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Iran's Next President; COVID-19 Delta Variant Becoming Dominant Strain; U.S. Catholic Bishops Advance Communion Document Plan; Western U.S. Facing Worst Drought in 20 Years; India Black Fungus; Scotland Holds England to 0-0 Tie at Wembley. Aired 2-2:45a ET

Aired June 19, 2021 - 02:00   ET




MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Hello and warm welcome to our viewers joining us from all around the world, I'm Michael Holmes, appreciate your company.

Coming up on CNN NEWSROOM, first, it was COVID ravaging India; now, there are concerns about what is called black fungus. We take you inside a hospital, working around the clock to fight it.

U.S. Bishops announce a plan that could withhold communion from abortion rights supporters, specifically, President Biden. HIs response to that move.

Also ahead:


HOLMES (voice-over): Jubilation on the streets of London. Why last night's tie is welcome news for the Tartan Army.



HOLMES: It is now about 10:30 on Saturday morning in Tehran and no official results have yet been announced in Friday's presidential election. But we have just learned that hardline chief justice, Ebrahim Raisi, has been congratulated by his sole moderate opponent. Raisi has been a favorite to win from the outset. His most serious rivals, many of them moderates, were not even allowed to run.

The last polling stations closing well after midnight local time. Many have been open for 19 hours, much longer than planned, in an effort to boost voter turnout. Now the sides dealing with domestic crises, Iran's next president will help decide whether the Iran nuclear deal can be revived.

It is a position that Raisi is said to favor.

Trita Parsi is the executive vice president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, also the author of "Losing an Enemy: Obama, Iran and the Triumph of Diplomacy." He joins me from Fairfax, Virginia.

Good to see you. I'm curious, what does the leadership's decision to, basically, read the candidate list basically to push such a hardliner, someone literally under U.S. sanctions, what does it say about the direction that you think the leadership wants to go in terms of relations with the West?

TRITA PARSI, QUINCY INSTITUTE FOR RESPONSIBLE STATECRAFT: I think primarily this is not about the relationship with the West. It is about who controls Iran for the next decades.

The hardliners are now in control of the judiciary through a rigged election. They are in control of the parliament and now, as well, the presidency, putting them in a very favorable position to also determine who the next supreme leader of Iran will be.

The current supreme leader is 82 years old and is likely to pass in the next few years. So this election was crucial for them, precisely because it was about so much more than just the presidency.

But it raises many different questions.

Had other candidates been able to participate and run in these elections, would there have been a turnout that is significantly lower than it was in the previous elections?

Had Trump not imposed sanctions and walked away from the JCPOA and not decimated Iran's middle class, would the reformists and the centrists have been as weak as they are right now?

Leading them to essentially having to be forced to accept the fraud that took place in the elections in terms of the narrowness of the candidates.

HOLMES: You touched on this, a lot of Iranians had hope in the JCPOA, which, as you pointed out, Trump pulled out of. Biden wants back in; talks have been taking place.

How might Raisi's election impact those negotiations, given he will have his own views and, possibly, his own negotiating team?

PARSI: I think what is likely to happen is that a return will be signed before Raisi comes in and takes over as president; meaning, in the next 6 or so weeks that Rouhani is still president, during the transition, I think it will take place.

The impact that Raisi will have is not necessarily on the return to the JCPOA but whether aspects of it can be renegotiated and add on negotiations. It seems somewhat unlikely that Raisi will approach the JCPOA in such a way that he will be open to the proposals that the Biden administration will have in terms of, from the U.S. perspective, lengthening and strengthening the JCPOA.

That is where, I think, the biggest difference will be. [02:05:00]

HOLMES: Given the exclusion of moderates and any real sort of choice for voters, big picture, how represented are Iranian voters in the nation's parliament versus those there to do the regime's bidding?

What is the state of, quote-unquote, "democracy," if you like and will of the people?

PARSI: This past election, as well as the past parliamentary election, is a very clear step away from greater representation.

The question will be, how will Raisi manage the country?

Will he seek to unite people, mindful of the fact that he ultimately does not have the type of legitimacy that would have been the case, had there been a much more open and fair election than the one that took place?

It also seems that the hardliners are increasingly viewing their legitimacy, not based on representations but based on the results and the outcome of their governance; meaning that he really has to perform.

If he performs well, they will consider themselves legitimate. So we are seeing a significant walk-away from principles of democracy, not that Iran has ever been a full democracy but it did have aspects of democracy that gave hope that those aspects could be growing. We are now instead seeing them shrinking.

HOLMES: What do you think Raisi's position will be regarding Iran's influence in the region?

I mean, from Iraq, to Syria, to Lebanon and so on.

PARSI: I don't foresee a significant change there. I think the larger change will be when it comes to the broader engagement with the West or a broader perspective looking toward China.

I think that a Raisi presidency is likely going to really double down on the idea that Iran should resolve its economic problems through resistance economy, meaning less dependence and integration with the global economy, at least, a global economy as it is, dominated by the West, and looking more toward China.

So this could be a significant geostrategic shift in the reorientation of Iran on a global scale but not necessarily on a regional one.

HOLMES: Really quick, we're almost out of time, you mentioned the sanctions imposed by the Trump administration and the impact of those on life for ordinary Iranians. You talk about of perhaps Raisi wanting a more self-reliant economy.

What is life like for ordinary Iranians?

PARSI: Life, in the last couple of years, have been absolutely devastating for ordinary Iranians. The sanctions imposed by the Trump administration led to the additional 10 million Iranians walking into poverty. You have the middle class of Iran that constituted 45 percent of the population, shrinking to roughly 30 percent of the population.

It has been extremely tough and that is part of the reason why there has been such a disillusionment with not only the reformists and the centrists but the very idea that their promise, that engagement with the West would bring about a better economic situation.

Those are promises that don't seem to carry a lot of weight any longer as a result of Trump walking out of the JCPOA.

HOLMES: Yes, yes. Great analysis, as always. Trita Parsi, appreciate it, thank you.

PARSI: Thank you for having me.


HOLMES: Well, concern among health officials is growing as that the Delta COVID variant spreads globally. Some 80 countries around the world have now reported cases of the Delta variant and health experts are worried about how easily it is spreading.


DR. SOUMYA SWAMINATHAN, WHO CHIEF SCIENTIST: The Delta variant is well on its way to becoming the dominant variant globally because of its significantly increased transmissibility.



DR. ROCHELLE WALENSKY, CDC DIRECTOR: We know the Delta variant is even more transmissible than the U.K. variant. And I anticipate that will be the predominant variant in the months ahead.


HOLMES: President Biden, meanwhile, warning Americans about the spread of the Delta variant and how it could threaten the progress the U.S. has made against the virus.

This all comes as he announces the U.S. has administered 300 million shots in just the past 150 days. CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta looking at the importance of that and the dangers posed by the variants.


DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: So we are at that 300 million doses administered mark and that's obviously a very notable number here in terms of overall immunity in the country.

It's not the 70 percent nationally that we wanted but if you look at the amount of immunity from the vaccines and also add in the amount of immunity coming from people being naturally infected, we are probably at functional herd immunity or soon to be there.

So we see the numbers coming down; hospitalizations, deaths, all good news. The big question, really, is about the variants.


GUPTA: And I think it is interesting to look around the world at these variants and see how much of an impact they're making. If you look at the U.K., for example, I think there is a story here that is important, that you can see in the graphic.

At the end of January, it was primarily the Alpha or the U.K. variant that was dominant in the U.K., understandably.

What happened over that time period?

The numbers came down, overall, which was good. But at the same time, the Delta variant started to enter the scene there. You saw the numbers pop back up and that was obviously primarily people who had not been vaccinated.

So that is the concern here. We know this is a much more transmissible variant. The U.K. or Alpha variant was 50 percent more transmissible than the strain before that. And this is 60 percent more transmissible than the Alpha variant. So you get an idea.

In Scotland, there was a study showing that those who were infected with the Delta variant were also more likely to be hospitalized. So this does appear to be more transmissible and more serious also.

So that is why there is so much attention on this. If you look at the effectiveness of the vaccines, if you take a look there, you can see that Alpha or Delta, you get a lot of impact, a lot of protection from these vaccines and that's why the message remains the same, to go out there and get vaccinated.

It is also worth pointing out that, as you can slow down the spread of the virus, overall, through vaccination, through immunity, you are going to be less and less likely to actually develop mutations that are problematic, that will create more variants that we continuously worry about.

So no matter how you cut it, whichever way, the message remains the same, to go get vaccinated.


HOLMES: Bishops in the United States are going forward with a proposal that could restrict communion for President Joe Biden, a Catholic. What he is saying about that, when we come back.



(MUSIC PLAYING) HOLMES: The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is moving forward with a plan that could potentially deny communion to public figures who support abortion rights, as President Joe Biden does. The bishops voting to draft a document on the eucharist, what Catholics receive during communion at mass.

The measure is controversial, of course, and even in the Vatican is reportedly against it. The president was asked about it; take a listen.


QUESTION: Are you concerned about the rift in the Catholic Church?

And how do you feel personally about that?

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: That is a private matter and I don't think that's going to happen. Thank you.


HOLMES: CNN senior Vatican analyst, John Allen, joins me now from Rome.

Good to see you, John.

What do you make of this, seemingly aimed at a very religious Joe Biden, whose job, as president, is to represent the people and the law of the land, not the wishes of Catholic bishops.



ALLEN: You used the word "seemingly" in that sentence. It was apt, because this is the Catholic Church, where things are rarely quite as they seem.

In this case, it is important to remember what the bishops were told they were actually voting on, which was not a document on whether Joe Biden should get communion. It is the eucharist. That is a sacrament in which the church teaches that Catholics receive the body and blood of Christ.

However, recent polls show that a strong share of American Catholics -- according to one poll, it's two-thirds -- don't actually believe that. They believe it is just a symbol or something.

Many bishops are concerned about that. Now this document will have a section on conditions to receive communion, which could have implications for Biden and other pro choice Catholic politicians. But we don't know because we haven't seen the text yet.

So my point is that lots of bishops could have voted for this document, while having either no opinion or actually being against communion bans for Biden or anyone else. We will just have to wait and see until they meet again in November and they actually have a text.

You're right that the Vatican, Pope Francis and his team, have been sending signals that they are against weaponizing the eucharist; that, is using it to score political points. Ahead of this meeting of the bishops, the Vatican sent a letter, warning that the bishops shouldn't do anything to compromise the unity of the American church.

Presumably, Michael, that will be taken into consideration as the bishops turn to drafting this document over the next several months.

HOLMES: Yes, there is a process to this. You mention attitudes on other things. But it is important, perhaps, to note that Pew surveys show that more than half of U.S. Catholics favor abortion rights and most American Catholics do not believe that Biden should be refused communion.

How may that influence the process, if at all?

ALLEN: I think it certainly will have an influence. I would note, the last time this was a hot issue in the American church was 2004, when John Kerry, a Roman Catholic as well, was the Democratic nominee for president.

At that time, Kerry was on the campaign trail; this issue came up.

Should he get communion when he would go to mass around the country?

Really, there was only a handful of American bishops who, publicly, announced he would not be welcome to receive communion in their diocese. So I do not think, Michael, we are anywhere yet to a straight up or down referendum among the American bishops on whether Joe Biden should be denied communion.

Frankly, I suspect most of them are hoping it never comes to that.

HOLMES: Yes, I am sure you are right, senior Vatican analyst, John Allen in Rome, always good to see you my friend, thank you.

Still to come on CNN NEWSROOM, scorched earth in the western U.S. Why the U.N. says much of the world could see conditions like this in years ahead.

Also, COVID isn't the only devastating disease that India is coping with right now.

Also, still to come, another threat that is surging in an overwhelmed health system.


SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is a fungus that feeds on dead flesh and sugar. And they're trying to prevent it from getting into his brain.


HOLMES: The western United States is drying out.


HOLMES: More than 25 percent of the region, right now, in a severe drought, the first in 20 years. Experts say, it is due to climate change, causing extremely high temperatures, low amounts of rain and also snowfall. California governor Gavin Newsom declaring a statewide heat wave emergency on Thursday.

State officials also say water in Lake Orville, a key reservoir, is expected to fall so low this summer, its hydroelectric power plant will shut down for the first time, affecting up to 800,000 homes.

And then there are scenes such as this. Have a look at this barren land. This used to be the Tule Lake National Wildlife Refuge in northern California, also, dried up. Similar scenes are developing all across the west. Here is what one southwestern cattle rancher told CNN's Stephanie Elam.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have about 200 reservoirs, and every one of them is dry right now.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dry. Never -- we -- no. We don't have a drop in any one of them and we've never done that in 85 years.

It is such a large area, I mean, it's almost half of the United States now. If this goes one more year, it will have a huge effect on everyone.


HOLMES: And now there is a stark global warning about water from the United Nations. It says immediate action is required to counter the global threat that water scarcity poses.

A new U.N. report describing the huge fail of the harm that drought can cause, from agricultural collapse, to health and economic damage, even civil unrest.

As one U.N. official said, "Drought is on the verge of becoming the next pandemic. And there is no vaccine to cure it. Most of the world, living with water stress for the next few years."

Let's talk more about all of this with Jess Phoenix. She is the director and cofounder of Blueprint Earth, a nonprofit organization focusing on environmental preservation.

Good to see you again, Jess. This report, it say drought and climate change will hit nearly 200 countries hard in the next eight decades, a massive number of countries. But it really illustrates how drought is a global issue. The U.N. puts it, that it is a pandemic without a vaccine. Speak about how immediate and serious the risk is. JESS PHOENIX, DIRECTOR AND COFOUNDER, BLUEPRINT EARTH: This is

something that it is affecting people right now. We are not talking about some mythic date in the future. Folks watching, all around the world, may be feeling some droughts of their own.

I know here in the southwestern United States, we've been dealing with a heat wave that is about 45 degrees Celsius. So we are sweating here. And I can't underscore enough how immediate this -- its not just a threat, it's a reality that we're all living in.

HOLMES: But the global nature of it is what comes out of this U.N. report. Talk about what drought affects, everything that's obvious, like irrigation, hydro power, which is happening in California, but also in other parts of the world; safe water supplies and, critically, also the ability to transport crops, the food, the supply chains we all rely on. Speak to that.

PHOENIX: In a way, it is almost -- it's kind of a good thing for drought planning that we had to contend with COVID. Because COVID-19, really, showed the vulnerabilities of our globally connected world.

So you are right. You hit the nail on the head there. It is not just the obvious, drinking water, but it is things like hydroelectric power, which provides a pretty good amount of power for many places around the world.

Some folks may be familiar with the dam, the Three Gorges Dam in China, that's obviously a large source of hydro power for those folks. This is something that more nations were looking to tap into, as it is something that is a bit easier to get your head around than more coal.

So having any sort of hang-up in global water supplies will be very damaging and especially for folks who already struggle to get access to clean drinking water.

HOLMES: The report calls for immediate action.

But how best to combat this?

How much is inevitable?

How much is preventable or at least open to mitigation?

PHOENIX: We can still mitigate a lot. And the good thing is, we have had a fantastic number of people and organizations, in the scientific and emergency management communities, preparing for this stuff for decades.

It is not a threat that is taking anybody by surprise, in terms of folks who work on this every day. But we do need to be really proactive. We can't deal with this reactively, which is what we have done a lot in the past. It is easier to just say, oh, everything is fine, everything is fine, until the drought hits you, personally.

[02:25:00] PHOENIX: But this is an instance where we need to have governments out there, educating the public. We need to look for financial incentives that can be given to private industry folks and citizens, private citizens, to work on drought proofing.

And, of course, we also need to identify people who can help and organizations that can help in these efforts. So we really have to do some mapping out of the connections between people and their local and regional environments.

That is how we will be able to see the infrastructure at work and protect that critical infrastructure from the effects of these massive droughts, that we will only see more of.

HOLMES: Droughts, I think the report says, have hit 1.5 billion people since '98. The thing that struck me, too, is how widespread it is, geographically. The U.N. expects more frequent droughts in most of Africa, Central and South America, Central Asia, Australia, of course; Mexico and so on.

Many people think, immediately, of places like Australia and Africa. But what was interesting is that more than 40 percent of the European Union's agricultural imports could become highly vulnerable to drought by the middle of this century. It really is affecting everyone.

PHOENIX: It is. And it is going to be a very globally felt issue. I have lived overseas, I've lived in Australia during some droughts and fires in the early 2010s. I left California, where we had drought to go to Australia, where there was drought.

You really can't escape it. It's just that, for folks who have money, they will always have access to clean water; it just may come at a higher cost. It's for people in communities who are lower income and have been traditionally disadvantaged.

Those are the folks who will be hammered. Of course, the natural environments will be very hurt by these droughts. Species take a long time to adapt. That goes for animals and plant species.

So we are looking at changes that could see vast desertification across the globe and species die-offs as well, that will affect everything in the food web, including humans.

HOLMES: You do make a good point. Things like this exacerbate social and economic inequities, already existing, making it so much worse. Jess, I'm going to leave it there, thank you so much.

PHOENIX: Thank you, Michael.

HOLMES: Now the stakes and the emotions were high as England and Scotland faced off Friday in Euro 2020's battle of Britain. Still ahead, the two teams go all out at Wembley but strikers come up short.

Also, Uganda's sending its first female boxer to the Olympics. She tells us about what she hopes to achieve and how she hopes to stay safe from COVID. We will be right back. (MUSIC PLAYING)




HOLMES: Welcome back to our viewers, all around the world, I am Michael Holmes, you are watching CNN NEWSROOM.

India's COVID numbers are some of the worst in the world. And another threat is putting even more pressure on an already taxed hospital system. Black fungus is an infection, caused by a type of mold and tends to be more common in people whose immune systems are already compromised and can affect the sinuses, brain, lungs and skin.

CNN's Sam Kiley, reporting on the devastation it is wreaking on India's hospitals.


KILEY: Srinivas (ph) is 41, a COVID-19 survivor, his doctors tell him he is facing another life-threatening illness.

Black fungus, mucormycosis, has invaded his face. He is being prepared for a third round of surgery to remove it before it spreads to his brain; 71 other patients have battled this rare infection at St. John's Hospital in Bangalore since April.

A surge in the disease has been seen across India among patients who are either already diabetic or when the coronavirus triggered diabetes. St. John's normally treats around 30 black fungus patients per year. This year, 12 have already died and the survival of others will often depend on access to Amphotericin B, a rare and expensive drug.

Srinivas (ph) became diabetic after his bout with COVID. He has lost the feeling on one side of his face and may lose his eye to the fungus that infected nearly 12,000 other Indians already this year.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The disease has progressed and the eye is also looking very bad. So --

KILEY (voice-over): His CT scan reveals that the fungus has spread.

KILEY: The key at this stage is for the surgeons to try to save the eye but also to clear the area around the eye of the dead flesh because this is a fungus that feeds on dead flesh and sugar. And they are trying to prevent it from getting into his brain.

KILEY (voice-over): It has already cost around $6,000, just for his drugs. Medical debt will be devastating to this driver. He has got two small kids to support.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It goes through the blood vessels, it erodes the bones and it has also entered the lower part of the sinus of the cheek.

KILEY: So if he doesn't get Amphotericin, what will happen to him?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The fungus will continue to spread. It will enter into the brain, it will start infecting all the blood vessels within the brain.

KILEY (voice-over): The Delta variant of COVID-19 has spread from India fast. British experts say that it may be 60 percent more infectious than others. India's second wave may be past its peak but ICUs are still busy with COVID patients, who, now, may face black fungus or mucor as a secondary illness.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What is blatantly staring us in the face, after the second wave, which was a huge surge compared to the first wave, was, of course, mucor.

KILEY (voice-over): Shortages of Amphotericin-B have forced doctors into deciding who gets it and may live and who may not.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It has been extremely tough.

KILEY (voice-over): But It is not just adults who are short of lifesaving drugs. Dozens of children at the Rainbow Hospital in Bangalore have been admitted with multisystem inflammatory syndrome or MIS-C. It is another post COVID illness, caused when the body's own immune system turns on itself.

The best treatment is an imported and expensive drug, called intravenous immunoglobulin, IVIG.

Hadav Samir (ph) is 9, he had mild COVID, recovered and then his antibodies attacked his own organs, including his heart, causing MIS- C. He is on the mend now.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We were totally shattered. We were so scared, very scary, very scary.

KILEY (voice-over): The hospital has seen 32 MIS-C cases in two weeks. By the end of this month, they will expect to pass 100. Keeping these kids alive will depend on sourcing IVIG.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a biological drug. As such, it's in short supply.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And, if we think that we are going to have a lot of MIS-C cases, we might land up in short supply of this drug.

KILEY (voice-over): Black fungus and MIS-C are still rare in India. But even a small percentage of 1.36 billion people adds up to thousands, who may discover that beating COVID isn't the end but the start of renewed suffering, when survival depends on access to scarce and expensive drugs -- Sam Kiley, CNN, Bangalore. (END VIDEOTAPE)

HOLMES: Meanwhile, India has lost one of its most successful track and field sprinters. The legendary Milkha Singh, nicknamed the flying Sikh, has died at 91 years old. His family says the former Olympian had been battling COVID-19 for the past month.

And a local news affiliate says that the former Commonwealth and Asian games champion developed complications. India's prime minister and president paying tribute to Singh on Twitter. The family says he fought hard but, quote, "God has his ways."

Now Olympic athletes from Uganda are set to arrive in Tokyo in the next few hours. It's not clear how warmly they'll be welcomed. Many in Japan are wary of letting athletes from nations where (INAUDIBLE). Selina Wang (INAUDIBLE) stakes are.


SELINA WANG, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For female boxers in Uganda, it's easy to keep a social distance in the ring. Days before setting off for the Tokyo Olympics, it is just Catherine Nanziri and her training partner. But Nanziri is used to going it alone. She's Uganda's first and only female Olympian in the sport.

CATHERINE NANZIRI, OLYMPIC BOXER: It's written and now history of course, my name, it will be the name that is announced that I was the first female boxer.

WANG (voice-over): Two male boxers will join Nanziri on the trip to Tokyo. More than half of the medals that Uganda has ever won at the Olympics have come in men's boxing events. Nanziri says, in Uganda, women have been shut out of a male-dominated sport.

It wasn't until 2012 that women's boxing was included in the Olympics at all.

NANZIRI: I have been bullied by some boxers and other people around me because I was a female.

As Nanziri prepares to take on the world, her home country has turned its main sports stadium into a COVID ward. Uganda is suffering a COVID surge with less than 1 percent of the population vaccinated. But the government has managed to set aside doses to fully vaccinate the 26 athletes on the Olympic team.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There has been a rush on the vaccines. Plan B was to (INAUDIBLE) no advantage of some of the regional hubs that the IOC has set up. For example, in Rwanda, our neighbors.

WANG (voice-over): Yet vaccines are not and many Japanese are wary of arriving Olympic teams, especially from hot spots like Uganda. At least 120 towns have withdrawn their invitation to host overseas athletes.

But not Izumisano city in Osaka prefecture, where the Ugandans are staying, after arriving in Japan and where they will also be COVID tested daily.

WANG: Why are you confident you can host this team safely?

"We spent more than three years preparing for the team," he says. "They're limited to the hotel and (INAUDIBLE)."

It also seems state of emergency that may only and shortly (INAUDIBLE).

NANZIRI: If me, as a person, do test positive, my friends, too, the group of boxing, they also lose their chance because of one mistake I've made.

WANG (voice-over): As Japan prepares to host the world's largest sporting event, the country is on high alert for the danger that can come from just one small mistake --Selina Wang, CNN, Tokyo.


HOLMES: Now the number of new coronavirus infections in Brazil just spiked again. The country, reporting nearly 99,000 new cases on Friday, its second highest daily increase since March. Brazil, now confirming more than 17.8 million cases, the third highest in the world.


HOLMES (voice-over): Now passion barely begins to describe what Scottish football fans felt, as their national team went head to head against England on Friday. An estimated 20,000 Scots fans descending on London, to see the two teams face off, in the first round of Euro 2020.



HOLMES: Meanwhile, the Danish football star, Christian Eriksen, is out of the hospital. He has been recovering from cardiac arrest after collapsing on the pitch during the Euro 2020 match last weekend. The Danish Football Association saying he's been fitted with an implantable device to monitor and stabilize his heart rate.

Eriksen, visiting his teammates after leaving the hospital, saying, quote, "It was very great to see the guys again after the fantastic game they played last night. No need to say that I will be cheering them on Monday against Russia."

Thank you for spending part of your day with me. I am Michael Holmes. You can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @HolmesCNN. "MARKETPLACE AFRICA," starting after the break. I will see you in 15 minutes.