In a report that first aired on Erin Burnett OutFront Tuesday, CNN's Karl Penhaul (@karlpenhaul) talks to Yosef Abobaker about the ISIS fighters who abducted him and American journalist Steven Sotloff in Syria in August 2013. Abobaker, who was working as Sotloff's fixer, was eventually released while Sotloff remained in captivity until his beheading earlier this month.
When asked whether U.S. officials tried to interview him about their abduction, Abobaker says nobody reached out to him to discuss his experience.
"Nobody tried to contact me and I tried to help. Nobody come to me and ask me any questions from the (U.S.) government...Nobody contact me or ask me about their conditions. And they can find me – it's easy. But no, nobody tried to contact me."
In an interview with CNN’s Hala Gorani, Syrian official Bouthaina Shaaban says Syria is ready to work with the U.S., but warns against any "act of aggression” by the U.S.
“We are ready to be part of any coalition against terrorism, and any strike on Syria without coordination with the Syrian government is considered an aggression against Syria.”
Shaaban, who is the political and media adviser to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, also says Obama’s strategy against ISIS has “many loopholes” and “leaves a lot to be desired.”
“The strategy that I read by Obama has many loopholes and leaves a lot to be desired. He would benefit a lot from cooperating with the Syrian government against terrorism because we have been truly fighting terrorism for the last four years. The four points he outlined as his strategy will not work simply because they are not based on reality.”
CNN International is making a number of key changes designed to strengthen its international management and sharpen its focus across newsgathering and editorial content across TV and digital, it was announced today by Tony Maddox, Executive Vice President and Managing Editor of CNN International.
“These changes tighten our senior management structure, but more importantly they bring the strengths of these exceptional editorial operators to bear on the key parts of the CNN International network,” said Maddox. “This new structure will help us to continue delivering the outstanding editorial output across all platforms that has seen us serve audiences worldwide with award-winning newsgathering and programming.” FULL POST
Tony Maddox, Executive Vice President for CNN International, talks about sending reporters into harm's way.
Propaganda concerns, duty to tell whole story drive decisions about terror videos
"Government minders pulled me aside – they were shaking – and said we needed to go right now back to Pyongyang. I was nervous – I didn't know what was happening," Ripley said.
We got in this van and drove to an area of the capital that we've never seen before off the regular route up to this nondescript building. And it was only when we were standing at the front door that they told us...we would be talking with the three Americans who were being held in North Korea."
Here's Ripley's report on his interviews with Kenneth Bae, Jeffrey Fowle and Matthew Miller: http://cnn.it/1poUfVw
What started off as an aid drop for a vulnerable population fleeing persecution at the hands of ISIS unexpectedly turned into a dramatic and chaotic rescue mission that has become a defining moment for a country on the brink of collapse.
CNN's senior international correspondent Ivan Watson and his team, which includes Emmy-nominated photojournalist Mark Phillips, were on board the Iraqi relief helicopter making a supply drop to desperate Yazidis seeking refuge from ISIS on Mt. Sinjar. As the chopper touched down, it was rushed by these frantic refugees begging for rescue. Among them, a girl in purple with tears streaming down her face - 15-year-old Aziza. Separated from her father back on Mt. Sinjar, her story has captured the world's attention.
But as Watson reported after the rescue, getting off the mountain – either by air or on foot – is only half the battle. Where do the Yazidis go now? In a breathtaking half hour, CNN takes you behind the scenes of the dramatic rescue from Mt. Sinjar as people embark on a flight from terror. FULL POST
CNN's senior international correspondent Ivan Watson (@ivanCNN) journeys with Iraqi forces to Mount Sinjar in a dramatic mission to supply and rescue desperate Yazidis after they fled ISIS. He captures and describes the harrowing story and posts it to his twitter account.
In an exclusive interview with CNN’s Becky Anderson (@beckycnn), Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke about the situation in Gaza, calling it a “genocide by Israel.”
“Nazism, the Fascism that was applied by Hitler, if you put all these on the table just like that, you can see that what Israel does to Palestine, to Gaza right now, has surpassed what Hitler did to them,” Erdogan said. “We don't approve. We don't accept what Hitler did either, but right now, we do not accept this persecution, the massacre, the genocide by Israel. Hamas and Fatah are unified in respect of this two-state structure, and they've formed a national consensus government. Israel does not want this government to make progress, they want to break it up.”
Erdogan also accused Israel of being a “terror state,” saying the country’s operation in Gaza was “creating a wave of terror.” FULL POST
In an interview recorded Wednesday with CNN’s Becky Anderson (@beckycnn), Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Israel of being a “terror state,” saying that the country’s operation in Gaza was “creating a wave of terror.”
Erdogan also denied that the governments of Turkey or Qatar were involved in the funding of Hamas’ terrorist activities, saying the only support his country is offering to the people of Gaza is humanitarian.
“Qatar’s cooperation with Turkey has always been to be on the side of the persecuted and to support them through humanitarian aid. This is what’s being done.”
The full interview will air Thursday at 11aET on CNN International’s Connect the World with Becky Anderson. FULL POST
CNN's Chris Cuomo sits down with the rebel leader of the self-styled Donetsk People's Republic Alexander Borodai to discuss the downing of MH17.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to CNN's Wolf Blitzer: “I support taking whatever action is necessary to stop this insane situation…"
On CNN's State of the Union: Secretary of State John Kerry to CNN's Candy Crowley: "There is no trust with the Russians"
Phil Black – @PhilBlackCNN
Ivan Watson – @IvanCNN
Chris Cuomo – @ChrisCuomo
Nick Paton Walsh – @npwcnn
Kyung Lah – @kyunglahCNN
Diana Magnay – @dimagnayCNN
Erin McLaughlin – @ErinCNN
Saima Mohsin – @SaimaMohsin
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia:
Andrew Stevens – @AndrewCNN
Wolf Blitzer – @wolfblitzer
Martin Savidge – @martinsavidge
John Vause – @vauseCNN
Israel at Gaza border:
Atika Shubert – @atikaCNN
Ben Wedeman – @benCNN
Karl Penhaul – @karlpenhaul
Barbara Starr – @barbarastarcnn
Elise Labott – @eliselabottcnn
Richard Roth – @RichardRothCNN