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Coalition Calls for Vote on Wednesday to Form New Israeli Government; Mexico Votes in Key Midterm Elections; Kamala Harris in Guatemala for First Foreign Diplomatic Effort; India Reports 100,636 New Covid Cases on Monday; Vietnam Sees Cases Soar after Early Success against COVID; Burkina Faso Massacre; Nigeria to Prosecute Twitter Users after Banning Site; British Memorial Opens in Normandy to Remember Fallen; Meghan and Harry Welcome Baby Girl, Lilibet Diana. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired June 7, 2021 - 01:00   ET



MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, and welcome to our viewers all around the world. I'm Michael Holmes. Appreciate your company.

Coming up here on CNN NEWSROOM:


NAFTALI BENNETT, YAMINA PARTY (through translator): I call from here, on Mr. Netanyahu, let's go. Release the country, move on.


HOLMES: Tensions rise in Israel as an anti-Netanyahu coalition pushes for a vote to form a new government. Can the prime minister derail their efforts and claim power? I discuss with my guest.

And we're awaiting results from key elections in both Mexico, and Peru. We're live in the region with the latest.

And, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced a birth of their second child with a name the pays tribute to Princess Diana and the queen.


HOLMES: Welcome, everyone.

The next few days are critical for quite the coalition looking to unseat Israel's longest serving prime minister. Leader of the right- wing Yamina party, Naftali Bennett, has asked the speaker of the Knesset to schedule a vote this Wednesday to form a new government. Bennett would, ultimately, succeed Benjamin Netanyahu if this coalition is successful. And, he says, every day that passes simply gives Netanyahu more time to try to derail this change of government.

And Netanyahu seems intent on doing just that, warning that he and his Likud Party oppose the establishment of any, so called, quote, government of deception, and that it would be toppled very quickly.

Elliott Gotkine is in Jerusalem for us.

And, yeah, Netanyahu, ratcheting up the fear tactics, said the coalition against him is the biggest election fraud in the history of the country. What else might he do to head off Lapid and Bennett?

ELLIOTT GOTKINE, JOURNALIST: Michael, we knew Netanyahu wouldn't go silently into the night, and in that respect, he's not disappointed. What he can do? Well, he can carry on doing what he's done so far, which is delivering thunderous speeches to his supporters on television. One columnist, describing it as a televised tantrum, and to encourage his supporters, and rallied them to put as much pressure as possible, particularly on the lawmakers of Naftali Bennett's Yamina Party, and one of the other right-wing parties in this proposed coalition from New Hope.

So, he's expected to continue to do that. Legally, he hasn't got any avenues. But, procedurally, he's got one option to buy a little bit more time, which is that the speaker of the Knesset, Yariv Levin, is from Netanyahu's own Likud Party.

Now, as you said, the coalition wants, the proposed coalition wants a vote of confidence to take place this Wednesday, in two days time. But, the speaker has, actually, as much as a week in which to call the vote. So, we may not get it until next Monday.

And, of course, every day that passes, the more time there is, and more opportunity for Prime Minister Netanyahu to try to put more pressure on potential waivers in this proposed coalition, to defect, and to see the error of their ways, and not support this proposed coalition and thereby preventing it from coming in effect.

HOLMES: Yeah, the domestic intelligence service, Shin Bet, has been warning of a potential for trouble. And this Thursday, the flag march of far right Israelis is made to take place in the old city. Near the flash point for the last conflict, with Gaza. How worried are people that this may spark more violence. How does that play into the current political situation?

GOTKINE: There are concerns, Michael.

Benny Gantz, the defense minister, has said that there shouldn't be any march going ahead that would, in his, words require special security arrangements, or could disturb the peace. Senior police commanders are reportedly concerned and are calling for the march to be rerouted, at the very least.

Now, we reached out to the police, they said that the decision hasn't been made yet. They will make one either today, or tomorrow, because this march was due to happen exactly one month ago, on what Israelis know as Jerusalem Day, which they celebrate as the reunification, in their eyes, of the city of Jerusalem in 1967. This march does, traditionally, go through both West Jerusalem and the Muslim quarter of the old city of Jerusalem, including passing by Damascus Gate as well. [01:05:02]

It was postponed, as you say, last month, after clashes between police and Palestinian protesters, and also, those rockets fired at Jerusalem from Hamas in Gaza.

There are concerns that this could, again, lead to further clashes, if it goes ahead as planned. As I say, the police is yet to make a decision, and there are calls, both from the defense minister, Benny Gantz, and reportedly from senior police commanders, at the very least, being rerouted to avoid ending up in, potentially, a similar scenario to what we saw kicking off last month -- Michael.

HOLMES: Yeah, very concerning. Elliott, thanks. Elliott Gotkine in Jerusalem for us.

And Yaakov Katz is a "Jerusalem Post" editor-in-chief. He joins me now from Tel Aviv.

Good to see you again.

The speaker of the Knesset is a Netanyahu supporter. There is still time for much horse trading, and convincing of individuals to change horses. What is your read of the landscape right now?

YAAKOV KATZ, EDITOR IN CHIEF, JERUSALEM POST: Well, Michael, I think Netanyahu was going to do everything that he can, procedurally, or technically, that the law allows him to try to torpedo this government for moving forward. His main ambition, at least, or his main goal, is to try to peel away a couple of members of this new coalition, either from Naftali Bennett, the presumptive candidate to serve first as prime minister, going from his party, or from New Hope, which was set up by a party that, as a member, used to be part of the Likud Party.

So, he's going to try to do all of those little tricks that he might be able to. It doesn't seem that those are being effective at the moment. I think, really, when he's trying at the moment with all of these speeches is to try and to create a narrative that he is the victim of fraud. That he is the victim of the steal, as they called it in the United States, a few months ago. And, as a result, he wants to play the victim card.

Even if he ends up going to the opposition, he'll continue to wave that victim card, and hope that this government collapses quickly, because it is such a kaleidoscope of a government, and has so many different sides and parts to it. And then he can come back, swoop in, pick up the pieces, and then become Israel's prime minister.

HOLMES: It's interesting what you say. You know, Netanyahu, he's been speaking in terms of almost reminiscent of Donald Trump. I mean, the biggest election fraud in the history of the country, people are being cheated, and saying that people should protest the formation of the government.

And as you point out, in "The Jerusalem Post", in your latest article, you said that this is at a time when more and more politicians are under police protection, intelligence, warning of potential political unrest. What are the concerns?

KATZ: Look, Yamina Party, which is led by Naftali Bennett, which is supposed to serve as the first prime minister in this government. Every member of that party, almost, is under security detail.

Naftali Bennett is protected by the Shin Bet. That's the Israeli security agency. His number two, Ayelet Shaked, receiving security now from the Knesset guard. That's Israel's parliament security force.

There's two other members, who yesterday, started to receive armed protection. The reason is they are being followed, they're being harassed. There are demonstrations, and protests, daily, nightly, outside of their homes. There's an escalation online, and in social media.

This led to the head of the Shin Bet, Nadav Argaman, to release a rare, public statement on Saturday, as the Sabbath was still taking place, which is something that doesn't happen that often in Israel. To release a rare statement to say, we need to lower the tone of the rhetoric. So, this could end in bloodshed, and I think what we saw yesterday with Netanyahu speech was on the one hand, he played lip service to the head of the Shin Bet's call to stop incitement which, unfortunately, coming from the right wing side of the map right now.

But on the other hand, he continues to add fuel to the fire. He said this is the greatest fraud in Israeli history. People are being cheated. He said we need to take every action possible. Of course, within, you know, the framework of the law, he added, and we need to attack the media, we need to attack these members of the Knesset.

All of this, together, if there is some lunatic on the other side, that could be interpreted the wrong way. And this is extremely delicate period for Israel right now. This is the week, Michael, when we're supposed to have a transition of power.

And during these times, we know that democracies are tested. We saw it in January in the United States, and I hope you know we don't see those same scenes here in Israel in the coming week.

HOLMES: I've spoken to Elliott Gotkine about this. I want to get your thoughts, too, on the postponed flag march of settlers, and far-right Israelis. It's meant to be taking place this Thursday, and going through delicate areas, the old city, near the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood as well, which was a flash point for the last conflict with Gaza.

How concerned are authorities that it could spark more violence? And, you know, how does that then play into the politics, as well, if there was more violence?

KATZ: Well, Michael, we know whether it was legitimate or not, what happened last month, when there was supposed to be, on Jerusalem Day, when the violence with Gaza began, I would say it was not legitimate, right.

[01:10:07] Israel has the right to celebrate its national holiday, Jerusalem Day has the right to march throughout its city, but with that said, we know this has become a flash point. And the fact that there are right- wing organizations that are aligned with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud Party, who are calling to hold another flag march on Thursday, just within this week, that we just spoke about how delicate and fragile, and volatile it is.

But to do it this week, there's no national holiday this week. There's no real reason to hold this like flag march this week. But, they're doing it now, and it's difficult to disconnect it from what's happening. It seems almost as if they want to invite tensions, and hostilities. They want to try to stir the pot, to find a way, maybe, for the prime minister to be able to stay in his role.

I hate to say it, but I'm afraid that might be the situation. But, otherwise, there is no reason for this to take place right now. Hold off, wait, this is a delicate, sensitive period.

And, anyone who cares, and cherishes Israeli democracy needs to understand that this coming week, we have to be extra vigilant to ensure that the process moves forward peacefully. That there is a transition of power, that can upholds and retains and strengthens our democratic institutions, and doesn't lead to a spillover of violence.

HOLMES: Yeah, it's going to be an interesting week. A week is a long time in politics, this one could be an eternity.

Yaakov Katz with "The Jerusalem Post", always good to get your thoughts. Thanks so much.

KATZ: Thank you.

HOLMES: Now, rescue operations are underway and the site of a deadly train coalition in Pakistan southern Sindh Province. Officials say at least 30 people are dead after two trains collided between stations.

Prime Minister Imran Khan tweeting that he has ordered a comprehensive investigation into the crash.

We'll take a quick break, when we come back, Mexico holds key midterm elections, seen as a referendum on the president's policies. We'll have more from Mexico City, coming up.

Also, security amidst a charged presidential election in Peru. We'll break down exactly what's at stake.

In the meantime, the U.S. vice president in Central America this hour, for bilateral meetings aimed at curbing migration from the region. All this, and much more, after the break.


HOLMES: The ballots are now being counted in Mexico after the country held its largest ever midterm election. Millions lined up to vote on Sunday with more than 21,000 seats up for grabs across 3 levels of government. And while his name wasn't on the ballot, the vote is seen as a referendum on the agenda of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

Now, the lead up to Mexico midterm was a violent one. Dozens of candidates and politicians killed since campaigning began last year.


And on Sunday, several voting centers had to close early because of threats from armed groups.

Our Matt Rivers is in Mexico City with more on the vote.


MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Mexicans spend their day on Sunday at voting locations like the one behind me voting in what are the single largest midterm elections in this country's history. More than 20,000 candidates on ballots all across the country.

Although you could argue that the person that is being talked about the most here in Mexico isn't actually on the ballot, that would be Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador who is trying to increase his political power in the country by getting his parties candidates elected. His party called Morena is attempting to get super majorities in the next congress. That would, of course, allow them to push through some of the agenda items that Lopez Obrador really wants, including some potentially controversial constitutional amendments.

How these midterm elections play out, it's something the United States is going to be watching very closely. There has been criticism of Lopez Obrador in terms of him eroding the power of democratic institutions here in Mexico as he tries to centralize power in the presidency. That's something the U.S. is going to be watching very closely.

And these elections just come two days before Vice President Kamala Harris will arrive here in Mexico. She's embarked Sunday night on a two-day swing through Central America, stopping first in Guatemala and coming here to Mexico. The main reason of her trip looking at how to solve the root causes of migration.

Of course, we've seen huge spikes in the numbers of migrants arriving at the U.S. southern border. The vice president trying to talk to both Guatemala and Mexico in terms of figuring out how to lower the number of people arriving to that southern border, this will be the vice presidents first foreign trip since taking office.

Matt Rivers, CNN. Mexico City.


HOLMES: Now, we're also watching a high stakes presidential election in Peru. Voting closed just a few hours ago. The election coming at a critical moment for Peru as the country faces multiple crises.

Stefano Pozzebon is live for us in Bogota, Colombia.

So, election day is over. The polls are closed. What do we know about the count and how it's looking?

STEFANO POZZEBON, JOURNALIST: Michael, we know that this count is going to be tight and that at these moments, the results are just simply too close to call. Just in the last hour, the chief electoral authority of Peru went on national television to present the first stash of official data, but he also warned his fellow Peruvian that these data are just from the polling stations, the seats closest to the counting center, so the electoral authority. This means mainly urban voters from the Peruvian cities, not from the rural areas, the Amazon regions, the outskirts of these communities.

This preliminary official data gave a very limited lead to the right wing candidate, Keiko Fujimori, running as your third attempt to the presidency. Her rival, Pedro Castillo in second place. But this could change, Michael, very, very quickly, as the rural data, the data from the rural provinces, which have five, or Pedro Castillo in the first round of the elections coming.

It's really very tight, a very tight election. We knew that this was going to be tight. This country is actually split in half. We reported for weeks. The first that I we are receiving from Lima, out of Peru confirm these impression that the country that these election race is really, really tight, Michael.

And this means to compete in models for how Peru should move forward in overcoming these multiple crises that the nation is facing its still at stake, and really just too much uncertainty at the moment to -- in the future -- Michael.

HOLMES: All right. Good to see you, Stefano Pozzebon there in Bogota for us. Appreciate it.

Let's talk more about all of this with our senior Latin American affairs editor Rafael Romo joining me here in the studio, which is kind of weird, but really good. It's great to have you here in person.

Let's start with Mexico, Rafael. I mean, we've been reporting the extraordinary political violence in this election. Dozens of candidates murdered, but in the broader context, what does it mean for the country of AMLO consolidate power in Congress the way he wants.

RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SENIOR LATIN AMERICAN AFFAIRS EDITOR: It's a midterm election, but the reality, it's an election about one man and that is the president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. It's a referendum of sorts on his first half of his presidency. And even though he's not on the ballot, his party is very much.


And the hope, his goal is to consolidate his power in Congress, all 500 members of the lower house representatives are going to be renewed. And so, if he can gain more positions, he can consolidate his mandate and has -- will probably have, if he achieves that goal, to implement some of the policies that he wanted to from the very beginning.

HOLMES: Yeah, a referendum on him. There's a lot going on in the region. That's why we wanted to get you to Peru. Results started to come on the election there. What were the main issues there and what is the state of politics in that country?

ROMO: It's a very interesting case. It's going to be a case study for Latin American politics, because if you remember during the first round, there were 18 presidential candidates. It boiled down to two, but the two that went to the second round didn't get, not even 33 percent of the votes.

So, that tells you a lot about how we got to this point. The number two, we're talking about these two candidates. Pedro Castillo, extreme left, Keiko Fujimori, extreme right.

Pedro Castillo, his party, in their own manifesto, says we are a Marxist, Leninist party. People hadn't paid close attention to that at the beginning and had bought the idea of him being a teacher, a member of the people, humble guy. He got a lot of support from the people. But then they started looking closer and some people walked back.

Keiko Fujimori, she is the daughter of Alberta Fujimori who governed the country between 1990 and 2000, who is currently serving a 25-year sentence --


ROMO: -- for human rights violations. And so, you probably know this, Mario Vargas Llosa, a Nobel laureate, said that Peruvians have to choose between the lesser of two evils.

HOLMES: And our thanks to our senior Latin American affairs editor, Rafael Romo, there.

And you heard our Matt Rivers mentioned earlier, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris is now on her first foreign diplomatic trip. She is charged with finding ways to curb the flow of migrants to the U.S. from Central America. Harris will arrive in Guatemala on Sunday evening as a full schedule on Monday, including a meeting with Guatemala's president.

And as we mentioned earlier, then she then heads next to Mexico.

Joining me now is Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU immigrants rights project.

Good to have you with us, Lee. What does the vice president need to ask of these countries are off of these countries in order to stem the outflow? What do you here are the push factors versus the pull factors? Reasons people leave their homes?

LEE GELERNT, DEPUTY DIRECTOR, ACLU IMMIGRANTS' RIGHTS PROJECT: Right, the first thing I would say is contrary to some assumptions being made by people in the United States and around the world, no one wants to pick up and leave their home country, to go to a foreign country, establishing new life where they don't speak the language. That's a very difficult journey. It's particularly difficult with young children. So, it really takes a lot for people to get up and leave.

I think what is driving most people in Central America know is the extreme violence and persecution they are facing. That violence is exacerbated by hurricanes, by the pandemic, in a variety of other things. So, people are fleeing when they are in real danger.

And I think the vice president is going to need to deal with root causes to give them economic hope, to deal with the corruption there, and to deal with the violence, because ultimately that's the long term solution. If people -- if they are stable in their own country and not fearful of being killed where their children are being killed, it won't pick up and come to the United States.

But the vice president also needs to address what is happening at our border right now, because at the end of the day, it's going to take a while before we deal with the root causes, and right now, the Biden administration, like the Trump administration, is turning around families with small children without any hearing whatsoever, and sending them back to danger.

So, we need to do both. We need to deal with the short term and the vice president needs to have real practical solutions for the long term reprisals.

HOLMES: Have things improved at all? I mean we talked about the dreadful commissions on the ground. Yes, corruption, hunger, even climate change impacting agriculture and things like that.

There were programs in place, which Donald Trump eliminated. Joe Biden says he will reinstate, but are you saying that's not enough? What more needs to be achieved?

GELERNT: Well, I think you're absolutely right. The Trump administration not only closed the border to desperate people, but then refused to continue many programs in Central America that would have made it better for those people so that they did not have actually have to come.

So, I am hoping that the vice president says we're going to restart those programs, maybe even build on those programs and move quicker, because we don't have years to try to fix those root cause problems. The pandemic has made things worse.

And whenever these things get worse economically and including hurricanes and climate change, that's when the criminal element can pray on people and the worst things get from poverty standpoint, the more the gangs control the areas and the more persecution there is. So, we would like to see the Biden administration implemented all the things used to be in place to help Central America and maybe go beyond that. So, I hope the vice president's discussions are constructive, but I

also hope the Biden administration is dealing with the immediate problem of having closed the border to desperate families. We said after World War II, we would never close our borders again to desperate refugees. And yet that's what the Trump administration did and unfortunately the Biden administration has continued that.

HOLMES: Do you think in the bigger picture -- and we could go back decades on this. That it's been a policy failure. Like you I was down on the Guatemalan Mexican border in 2019 talking to these people. I don't think any of them said we want to go. We had to leave because of the violence, the hunger, the government, corruption.

Do you think there's been a policy failure over the years? That those root causes won't address? And it was a matter of, just sort of, wait until they get here and have a crisis?

GELERNT: You're exactly right. People do not want to pick up and leave. And we certainly have not solved the root causes. It's been cyclical. It's been better or worse at different times.

You know, I don't know that we are ever going to be able to completely get on top of it, but I hope so. But there's no question that there has been extensive migration from these countries for a while. And if we could fix the root cause so people don't feel the need to leave and come here, you know, that's ultimately the best way to fix it.

HOLMES: Real quick, you mentioned the pandemic. It is an interesting issue. What sort of other issues has the pandemic exposed in terms of the haves and have-nots among the countries that people are fleeing?

GELERNT: Well, I suspect they are not that different than in other countries around the world, and to some extent in our country where you have more resources and more education, more money. You're probably more likely to be able to get tested, to get the vaccine.

But I think just in general, COVID has ravaged those countries like it has ravaged other countries. And so, the more desperate people are, they can't go to work, they can't make a living, that's when the gangs step in. So, you know, inequality and health care exacerbated by the pandemic is definitely a real issue around the world, I think.

HOLMES: Yes. Let's hope that the vice president gets some success with mitigating the push factor versus the pool. Lee Gelernt, thank you so much. Appreciate it.

GELERNT: Thanks for having me.

HOLMES: The U.S. president Joe Biden preparing for his first overseas trip. He will have a packed itinerary meeting Prime Minister Boris Johnson ahead of the G7 summit on Friday. He will also be meeting Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle.

Biden will then travel to Brussels to participate in the NATO summit where he will also meet with the Turkish president. It will be followed by meeting with the Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva. Busy schedule.

Now, the theme for this year's G7 summit is to help the world build back better after the COVID-19 pandemic, leading the global recovery effort through equal vaccine distribution, finding ways to prevent future pandemics and discussing ways to promote free and fair trade, and tackle climate change.

India's second COVID wave has left many children orphaned. Ahead, we'll see how one family is dealing with that unspeakable tragedy.

Also, what appears to be a new coronavirus mutation raising concern in Vietnam. We'll bring you the warning from health officials as cases surge there. That's when we come back.



MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: And welcome back to our viewers all around the world.

I'm Michael Holmes. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.

Now, India's capital New Delhi is easing some COVID-19 restrictions as COVID cases drop. The government now allowing shops and malls to reopen with limited hours. And metro trains are operating at 50 percent capacity. And here's another positive sign. India just reported its lowest numbers of new COVID cases in 61 days.

CNN's Vedika Sud joins me now from New Delhi. And yes some positive numbers there although a lot of people worry about a third wave and I know you've been looking at what all of this has meant for India's children.

VEDIKA SUD, CNN REPORTER: And India's future indeed, Michael. It's really unfortunate to speak about this with you because from what we've heard from the Indian government here, at least 577 children have been orphaned by the second wave of COVID-19 between April 1st and May 25th this year.

Also over 1,700 of these children have lost both their parents to COVID-19 ever since the pandemic hit India. My team and I spoke to seven siblings, all are part of one family. They first lost their mother and then they lost their father to COVID-19 within a span of just 10 days. 23 year old Devika, who we interviewed, now she is the head of the family and she has a huge responsibility on her shoulders.

Here's her story.


SUD: She lights this oil lamp in memory of her parents every morning. Just 23, Devika is now the head of the family and caregiver to her six siblings.

These children, the youngest only four years old lost their mother and then their father to the brutal second wave of COVID-19 in India.

DEVIKA, ORPHAN (through translator): My 14 and 9 year old sisters know about our parents. I haven't told the three younger ones. All they believe is that they're unwell and recovering in the village.

SUD: In the last week of April when the crisis hit the capital of Delhi hard, India was reporting over 350,000 daily cases of COVID-19 and a (INAUDIBLE) shortage of hospital beds and oxygen.

Devika's 39-year-old mother was suffering from high fever. Her oxygen levels had dropped. After being turned away from many hospitals Devika admitted her to a medical facility in the city of Kurukshetra about 117 kilometers away where she took her last breath.

DEVIKA: All she wanted was to get better. She wanted to fulfill her responsibilities as a mother. She wanted to be saved.

SUD: 10 days later her father also infected by the virus and heartbroken, could not be saved.

An emotional Devika said her parents loved each other very much.

DEVIKA: My father doted on my mother. They are together now.


SUD (on camera): You're very brave.

(on camera): It is hard to console this young woman who is barely out of her teens. She hasn't had had much time to grieve.

Devika holds tests for classes, she brings in about $70 a month. Before his death, their father was the only earning family member.

While family and friends have helped them financially, I asked her Devika if she is worried about not making enough to sustain the family and about her siblings being taken away by authorities.

DEVIKA: This is my biggest fear. I will do all that I can to keep them with me.

SUD: Calls to child welfare organizations reporting orphaned and abandoned children, especially through the second wave, have been relentless.

DR. YASMIN ALI HAQUE, UNICEF INDIA REPRESENTATIVE: The biggest challenge is who takes responsibility, if I could put it that way. And that is where it is so important that we link them to the services needed so that there they can be determination, especially kinship care.

SUD: Orphaned, Devika says memories is all she is left with.

DEVIKA: One of my favorite memories is of my parents dancing on my sister's birthday in December. It was the first time they danced in front of us. It is now one of the lasting memories we have of them. SUD: In the midst of this raging pandemic, (INAUDIBLE) cremate not one

but both parents. Devika doesn't not let her siblings out of sight. So fearful of the virus, this door opens to very few.


SUD: And Devika's biggest fear remains that her siblings may be taken away from her if she cannot financially provide for them. 70 dollars is all that she's earning per month. There's seven of them, Michael. And now the Indian government has promised (INAUDIBLE) to help the orphans who have lost their parents to COVID-19.

It is just not the financial assurance they need. They also need so much care mentally and otherwise. They need psychological care as well, given the trauma they have been through, Michael.

HOLMES: All right. Vedika, powerful reporting there. Vedika Sud in Delhi for us.

Now, Japanese officials say they're preparing to send COVID vaccines to Vietnam. That country has seen a disturbing rise in cases after being hailed for its containment measures at the start of the pandemic.

CNN's Paula Hancocks with more on that.


PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Ta Hien (ph) Street in Hanoi known locally as Beer Street. The throng of tourist eating and drinking outside have been absent for well over a year. Bars are now completely shut. And restaurants are take away only until at least June 14th.

Vietnam was once a rare beacon of hope in the midst of this pandemic. But more than half of their coronavirus cases have been reported in just the last months.

International flights to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city were briefly suspended. Ho Chi Minh city has imposed a de facto lockdown saying people should only go out for food, medicine or cash withdrawal.

Mandatory testing is underway in high risk areas including a Christian mission where (INAUDIBLE) was found, industrial zones, and teachers involved in an upcoming high school entrance exam. With less than 1 percent of the population fully vaccinated, authorities are scrambling to buy more doses.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I hope the government can buy vaccines for everyone. With a low vaccination rate like this it's probably going to be a long time before it's my turn.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I feel very worried, afraid that the disease will spread into the community. Therefore we strictly follow the regulations. In times of pandemic like this, it's good to be alive. HANCOCKS: Vietnam's health minister warned last weekend of a potential

new variant combining highly transmissibility strains found in India and the U.K. calling it quote, "very dangerous".

Experts say it appears to be a mutation rather than a new variant. But more data is needed over the next few weeks to show if it is in fact more infectious.

KARTHIK GANGAVARAPU, SCRIPPS RESEARCH INSTITUTE: At the moment I don't see a reason to be overly concerned about just that one mutation. However that is of interest and should be studied further and that story might change as more data comes in.

HANCOCKS: What is of concern now is the so-called Indian variant being in a country with such levels of vaccination.

DR. KIDONG PARK, WHO REPRESENTATIVE IN VIETNAM: Regardless of the mutation, we should do our best to increase the number of people vaccinated, and then to prioritize the limited quantity the vaccine to high-risk groups.


HANCOCKS: The World Health Organization says the next few weeks are critical for Vietnam to suppress this outbreak. The WHO is considering Vietnam's proposal to become a COVID vaccine technology hub. But for now the country is still trying to find more supply for its own citizens. A tall order within a tight global supply.

Paula Hancocks, CNN -- Seoul.


HOLMES: Much more still to come here on CNN NEWSROOM. Including demands for peace and security in Burkina Faso after militants carried out one of the deadliest attacks there in years.

Also still to come on the program, the U.S. And Europe react to Nigeria's ban on Twitter. Why critics say the move is not just bad for human rights, but bad for business.

We will be right back.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For some time they had stopped so we thought everything was ok. But now we see it is starting again. People are being killed. This news we just heard about really affects me as a Burkinabe.

So we are calling for them to look into security and assuring security so that there is peace in the country and in the provinces.

(END VIDEO CLIP) HOLMES: A young man in Burkina Faso there reacting to one of the country's deadliest attacks in years.

Armed assailants laid siege to a village in the northeast late Friday into Saturday. The government says terrorists killed more than 130 people, some of them children. Monday marks a third day of national mourning.

CNN's David McKenzie reports for us from Johannesburg.


DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Well, this attack in both its scale and its nature is certainly horrifying. According to state media in Burkina Faso and that country's president, it occurred in the border regions of Niger, where unknown assailants late Friday into Saturday attacked the village firing indiscriminately and torching structures. Many injured fled to neighboring areas, says the red cross.

More than 100 people were killed including at least seven children says the United Nations. It's the latest sign that the Sahel region is facing really bad insecurity. More than a million people in Burkina Faso alone have had to flee their homes in the last two years says the U.N.

And this is despite the substantial presence of French troops and the U.S. drone base in Niger chair looking to go after these jihadists groups. The government says they will try and take on those assailants and no one at this stage has claimed responsibility.

But al-Qaeda in that region or a group affiliated with al-Qaeda and a group affiliated with ISIS works almost with impunity in attacking villages. There is no real sense of a clear motivation at this point, but attacks of this nature are often reprisal attacks against civilian defense groups organized by villagers, because the government has very little control.

David McKenzie, CNN -- Johannesburg.



HOLMES: Now, Nigeria is a country plagued by kidnappings, extremists and bandits. But the government wants to crack down on a new type of criminal -- Twitter users.

It banned the social media platform after Twitter deleted a post by the president, and now just sending a tweet can get you arrested.

CNN's Larry Madowo explains.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I can't tweet. Is this how a government acts? LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over) : Nigerian's are reacting

with shock and frustration after the government suspended Twitter's operations in the country on Friday.

DANIEL SEUN OLATUNDE, TWITTER USER: This morning I could not even tweet. You see, it's shameful.

MADOWO: The Nigerian government defended the ban saying it was temporary and -- they just ordered federal prosecutors to arrest and prosecute anyone still using the app.

The moves comes just about two days after the social media platform deleted a tweet by Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari that some say threatened to punish regional separatists. Twitter says the tweet violated its abusive behavior policy.

Nigeria's information minister says the company has double standards and accused it of trying to undermine the country's interests.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Twitter may have its own rules. It's not a universal rule.

MADOWO: In the past Nigeria has tried to regulate social media, saying it spreads misinformation and fake news especially when it uses social movements like the mass protests against police brutality last year organized under the hashtag #End Sars with Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey tweeted his support for and the #bring back our girls which expressed outrage oftentimes directed at government inactions over the kidnappings of school girls by the terror group Boko Haram. Human rights groups say the Twitter ban is an attempt to suppress free speech.

FRANK TIETIE, HUMAN RIGHTS LAWYER: I think the reaction on the part of this government is inappropriate and unnecessarily too strict. And it sends very wrong signals and it's against the interest of Nigeria.

MADOWO: Critics warn too much regulation could scare off international investors and alienate people inside the country who use the platform for business or just want to communicate online.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not in a military. It's totally wrong. This is a democracy.

MADOWO: Twitter says it is deeply concerned about the suspension. And will work to restore access in Nigeria.

Its users there, silent for now, can only wait to see who will have the last word in this social media showdown.



HOLMES: And a number of countries have now condemned Nigeria's Twitter ban -- Canada, the European Union Island, the U.S., and the U.K. issued a joint statement saying there are disappointed and that the path to a more secure Nigeria lies and more, not last communication.

Sri Lanka has recovered the so-called black box from a sunken cargo ship. The voyage data recorder has been handed over to local law enforcement for their investigations. The country's navy launched this dive operation over the weekend. The government says no oil or fuel leaks have been found so far.

The ship began to sink last Wednesday after it was gutted by fire that burned for nearly weeks. Since then waves of debris and micro plastic have been washing up on the Sri Lankan beaches.

The duke and duchess of Sussex are celebrating the birth of their second child. Details on the baby girl who is now eighth in line to the British throne and the special meaning behind her name.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lilibet, yes. Yes Lilibeth, Elizabeth -- it's very close. I mean I think it's a little bit of saying, maybe a little bit of an apology to her majesty, maybe. But I think they're going to be coming together now.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it's a good thing that he did, to represent his mom. I really think that he represented his mom. He was just making sure the name lives on. I like it.

I think it's fitting for the daughter. I feel like it really is.




HOLMES: A memorial for British servicemen and women killed during D- Day and the battles that followed is now open in France. The ceremony took place on the 77th anniversary of the storming of the beaches at Normandy by allied forces. It was the largest seaborne invasion in history and helped to bring an end to World War II. Now the memorial is spectacular and it sits on a hill above Gold Beach, one of three where British-led troops came ashore.

More than 22,000 British men and women lost their lives and that effort. Their names now forever inscribed on the memorial wall.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are welcoming a daughter into the family. Her name is Lilibet Diana Mountbatten-Windsor. She is the second child to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Their first, Archie, was born in 2019.

Across the pond members of the royal family extending their greetings. Prince Charles and Camilla tweeting congratulations to Harry, Meghan and Archie on the arrival of Baby Lilibet Diana. Wishing them all the best at this special time.

Now, Prince William and Kate Middleton wrote quote, "We are all delighted by the happy news of the arrival of Baby Lili. Congratulations to Harry, Meghan and Archie." Now we have CNN's Paul Vercammen in Santa Barbara California where Baby Lili was born. But first let's go to our royal correspondent Max Foster who tells us the special meaning behind Lili's name.


MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL, CORRESPONDENT; Lilibet was born on Friday. And mother and baby are back home already. And they're both doing well. They're healthy, according to a statement from the Sussex household.

So everything seems to have gone to plan. Lilibeth is named after the Queen whose nickname is Lilibet, she could not say her name properly, Elizabeth as a child. That's what legend says anyway. But this baby will be called Lili, we're told.

Her middle name is Diana, so also named after Harry's late mother as well. A real nod to the British royal family, Harry's side of the family with this baby.

They have said previously, they're only going to have two and Harry suggested that's for environmental reasons. So we do seem to have the full set now of four Sussexes living in California.

The rest of the British side of the family issued a statement -- the Queen, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall; and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been informed and are delighted with the news of the birth of a daughter for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

Max Foster, CNN -- Hampshire, England.


PAUL VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Harry and Meghan welcoming Baby Lili or Lilibet Diana Mountbatten-Windsor paying homage to both the Queen and Princess Diana.

She was born here at Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara. And a publicist for Meghan Markle saying to us that the family is settling in at home. Everyone is healthy and confirming that Archie is glad to be having a little sister.

At this hospital, born in one of those upscale birthing rooms with the sofa and the recliner and the other chair and the bed and whatnot.

And I was speaking with a former royal watcher in the U.K. who has now moved to this area. he lives by the Markle's in Montecito. He said that one of the things about them is they wanted to preserve their anonymity and they've been able to do so. And he described how he thinks some rather upscale guests may drop off baby gifts.


RICHARD MINEARDS, COLUMNIST, MONTECITO JOURNAL: I fully expect Oprah to go over and Ellen to go over With baby presents. I'm sure they'll be absolutely bombarded with christening gifts. So we'll see more hopefully, in due course. (END VIDEO CLIP)

VERCAMMEN: And if you're saying to yourself why -- how did they have a baby here without the paparazzi stalking them, their entrance and their exit. Well, that's very much a strategy here among the royal couple. They wanted to move to California and have much more of a private life and many of the experts say there just aren't the number of paparazzi photographers chasing them all around here.

Reporting from Santa Barbara, I'm Paul Vercammen. Now, back to you.

HOLMES: All right. Paul, thank you.

Earlier CNN spoke with Trisha Goddard, a British talk show host about the meaning of Lilibet Diana's name. We asked her if naming Lili after the Queen could be seen as an overture to Buckingham Palace. Here's what she said.



TRISHA GOODARD, BRITISH TALK SHOW HOST: Harry and the Queen have always been very close. They've always been very, very close. It's interesting to note that the queen does a very close relationships with those members of her family who were actively serving in the Armed Forces as of course Harry was.

He did two tours, as indeed did Prince Andrew. And her own husband, of course the late Prince Philip was actively serving. So she's always had that really close -- do you remember they did that little skit where Harry sort of did the mic drop and what have you.

So I think Lilibet being that pet name that Prince Philip especially had for the Queen, it's probably something they've had in mind for some time.

And of course Diana, it was always going to be Diana as the middle name.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Let's talk about that, because as you point out, they've also named their daughter in honor after Prince Harry's late mother. Let's listen to Prince Harry talking about how he struggled with substance abuse after her death.

PRINCE HARRY: I just wanted to drink. I just wanted to take drugs. I just wanted to try and do the things that made me feel less like I was feeling. And I found myself drinking, not because I was enjoying it, but because I was trying to mask something.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So what do think it means for him to honor his mother like this?

GODDARD: It was so sad. So sad. I mean he has been very open and honest about how he struggled with the loss of his mother, as I am sure has Prince William, but they are very different personalities. So it was always going to be on the cards. And Of course, remember Diana would have been 60 on July the 1st, which is the day that they were due to unveil the statue in her honor in Kensington Gardens.

And so now that the baby is born, I'm sure Prince Harry will have time. And I think he will be even more wanting to be there at the unveiling of the statue, because he is now starting -- because he's spoken out about the grief he went through with his mother.

I think it's out there in the open. I think he is going to feel a lot more comfortable and perhaps a lot less anxious about going back to Britain this time.


HOLMES: All right. Thanks for spending part of your day with me. I'm Michael Holmes. You can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @HolmesCNN.

Do stay with us. I'll be back with more news in just a moment.