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As Olympics Begin, CNN Gets Exclusive on Other Big International Story

ammorning_8-8.JPGAs their respective athletes get set to compete in the Olympics, Russia and Georgia appear on the brink of war.

This morning, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili took to the media to make his case. Saakashvili appeared on CNN American Morning just after 8:35amET, and was interviewed by Kiran Chetry in his first U.S. interview. He had previously been interviewed by BBC News and Bloomberg in the U.K.

He also had just appeared on CNN International. American Morning EP Janelle Rodriguez tells TVNewser it was after this interview the “hustle” began between New York, Atlanta (the international satellite desk) and Moscow. It took a, “tag team, multi-city” effort to get the President back in position to go live on CNN in the U.S.

“Kiran was prepping on the fly. She did an incredible job, and made lots of news,” Rodriguez said. “He got mic’ed up and we got right to him. It was a five minute turnaround at tops.

“The international desk really deserves a lot of credit,” she said.

The interview has been replayed multiple times on CNN today, and has been quoted in various print reports.

“This is when you know you’re in the big leagues and you’re performing as the best amongst the best,” said Rodriguez. “This is our strength.”

The Bloomberg interview, which took place around 6:45amET, was first aired in the U.S. at 11amET on Open Exchange. It will replay again later tonight (more on that later).

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