Return to Transcripts main page


Zuckerberg Dodges Questions and Angers Lawmakers; Kilauea Eruption Sends Lava Bombs Flying; Ireland Divided over Abortion Ban Vote; One Year after Deadly Terror Attack in Manchester; Harry and Meghan Attend Prince Charles' Birthday Party; Trump-Kim Jon-un Meeting May Not Happen In June; Reporters To See Dismantling of North Korean Nuclear Site; Cohens' Business Partner Pleads Guilty to Tax Evasion. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired May 23, 2018 - 01:00   ET


[01:00:34] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: You're watching CNN Newsroom live from Los Angeles.


Ahead this hour, maybe it will, maybe it won't, Donald Trump warns his summit with Kim Jong-un might not go ahead next month after all.

The European grilling, tough questions from lawmakers in Brussels for Facebook's CEO, Mark Zuckerberg and his response, "We'll get back to you."

And, the danger from the Hawaii volcano just escalated with lava heading straight toward a power plant.

Very great to have you with us.


I'm John Vause, this is now the second hour of Newsroom L.A.

The much hyped U.S.-North Korea summit is looking increasingly unlikely next month. Last week North Koreans threatened to pull out and now, President Trump has given in a 50-50 chance of going ahead.


DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: There's a chance that it'll work out. There's a chance, there's a very substantial chance that it won't work out. I don't want to waste a lot of time and I'm sure he doesn't want to waste a lot of time.

So, there's a very substantial chance that it won't work out and that's okay. That doesn't mean it won't work out over a period of time, but it may not work out for June 12th. But, there's a good chance that we'll have the meeting.



VAUSE: South Korea's President was at the White House on Tuesday, trying to keep these talks on track and insisting the meeting with Kim could be a success. If the summit happens and if the North Koreans agree to a deal, President Trump says he will guarantee the safety of Kim Jong-un.


Well, for more on this, live from the region now CNN's Ivan Watson is with us from Seoul, South Korea, Matt Rivers is in Beijing, but, Ivan, first to you.

Despite this diplomatic chill, which is returning to the Korean Peninsula, South Korea's President, he is still optimistic the summit will go ahead as planned.


MOON JAE-IN, SOUTH KOREAN PRESIDENT: And I've every confidence that President Trump will be able to achieve a historic feat of making the upcoming U.S.-North Korea summit successful and end the Korean War that had been lasting for the past 65 years.


VAUSE: I guess one of the concerns that many people have is that perhaps it was the South Koreans who initially oversold this summit and what the North Koreans were prepared to do in the first place.

IVAN WATSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's one of the narratives that has emerged. We definitely saw a show of solidarity between Presidents Trump and Moon there, these allies where Trump did not suggest anything like that. I think that President Moon's message was stay the course to the White House, try to go ahead with this summit on June 12th in Singapore.


But, the message was being delivered as the South Korean government has been the target of some pretty serious criticism in the last couple of days from North Korea, including what seemed to be some punitive measures. Like excluding South Korean journalists until quite literally at the last moment from this ceremony that the North Koreans are going to hold at their main nuclear testing facility.

Where journalists from four other countries were invited and were brought to Wonsan in North Korea, and then at the last minute the North Koreans I guess turned their fax machine on, or whatever communicating device, and accepted the visa applications for eight South Korean journalists.


And now, the South Korean government has had to scramble to send a government flight up to that area to join the rest of that crew. Now, the decommissioning of that nuclear testing site, there are some skeptics about it, notably coming from within the U.S. security establishment.

A U.S. defense official told CNN that they thought that this closing was a PR stunt and that the undercrown (ph) testing site was already kind of inoperable from the six previous nuclear tests that North Korea has conducted. You know, that's one official speaking to CNN.

And, we have seen precedent in the past where North Korea has demolished things, like a water cooling testing tower at some 10 years ago and then gone onto carry out future nuclear tests.

So, big questions about how this is going to go forward amid some of these tensions between Pyongyang, Washington and Seoul in the final weeks before what we expect could be a summit between North Korea and the U.S.

[01:05] John.

VAUSE: Ivan, thank you.

Matt, in Beijing, we have the U.S. President blaming China's Xi Jinping, at least in part, for what he sees as a change in attitude from the North Koreans. At the same time the U.S. has been pushing China for help on North Korea, to use its influence to you know to try and end their nuclear program.

Separately though, Washington has been threatening Beijing with a trade war. Are these two issues linked? Could Xi Jinping be using the North Korea issue to you know get a better deal on trade?

That's how these things often work. What are the possibilities here?

MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I mean, I think it sort of depends on who you ask, at least publically. I mean, publically China has tried to separate these two issues by saying that we don't want to combine issues of national security and trade.

I think the person, at least publically, who has been really linking these two issues for 18 months now would be President Trump himself. I mean, that was the stated reason that he gave for not being tough on China when it comes to trade in the first year or so after he took office.

He said why would I put tariffs on a country when I'm trying to solve this other issue with North Korea. So, President Trump certainly willing to link these two issues, but you have to think, at least behind closed doors despite what China says, they know that things don't happen in a vacuum and that these two issues are not necessarily mutually exclusive.


And so, does that trade negotiation have a negative impact overall on what China is doing with North Korea? Yes, it probably does. Does China want, though, those two issues to be so inextricably linked? I think probably not.


VAUSE: Okay, Matt, thank you.

Matt Rivers for us there in Beijing, also Ivan Watson for us in Seoul, South Korea.

Well stay with us for a little longer.

Joining me now, Paul Carroll, Senior Advisor for N Square, a group committed to nuclear disarmament. Also, DJ Peterson, the President of Longview Global Advisors. Thank you, again, for being with us.

DJ, you're the new guy, first to you. We have CNN's Will Ripley, he is in North Korea. He's travelling to the nuclear testing site, which Kim Jong-un has said will be closed as a good will gesture. Here's part of Will's reporting.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: But, as of now, we are still planning to travel nearly 20 hours by train and car, and by hiking, to one of the most remote areas inside North Korea, the nuclear test site at Punggye-ri. Where we, along with a very small group of fewer than two dozen international journalists, expect to witness what North Korea says is the dismantlement of their nuclear test site.


VAUSE: Okay. So, DJ, I wonder if this ceremony is going ahead regardless of you know, the fate of the summit? Because essentially the testing site - - we heard this from Ivan Watson, according to a number of reports, it's just no longer operational.

DJ PETERSON, PRESIDENT, LONGVIEW GLOBAL ADVISORS: Right. Remember that North Korea has a very large nuclear complex and this is just one component of it. And, what does dismantlement mean? The mountain is not going away, the tunnels are not going away, the facility is not going away, perhaps they're putting a lock on it for a while, but I would just see this as a gesture, part of the theater of negotiation that both Washington and North Korea are participating in.

VAUSE: And, Paul, to you, we've seen the theater before, they demolished a water cooling tower at Yongbyon. They started dismantling the reactor, when things went bad, they rebuilt the water cooling tower and started reassembling the reactors. So, we've seen this movie before.

PAUL CARROLL, SENIOR ADVISOR FOR N SQUARE: Absolutely. I completely agree. The test site itself may likely not be needed by the North anymore. Keep in mind India and Pakistan, which have substantial nuclear arsenals upwards of 150 to 200 weapons each, built those arsenals based on five nuclear tests and North Korea has conducted six. So, it's like they know the recipe, right? They can give us the pots and pans, but they've got the final product. And, there are other facilities that we simply don't know about.

Yongbyon, as the other guest mentioned is where they had a plutonium reactor. They blew up the cooling tower, everyone thought 'great, they really mean it this time'. Well, under the table they had the uranium centrifuges enriching uranium for another type of bomb.

So, I'm very skeptical that the closing of the test site is really cutting off their ability to test if they decide to go back, or it's really doing anything meaningful other than, frankly, destroying evidence. There are valuable things that could be learned from that site.

VAUSE: I hadn't thought of it that way. That is a good point.

DJ, I always thought the summit was pretty much a certainty, because if nothing else the North Korean leader regardless if it's the son, the father, or the grandfather, they've always wanted this photo op with a sitting U.S. President. So, why not turn up, get that photo, walk out, it's a win-win.


But, here's a part of a report in The Washington Post, "During Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's second meeting with Kim earlier this month, he outlined his expectations for a fast and comprehensive denuclearization plan for the peninsula said individuals familiar with the meeting".

[01:10] "Kim, meanwhile focused on logistical issues and lingering North Korean concerns about the long-term integrity of a security guarantee from the United States".


The report also talks about Kim's concerns about a coup if he leaves for an extended period and all this seems to suggest that maybe the North Koreans really are serious about not showing up.

PETERSON: No, I would say they're very serious about showing up. They do want to have the photo op. This is a critical moment and a critical opportunity.

The leader of North Korea has taken significant risks by going down this path and he wants to deliver on it. Now, the idea of denuclearization and how they think about it and how we think about it is very different.


Denuclearization could mean, perhaps, calming down the relationship. Obviously they're stopping nuclear testing for a while. They've halted missile tests for a while, but they are not going to give up their missiles. They are not going to be flown out of the country and their facilities are not going to be dismantled.

Because that's what got them to the negotiating table with President Trump. That is there claim to being a great power and they're not going to give them up.


We can, though, dial back the tensions, just like we did with the Soviet Union. We did denuclearize to a limited extent, but the Soviet Union, and certainly Russia, never gave up their nuclear weapons and we haven't either.

VAUSE: Okay. Two weeks ago, the talk around this North Korean summit was very different from what we're hearing now. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Do you deserve the Nobel Prize, do you think?

DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: Everyone thinks so, but I would never say it.

You know what I want to do? I want to get it finished. The prize I want is victory for the world, not for even here, I want victory for the world because that's what we're talking about. So, that's the only prize I want.


VAUSE: And, you know the White House communications agency even issued a commemorative coin for the summit, which has yet to happen.


So, Paul, you know, it seems to hype an expectation, at least on the U.S. side, has been off the charts and was it really based in reality?


CARROLL: I think what your other guest said is very true. All of the parties, President Moon of South Korea, Kim Jong-un of North Korea, President Trump, they all want this summit to happen. They want it for different reasons, they all have a stake in it, there's value for having this summit for all three of them.

But, I would say that Kim Jong-un needs it the least, right? If it falls apart, President Trump, who's put a lot at stake on this as a political success, he loses face, he loses the potential of having that photo op and that's bad for him, because they have other things on his domestic agenda that aren't going well.


President Moon even more so, he won an election based on promises and the vision of a rapprochement and even a peace structure with North Korea. So, politically he's very exposed. Kim Jong-un, and any dictator in North Korea, can simply turn to his security team, his political leaders and say, "Eh, we're just going to blame the U.S. again, the great evil and everything will be fine." They have far less to lose - - yes, they have something to gain, but they have far less to lose and all three can blame the other.


And, then we're back to where? Where are we back to? The pre-Olympic rhetoric and, frankly, ratching (ph) up of tensions. That's what's at stake here.

VAUSE: And, DJ, if the summit does go ahead, it seems it's unlikely to be you know the movie, which I imagine is playing in Donald Trump's head. Which is that he'll show up, he'll win over the North Korean leader with his charm, he'll force some kind of deal by lunchtime and pick up a Nobel Peace Prize on the way home.

PETERSON: Right. I think we have to go back to Ronald Regan and his attempts to strike a deal with the Soviets. It started with two very interesting conversations both in Geneva and Reykjavik that did not result in anything, but it started a dialog.

And, I think this is what's the important piece - - is that we don't walk away from any meeting in June with nothing in hand and say it was a failure. Let's have some serious talks, let's start building a relationship, let's start talking about what's important to each country and start a process that perhaps will take many years to - - to - - to execute.

VAUSE: You mean a process and slow work and relationship building is not - - you know, can't be substituted with a few abusive Tweets and some . . .

PETERSON: Something our president doesn't do very well.

VAUSE: Yes. DJ and Paul, thank you both.

Bill Schneider, is a Resident Scholar at Third Way, he's also a former CNN Political Analyst and author of "Standoff: How America Became Ungovernable" and you are with us now, which is great.

Okay. So, Bill, the president, he seemed to grab ahold of this meeting with Kim Jong-un with both hands, and you know there was a lot of reporting he saw this as some kind of panasere (ph) for his legal troubles with Stormy Daniels, with the Russia investigation, maybe even this is a way of winning - - you know saving the mid-terms from a Republican collapse; if he could have this meeting and walk away with some kind of success.

Now that it's looking unlikely, and it seems to be dawning on the president that maybe this won't go ahead, or maybe if it does, it won't end up quite as successful as he had hoped. What's the political price he will pay for this?


VAUSE: Exactly. No counting Nobel Prizes before they hatch.

SCHNEIDER: That's right and I'm sure he has somebody working on his acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize.

It will not help him and he will not help the Republicans in the mid- term. A lot of voters will say, "Maybe we do need a president with some foreign experience". He thinks he's dealing with New York City landlords, which is what he's always dealt with, and he can just wheel and deal his way to success.

This was supposed to be his Nixon goes to China moment, when he breaks through barriers and creates an entire new dialog, and changes the direction of the world. Well, that may not happen and it raises an interesting question. Is Donald Trump getting played by Kim Jong-un? Is that happening? That would be very embarrassing.

VAUSE: Is he being out-trumped?


Also, we're going to get to a break very quickly, but you know - - have a situation with the White House communications agency minting this commemorative coin and there's a lot of issues with this coin. For instance, it refers to Kim Jong-un as Supreme Leader, which is a term that the U.S. doesn't use.


It has these two men sort of on an equal level looking at each other, sort of eye-to-eye and there's been a lot of criticism. We've heard the Senate Minority Leader, Democrat Chuck Schumer Tweet this, "I urge the White House to take Kim off the coin. Challenge coins, as they are known, are a time honored tradition and certainly appropriate in this situation, but Kim Jong-un's face has no place on this coin. He's a brutal dictator and something like the Peace House" - - which is where they have these negotiations on the DMZ, "would be much more appropriate."


Does Schumer and all the others who are criticizing this, do they have a point?

SCHNEIDER: They do have a point and I think very quickly these coins are going to be called back by the federal government, they're going to try to destroy all of them, melt them all because they're going to become collectors' items. If you have one, it's going to be worth a lot of money.

VAUSE: It also sort of indicates to me that this is the president who loves the trappings (ph) . . .


VAUSE: . . . and all the symbolism of everything, not the work, not the detail, not the hard stuff.

SCHNEIDER: Look, he enjoys campaigning, he doesn't enjoy governing and even foreign policy is something very alien to him. He thinks he can deal with it the way he wheels and deals in New York City politics and New York City real estate.

He doesn't know anything about the ways of the world. I think a lot of Americans will begin to ask themselves, "Did we make a mistake? Was this a catastrophic error? Is he really making things worse for the United States?"

VAUSE: Okay. I guess we'll find out in the mid-terms and then maybe two years after that.

Bill, you'll stay with us because there's a lot more politics to get to, including Michael Cohen's business partner has agreed to a plea deal.


He reportedly will cooperate with government prosecutors. Does this spell trouble for Cohen, who is the president's personal attorney and for the president himself?

Also ahead, that volcano in Hawaii still erupting launching balls of lava into the sky and threatening more homes.



[01:21] VAUSE: President Trump's personal attorney may face increased pressure to cooperate with the Russia investigation, now that his close business partner has reached a plea deal.


Evgeny Freidman is a Russian immigrant who's known as New York's 'taxi king', his partner in that business is Michael Cohen. Freidman pleaded guilty to tax evasion on Tuesday.

New York Times is reporting his testimony could be used to pressure Cohen into helping the special counsel. Last month federal agents raided Cohen's office, home and his hotel room.


CNN's former Senior Political Analyst, Bill Schneider, is back with us. Also, joined by CNN's legal analyst Areva Martin.

So, Areva, let's look at the deal here, because essentially what the deal looks like is that felonies, the original charge, if you combine the jail time, it's more than 100 years - - those felonies combined. He walks away with five years' probation, that's a sweetheart deal. That's a pretty good deal.


VAUSE: So, what's the threshold for Freidman to get that deal? What has he got?

MARTIN: Yes, there had to be some substantial information he had on someone higher than him. When the federal prosecutors make that kind of deal - - plea bargain, we're going to take 100 years of potential jail time and reduce it to five years' probation, it's because someone much bigger than him - - he has information on them and he's willing to provide that information.

And, it's important to note, he's not just saying I'll provide it, he had to lay out what that information is in order for those prosecutors . . .

VAUSE: He'd have physical - - what records? Or photographs? Or some kind of evidence?

MARTIN: He's got to spill his guts, he got to talk about everything he know, because they have to evaluate whether it's worth it for them to reduce the sentence to the point that - - you know, five years' probation. This guy, as you said, was facing up to 100 years.

VAUSE: Yes, 100 plus years.

MARTIN: Very serious felonies. Over $5 million he was accused of basically scamming or stealing from the state of New York. So, to now be you know given this light sentence means he knows a whole lot.

Now, we don't know if this is information that the special prosecutor will be able to use to somehow link to Donald Trump. So, I don't think we should make that leap, but we do know he's been a business partner of Michael Cohen for many years and that they were in this taxi business together.

And, we've heard all kinds of rumblings about how Michael Cohen ran his own portion of that business, and that the raid on his house and office was not just about the $130,000 payment, but it was also his taxi business as well.

VAUSE: And, Bill, this seems to be trend here. This is a president who surrounds himself with people who have serious legal liabilities, who surround themselves with people who have serious legal liabilities.

SCHNEIDER: This is a two-step process. Freidman is an associate of Michael Cohen. Michael Cohen is the one that they're really after because he's the one who knows where all the bodies are buried with Donald Trump. He's Trump's 'fixer', he's been part of everything that Trump has been doing in business and in politics for a long time.

So, that's the guy who's really got to turn tables on Trump and be willing to testify against him, and there's great pressure on him. Remember, they raided his office, they took all of his files, it was really remarkable. He's the real danger for President Trump.

VAUSE: And, Areva, if you look at the number of people who've already flipped, and who have agreed to work with the special counsel, there's a lot of them out there - - I mean, we have Michael Flynn, amongst others.

You know, Manafort's former - - deputy Gates, you know, these are people who know a lot of stuff.

MARTIN: Yes and this is a very common practice by prosecutors. You start at the bottom and you work your way up to the top. And, you showed some clips earlier where Michael Cohen was professing his loyalty to Donald Trump, but we should note that their relationship you know hasn't always been so lovey dovey and so cozy.


Cohen wanted to go to D.C. with . . .


He wanted to be the chief of staff and it's reported that Donald Trump have had their own issues in their relationship. And, we know that Michael Cohen is married and he has a family and he has huge legal fees.


So, those are all the kinds of things that we should be listening for and as we start to hear how he's responding to all of these things, we'll start to know if he's softening. If his position about being so loyal to the president is changing, because now he's thinking about being away from his family, being away from his wife and putting them in substantial debt trying to pay these huge legal fees that we know he's facing.

VAUSE: Okay, if you're the president and the man called the shady business partner of your personal lawyer - - that personal lawyer who's under criminal investigation makes a deal with prosecutors.

[01:25:04] What do you do? Well, if you're Donald Trump, you appear before an anti-abortion group in Washington and you promise tax cuts.


DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: We have a big, big surprise in six months. Big, beautiful surprise, we're going to be submitting additional tax cuts sometime prior to November. It's going to be something very special.


VAUSE: You know, don't make too much out of the timing, but they just passed $1.5 trillion in unfunded tax cuts. What do you make of this?

SCHNEIDER: What he's doing is mobilizing his base. It's a rallying call to his base, which believes in tax cuts, they believe in Trump. Your base in politics are the people who are with you when you're wrong, you always need a base.

Sooner or later you're going to be wrong, Trump may be very wrong in this and that might be proved, but he's got to have somebody who's there in his corner. So, he's feeding the base, he's keeping them rallied, he wants this to be - - you know what he's doing? A quote from The Godfather, he's "hitting the mattresses."



VAUSE: The tax cuts are the bread, the circuses in this are the allegations that the FBI planted a spy in the Trump campaign for political purposes. The president upped the ante with this on Tuesday, with this Tweet.


"If the person placed very early into my campaign wasn't a spy put there by the previous administration for political purposes, how come such a seemingly massive amount of money was paid for services rendered? Many times higher than normal, follow the money. The spy was there early in the campaign and yet never reported collusion with Russia, because there was no collusion. He was only there to spy for political reasons", yada, yada, yada, yada.


Areva, you know, one source who worked for the department of defense was paid $1 million, but that's not the FBI paying him $1 million. If the FBI paid that sort of money, then there would be reason to be concerned.

MARTIN: Yes, this is all again Trump trying to deflect the American people away from the real issue, the Russia investigation, the problems that his personal attorney has and I don't think we can underestimate the significance of this.

This is a guy that's been with the President of the United States for over a decade and he has his house raided, now his business partner is in criminal jeopardy, enters into a plea deal with federal prosecutors. These are all the people that are in the orbit of the President of the United States.

So, this speaks volume about his so-called judgement, having the best people around him, bringing the best people to Washington. These are the worst people.

Michael Cohen is a horrible lawyer. This whole Stormy Daniels situation started because of the sloppiness involved with him negotiating that NDA and the lack of signatures and the corporation that he set up - - the shell corporation to make the payment. All of that stems from the way Michael Cohen was representing the president and it was really done very poorly as a lawyer, and look at the fallout from it.

VAUSE: And, Bill, if there really was a spy in the Trump campaign, determined to be there for political purposes, essentially to sink the campaign. Why wouldn't the FBI then announce the fact before the election, that the campaign chairman was under investigation?

You know, a senior aide, Michael Flynn, was also under investigation with links to Russia. There were others within the campaign who are believed to be Russian agents, others who are believed to be working directly with the Russians.

I mean, this was a campaign which was under you know a spotlight for a variety of reasons and all of them went back to Moscow.

SCHNEIDER: That's right. Well look, it - - it - - it depends on whether you believe the FBI had a political motive in this. This all happened right before the election itself. A lot of people blame James Comey for defeating Hillary Clinton, I think she does, too.

And, the reason is interesting. It's not that he announced he was looking at her email records and reopening the investigation, it's that a few days before the election he announced there was no charges, there was nothing he was going to charge her with.

Which enraged the Trump supporters, because they said, "there's the establishment protecting its own." They were very angry about that and that probably got them out to vote.

VAUSE: That's interesting.

MARTIN: That's kind of interesting that Trump is now claiming there's a spy imbedded in his campaign, to sink his campaign, and all along we were focused on all of the activity happening with Hillary Clinton and her email server.

And, we know that President Obama - - the FBI had so much information about Trump and the Russia infiltration of his campaign and they never revealed that information. They could have easily shared that, but they held it back for as not to impact the election.


VAUSE: We're out of time, but this is the "I'm rubber, you're glue" strategy, isn't it? That's what Trump's doing here, I'm rubber, you're glue, whatever you say sticks on you - - right back at you.


SCHNEIDER: You investigate me, I'm going to investigate you, how do you like that?

VAUSE: Okay. Areva and Bill, thank you so much.

MARTIN: Thank you, John.

VAUSE: Well, coming up here. Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg gets an earful from angry European lawmakers.


And they get little more than yet another apology. Details in a moment.



[01:29:54] VAUSE: Well, coming up here -- Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg gets an earful from angry European lawmaker although they get little more than yet another apology. Details in a moment.


VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles.

I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.

U.S. President Donald Trump says the summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un may not happen next month. It's the strongest indication yet that the meeting is at risk after North Korea's recent threat to pull out. South Korea's president was at the White House on Tuesday trying to keep the summit on track.

An Australian archbishop is stepping down after being convicted of concealing child sex abuse by a fellow priest. Philip Wilson faces up to two years in prison. He was found guilty of hiding the abuse of Father James Fletcher in New South Wales during the 1970s. Fletcher was convicted and died while serving his jail sentence.

And in Karachi a burial is under way right now for a Pakistan teenager killed during last week's shooting in Texas. Seventeen-year-old Sabika Sheikh was one of ten people killed at Santa Fe high. She had received a scholarship to visit Texas on a program funded by the U.S. State Department.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will meet with the French President Emmanuel Macron in the coming hours. Macron wants to encourage the tech industry and start-ups. But European lawmakers, they're still looking for answers from Zuckerberg even after grilling him on Tuesday.

Well, the Facebook founder apologized again today but he was able to dodge many of their questions and demands for specifics.

More details now from CNN Money's Samuel Burke.


SAMUEL BURKE, CNN BUSINESS AND TECHNOLOGY CORRESPONDENT: A major missed opportunity in the European parliament. The members here had very poignant, well-thought out questions about fake news, about foreign interference and Cambridge Analytica.

And what was incredibly interesting was to see how the members here were really tag teaming with their U.S. counterparts. They named senators and said they wanted to follow up with questions that their U.S. counterparts had asked but Mark Zuckerberg was able to evade by saying I'll have my team follow up with you.

But in the end it all seemed like a futile experiment because the format that was used here meant that all of the members would ask their questions first in about an hour's time and Mark Zuckerberg replied in one fell swoop at the end. So there was no back and forth. There was no real chance for follow-up.

And by the end of his testimony, you could feel the tension over this format really bubble over as some of the members started to argue with the President of the European Parliament about the lack of back and forth with Zuckerberg.

MARK ZUCKERBERG, CEO, FACEBOOK: I'll make sure that we follow up with each of you afterwards to make sure that your specific questions get addressed. And we're going to have someone come to do a full hearing soon to answer more of the technical questions as well. So thank you again for inviting me.

[01:35:06] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Zuckerberg -- I think there was one question raised by (INAUDIBLE) and that's linked to my question and that's the separation of different services. And I think it's a very important question in this round the market power of Facebook and to question if you cross-use, for example, data between Facebook and What's App. So it would be good if you say at least one word to that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Would you allow users escape targeted advertising. I mean I asked you six yes or no questions I got not a single answer. And of course, well, you asked for this format well -- for a reason.


ZUCKERBERG: I'll make sure we follow up and get you answers to those.

BURKE: Now, Mark Zuckerberg didn't avoid all the tough talk. He did respond directly to questions about being a monopoly possibly, about competition. But because he was doing his answer really as a monologue it meant that he was able to recycle bullet points that we'd already heard from him about these topic in other speeches and in his opening remarks here at the European parliament.

Samuel Burke, CNN -- Brussels.


VAUSE: Well right now to Hawaii where a fissure has reactivated and is sending lava towards a geothermal power plant. All of this comes on top of the toxic gas and the towering ash plumes that having people on many parts of the big island dealing with this drama and this crisis. So this has been going on for weeks now.

Our report from Stephanie Elam.


STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The sound as eerie as the sight; lava and toxic gas bursting from more than 20 cracks in the ground. What sounds like the ocean is actually pressure from the earth forcing lava bombs into the air. Officials escorted us to this spot but we couldn't stay for long.

Deep orange pieces being launched out of this fissure into the sky with wave after wave of this volcanic gas that is coming out of there.

The lava, stretching for miles in some cases, finally reaching the ocean creating another phenomenon called laze. It's a thick layer of haze created when hot lava mixes with ocean water. The resulting plume even carries tiny glass particles.

The creeping lava and dangerous gases have already forced nearly 2,000 people to flee; walls of lava cutting many off from their homes. Lava bombs threaten those who do return.

During this interview with CNN's Scott McLean lava bombs were loud and powerful rattling Darrell Clinton who returned briefly to check on his property.

DARRELL CLINTON, HAWAII RESIDENT: It is almost like catching a football. But you don't wan to catch this football.

ELAM: The next day a lava bomb did hit Clinton. Now he's recovering in the hospital with a leg wound.

For the most part the Kilauea eruption which began decades ago is impacting a small but growing portion of the big island. This latest phase is so dramatic because lava has burst through ground away from the summit, not only reaching the ocean but also threatening a power conversion plant. The risk there -- explosion if lava mixes with steam and liquids kept in the plant's wells.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A well could be plugged with special types of mud.

ELAM: Officials say they have the upper hand but back at Kilauea's summit a new development -- an overnight eruption sending more ash into the air. It's the second time in recent days the summit has blown its top. And geologists warn despite all of this lava and ash this phase of the Kilauea eruption is in its in early stage.

Stephanie Elam, CNN -- Pahoa, Hawaii.


VAUSE: Well for more on this, Jess Phoenix is with us. She's a geologist and the executive director and co-founder of a non-profit environmental scientific research organization which called Blueprint Earth. Good to have you. Thanks for coming in. JESS PHOENIX, COFOUNDER, BLUEPRINT EARTH: Thanks for having me.

VAUSE: Ok. Explain the concern right now that authorities have should the lava reach those underground wells of the geothermal plant.

PHOENIX: Well, the Puna Geothermal Venture site has chemicals there that actually could be very volatile. The main concern is that the lava could breach these wells and hydrogen sulfide could be released into the atmosphere.

That gas is very harmful to humans and, of course, animals. So that's the major concern so the company has been working very hard to try to mitigate that risk.

VAUSE: And last week, (INAUDIBLE) was to fill these wells with cold water and to cap them with these sealed covers. But the problem seems that this has never happened before so no one knows entirely what to expect whether this is actually going to work; this solution will actually hold.

PHOENIX: Yes. And they've actually had to adapt a little bit and inject some special mud down into there because the water wasn't working for one of the three wells that's being affected by this. So it is potentially affected.

[01:40:01] So it is -- it's a calculated effort to try to mitigate that risk and, you know, the likelihood that it would actually cause a problem is very small.

Of course, noise is also a concern. It's not just the poisonous gas; it is also the fact that it is a very loud sound when these wells would rupture. So -- but the funny thing is the actual spattering lava is louder.



VAUSE: I know sort of noise being, you know, a big problem in all this, I guess. You know, the Civil Defense Agency has put together a map of where this lava has been flowing and also the location of the fissures. Take a look at that map now -- the triangles marked, the fissures the green ones not active, red is active. So right now, if you look at the map, as you can see, you've got those green dots there. Just because a fissure is not active, that doesn't mean it's going to stay that way. We've seen them become reactive fairly, you know, fairly quickly.

PHOENIX: Yes. Fissure six, for example, has reactivated and we'll see this with a variety of the fissures as this eruption progresses. That's because the whole system is like a hydraulic system.

If you think about it like the plumbing in your house, if there's a problem in one part of the system, the other part of the system will react to that. So this is all dependent on how much lava is entering the system and where it's being forced to the surface. VAUSE: So from that you can sort of extrapolate like where this is

all heading and how much longer this is expected to go.

PHOENIX: I wish we could tell you. But you know, volcanology is still a relatively young science. We've moved into the modern era of it since the eruption of Mount St. Helens in 1980.

So we are still learning and, you know, we can look at past eruptions to kind of indicate how this one might go. In 1955 there was an eruption in an area that's very, very close to this area. And we actually saw 24 fissures open. It lasted for three months and 4,000 acres were covered.

It has some characteristics; today's eruption does share characteristics with the one from the 50s but it also shares characteristics with the 1924 eruption as well.

VAUSE: Ok. Is it possible to work out a worst-case scenario, you know, and in the event of that, you know, the big eruption which everyone seems to be expecting? If that happens, when it happens, if it hasn't already happened -- what are we looking at in terms of damage and, you know, scale?

PHOENIX: We are really fortunate that this is Kilauea Volcano. This volcano is one of the most studied volcanoes in the world. I actually started my career doing volcano research there.

And because of that, we know a lot about this type of volcano which is a shield volcano. It's very different from a Mount St. Helens or a Mount Vesuvius or a Mount Rainier or a Mount Fuji. It's just a totally different type. It typically erupts in a more flowy, oozy sort of way than a big explosion.

VAUSE: And gentler and nicer eruption.

PHOENIX: Yes. It's a kinder, gentler volcano.

VAUSE: Right.

PHOENIX: But, you know, of course it still poses hazards but most of its hazards are to people who can't evacuate. And fortunately, we have a lot of time. So I think what you are looking at is a continued, ongoing destruction of property. It's probably our worst case scenario and then of course, the summit eruptions are still an ongoing possibility. But --

VAUSE: The island is not about to be, you know, blown away?

PHOENIX: No. There's actually five volcanoes on the island of Hawaii that make it up and only Kilauea is erupting now.

VAUSE: Very quickly -- we go back to the map. What we can see with the lava flow is that it has now reached the ocean. You know, it's reached the water.

PHOENIX: Yes. VAUSE: And when the lava meets the water, you have this, you know,

reaction which causes these toxic clouds -- the laze.


VAUSE: Laze. Thank you --


VAUSE: Sorry.

PHOENIX: That's ok.

VAUSE: Thank you.

PHOENIX: There you go.

VAUSE: So how serious is the threat from the laze and is that sort of one of the bigger dangers here compared to everything else?

PHOENIX: Well, laze is actually a very serious health hazard. I recommend that nobody go anywhere near it. It is -- what happens is when the lava enters the sea water it actually creates a chemical reaction that produces hydrochloric acid which everybody knows, if they remember their middle school chemistry classes, that's very dangerous.

You don't want to breathe it in and it also produces volcanic glass particles that you could actually inhale. Those are very damaging to your eyes, to your lungs. So stay very far away and I just -- my word of caution to everyone there on the island, if you are a tourist or a local. Please listen to the Hawaii Civil Defense authorities. Listen to the volcano observatory scientists. They will keep you safe.

VAUSE: Very quickly -- it's not part of the ring of fire, right?

PHOENIX: No. Hawaii is not part of the ring of fire. It is in the middle of the plate. So when people have been wondering, last couple of days, you know, I hear a lot of theories. Oh my god, all of them are going -- no.

It's not connected. It's a completely separate entity. And we've got a really good handle and understanding of what this volcano is capable of.

VAUSE: Good Well, that's some good news, but I guess the better news would be when this is all done.

PHOENIX: Yes. I mean it's really tough as a volcanologist because you want to learn, you want to see these eruptions but you want people to stay safe.

VAUSE: Absolutely. Ok. Jess -- thank you.

PHOENIX: Thank you -- John.

VAUSE: We appreciate your expertise. Great to have you with us.

Ok. Still to come here on NEWSROOM L.A. another glimpse of Britain's royal newlyweds. We'll tell you why the Duke and Duchess of Sussex actually delayed their honey moon. That's up next.


VAUSE: On Friday, voters in Ireland will decide if the country's abortion law should be repealed in what has been a highly-charged nationwide referendum. Polls are tightening ahead of the vote and CNN's Atika Shubert reports now on both sides of the debate.


ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Canvassing for votes to repeal Ireland's ban on abortion but on this issue, voters in Ireland are deeply divided.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What we get is -- what I found any ways, you get people and they've had abortion for young women and they still believe that we can talk about it. We were almost hit by this guy saying you should be ashamed. You shouldn't be standing here.



SHUBERT: On May 25th voters here will choose whether or not to repeal a controversial constitutional amendment that makes it illegal for women to get an abortion in Ireland. In cities like Dublin the yes vote to repeal the ban seems to resonate more especially with women hoping for change like Lucy Wattman.

LUCY WATTMAN, IRELAND VOTER: When I had my abortion. It was not spoken about. And I didn't know anyone else that had one. And now, so many people are speaking out. So many people are sounding off for this and it's good to see change.

SHUBERT: Her experience as a teenager forced to leave the country to seek an abortion is why she wants to see change.

WATTMAN: I felt like it was my fault. I felt like -- I must have done something wrong. I felt dirty because -- I had to leave but there was a brief moment leaving Ireland and looking out the window (INAUDIBLE) and going this is wrong.

SHUBERT: But the young female vote cannot be taken for granted. Some like Katie Ascough are determined to keep the abortion ban in place.

KATIE ASCOUGH, IRELAND VOTER: I completely agree that we need to support women better in this country but I do not think the answer is intentionally end lives in the process.

SHUBERT: In rural (INAUDIBLE) pro-life campaigners have balloons, pamphlet and a plastic model fetus on display to convince voters to keep abortion illegal. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If the baby is viable, in other words if it will

survive outside of the womb, then both mother and baby are saved. Isn't that a wonderful piece of legislation. So you would ask yourself, why would that have to be removed?

SHUBERT: Campaigners here are targeting more conservative voters but also men who oppose abortion and they think are being overlooked in the national debate.

[01:50:04] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What is the impact of the repeal on the man's rights. Now, we talk about the woman's right and we talk about female bodily integrity, we talk about female reproductive rights. There is no mention of the male reproductive rights.

SHUBERT: From city streets to country roads it is a fierce fight to the ballot box. Polls have narrowed and many voters remain undecided. The one thing both sides can agree is that no vote can be taken for granted.

Atika Shubert, CNN -- Dublin.


VAUSE: Public services across France were brought to a standstill by striking workers while violence broke out among street demonstrations in Paris on Tuesday.

Shop windows were smashed, 15 people were arrest. Many workers are opposed to economic reforms proposed by President Emmanuel Macron. Protesters say pensions and employment protection in place for decades would be jeopardized.

A year ago 20 people were killed in a terror attack in a concert in Manchester and the victims have been remembered.

CNN's Erin McLaughlin was at a church service.



ANDY BURNHAM, MAYOR OF MANCHESTER: Manchester wasn't broken by extremists. We stood up. We were resolute in saying that nothing will change us.


ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's been a year since a suicide bomber tore apart a concert for little girls. The blast happened shortly after superstar Ariana Grande stopped singing and their parents had arrived to pick them up.

An attack so cold, so horrific -- the city of Manchester was left reeling. Shocked, yet defiant -- united in song. Today that same solidarity at an interfaith memorial service to remember the 22 killed and the hundreds injured. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Though a door may have closed -- closed between

us, may we be able to view our lost friends with eyes wise with calming grace. Forgive them, the damage we were left to inherit.

MCLAUGHLIN: The gathering of the great and the good and the moment of silence.

Manchester remembers -- as does Ariana Grande. In a tweet she said, "Thinking of you all today and everyday. I love you with all of me and sending you all the light and warmth I have to offer on this challenging day."

Tears (ph) lost are not forgotten. Kelly Brewster died shielding her niece from the blast. The family released a statement, "One year on from losing Kelly and she is still in our thoughts every single day. Everyone who knew her misses her so much."

For Manchester, the memory of what happened is indelible. At a local tattoo parlor, dozens were marked with a bee -- symbol of the city's hardworking past and resilience. For many the attack remains a fresh wound.

SANDRA WHITFIELD, MANCHESTER RESIDENT: (INAUDIBLE) -- that someone could attack our own children. I'm amazed with the attitude with the ranch (ph) and the Manchester people came out with and they all stood together and all said, you're not going to do that to us and we're not going to react in that way and we all came together. It's amazing.

Eric McLaughlin, CNN.


VAUSE: One of the greats of American literature has died. Phillip Roth passed away Tuesday night in a Manhattan hospital. His agent says the author suffered from heart failure. Roth won the Pulitzer Prize for his 1997 novel, "American Pastoral". He chronicle Jewish life in much of his writing which spanned more than five decades. Phillip Roth was 85.


VAUSE: So what happens when mom and dad beg an adult son "get out, leave" but he refuses? Thirty-year-old Michael Rotondo in New York State learned the hard way when his parents took him to court. The judge ordered his eviction.

His parents had warned him in February to grow up, put on his big boy pants and move out. They wanted to use his room for a home gym. But Michael says he was never expected to do chores or anything like that or help with expenses. The man baby plans to appeal his eviction calling the judge's ruling quote, "ridiculous". I made that stuff up about the home gym.

Prince Harry and Meghan, now the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, have made their first official outing since getting married on Saturday. The couple attended a charity event for Prince Charles' 70th birthday. They even delayed their honeymoon so they could be there.

Here is Max Foster.


MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: Meghan Markle, a.k.a. the Duchess of Sussex, got her first taste of what it is like to be out in public as a royal with people curtseying to her at the garden party here at Buckingham Palace in honor of her father-in-law, Prince Charles on his 70th year.

The charities and organizations he's worked with over a lifetime were all represented here. She went out and met them and Prince Harry, her husband paid tribute to his father and his work with conservation and wildlife and appropriately he was interrupted by a bee.

PRINCE HARRY, DUKE OF SUSSEX: Sorry but -- sorry. That bee really got me.

FOSTER: The Duchess of Sussex will now have to consider which charities and causes she'll want to adopt. They will define her future royal role. You can be pretty sure that women's rights and equality will play a very big part in that.

Her immediate priority though is packing and jetting off on her honeymoon. We don't know where, we don't know when but all bets appear to be on Africa somewhere.

Max Foster, CNN -- Buckingham Palace, London.


VAUSE: Thank you for watching NEWSROOM L.A. I'm John Vause. Please stay with us. I'll be right back with more news after a short break.


[02:00:12] VAUSE: This is CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles.