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tv   Early Start with Christine Romans and Dave Briggs  CNN  March 1, 2019 1:00am-2:00am PST

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all right. to the best team in show business. thanks for watching. our coverage continues. i'm going to get you guys. new controversy surrounding the president's son-in-law. how did jared kushner land a top secret security clearance. >> they wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety. the president says he had to walk away. now north korea's pushing back on the sticking points. democrats in congress are not done with michael cohen yet. they think his dramatic testimony left a number of new leads to follow. this man just signed the richest sports contract in north
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american history. bryce harper is headed to philly. good morning, everyone. welcome to "early start." congratulations philly fans. i'm dave briggs. >> no doubt he's planning his next vacation. >> huge money until he's 39 years old. >> and i'm alison kosik. good morning, it is march 1, 4:00 a.m. in the east. and the "new york times" reports that president trump personally ordered a top secret security clearance for jared kushner. the times sa"times" says the prs command to then chief of staff john kelly came the day after the white house counsel's office urged him not to grant kushner the clearance. here is the president just a few months before that. >> so that will be up to general kelly. general kelly respects jared a lot and general kelly will make that call. i won't make that call. i will let the general who is right here make that call. >> the "times" says that the
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directive prompted two internal memos, one from kelly on being ordered to grantd tchbts grant . here is the president about a month ago. >> did you tell general kelly or anyone else in the white house to -- >> no, i don't think i have the authority to do that. i'm not sure i do. but i wouldn't do it. jared is a good -- i was never involved with his security. i know that he just from reading i know that there was issues back and forth about security for numerous people actually. but i don't want to get involved in that stuff. >> the president's daughter was asked about it on abc just last month. >> the president had no involvement pertaining to my clearance or my husband's clearance. there are literally close to a
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million people in the federal government who are in the pipeline to get their permanent clearance and are on temporary status. so no special treatment. >> a spokesman for kushner's lawyer says in 2018 white house and security clearance officials affirmed that mr. kushner's security clearance was handled in the regular process with no pressure from anyone. that was conveyed to the media at the time and new stories if accurate do not change what was affirmed at the time. >> meanwhile president trump and the north korean government now disagree about what caused that abrupt end to the hanoi summit. according to kim jung-un's foreign minister, north korea was willing to permanently dismantle its uranium and plutonium production facilities at the yongbyon nuclear site if the u.s. was willing to partially lift sanctions. apparently that is not what the president heard. >> basically they wanted the
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sanctions lifted in their entirety and we couldn't do that. >> so let's bring in ivan watson. good to see you. now, no reason to trust the north koreans first off, but even if that was the offer, still would represent a bad deal from the u.s. perspective, would it not? >> reporter: yeah and clearly they were not able to bridge the gap. we're in this funny position where both governments are expressing affection for each other, promising to keep talking, while also expressing disappointment at failing to reach a deal. the north koreans gave a very unusual press appearance, their foreign minister, during which he said that the north koreans had offered to dismantle their yongbyon nuclear plant in exchange for lifting five out of 11 sanctions. and they said that was pretty of the best offer they could put on the table given the current
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levels of confidence between these two governments. in return a senior state department official briefing journalist said yeah, the north koreans wanted sanctions lifted excloouding the ones that stopp the export of weapons to north korea. but went on to say that the north koreans were not willing to dismantle other sites that also developed weapons of mass destruction and that the trump administration could not go that far, allowing in billions of dollars worth of trade that would indirectly help fund ongoing programs for weapons of mass destruction. so no deal signed. there was a vice foreign minister who also spoke to journalists from north korea here in hanoi and she was telegraphing impatient inin ii part of kim jung-un saying the u.s. missed a one time opportunity in a thousand years.
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i doubt in that strinct authoritarian system that the vice minister was freelancing. >> ivan watson live for us. most agree the president made the right decision to walk away. however, the president once again under fire from democrats and republicans for taking the word of a brutal dictator over his own intelligence agencies. the president says when he met with kim jung-un he discussed the injuries suffered by warmbier while in north korean custody, injureliy ies that pro fatal. here is the president. >> i don't believe that he would have allowed that to happen. just wasn't to his advantage to allow that to happen. he felt very badly. he knew the case very well, but he knew it later. he tells me that he didn't know about it and i will take him at his word. >> nikki haley however former u.s. ambassador to the u.n. says
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that americans know the cruelty that was placed on otto warmbier by the north korean regime. our hearts are with the warmbier family for their strength and courage. we will never forget otto. and this from mitt romney. >> i think there is no question but that the government of north korea has been responsible for a whole host of human rights abuses and atrocities. i've never heard somebody who did something wrong jump up and say yeah, i did it, i did it. they teni typically blame someb else. michael cohen returning to capitol hill on march 6 to finish closed door testimony to the house intelligence committee. intel chairman adam schiff announcing cohen will come back next wednesday after trump's former lawyer and fixer finished part one of his testimony
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yesterday. >> able to shed light on a lot of issues that are core to our investigation and we were able to drill down in great detail. none of the questions that we had for him went unanswered. >> schiff's announcement after the blockbuster appearance on wednesday. under pointed questioning from alexandria ocasio-cortez, cohen claimed president trump inflated and deflated his assets to suit his business needs,s some that could amount to financial fraud. >> to your knowledge did the president ever provide inflated assets to an insurance company? >> yes. >> who else knows that the president did this? >> allen weisselberg, ron lieberman, matthew calamari. >> and where would the committee find more information on this, do you think we need to review his financial statements and tax returns in order to compare them? >> yes, and you'd find it at the
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trump org. >> a little background, weisselberg is the trump organization cfo, among the oer associates the committee plans to question. >> cohen may also be facing a perjury problem. two have referred cohen to the justice department for possible criminal prosecution. they claim to have evidence cohen knowingly made false statements to lawmakers. among the areas of cohen's public testimony they want the justice department to investigate, this claim -- >> i was extremely proud to be personal attorney to the president of the united states of america. i did not want to go to the white house. >> congressman jim jordan and mark meadows point to court filings from federal prosecutors in manhattan, the documents state that cohen privately told friends and colleagues including
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seized text messages that he expected to be given a prominent role and title in the new administration. cohen will soon start serving a prison sentence for previously lying to congress. president trump's economic adviser larry kudlow has thoughts on how the green new diehl woueal would affect the e. listen to what he said yesterday. >> the green new deal would literally destroy the economy. literally. it would knock out energy, transportation, airlines, jobs, businesses. we'd probably lose 10% to 15% of our gdp. >> kudlow slammed the proposal recently introduced by alexandria ocasio-cortez and senator ed markey. the legislation is aimed at addressing climate change and economic inequality. the green new deal proposes
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providing all people with high quality health care, affordable safe and adequate housing, economic security and access to clean water, clean air, healthy and affordable food and nature. the green new deal has been heavily criticized by many on the right. kudlow called universal health care ending private insurance crazy ideas citing high costs. senator markey tweeted climate change is literally destroying the planet. according to the trump administration's national climate assessment, with no action climate change will result in 10% gdp loss by 2090. a green new deal addresses this climate reality not right wing misinformation. northern california expected to get a break from torrential rain today, but devastating floods likely to ravage the state for the next couple days. governor newsome declaring states of emergencies in five counties. the russian river crested above
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45 feet wednesday night submerging this entire neighborhood. >> 46 feet, it's crazy. >> things were just as bad in forestville. fire crews rushed to save this woman stranded in her car. the army national guard clearing roads and helping people get back on their feet. let's hope those rivers begin to slow. >> california not used to all that rain. >> just so much devastation in that state the last couple years. a potential break to benjamin netanyahu's re-election bid, the israeli prime minister facing indictment on corruption charges. a live report coming up from jerusalem next.
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in a serious blow to benjamin netanyahu's chances for re-election in april after israel's attorney general announces the prime minister will be indicted. accusations of bribery and breach of trust stemming from three separate investigations. netanyahu says the impending
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charges are political and his main challenger is calling on him to resign. oren liebermann is joining us live with the latest from jerusalem. >> reporter: and that has been one of netanyahu's biggest complaints that it is 5 1/2 weeks away until israeli elections and netanyahu is in a very tough fight against his main challenger and netanyahu says these are politically motivated, persecution driven by the media and left to try to pressure the attorney general to issue an indictment at any cost against the prime minister. the attorney general announced he intends to indict the prime minister on charges of bribery and breach of trust and additional charges in two separate cases. it comes again at this critical time right before the elections here. his main challenger, his former chief of staff, has called on him to resign saying if it is found that you are innocent, you can re-enter politics.
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we want to see the k3i9 pothe e. and i don't think that it is an xan exaggeration to say that these may be the most closely election polls watched in years. >> did it looks like a runaway win ahead of these charges? >> runaway win is probably too strong, but it did look like he was holding on to the support of all of the right wing parties that he needed. they too will be looking at whether it is a good idea to keep supporting him or to look at other options. >> oren liebermann live for us, thank you, sir. former vice president joe biden may have felt a bit blind sided by criticism from the left after he called his successor mike pence a decent guy. biden's comment came at a forum while reaction the discussion of world leaders to pence. >> it was followed on by a guy is a decent guy.
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our vice-president who stood before this group of allies and leaders and said i'm here on behalf of president trump. and there was dead silence. dead silence. >> okay. so then cynthia nixon who is a lesbian called out biden for praising pence, she tweeted you've just called america's most anti-lgbt elected leader a decent guy. please consider how this falls on the ear of our community biden was quick to respond saying you're right, i was making a point in a foreign policy context that under normal circumstances a vice president wouldn't be given a silent reaction on the world stage, but there is nothing decent about being anti-lgbtq rights and that includes the vice president. >> it will be an interest 2020. senator lindsey graham elaborating on his budding br d
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below bromance with president trump. he admits the president can be a handful. he made a speech at the political action conference. >> so president trump and i did not start off well. i remember meeting him after he got elected and he said hey lindsay, i don't have your phone number and i said there is a reason for that. so i've given him my phone number and trust me, he uses it. and i couldn't be more proud of the fact that he talks to me and asks my opinion. and we've got a lot in common now. i like him and he likes him. >> i like him and he likes him. senator graham went on to say he thinks president trump is doing a hell of a job and the best is jet to do. but just a little more context here. i remember lindsey graham saying
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sports history. this is just after manny machado signed a $300 million deal with the padres. harper reportedly turned down an offer to stay with the washington nationals before he defenktsed ed effect defected to the phillies. >> three people have dominated the news. president trump, kim jung-un and michael cohen. here now some of the big stories that flew under the radar while they stole the headlines. jared kushner met with saudi arabia's crown prince, their first face-to-face since october's murder of jamal khashoggi. india and pakistan came to the brink of an all-out war, the two nuclear-armed neighbors fought their first aerial combat in almost 50 years. the house approved congress' first major gun control bill in nearly 25 years. it would require federal background checks for all firearm sales and transfers. john rob bhert erts sided w
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liberal wing of the supreme court helping block the death penalty for a murderer with dementia who can't remember a crime. and at the center of north carolina's ballot fraud scandal, mark harris says he won't rerun for the house seat. joe biden helped and that youed about running for vice president again until a woman couldn't take it anymore. >> but you know -- >> just say yes. and lady gaga answered the oscar night rumors of a love affair with co-star bradley cooper. >> yes, people saw love and guess what, that is what we wanted you to see. when you're singing love songs, that is what you want people to feel. social media quite frankly is the toilet of the internet. >> loved it. >> that we can all agree on, but the rumors will not die. >> we continue to talk about this. the "new york times" reports
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that president trump personally ordered a top secret security clearance for his son-in-law jared kushner even though he was urged not to do it. details ahead on "early start." to change us make us better parents, better leaders, better people. and there's no better place to listen than audible. with audible you get a credit good for any audiobook and exclusive fitness and wellness programs. and now, you'll also get two audible originals: titles exclusively produced for audible. automatically roll your credits over to the next month if you don't use them, and if you don't like a book just swap it for free. enjoy 100% ad free listening in the car, on your phone or any connected device. and when you switch a device pick up right where you left off. with our commitment free guarantee, there's never been a better time to start listening to audible. the most inspiring minds, the most compelling stories, the best place to listen.
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cell phone? it's ringing. get to know geico and see how much you could save on homeowners and condo insurance. new controversy surrounding the president's son-in-law. how did jared kushner land a top secret security clearance. >> they wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety. the president says he had to walk away. now north korea's pushing back on the sticking points. democrats in congress are not done with michael cohen yet. they think his dramatic testimony left a number of new leads to follow. welcome back to "early start." >> good morning, everyone. happy friday. we start with some major reporting from the "new york times" that president trump personally ordered a top secret
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security clearance for his son-in-law and senior adviser jared kushner. the "times" says that the president's command to then chief of staff last kelly came last may a day after the white house counsel's office urged him not to grant kushner the clearance. here is the president just a few months before that. >> so that will be up to general kelly. general kelly respects jared a lot and general kelly will make that call. i won't make that call. i will let the general who is right here make that call. >> the "times" says that the directive prompted two internal memos, one from kelly on being ordered to grant the clearance. here is the president about a month ago. >> did you tell general kelly or anyone else in the white house to -- >> no, i don't think i have the authority to do that. i'm not sure i do. but i wouldn't do it.
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jared is a good -- i was never involved with his security. i know that he -- just from reading i know that there was issues back and forth about security for numerous people actually. but i don't want to get involved in that stuff. >> the president's daughter was asked about it on abc just last month. >> the president had no involvement pertaining to my clearance or my husband's clearance. there are literally close to a million people in the federal government who are in the pipeline to get their permanent clearance and are on temporary status. so no special treatment. >> a spokesman for kushner's lawyer says in 2018 white house and security clearance officials affirmed that mr. kushner's security clearance was handled in the regular process with no pressure from anyone. that was conveyed to the media
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at the time and new stories if accurate do not change what was affirmed at the time. meanwhile president trump and the north korean government now disagree about what caused that abrupt end to the hanoi summit. according to kim jung-un's foreign minister, north korea was willing to permanently dismantle its uranium and plutonium production facilities at the yongbyon nuclear site if the u.s. was willing to partially lift sanctions. apparently that is not what the president heard. >> basically they wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety and we couldn't do that. >> let's bring in ivan watson. let me he get this straight here. so the two couldn't obviously agree on a deal and they can't agree what dissolved discussions in the first place. >> reporter: both sides are
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expressing affection for each other and also disappointment that they couldn't bridge the gap between their negotiating positions. so it was a surprise appearance by north korea's foreign minister last night here around midnight before some journal iss where he said we wanted five out of 11 sets of sanctions lifted and in exchange we would have permanently dismantled the facilities at the yongbyon nuclear sight. that is a sprawling site in north korea. a senior state department official has responded briefing journalists saying that the president had asked for other sites involved in development of weapons of mass destruction to also be dismantled and that the north koreans were not willing to go that far. so as a result, both sides ended up with, to paraphrase president trump, a friendly walkaway with
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that lunch at the historic metropole hotel of snow fish and dessert uneaten and the planned joint signing agreement ceremony unsigned. leaving both sides kind of again saying they like each other, they want to keep talking, but they were not able to make a deal. one official from north korea, a vice foreign minister, also telling journalists that kim jung-un is running out of patience and that the u.s. missed a once in a thousand year opportunity here. >> many expressing relief that there wasn't a deal because of concerns that president trump would have made too many concessions. ivan watson, thanks so much. president trump once again under fire from both democrats and republicans for taking the word of a brutal dictator over his own intelligence agencies. the president says when he met with kim jung-un, he discussed
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the injuries suffered by american student otto warmbier while in north korean custody. injuries that proved fatal. here is how the president characterized that discussion. >> i don't believe that he would have allowed that to happen. just wasn't to his advantage to allow that to happen. he felt very badly. he knew the case very well, but he knew it later. he tells me that he didn't know about it and i will take him at his word. >> nikki haley however former u.s. ambassador to the u.n. says that americans know the cruelty that was placed on otto warmbier by the north korean regime. our hearts are with the warmbier family for their strength and courage. we will never forget otto. and this from mitt romney -- >> i think there is no question but that the government of north korea has been responsible for a whole host of human rights abuses and atrocities. i've never heard somebody who did something wrong jump up and
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say yeah, i did it, i did it. they typically blame somebody else. >> here now the reaction from conservative ben shapiro, fing pathetic. michael cohen returning to capitol hill on march 6 to finish closed door testimony to the house intelligence committee. intel chairman adam schiff announcing cohen will come back next wednesday after trump's former lawyer and fixer finished part one of his testimony yesterday. >> he was able to shed light on a lot of issues that are core to our investigation and we were able to drill down in great detail. none of the questions that we had for him went unanswered. >> schiff's announcement after the blockbuster appearance on wednesday. under pointed questioning from alexandria ocasio-cortez, cohen claimed president trump inflated and deflated his assets to suit
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his business needs, something that could amount to financial fraud. >> to your knowledge did the president ever provide inflated assets to an insurance company? >> yes. >> who else knows that the president did this? >> allen weisselberg, ron lieberman, matthew calamari. >> and where would the committee find more information on this, do you think we need to review his financial statements and tax returns in order to compare them? >> yes, and you'd find it at the trump org. >> a little background, weisselberg is the trump organization cfo, among the associates the committee plans to question. >> cohen may also be facing a perjury problem. two of the president's closest allies on the committee have referred cohen to the department of justice for possible criminal prosecution. they claim to have evidence cohen knowingly made false statements to lawmakers.
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among the areas of cohen's public testimony they want the justice department to investigate, this claim -- >> i was extremely proud to be personal attorney to the president of the united states of america. i did not want to go to the white house. >> cnn has repeatedly reported to the contrary, that cohen eagerly pursued and expected to get a job in the white house. congressman jim jordan and mark meadows point to court filings from federal prosecutors in manhattan, the documents state that cohen privately told friends and colleagues including in seized text messages that he expected to be given a prominent role and title in the new administration. cohen will soon start serving a prison sentence for previously lying to congress. chugdp group at 2.6% in the fourth quarter, slower than the
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previous three months but with unemployment close to a 50 year low, consumer spending was strong. business investment was even stronger rising by 6.2%, that helped to support overall growth. with solid growth in the fourth quarter, the economy grew 2.9% for the entire year, that just misses the trump administration's goal of 3%. it actually makes it the strongest year of economic growth since 2018. economists are still cautious about the pace of growth going forward as the economy maxes out on available workers and the effects of last year's tax cuts and government spending. there is also concern that chinese and european economies, that could wind up slowing everyone more and dragging down u.s. growth. so still lots of headwinds. >> let's hope they get a brexit deal because that could really drag things down as well. ahead, a potential blow to benjamin netanyahu's re-election bid. the israeli prime minister
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facing indictment on corruption charges. a live report from jerusalem is next.
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a serious blow to benjamin netanyahu's chances for re-election in april after israel's attorney general announces the prime minister will be indicted.bribery and breach of trust stemming from three separate investigations. netanyahu says the impending charges are political while his main challenger is calling on him to resign. oren liebermann is joining us live from voous with tjerusalem. how will this impact his re-election establish if the charges stick? >> reporter: this will make it much more difficult for benjamin netanyahu as he seeks a fifth term in office. and those elections just over five weeks away at this point.
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that has been one evof netanyahs main criticisms that he doesn't have a chance to have a hearing to present his side before elections so all the voters have is the statement from the attorney general. netanyahu calls this announcement politically motivated and a witch hunt driven by the media and the left to topple his right wing government at any cost. so what was the big announcement? the attorney general here saying that he intends to indict the prime minister on charges of bribery and breach of trust in the biggest case facing the prime minister as well as charges of preach of trubreach in two smaller cases. so we'll have to see what the latest round of polling shows, but netanyahu facing a serious blow here. before this announcement, it looked like he had a very good chance of putting together a government of winning that fifth term in office. but he is in a very tight race here against his former chief of staff and it doesn't take a very big shift here in the election polls even a shift of one or two
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seats to give the advantage to that challenger. and that is what everybody will be keeping an eye on. clue sh he has the support of key right wing coalition partner, but if they see the polls shifting, they may withdraw that support and that could be a very serious blow to the prime minister as he seeks not only a fifth term in office, but a chance to become the longest serve prime minister in the country's history. >> thanks so much. president trump declaring american backed forces have retaken 100% of the isis-held territory in syria, a claim that shofrk ed shocked regional allies and troops on the ground. the president made the remarks in alaska on his return home from hanoi. >> we just took over -- you kept hearing it was 90%, 92%, the caliphate in syria. now it is 100% we just took over
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100% caliphate. that means the area, the land we just have 100%. so that is good. we did that in a much shorter period of time than it was supposed to be. >> an official with the syrian democratic forces tells cnn's ben weeds m ben wedeman that the fighting is ongoing and they were surprised by trump's statement and multiple u.s. officials tell barbara starr that civilians still remain in the last region of syria still under isis control. a cheaper version of the tesla model 3 is finally available, but it comes at a cost. cnn business is next. i'm alex trebek here to tell you
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4:54. pakistan has promised to release an indian fighter pilot today as a gesture for peace. the pilot captured after his jet was down in a dog fight between warplanes. as ever now both countries remain on high alert. pakistan says four civilians were are killed by indian gunfire across the so-called line of control that splits the contested kashmir region. nic robertson live in abu dhabi where there was supposed to be a conference. >> reporter: and that is the clue to is this really going to restore a good relationship between the two countries when this indian fighter pilot is handed back over, expected to happen in the next hour or so at the land border between india and pakistan. and the clue is that the pakistani foreign minister
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didn't show up here for what is a major conference of islamic nations. this is the organization of islamic invited and we've heard the indian foreign minister speaking today, didn't mention pakistan directly, did say that there should be no space for terrorist organizations to be harbored or to operate -- this was an international issue, this wasn't an issue about a specific religion, but pakistan's foreign minister didn't come here for the meeting because india was invited. so that gives you an idea of the tensions that still underlie the situation here. so the fighter pilot will be handed back over or is expected to be handed back over, but i think we're still a long way from the tension s on this current rise ratcheting down. this is what is seen broadly as a positive step, a step towards reconciliation at the moment.
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but those underlying tensions, the line of control, the confrontation going on there, we understand more civilians were injured overnight in continued shelling there. so the issue is not going away. but watch the space for the indian fighter jet to be handed over in the next hour or so. >> two nuclear powers on the brink, easily the most underplayed story given the wild week here at home. thank you, sir. a check on cnn business. global markets are mostly higher has trading kicks off the month of march. nikkei closed up 1%, shanghai composite in the green 2% higher and the hang seng up over half a percent. european markets, the dax up over 1%. on wall street, we are seeing green arrows as well even after the economy posted solid growth for the fourth quarter of 2018, u.s. markets closed lower on thursday. the dowd fell 69 points.
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the s&p 500 and nasdaq also declininged slightly, but all three of the major averages still finishing february on a positive note. the dow increased close to 4%, the s&p 500 finished up 3% and the nasdaq ended up a little over 3%. tesla has been promising a paired down version of its model 3 for more than a year. drum roll please. tesla announced that the cheaper version is finally available, it will cost $35,000. b elon musk says tesla will have to lay off workers to make it financially sustainable to produce the cheaper car. musk says that the model 3 is excruciatingly difficult to make at the reduced price. the cheapest model 3 on sale before the announcement was 42, $900. tesla declined to say how many of its stores will close or how many jobs will be affected. mufrk says musk says a small number in high
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traffic locations will remain open as galleries and information centers, an opportunity for you to just sit and hang out in the car. gap and old navy are splitting up. gap announced plans to separate and create two publicly traded companies. the stores had been trending in opposite directions for years. old navy has thrived in recent years. mean time the gap mass strhas s and banana republic has been closing stores which helped improve overall sales. gap says it will close 230 stores over the next two years as part of its plan to revitalize the gap brand. closures include mall based stores. and it is all about being able to adapt to the latest change in tastes and change to what the consumer wants. >> and malls on the decline to say the least. "early start" continues right now.
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new controversy surrounding the president's son-in-law. how did jared kushner land a top secret security clearance. >> they wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety. the president says he had to walk away. now north korea's pushing back on the sticking points. democrats in congress are not done with michael cohen yet. they think his dramatic testimony left a number of new leads to follow. this man just signed the richest sports contract in north american history. bryce harper is headed to philly. good morning, everyone. welcome to "early start." you've been talking about that since you walked in. >> he took the an newity. he wanted the long range 13 year deal. could have

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