media, any movement there?
LIEBERMANN: Not at this time. Those cases have been turned over to the attorney general who is expected will take months to decide because he'll
go back to the beginning and look at these probes, and these investigations from the very beginning.
So that isn't a quick process, the attorney general essentially doing a slow methodical review of the entire case before he decides whether or not
to indict Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in what's known as Case 1,000 and Case 2,000.
In the meantime, Netanyahu has the support of key coalition partners. So, this coalition at least right now is holding --we'll see if we get more
information on this newer investigation.
Because if he's questioned as suspect, if we find out that he was questioned as a suspect in those cases, that could be a bigger blow to the
And that could change the calculus there for his coalition partners. But at the moment, Netanyahu is in a position where he has the support of his
coalition partners and of course, that's crucial because next week he's off to Washington to meet President Donald Trump.
COREN: You have to think that this questioning though may somehow overshadow that trip. Oren Liebermann, good to see you, thank you.
Well, turning to the U.S., as if there wasn't enough turmoil in the White House already, CNN has learned exclusively that the president's daughter,
Ivanka, has come under scrutiny by FBI counterintelligence officials.
Specifically, her role in putting together a real estate deal for the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Vancouver, one that sparked protest when
[08:25:05] Well, according to two sources, the FBI is interested in the negotiations and financing of the building. What's not known is why the
FBI is probing this particular deal.
One reason could be the timing. It immediately attracted an influx of foreign buyers. And according to President Trump's financial disclosure
form made the Trump organization millions of dollars.
All across India and Pakistan, they are marking holy, the festival of spring. And you can see the people in Karachi are gathered at a Hindu
Temple to celebrate throwing colored powder and singing, and dancing.
Well, the festival honors a Hindu legend. One man explained it also marks the victory of truth and the festival of colors and love.
Well, the British prime minister is about to give major speech on Brexit. That's still to come. We'll hear about Theresa May's vision for trade once
the U.K. leaves the European Union.
COREN: Welcome back. I'm Anna Coren in Hong Kong. You're watching News Stream. There are your world headlines.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Four attackers at the French embassy in Burkina Faso have been neutralized. Well that is according to the government of Burkina Faso. We
are hearing it was under attack earlier.
A freelance journalist who is in the capital tells CNN, the shooting has stopped and the people who attacked the army headquarters were wearing army
clothes. We'll bring you the latest developments as we get them.
U.S. President Donald Trump is defending his plan for steeper tariffs on steel and aluminum imports tweeting that trade wars are good and easy to
win. But investors disagree. Asian markets closed down on Friday and European markets are following suit. U.S. trading partners are threatening
President Moon Jae-in is sending special envoy to North Korea in what appears to be a response to a personal invitation from North Korean leader
Israeli investigators have questioned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at his home in Jerusalem. It's believed the interview concerned two new
corruption cases in addition to those he's already been linked to. Mr. Netanyahu says he has done nothing wrong.
And in a CNN exclusive, sources say Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka is under scrutiny for her business dealings. The FBI wants to know about her role
in putting together a real estate deal for the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Vancouver, including finance and negotiations.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Well, in just a few minutes, we are expecting Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May maybe on stage in London.
[08:30:00] She is due to give a speech outlining her vision for the U.K.'s future relationship with Europe once Brexit takes effect.
CNN's Bianca Nobilo joins us now from London. Bianca, we know that Downing Street released extracts from the prime minister's speech overnight. We
understand that she is going to set out five tests to guide the U.K. in its negotiations with the E.U. What more can you tell us?
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN PRODUCER AND WRITER: Yes. Those five tests are fairly platitudinous to be honest. Things like ensuring that the referendum result
is respected. It's not full of detail just yet. We're expecting that to be fleshed out in the speech. We haven't learned a huge amount from the five
What we are expecting is for the prime minister to outline how she envisions (ph) the future relationship between the U.K. and the E.U. is
going to work. That's something which she hasn't been able to explain just yet.
So we are expecting the prime minister to say that she is not looking to align the U.K. with the E.U., but to find a system to manage these two
different legal entities, the European Union and the U.K.
But we're also expecting something which we have not had before which is that the prime minister will say that it isn't possible for the U.K. to
have its cake and eat it too, to leave the European Union without any form of negative consequence. This will be the first time she's been honest with
the public in this way.
COREN: And Bianca, it's reported that one cabinet minister said that May needs to be honest with the public until some hard truths. Is that what we
can expect from this speech?
NOBILO: That is what we're expecting. I believe that was Chris Grayling, the transport secretary, speaking this morning. He is a leading Brexiteer
here. So the fact that he has come out and made that admission that the fact that there are hard truths behind Brexit and it won't be possible to
have a solely positive experience when the U.K. leaves the E.U. is quite significant.
And it's something people have been hoping for, for some time. There's a real apathy that I find when I talk to people in U.K. about Brexit. There
is so much talk about it, but not a lot of details and not a lot of action from the U.K.
And the E.U. this week have been pressuring the British government, saying you have to pick up the pace if you want these negotiations to be
successful and you actually want Brexit to happen by March 2019.
So there's frustration mounting not just from the E.U. of course but from the British parliament which is an integral part of this Brexit process,
because the prime minister has to ensure that parliament will pass whatever deal she ultimately strikes with the E.U. So she has to consider them, too.
Now of course, the reason for this vague language from the prime minister so far has been the fact that the country is just so divided on this issue.
Her party is also divided on this issue and she has to walk this tight rope between people who are desperate to leave the E.U. and unshackle themselves
from all the regulations and have autonomy to strike free trade deals and those who are fearful of that and think that remaining is the best way to
preserve jobs and the British economy.
So this is likely to be a finely tuned speech calibrated to address those divisions and calling on the United Kingdom to unite behind Brexit.
COREN: Bianca, I wanted to ask you about the mood of the people and you touched on that, saying that those you speak to are very apathetic and
frustrated. But how would you gauge the temperature because this has been going on now since 2016. People must be over it and yet it hasn't even
NOBILO: Yes. That's certainly the sense that I get. I worked in politics for quite a few years before I worked here. I've spoken to a lot of people
on the doorstep about European issues for a long time. It's not necessarily the first thing that a British voter would care about.
They care about the national health service or their jobs and the economy which of course is linked to Brexit. But it's not necessarily top of their
agenda. So there is this apathy and frustration with this constant stream of Brexit need (ph) and very little detail.
It is certainly a polarizing topic as well. It has created division in the U.K. and a lot of that is because it's become this political football, and
the debate around whether or not to leave or to remain in the European Union was very charged. There was huge amounts of criticisms about the way
the leave campaign in particular conducted itself during the referendum campaign.
And a lot of illusions have been drawn between anti-immigrant sentiment and the leave campaign which has caused a lot of rancor on both sides as well.
So it continues to polarize the British public. There is mounting frustration. So I think there is a real hope that today the prime minister
will at least
[08:35:00] take a bold stance that people can get on board with and leadership is really what voters and what parliament and her cabinet have
been calling for. All of these last months that even if some people disagree with the course that the prime minister decides to take, she does
need to make a decision to choose a course in order to engage with the E.U. and have those substantive negotiations.
COREN: You say this is definitely without doubt polarized the nation. Brexit is happening. U.K. is leaving the E.U. So I guess they are hammering
out the finer details. What are the main issues?
NOBILO: First of all, of course, we are under the impression that everything is going in the direction of Brexit for the 29th of March 2019.
But earlier this week, Michel Barnier, the E.U. chief negotiator, did say that if the U.K. wants to achieve a smooth and orderly Brexit by that time,
then they do need to hurry up.
There have been sentiments like that expressed from the E.U. that things are falling behind schedule. And of course let's not forget that there are
still calls for a second referendum to possibly undue that Brexit result, led in large part by Tony Blair, the former British prime minister.
He has been speaking again this week, saying that he believes there are still people who would like to see the referendum overturned. He thinks
there's about a 50 percent chance, he says, of a second referendum and that Britain might not end up leaving the E.U.
Now that's not necessarily a majority opinion, but it's definitely one which is still prevailing in the U.K. in a lot of parts. The liberal
Democrats, one of the main parties in the U.K. also has championed a second referendum. And just this week, another former
prime minister, John Major, came out to criticize the government's approach to Brexit, saying it was a form of national self-harm.
So there is sentiment against Britain leaving the E.U. still, but you mentioned those fine details that need to be hammered out. A lot of this is
terribly bureaucratic and the European Union frequently produce these slides which outline how the areas of aviation or fisheries or governance
are going to work between the U.K. and the E.U. after Brexit.
It's very complicated but some of the main issues are that of what's going to happen to European citizens living in the U.K. after Brexit and U.K.
citizens living in the E.U. What will their settlement rights be? What will their ability to move around the European continent be?
There are also issues with the continued jurisdiction of the Wuropean courts of justice, something which Brexiteers in the U.K. fundamentally
reject. They want to see the control of any of European courts completely severed after Brexit on the 29th of March 2019. So that's another big
issue. There's still plenty of things to hammer out.
And then of course, the biggest sticking point of all still remains this border in Northern Ireland. Everybody on all sides of this, the E.U., the
U.K., from whatever party are determined to avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland. Something which seems impossible to avoid at the moment if the
U.K. is to leave a customs union with the European Union, and that is something which the prime minister has said she's determined to do.
So there's a lot of square pegs and round holes here. The seemingly impossible situation the prime minister has put herself in by saying that
she needs to avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland but also wants to leave the customs union with the E.U. So there are plenty of details still
to be hammered out, and a lot at stake.
COREN: Bianca, we are obviously waiting for the British prime minister, Theresa May, to come to the lectern of the stage and outline her vision for
post-Brexit. We were expecting her to take to the stage some time ago. There does seem to be a little bit of movement behind us.
Not quite sure if this is Theresa May coming now. Perhaps I can get a little bit of guidance there. Certainly there has been questions about her
leadership to date. Does she have the support of the party?
NOBILO: Well, there's going to be a lot of prominent cabinet figures attending this speech that our viewers can see and the lectern they can see
right there, including Boris Johnson, who is a leading Brexiteer and somebody who is often put forward as a possible replacement for the prime
minister and somebody who has challenged her authority in the past.
There' also going to be the chancellor attending as well. But in terms of the prime minister's leadership, obviously, this has been one of the main
question marks over the Brexit process, is whether or not Theresa May would be the one to execute it in its entirety and how long she would last.
All this comes back to the election in which she called the snap election where she said she wouldn't call and she ultimately did in June last year.
She called it, she says, to ensure that she had a mandate to negotiate
[08:40:00] Brexit. It didn't go her way and she actually lost seats in that election and cut her majority down to a working majority of about 13.
Now that plunged her into a minority government situation where she then had to team up with the Democratic unionist party which is the union's
party in Northern Ireland, the DUP.
Now they also make it a difficult situation for her to negotiate issues regarding the E.U. and Northern Ireland because they clearly have a very
strong vested interest in ensuring that Northern Ireland doesn't move away from the U.K. and towards the E.U. in the event of the U.K. leaving the
That's another issue that Theresa May has had to contend with. In this weakened position, she's been subject to almost weekly speculation about
In the U.K., we have this rather complicated process within the conservative party whereby if a certain number of members of parliament
write to a back bench committee, they can trigger a vote of confidence in the prime minister, potentially precipitating their downfall and replacing
them with somebody else.
And we've been on the precipice of that happening for quite a few months now. So it's not a strong position for Theresa May to be in in order to
undertake the most complicated legislative process that we've ever seen in the United Kingdom.
COREN: Bianca, whilst you and I discuss the ins and outs of Brexit, I just want to remind our viewers as to what we're looking at, which is a room
full of people. We saw a delegation arrive there in London. Now we can see the British prime minister, Theresa May, taking to the lectern to outline
her post-Brexit position. Let's take a listen.
THERESA MAY, PRIME MINISTER OF UNITED KINGDOM: Good afternoon. I'm grateful to the lord mayor and all his team at the mansion house for
hosting us this afternoon. And in the midst of the bad weather, I'd just like to take a moment before I begin my speech today to thank everyone in
our country who is going the extra mile to help people at this time.
I think of our emergen services and armed forces working to keep people safe. Our NHS staff, care workers, and all those keeping our public
services going. And the many volunteers who are giving their time to help those in need. Your contribution is a special part of who we are as a
country and it's all the more appreciated at a moment like this.
Now I'm here today to set out my vision for the future economic partnership between the United Kingdom and the European Union. There have been many
different views and views in the debate on what our new relation with the E.U. should look like. I've listened carefully to them all.
As we chart our way forward with the E.U., I want to take a moment to look back. Eighteen months ago, I stood in Downing Street and addressed the
nation for my first time as prime minister. I made this pledge then to the people that I serve. I know you're working around the clock. I know you're
doing your best. And I know that sometimes life can be a struggle.
The government I lead will be driven not by the interests of the privileged few but by yours. We will do everything we can to give you more control
over your lives. When we take the big calls, we'll think not of the powerful but you. When we pass new laws, we'll listen not to the mighty but
to you. When it comes to taxes, we'll prioritize not the wealthy but you. When it comes to opportunity, we won't entrench the advantages of the
We will do everything we can to help anybody, whatever your background to go as far as your talents will take you. We are living through an important
moment in our country's history. As we leave the European Union, we will forge a bold, new positive role for ourselves in the world, and we will
make Britain a country that works not for a privileged few but for every one of us.
That pledge to the people of our United Kingdom is what guides me in our negotiations with the E.U. And for me, that means five things. First, the
agreement we reach with the E.U. must respect the referendum. It was a vote to take control of our borders, laws and money. And to vote for wider
change so that no community in Britain would ever be left behind again. But it was not a vote for a distant relationship with our neighbors.
Second, the new agreement we reach with the E.U. must endure. After Brexit, both the U.K. and the E.U. want to forge ahead with building a better
future for our people, not find ourselves back at the negotiating table because things have broken down. Third, it must protect people's jobs and
security. People in the U.K.
[08:45:00] voted for our country to have a new and different relationship with Europe. But while the means may change, our shared goals surely have
not. To work together, to grow our economies, and keep our people safe.
Fourth, it must be consistent with the kind of country we want to be as we leave. A modern, open, outward looking, tolerant European democracy. A
nation of pioneers, innovators, explorers and creators. A country that celebrates our history and diversity, confident of our place in the world,
that meets its obligations to our near neighbors and far off friends and is proud to stand up for its values.
And fifth, in doing all of these things, it must strengthen our union of nations and our union of people. We must bring our country back together,
taking into account the views of everyone who cares about this issue from both sides of the debate. As prime minister, it is my duty to represent all
of our united kingdom. England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. North and south from coastal towns and rural villages to our great cities.
So these are the five tests for the deal that we will negotiate. Implementing the decision of the British people. Reaching an enduring
solution, protecting our security and prosperity, delivering an outcome that is consistent with the kind of country we want to be. And bringing our
country together. Strengthening the precious union of all our people.
We are now approaching a crucial moment. There is no escaping the complexity of the task ahead of us. We must not only negotiate our exit
from an organization that touches so many important parts of our national life. We must also build a new and lasting relationship while given the
uncertainty inherent in this negotiation preparing for every scenario. But we are making real progress.
At the end of last year, we agreed the key elements of our withdraw. We are in the process of turning that agreement into draft legal text. We've made
clear our concerns about the first draft the commission published on Wednesday. But no one should be in any doubt about our commitment to the
joint report we agreed in December.
We are close to agreement on the terms of an implementation period which was a key element of December's deal. Some points of difference remain but
I am confident these can be resolved in the days ahead. Both the U.K. and the E.U. are clear this implementation period must be time limited and
cannot become a permanent solution.
But it is vital to give governments, businesses and citizens on both sides the time they need to prepare for our new relationship. With this agreed, I
want both sides to turn all our attention efforts to that new relationship. But before we can do that, we need to set out in more detail what
relationship we want.
Building on my Lancaster house and Florence speeches. So last month, I spoke in Munich about the security partnership we seek. And today I want to
talk about the other pillar of that relationship. How we build our economic partnership. In my speech in Florence, I set out why the existing models
for economic partnership either do not deliver the ambition we need or impose unsustainable constraints on our democracy.
For example, the Norway model, where we would stay in the single market, which means having to implement new E.U. legislation automatically in its
entirety and would also mean continued free movement. Others have suggested we negotiate a free trade agreement similar to that which Canada has
recently negotiated with the E.U. or trade on world trade organization terms.
But these options would mean a significant reduction in our access to each other's markets compared to that which we currently enjoy. And this would
mean customs and regulatory checks at the border that would damage the integrated supply chains that our industries depend on and be inconsistent
with the commitments that both we and the E.U. have made in respect to Northern Ireland.
This is a wider issue in our negotiations, and I want to dwell on this for a minute. Successive British governments have worked tirelessly together
with all the parties in Northern Ireland and with the Irish government to bring about the historic achievement of peace. This is an achievement that
we should all be proud of and protect. That is why I have consistently put up holding
[08:50:00] the Belfast agreement at the heart of the U.K.'s approach. Our departure from the E.U. causes very particular challenges for the Northern
Ireland and for Ireland. We joined the E.U. together 45 years ago, and it's not surprising that our decision to leave has caused anxiety and a desire
for concrete solutions.
We have been clear all along that we don't want to go back to a hard border in Ireland. We have ruled out any physical infrastructure at the border or
any related checks and controls. But it's not good enough to say we won't introduce a hard border. If the E.U. forces Ireland to do it, that's down
to them. We chose to leave, and we have a responsibility to help find a solution.
But we can't do it on our own. It is for all of us to work together. And we agreed when we met recently that our teams and the commission should now do
just that. I want to make one final point. Just as it would be unacceptable to go back to a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland, it would
be also be unacceptable to break up the United Kingdom's own common market by creating a customs and regulatory border down the Irish sea.
My personal commitment to this is clear. As prime minister of the whole United Kingdom, I am not going to let our departure from the European Union
do anything to set back the historic progress that we have me in Northern Ireland, nor will I allow anything that would damage the integrity of our
So existing models do not provide the best way forward for either the U.K. or the E.U. But before I turn to what a new and better model might look
like, I want to be straight with people, because the reality is that we all need to face up are some hard facts. We're leaving the single market. Life
is going to be different. In certain ways, our access to each other's markets will be less than it is now.
How could the E.U. structure of rights and obligations be sustained if the U.K. or any country were now to enjoy all the benefits without all of the
obligations? So we need to strike a new balance, but we will not accept the rights of Canada and the obligations of Norway.
The second hard fact is that even after we have left the jurisdiction of the European court of justice, E.U. law and the decisions of the ECJ will
continue to affect us. For a start, the ECJ determines whether agreements the E.U. has struck are legal under the E.U.'s own law. As the U.S. found,
when the ECJ declared the safe harbor framework for data sharing invalid, we believe the E.U., the withdraw bill will bring E.U. law into U.K. law.
That means cases will be determined in our courts, but were appropriate our courts will continue to look at the ECJ's judgments as they do for the
appropriate jurisprudence of other countries' cause. And if it's part of our future partnership, parliament passes an identical law to the E.U. law,
it may make sense for our courts to look at the appropriate ECJ judgments so we both interpret those laws consistently.
As I said in Munich, if we agree that the U.K. should continue to participate in an E.U. agency, the U.K. would have to respect the remit of
the ECJ in that regard. But in the future, the E.U. treaties and, hence, E.U. law, will no longer apply in the United Kingdom. The agreement we
reach must, therefore, respect the sovereignty of both the U.K. and the E.U.'s legal orders.
That means the jurisdiction of the ECK in the U.K. must end. It also means the ultimate arbiter of disputes about our future partnership cannot be the
court of either party. The next hard fact is this. If we want good access to each other's markets, it has to be on fair terms. As with any trade
agreement, we must accept the need for binding commitments.
For example, we may choose to commit some areas of our regulations like state aid and competition to remaining in step with the E.U.'s. The U.K.
drove much of the policy in this area and we have much to gain from maintaining proper disciplines on the use of subsidies and anti-competitive
Furthermore, as I said in Florence, we share the same set of fundamental beliefs. Belief in free trade, rigorous and fair competition, strong
consumer rights and that trying to beat each other country's industries by unfairly subsidizing one's own is a serious mistake. And in other areas
like workers rights or the environment, the E.U. should be confident that we will not engage in a race
[08:55:00] to the bottom in the standards and protections we set. There is no serious political constituency in the U.K. which would support this.
Quite the opposite. Finally, we need to resolve the tensions between some of our key objectives. We want the freedom to negotiate trade agreements
with other countries around the world. We want to take back control of our laws.
We also want as frictionless a border as possible between us and the E.U. so that we don't damage the integrated supply chains our industries depend
on, and don't have a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland. But there are some tensions in the EU's position, too. And some hard facts for
them to face as well. The commission has suggested that the only option available to the U.K. is an off the shelf model.
But at the same time, they have also said that in certain areas, none of the E.U.'s third country agreements would be appropriate. Under the
European Council's guidelines, aspire to a balanced, ambitious and wide- ranging deal with common rules in a number of areas to ensure fair and open competition. This would not be delivered by a candidate style deal which
would not give them the death of market taxes that they want.
And it's hard to see how it would be in the E.U.'s interest for the U.K.'s regulatory standards to be as different as Canada's. Finally, we both need
to face the fact that this is a negotiation. And neither of us can have exactly what we want. But I am confident that we can reach agreement. We
both want good access to each other's markets.
We want competition between us to be fair and open. And we want reliable transparent means of verifying we are meeting our commitments and resolving
disputes. But what is clear is that for us both to meet our objectives, we need to look beyond the precedence and find a new balance. As on security,
what I am seeking is a relationship that goes beyond the transactional to one where we support each other's interests.
So I want the broadest and deepest possible partnership covering more sectors and cooperating more fully than any free trade agreement anywhere
in the world today. And as I will go on to describe, we will ado need agreements in a range of areas covering the breadth of our relationship.
And I believe this is achiefable because it is in the E.U.'s intetests as well as ours.
The E.U. is the U.K.'s biggest market and of course the U.K. is also a big market for the E.U. And furthermore, we have a unique starting point where
on day one we both have the same laws and rules. So rather than having to bring two different systems closer together, the task will be to manage the
relationships once we are two separate legal systems.
To do so and to realize this level of ambition, there are five foundations that must underpin our trading relationship. First, our agreement will need
reciprocal binding agreements to ensure fair and open competition. Such agreements are part and parcel of any trade agreement. After all, why would
any country enter into a privileged economic partnership without any means of redress if the other party engaged in anti-competive practices?
But the level of integration between the U.K. and E.U. markets and our geographical proximity means these reciprocal commitments will be
particularly important in ensuring that U.K. business can compete fairly in E.U. markets and vice versa. A deep and comprehensive agreement with the
E.U. will therefore need to include commitments reflecting the extent to which the U.K. and E.U. economies are intertwined.
Second, we will need an arbitration mechanism that is completely independent, something which again is common to free trade agreements. This
will ensure that any disagreement about the purpose or scope of the agreement can be resolved fairly and promptly. So given the close
relationship we visit, we will need to have an ongoing dialogue with the E.U. and to ensure we have the means to consult each other regularly.
In particular, we will want to make sure our regulators continue to work together as they do with regulators internationally. This will be essential
for everything from getting new drugs to patients quickly to maintaining financial stability. We start from the place where our regulators have
already had deep and longstanding relationships so the task is maintaining that trust, not building it in the first place.
Fourth, we will need an arrangement for data protection. I made this point in Munich in relation to our security relationship, but the free flow of
data is also critical for both sides in any modern trading relationship, too. The U.K. has exceptionally high standards of data protection.