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One Officer Killed, One Wounded, Attacker Dead at U.S. Capitol; Abundance of Video at George Floyd Murder Trial; Capitol Police Mourn Fallen Officer; MLB Moves All-Star Game out of Atlanta; Pope Leads Scaled-Down Passion Service; U.N. Special Envoy to Myanmar, "A Bloodbath Is Imminent"; U.S. Employers Add Jobs, Boosting Economy; CDC Says Fully Vaccinated Can Gather for Easter. Aired 4-5a ET

Aired April 3, 2021 - 04:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[04:00:00]

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KIM BRUNHUBER, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): A deadly confrontation at the U.S. Capitol leads to new concerns about security.

Also, the head of the Minneapolis Police homicide division delivers damning testimony regarding the death of George Floyd.

And striking out: Major League Baseball pulls its All-Star game from Georgia because of the state's new law making it harder to vote.

Live from CNN World Headquarters en in Atlanta welcome to all of you watching. I'm Kim Brunhuber. This is CNN NEWSROOM.

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BRUNHUBER: For the second time this year, a Capitol Police officer has been killed in the line of duty. Flags at the U.S. Capitol and the White House have been lowered to half-staff to mourn his death.

The violent confrontation began midday Friday, when the suspect rammed a car into the security barricade. Police say the driver then lunged at officers with a knife, stabbing one of them before he was fatally shot. Another officer was also wounded. CNN's Jessica Dean has the latest.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JESSICA DEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The United States Capitol on high alert again, as another attacked left one Capitol Police officer dead and another injured.

ACTING CHIEF YOGANANDA PITTMAN, U.S. CAPITOL POLICE: The suspect rammed his car into two of our officers.

DEAN (voice-over): A 25-year-old suspect, Noah Green, rammed this blue sedan into a barricade at the Capitol building, striking two officers before exiting that vehicle and charging at the officers with a knife.

PITTMAN: The suspect did start lunging toward U.S. Capitol Police officers, at which time Capitol Police officers fired on the suspect.

DEAN (voice-over): A law enforcement official telling CNN one officer was stabbed.

PITTMAN: It is with a very, very heavy heart that I announce one of our officers has succumbed to his injuries.

DEAN (voice-over): William "Billy" Evans, an 18-year veteran of the force, is the second Capitol Police officer to die on duty in just the last three months. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi calling him a, quote, "martyr for our democracy."

And President Biden ordering flags to be lowered at half-staff at the White House. This afternoon's attack bringing back memories of the January 6th insurrection, just as security measures were ramping down with fences being removed around the Capitol.

REP. ADRIANO D. ESPAILLAT CABRAL (D-NY): What it shows is that there are people out there who want to hurt us. And so we got to do more and we got to do it better.

DEAN: Authorities are still working to determine a motive in all of this, but we know in the weeks before the attack, the suspect had posted to social media about losing his job, about medical issues and also about his fear that the government had targeted him for what he called mind control -- Jessica Dean, CNN, Capitol Hill.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Lawmakers are offering messages of condolences for the fallen officer.

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer tweeting, "For his service to our Capitol, everyone who serves at and visits our country we'll forever be indebted to Officer Evans, who was killed today defending them, to his family, to his fellow officers and to everyone who knew and loved him."

And Senate Republican leader McConnell writing, "I'm heartbroken that Officer Evans was killed today in the line of duty on this Good Friday. Let's all pray for healing for the surviving officer, comfort for Officer Evans' family and for all the officers and families with the United States Capitol Police."

CNN legal and national security analyst Asha Rangappa joins me now from Connecticut. She's also a former FBI special agent and lecturer at Yale University.

Thanks so much for being here with us. First of all, I want to get your reaction to this, the second deadly attack on the Capitol in three months.

ASHA RANGAPPA, CNN LEGAL AND NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Yes, well, I think the main question here is, what is the motivation?

You know, looking at this, we know it's not an accident. This person rammed into the barricade, injuring one law enforcement officer and killing another. And then he exited the vehicle with a knife. So clearly, he had intentions.

And the question is, what were those intentions?

Were they motivated by some kind of ideology?

[04:05:00]

RANGAPPA: Does this fall into the terrorism bucket or was this a lone actor acting out perhaps some frustrations or, you know, grievances against the government?

And I think that's what the investigation now is seeking to uncover.

BRUNHUBER: Yes, certainly we don't know the details, as you say. From what we are to glean from those who knew him best, it seems to have been a lone wolf attack from someone without a larger network that could have been, say, penetrated by law enforcement to prevent it and so on.

So how hard is it to prevent this type of incident from happening?

RANGAPPA: Lone actor incidents like this are incredibly hard to prevent because there's no other signal that this is coming. In a planned attack, in a coordinated attack, you actually have communications happening between groups of people that can get on the radar of law enforcement so that they can intervene, you know, in the planning stage, for example.

But if all this is happening really in the perpetrator's mind, the people who are going to see any red flags, if any at all, are the people who are closest to them, the friends, the family. They might see the comments they're making, that they had a weapon.

In the Atlanta shooting, this person had -- the family member saw they had a weapon. So law enforcement is really relying on tips to get a heads-up on things like this that are coming in order to prevent them before they happen, which is difficult.

BRUNHUBER: And then in terms of the hard security there, I mean this has become a political issue. Many in Congress and in the community there as well complained about the added security, the barriers and so on. They just opened up those barriers, those roads to traffic two weeks ago.

Does this suggest to you these measures should be reinstated, not just to protect the lawmakers but to better protect police?

RANGAPPA: Well, I defer to the people on the ground to make the decision on what specific security measures are needed. But it's clear that the Capitol is a target. You know, this is a soft target generally. This is the seat and symbol of American democracy.

But I think, especially on January 6th, it became a focal point for the nation and the world. And I think, as a result, it is now in the popular imagination for people who may have a variety of motivations and, you know, grievances against the government, who may have conspiracy theories about the government or just may want visibility to use this as a target.

And so there does need to be some security. And, you know, here, I -- on the one hand, the Capitol wasn't breached. But the people who are at the periphery -- and there will always be some outer point where security is going to be protecting it -- I think those people will be vulnerable.

And that needs to be taken into account and, you know, looked at very carefully, because we want to protect the law enforcement as well as the building and the people inside as well.

BRUNHUBER: That's all the time we have but really appreciate your expertise on this, Asha Rangappa, thank you so much.

RANGAPPA: Thank you so much.

BRUNHUBER: The death of Officer William Evans is hitting the Capitol Police hard. Emotions are still raw over the January 6th insurrection and the loss of three officers. This latest incident only adds to the trauma. CNN's Alex Marquardt has more.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): For the third time this year, United States Capitol Police is laying to rest one of its own, a procession on Friday afternoon for Officer William Evans, a member of the first responders unit, who, just last month, had marked 18 years on the force.

PITTMAN: And it is with a very, very heavy heart that I announce one of our officers has succumbed to his injuries.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): The acting chief of the Capitol Police Yogananda Pittman reminding America what her officers have endured this year, starting in the first days of 2021 with the insurrection.

PITTMAN: I just ask that the public continue to keep U.S. Capitol Police and their families in your prayers. This has been an extremely difficult time for U.S. Capitol Police after the events of January 6th and now the events that have occurred here today.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): After a dramatic ramping-up of security following January 6th, things had just begun to ease, with the perimeter moving back, fences coming down and a hope among members of Congress and law enforcement for some return to normalcy.

That hope was shattered Friday, with the second major act of violence on Capitol Hill in under three months.

[04:10:00]

MARQUARDT (voice-over): U.S. Capitol Police, along with Washington, D.C., Police, were the first line of defense against the insurrectionists on January 6th. They were screamed at, beaten and sprayed with chemicals by the rioters.

Officer Brian Sicknick was hit with what's believed to have been bear spray. He died from his injuries a day later. Two other officers later took their own lives. The wife of Capitol police officer Howie Liebengood said his suicide was in the line of duty, saying the insurrection in the days that followed took an incredible toll.

Officer Harry Dunn described the pain to CNN's Don Lemon, calling it hell.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OFFICER HARRY DUNN, U.S. CAPITOL POLICE: You have good days, and you have bad days. But just thinking about it just takes you back to that, like you said, that hell day. And it was tough to live through and it's also tough to relive, talking about it.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): Dunn told CNN that the Trump supporters who were there that day used racial slurs against Black officers. He talked about the depression that many officers felt afterwards.

DUNN: Officer Sicknick was killed. We had officers that took their life because of the stress that they endured from that day. That is what happened. I don't know how you can word it any different than what exactly happened.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): In the examination of what happened on January 6th, it was called the worst of the worst in the two decades of service of Capitol Police Captain Carneysha Mendoza.

CAPT. CARNEYSHA MENDOZA, U.S. CAPITOL POLICE: As an American and as an Army veteran, it's sad to see us attacked by our fellow citizens. I'm sad to see the unnecessary loss of life. I'm sad to see the impact this has had on Capitol Police officers and I'm sad to see the impact this has had on our agency and on our country.

MARQUARDT (voice-over): Alex Marquardt, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Straight ahead, one of the top Minneapolis police officers says Derek Chauvin's use of force against George Floyd was totally unnecessary. Details on the damning testimony next.

And the state of Georgia has just struck out with Major League Baseball. We'll have more on the latest controversy, involving the new laws that critics say make it harder to vote there. Stay with us.

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[04:15:00]

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BRUNHUBER: The first week of Derek Chauvin's murder trial has ended with testimony that could prove damaging for the accused.

A top police officer told the court that his former colleague's actions to control George Floyd that day were totally unnecessary. The prosecution's case has been filled with emotion, fueled by graphic video of the day George Floyd died. CNN's Omar Jimenez reports.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The theme of a shortened day five of testimony was training.

MATTHEW FRANK, PROSECUTING ATTORNEY: Have you ever in all the years you've been working for the Minneapolis Police Department been trained to kneel on the neck of someone who has handcuffed behind their back in the prone position?

LT. RICHARD ZIMMERMAN, MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT HOMICIDE OFFICER: No, I haven't. That would be the top tier, the deadly force.

FRANK: Why?

ZIMMERMAN: Because the fact that if your knee is on a person's neck, that can kill him.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): Thirty-five-year veteran, Lieutenant Richard Zimmerman, who said his serve longer than any other officer in the Minneapolis Police Department, testified of the risks of restraining a suspect way George Floyd was held.

FRANK: What was your view of that use of force during that time period?

ZIMMERMAN: Totally unnecessary. Once the person is cuffed, you need to turn them on their side or have been set up. You need to get them off their chest. Your muscles are pulling back when you're handcuffed and if you're lying on your chest, that's constricting your breathing even more.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): It was even something former Officer Derek Chauvin was asked about in the moment by former Officer Thomas Lane.

THOMAS LANE, FORMER POLICE OFFICER: Should we roll on his side?

DEREK CHAUVIN, FORMER POLICE OFFICER:

Nope. He's staying where we've got him.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): During cross-examination, the defense pointing out the differences between a patrol officer and Zimmerman's role as a homicide detective, largely investigative in nature, despite the annual defense training.

ERIC NELSON, DEFENSE ATTORNEY FOR DEREK CHAUVIN: The frequency with which you have to use higher levels of force as an investigator doesn't happen all that often, right?

ZIMMERMAN: Correct.

NELSON: It would not be within your normal role or job duties to do such a use of force analysis, right?

ZIMMERMAN: That's correct.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): Zimmerman's testimony comes on a tail-end of a week filling in gaps of what happened on May 25th, 2020, including what happened when medical personnel arrived.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In layman's terms, I thought he was dead.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): Painful testimony about what it was like in the moment that day just steps away from Floyd.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I feel helpless.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): An insight to how Derek Chauvin interpreted to what's adjusted to happen.

CHAUVIN: We got to control this guy because he's a sizeable guy. It looks like he's probably on something.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): All of it stemming from an excruciating 9 minutes and 29 seconds of a knee to the neck that according to Friday testimony should have ended much earlier.

ZIMMERMAN: The ambulance will get there in whatever amount of time and in that time period, you need to provide medical assistance before they arrive.

JIMENEZ: And Lieutenant Zimmerman was among 14 Minneapolis police officers that signed onto an open letter last June condemning Derek Chauvin.

At one point, the letter read, "Derek Chauvin failed as a human and stripped George Floyd of his dignity and life."

Zimmerman was the last witness called in week one of testimony in this trial. Week two of testimony will pick back up Monday morning. And while the exact lineup of witnesses is still under wraps for security reasons, we do know at some point it's expected that current Minneapolis police chief will testify, along with an emergency medicine physician and, critically, the medical examiner -- Omar Jimenez, CNN, Minneapolis.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

[04:20:00]

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BRUNHUBER: For more on this case, let's bring in CNN legal analyst Areva Martin in Los Angeles. She's a civil rights attorney and legal affairs commentator. Thanks so much for being with us. I want to just flow from what we

just saw there. Obviously, part of Chauvin's defense will be that the restraint was necessary and we heard him, even right after the incident, justifying it. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DEREK CHAUVIN, FORMER POLICE OFFICER: We got to control this guy because he's a sizeable guy.

(CROSSTALK)

CHAUVIN: It looks like he's probably on something.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: So both of those things are verifiably true. He was a big guy, and he did have drugs in his system. But the testimony we just heard in that report from our reporter, from the other police officers, it seems particularly damning, right?

AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: The defense told us in his opening statement that we would hear that Derek Chauvin did what he was trained to do.

Zimmerman blew a hole in that theory, saying that this is not the training of the Minneapolis Police Department.

The defense also told us that this crowd somehow was unruly, distracted the officers from being able to care for George Floyd or to be able to control him.

And what we also heard from Zimmerman was that the crowd had nothing to do with it, that the crowd should not have impacted the amount of force that was used on George Floyd and that, in fact, this crowd was not attacking the officers in any way that put them in danger.

So very devastating testimony on behalf of Zimmerman as it relates to the defense's key arguments in this case.

BRUNHUBER: So then if the justifiable use of force defense doesn't fly, they may rely more heavily on medical testimony. It's interesting to me that both sides will be using the same medical examiner's report to argue two different causes of death.

MARTIN: Oh, absolutely. In this case, it's going to come down to the reasonableness of the actions of Chauvin and then causation.

Did the actions of kneeling on Floyd's neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds -- was that a substantial cause of his death?

Because in Minnesota, it doesn't have to be the sole cause as long as the prosecution can prove that it was a substantial cause. They should be able to get a conviction on one of the three charges that have been filed. We know medical testimony is going to be key in this case. And we're

going to see, going into next week, probably a battle of expert witnesses.

BRUNHUBER: So you know, I just can't remember another trial in which we got such a horrific, immersive experience, seeing this tragedy unfold up close from so many different angles.

You know, if trials rely at least as much on emotion as cold, hard facts, how influential could that be?

MARTIN: Oh, I think you are absolutely correct. This is a case where, from the very moment that George Floyd has interactions, with that store clerk, with individuals inside Cup Foods, it's all caught on videotape.

Oftentimes, we're relying on the testimony of eyewitnesses. We're relying on documents to tell us what happened with regard to a particular incident. But in this case, as you just stated, we have videotape with multiple -- from multiple individuals that give us a clear picture.

And I can't help but believe that the videotapes, the ones that we've seen of George Floyd, of him acting pretty normal, engaging in conversation, going about his business and then watching what happens to him under the knee of Chauvin, that that videotape is resonating with jurors.

BRUNHUBER: Yes and resonating with those of us watching it. I mean, obviously, the pain for the family must be unimaginable for those watching; you know, obviously on a much lower scale. But there's still pain as well.

I know many people in the Black community are getting retraumatized, you know, not just here in the U.S.; I've heard people have been identifying with this experience from around the world.

MARTIN: Oh, absolutely. And think about some of the witnesses that have come forward this week. We've seen from a 9-year-old little girl to a 61-year-old man. And we actually saw that 61-year-old man weep on the witness stand as he recounted how helpless he felt in terms of trying to help Mr. Floyd.

We saw the off-duty firewoman also weep during her testimony. We saw the very, very powerful and impactful testimony of George Floyd's girlfriend, as she recounted their use and their repeated efforts to break their addiction on opioids.

So many individuals that have testified this week, telling very powerful stories and that's what trials are about. Trials are about characters. They're about individuals telling their stories and connecting with the jurors.

[04:25:00]

MARTIN: And we're hearing from those pool reporters that some of these witnesses are looking directly at jurors as they testify. And jurors are taking copious notes, appearing to really connect with these witnesses.

BRUNHUBER: Yes, incredibly emotional and compelling so far. Thanks so much for your expertise here, CNN legal analyst Areva Martin in Los Angeles, appreciate it.

MARTIN: Thank you, Kim.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Just ahead on CNN, the U.S. Capitol comes under attack and, again, a police officer sworn to protect Congress is dead. We'll have more details.

And Major League Baseball pulls its All-Star game out of the state of Georgia. The reason: the state's new law, making it harder to vote. Stay with us.

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BRUNHUBER: And welcome back to all of you watching here in the United States, Canada and around the world.

We're turning now to our top story, the fatal incident at the U.S. Capitol. A veteran officer of the Capitol Police was killed when a man attacked officers with a knife after crashing a car into a security barricade. Another officer was wounded and the suspect was fatally shot.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ordered the U.S. flag over the Capitol lowered to half staff and sent this message.

"America's heart has been broken by this tragic and heroic death of one of our U.S. Capitol Police heroes, Officer William Evans. He is a martyr for our democracy. May it be a comfort to his family that so many mourn with them and pray for them at this sad time."

Evans had been on the force for 18 years. He's the second Capitol officer to die in the line of duty this year.

[04:30:00]

BRUNHUBER: His college roommate spoke to affiliate WBZ.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MATT DERRY, OFFICER EVANS' COLLEGE ROOMMATE: It was real surreal to just think that I -- I mean I literally just talked to him and we shared a laugh a couple of days ago and now he's gone.

It has just been shock ever since. I mean it's been fighting back tears all afternoon and then trying to -- trying to make sense of it all and knowing that there's none to be had.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: Investigators haven't yet determined a motive for the attack and, of course, we'll bring you the latest on the story as we learn more.

Major League Baseball is moving its All-Star game out of Atlanta, Georgia. It's a response to the state's sweeping new election law. Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred says, "Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box."

Atlanta mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms tweeted, "Just as elections have consequences, so do the actions of those who are elected. Unfortunately the removal of the MLB All-Star game from Georgia is likely the first of many dominoes to fall until the unnecessary barriers put in place to restrict access to the ballot box are removed."

Stacey Abrams, who's credited with increasing Georgia's voter turnout in recent elections, tweeted this, "Disappointed that Major League Baseball will move the All-Star game but proud of their stance on voting rights. Georgia GOP traded economic opportunity for suppression."

In a statement, the Atlanta Braves say they're, "deeply disappointed by the decision of Major League Baseball to move its 2021 All-Star game. This was neither our decision nor recommendation. We had hoped our city could use this event as a platform to enhance the discussion."

NAACP president Derrick Johnson tells CNN that moving the game was the right decision.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DERRICK JOHNSON, NAACP PRESIDENT: I commend the commissioner of Major League Baseball and all the team owners for stepping up in this moment to protect our democracy.

You know, Republicans have to understand, particularly those in Georgia, you cannot steal your way through elections. You cannot suppress votes. This is not 1930. And corporate America should not tolerate our undermining and subverting our democracy.

So I commend Major League Baseball and all the corporations stepping up in this moment.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: But Georgia's governor, appearing on FOX News Friday night, said people are overreacting, based on what he called liberal lies.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) GOV. BRIAN KEMP (R-GA): This is unbelievable. I mean, really unfortunate, today, obviously, the Major League Baseball has folded up and caved to the cancel culture in a bunch of liberal lies, quite honestly.

And what's even more sad is the President of the United States, Joe Biden, and people like Stacey Abrams, labeling the election integrity act Jim Crow. This is what happens.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: The All-Star game will honor Atlanta Braves legend and civil rights activist Hank Aaron, who died in January. There's no word yet where the game will be held.

Well, it's Easter weekend. Two European countries are starting new coronavirus lockdowns. French president Emmanuel Macron says his country is starting a limited lockdown and it's set to last a month. People are asked to work from home and domestic travel will be limited; schools will also be closed for at least three weeks. Now this is on top of the national curfew.

Italy has also started a strict new lockdown. Officials are trying to prevent the virus from spreading over Easter. So we have two reporters in two European capitals, Salma Abdelaziz is in London and Delia Gallagher is in Rome.

Let's start with you, Delia, a scaled-down Easter in Italy.

DELIA GALLAGHER, CNN VATICAN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Kim. You know the lockdown is obviously affecting the Vatican as well. That was evident last night at the pope's Good Friday ceremony to a virtually empty St. Peter's Square.

That's a ceremony usually held at the Colosseum in Rome with thousands of people, a candlelit ceremony. But the Vatican had to scale that back. Tonight's Easter vigil, also they moved up the time so the few people that will be attending that vigil can be back in their home for that curfew.

Instead of holding Easter Sunday mass in the square, they're having that in the basilica with few people in attendance.

The Vatican has been using the Pfizer vaccine. And with their extra doses, the pope decided this week to donate those to 1,200 homeless and underprivileged people around the Vatican. He paid a surprise visit to them yesterday morning.

They've said they've vaccinated 800 of them. And it's a sign of solidarity and something the pope has been speaking about since the beginning of vaccine rollouts in all countries, to pay attention to those people who might slip through the cracks in the health care systems.

[04:35:00]

GALLAGHER: So he is taking care of at least the people that are in his area around the Vatican -- Kim.

BRUNHUBER: All right, so the Vatican using the Pfizer vaccine as you say. But Italy as a whole importing a lot more of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is a bit controversial.

Any worries there about the reports of blood clots?

GALLAGHER: Well, there were worries back in March. In fact, they suspended it, along with other European countries. But then the European Medicines Agency gave it the green light again. They said the benefits outweighed the risk as far as that was concerned.

So they went ahead and reinstated it. And in fact, the prime minister, Mario Draghi himself, was vaccinated with the AstraZeneca vaccine. They will be starting to use the Johnson & Johnson vaccine mid-April. So that might help them speed up their vaccine rollout in this country.

BRUNHUBER: Thanks so much Delia Gallagher in Rome. And let's go to Salma Abdelaziz in London.

British regulators said they found 30 cases of rare blood clot event after people used the AstraZeneca vaccine. So let's dive a bit deeper into that controversy, unfortunately fueling more doubts about their vaccine.

What's the latest there?

SALMA ABDELAZIZ, CNN PRODUCER: Absolutely, Kim. And let's start by saying there are still investigations being done by experts to try to understand if there is a link, what is the link between the AstraZeneca vaccine and these blood clots.

But unfortunately, U.K. officials have confirmed, out of those 30 cases in which clots were exhibited, seven people have died. That's what was confirmed to the BBC. And again, more investigation is being done.

But the U.K. regulatory body here again saying the benefits outweigh the risks. The York medicine agency (ph) saying that this is possibly a link between the vaccines and these blood clots but it's still to be proven.

So in the meanwhile, officials here say, listen, the benefits of this, because you're talking about 18 million people up to March 24th, that's when this data was gathered, out of 18 million people, 30 people had these blood clots. So to them, this still outweighs; the risks are not high enough. It outweighs -- the benefits are too high in order for them to make any changes.

So that vaccine continues to be rolled out across this country. And compared to what you're hearing there from my colleague in Italy, what is happening here is absolutely opposite from what we're seeing in Europe.

Rules are starting to relax. This is first weekend, Easter weekend, where people will be allowed to socialize and gather with people outside their household. But a lot of warnings as well, prime minister Boris Johnson saying don't gather inside, from the Metropolitan Police.

The police force here in London, who say they're going to be highly visible this weekend to remind people of the rule of six, of how many people can gather. And they will being issuing fines if anyone breaks those rules.

BRUNHUBER: An interesting contrast there. Thanks so much, Salma Abdelaziz in London.

Argentina's president has tested positive for COVID-19. He made the announcement Friday, which was also his birthday. He says he took a test after having a fever and slight headache and is waiting for results of another test.

He says he's isolating and notifying people he met with in the past 48 hours. He received the Russian Sputnik V vaccine on January 21st.

Still to come, bloodshed in Myanmar. Hundreds have been killed since the military began its brutal crackdown on pro-democracy protesters. We'll explain how they're trying to control information in the region next.

Plus we'll find out what advice the CDC has for the fully vaccinated who want to travel over the Easter weekend and beyond. Stay with us.

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[04:40:00]

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BRUNHUBER: Myanmar's violent military crackdown is intensifying. One advocacy group says at least 550 people have been killed since the February coup and they say that number is much likely higher.

The military is now ramping up its efforts to control communication in the area. Ivan Watson is following the story for us from Hong Kong.

Ivan, what's the latest?

IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the test of wills continues. This bloody, deadly test of wills, with the military clearly trying to crush the uprising against the now two-month-old military coup.

It can get kind of surreal because, amid scenes like this that are filmed by very brave activists of clashes in the streets, you have the front page of the military-run new "Global Light of Myanmar" newspaper, which is highlighting a visit by the man who declared himself dictator to the country to see the sale of pearl and jade and gems in the capital, Nay Pyi Taw. Meanwhile you have a curfew pretty much imposed on the entire country every night. As you pointed out, the internet being turned off on cellphones and wireless and that taking place almost on a daily basis.

The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, the NGO, reporting more than 540 people killed over the past two months, more than 2,000 people detained. That organization estimates that seven people were killed between Thursday and Friday by security forces.

We can show you some footage from a contact of ours from last night in Yangon of the security forces, walking through the empty streets after curfew, just one of the images people see outside their homes at night.

For example, just to suggest how strange this all is, a growing number of foreign governments that are urging their citizens to leave; most recently, South Korea joining the U.S. State Department, which has ordered nonemergency personnel and family members to leave.

Britain has urged its citizens not to go to Myanmar as well. And then another statement that came out on military-run television, that was announcing arrest warrants for more than 20 singers and actors and celebrities and influencers, accusing them of Article 505a, which is basically trying to convince armed forces to quit, to be in dereliction of their duty.

Yet another one of the examples of the ways that the military is struggling to stop this popular uprising, which has spread to the ethnic enclaves that are run by ethnic militias, where we've seen an increase in fighting between the military and the militias, including the use of airpower by the military.

[04:45:00]

WATSON: We've seen people fleeing to those areas and across borders to Thailand, for example, in the last week. And an increasing call from some of the activists, to arm themselves against the military. It is all the signs of a country descending further into chaos -- Kim.

BRUNHUBER: All right, Ivan Watson, thanks so much for keeping us up to date on this important story. Appreciate it.

Prosecutors in Taiwan are seeking a warrant for a construction site manager, whose truck is believed to have caused the train crash that killed at least 50 people. According to authorities, the brakes on the truck weren't properly set.

The truck then rolled downhill onto the tracks, causing the crash. For more, let's bring in our journalist Andrew Lee, joining us from Taiwan.

What more can you tell us about how this exactly happened?

ANDREW LEE, JOURNALIST: Right. Good question.

Exactly how did it happen? This is the tunnel, this is the train traveling at 110 kilometers per hour. Before it entered the tunnel, a construction truck, without the brakes properly fixed, skidded down the slope 30 meters and it stayed on the train tracks.

The train traveling at 110 kilometers per hour did not stop in time. The driver did hit the brakes, the investigator told me. But the train still hit the truck and then the train went into the tunnel, momentum still very strong.

So four carriages are inside the tunnel, four carriages are outside the tunnel. Now 350 seated passengers were on the train. However, the train had standing passengers, totaling nearly 500 passengers. So those passengers who were standing, they were injured, severely injured. They were hurt the most.

Right now all the wounded and dead are accounted for so authorities and rescuers are bringing in the heavy machinery. Now that they're all accounted for, all removed from the wreckage, the wounded and the dead, they're bringing in the heavy machinery to remove the wreckage from the train tracks.

Four carriages outside the tunnel, that's the easy part. Now the hard part would be to tow the four carriages within the tunnel out of the tunnel. That's the hard part because the carriages are all entangled and twisted inside the tunnel.

And in addition to removing the wreckage, they'd still have to fix the train tracks. The train tracks are deformed and twisted due to this traffic accident. So we're looking, at minimum, a week before normal transportation in terms of rail system could resume in that part of the island, the eastern part of the island.

And right now the responsibilities, the passengers would have to get their compensation insurance from the rail system operators. The rail system operators would have to hold the construction manager accountable -- Kim.

BRUNHUBER: All right, thank you so much, appreciate that explanation. Journalist Andrew Lee in Taipei, Taiwan.

Just ahead on CNN NEWSROOM, if you've been fully vaccinated, the CDC has new travel recommendations and just in time for Easter Sunday. We've got all you need to know coming up. Stay with us.

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BRUNHUBER: A new temporary migrant processing facility is being opened in Texas. U.S. Customs and Border Protection says it will be located in Eagle Pass along the southern border. It comes as there's an influx of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border

including many unaccompanied minors. It'll be similar to the one in Donna, Texas, which is well over capacity. More than 4,000 migrants are being held there, despite a pandemic limit of 250.

Well, the coronavirus pandemic pushed many Americans out of work. Now jobs are coming back at a rate better than some economists predicted. On Friday, the U.S. Labor Department reported, in March, employers added more than 900,000 jobs to the work force. That's the biggest gain since August.

We're seeing jobs return to restaurants, bars, hotels, education, performing arts and spectator sports. Construction work is also making a comeback.

And more than 100 million people in the U.S. have now received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. That number is from the CDC and it comes 109 days after the first shot was administered in the U.S.

About a quarter of those who got the shot got it some time in the past two weeks, as more and more states have been expanding vaccine eligibility. And the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released new guidelines saying who's been fully vaccinated can travel but things aren't back to normal yet, not by a long shot. CNN's Pete Muntean breaks it down for us.

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PETE MUNTEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The CDC is now telling fully vaccinated people that they can travel at low risk to themselves. But the CDC is not recommending that people travel for nonessential purposes.

Even still, this is a massive shift, one notably absent from CDC guidance for vaccinated individuals that came out on March 8th. The CDC is telling domestic travelers they do not need to quarantine after their trip. They do not need to get tested for coronavirus before and after their trip.

And the CDC is telling international travelers that they still need to show proof of a negative coronavirus test to their airline at the start of their trip back to the United States.

All travelers, according to the CDC director, still need to be smart and vigilant. This does not mean the pandemic is over. She says they still need to wear federally mandated masks on planes and still socially distance.

But this comes at a time when travel numbers are very high. March was the biggest month of the pandemic for commercial airlines. And commercial airlines cannot wait for people to come back.

American Airlines says bookings are at 90 percent of pre-pandemic levels and United Airlines is now hiring pilots for the first time in more than a year -- Pete Muntean, CNN, Reagan National Airport. (END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: The U.S. CDC is now updating its guidance for cruise ship operators.

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BRUNHUBER: They'll also have to report new COVID-19 cases every day instead of weekly and plan to vaccinate their crew and port staff. But the new guidance doesn't give a date when cruises can start again. And Dolly Parton has received her second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

The country music legend posted photos on her social media accounts, thanking doctors from Vanderbilt Medical Center in Tennessee, where she got the shot. She tweeted she got the second dose of her own medicine.

You'll remember last year she donated $1 million to COVID-19 research, which was partially used to fund Moderna's vaccine. So I guess I owe her a thank you as well, because that's the one I got.

Well, that wraps up this hour of CNN NEWSROOM. I'll be back in just a moment with more news. Stick with us.

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BRUNHUBER: An attack outside the U.S. Capitol has left one police officer dead and one other injured in the most serious security threat to Congress since the January 6th riot.

Also ahead, week one of Derek Chauvin's murder trial wraps with compelling and potentially damming testimony. What a senior police official had to say about Chauvin kneeling on George Floyd's neck.

And Major League Baseball tosses the All-Star game out of Atlanta in response to Georgia's restrictive new voting law.

Live from CNN World Headquarters in Atlanta, welcome to all of you watching here in the United States, Canada and around the world. I'm Kim Brunhuber. This is CNN NEWSROOM.