welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers in north america and around the globe. my name is mike embley. our top stories: counting down the final days in office as congress battles over president obama's legacy. israel's prime minister calls for the pardoning of a soldier convicted of killing a wounded palestinian militant. after a large crowd of men molest women during new year celebrations — police in southern india arrest six people. and spinning his way through old age — at 105 years old this frenchman has set a new cycling record. in the final days of his administration, the cornerstone of president obama's legacy is being fought over by congress. the battle lines are drawn over obamacare,
the president's healthcare reform. donald trump was elected on a promise of dismantling it as soon as possible. and with the republicans in control of both houses of congress — the democrats will struggle to save any of it. laura trevelyan reports from washington. they swarmed across capitol hill today with rival entourages and duelling missions. one to protect his signature health—care law, the other to drive a stake through it. president obama and vice president—elect mike pence met with their respective lawmakers to plot their opposing strategies. according to those present, mr obama encouraged democrats to fight republicans hard, nickname their attempts trump care and not rescue them by helping to pass a replacement law. for his part, mr pence confirmed dismantling obamacare is mission number one for the incoming administration. my message to members of congress is that we are going to be in the promise—keeping business and the first order of business
is to keep our promise to repeal obamacare and replace it with the kind of health—care reform that will lower the cost of health insurance with our growing size of government. democratic leaders shot back saying republicans don't have a plan to replace obamacare and that americans will be worse off than before. so, we're here today to warn the american people that the republican plan to cut medicare, medicaid, repeal the aca, will make america a sick again. earlier in the day, president—elect donald trump weighed in in his trademark way. by tweeting that the existing law might collapse on its own, warning republicans: hanging in the balance is thejewel in the crown of obama's presidency, his single greatest victory in eight years of partisan fights. applause obamaca re, or the affordable care act as it's
officially known, expanded healthcare to more than 20 million people. republicans always saw the law as government over reach and the trump campaign seized upon rising costs for consumers as a rallying cry. the question is how to replace it without causing chaos and depriving needy americans, many of them trump voters, of their health insurance. i spoke just now to geoff garin, president of hart research associates. he's a democratic pollster and he told me what he thinks will happen when president trump begins repealing and replacing obamacare. it's very likely people will start to lose their coverage pretty quickly and rates, as high as they are now, will start to go up even more quickly, especially for people who have to buy it on their own. that's going to boomerang on the republicans. all of the problems of the healthcare system that are now blamed on obamacare and democrats, will transfer over to the blame of the republicans
and this is going to be a real political albatross for them this year and into the mid—term elections next year. i also spoke to ovik roy who was an advisor on healthcare to the 2012 republican presidential nominee mitt romney. he's now president of the think tank, the foundation for research on equal opportunity. obamacare, i suggested, isn't really very different from mitt romney's approach. the thing people need to understand is there isn't an either or in terms of expanding coverage to the uninsured. obamacare try to do it
one way, it didn't work as well as hoped, but 10 million fewer are covered under 0bamacare than were expected to be covered and republican approaches can cover more people than 0bamaca re republican approaches can cover more people than 0bamacare at a lower cost and the way to do is give consumers more control over their own dollars, that's what most republican plans try to do. if they don't help pass a replacement, what impact could that have, lots of people could be worse off? absolutely. if democrats decide it's either my way or the highway and they want to be stubborn and oppose anything they don't like then yes they could make health insurance worse for lots of people. but here's the thing, if republicans oppose a credible plan that would cover as many people as the affordable care act or 0bamacare as we call it but do so with lower costs and more choice than 0bamacare does, are they going to be 48 democrats in the
cemaat that oppose it? many partisans will but there are ten to 15 to 20 votes for democrats in the cemaat for that approach to par putt. it is up to republicans to propose something those 15 democrats can support but that possibility is there. now to a case that's divided opinion in israel. a soldier who shot dead a wounded palestinian militant has been convicted of manslaughter — and israel's prime minister has now lent his support to those calling for a pardon. israeli sergeant elor azaria killed abdul fatah al—sharif in hebron last march — the palestinian had been involved in stabbing another soldier. this from our middle east correspondent yolande knell. it's minutes after two young palestinian men with knives attacked israeli soldiers in hebron. both have been shot. one is dead and one is clearly still alive. sergeant elor azaria, a 19—year—old medic, helped treat a wounded soldier, and then he did this. gunshot a single bullet to the head killed abdel fattah al—sharif.
today the sergeant was in a military court, smiling to see a friend and his mother. but soon after, he was found guilty of manslaughter. judges rejected the soldier's claimed that the palestinian posed a threat and decided he shot him out of revenge. but sergeant azaria has loyal backers in a country where most young people do military service. they accuse the army of abandoning one of its own. this guy came to do an attack, to hurt families. this soldier is a hero. even the israeli defence minister spoke of this as a difficult verdict. before taking up his post, he made clear his support of sergeant azaria. and that caused tensions with the top brass here in the military headquarters. they said they command according to rules and an ethical code, not public opinion.
such a high—profile trial of a soldier for killing a palestinian is very unusual in israel. the outcome was welcomed by the family of abdel fattah al—sharif. translation: i feel like any father would feel after seeing my son executed on tv, murdered. it's so hard to see that. no—one can endure this. it's still hard for me every time i remember what happened. if he died instantly it would have been much easier than to see your son executed like that. sergeant azaria's crime took place during a wave of palestinian attacks when there was a national debate about how to respond. and his case has proved highly divisive. when he is sentenced, the maximum he could serve is 20 years injail, but he is expected to get far less. and tonight the prime minister has joined other israeli politicians calling for a pardon. yolande knell, bbc news, tel aviv. in other news: the commander of the us—led coalition says iraqi forces confronting islamic state militants
in mosul are gaining momentum. general steve townsend conceded the attack lacked co—ordination, at first. he said he'd been "greatly concerned" by what he called the army's daunting number of casualties. the iraqi government predicted it would win the battle by new year, but it's still not re—captured even half the city. a commuter train derailed during the morning rush hour in new york, injuring more than 100 people. the long island railroad train went off the tracks as it arrived at the atlantic terminal in brooklyn. the fire department says the injuries were not life—threatening. a court in south carolina has begun a hearing to decide whether the white supremacist, dylann roof, should receive the death penalty for the murder of nine black churchgoers in charleston in 2015. last month he was found guilty of all 33 hate charges against him. sarah corker reports. prosecutors say mass murderer dylann roof has shown no remorse for a racially motivated attack that shocked the us.
at charleston court house, a jury will now decide if he should be executed or sentenced to life in prison. the 22—year—old shot dead 9 black worshippers during a bible study session in june 2015. roof is representing himself in court and said he plans to call no witnesses. here you have one side fighting and the other side sleeping so there is no way you can get a just result. he's not going to give him any reasons to spare his life. in his opening statement, roof said "there is nothing wrong with me psychologically", apparently contradicting his lawyers who have said he is not mentally fit. the widow of one of his victims told the court she heard roof say "i'm not crazy, i have to do this", during the shooting. in downtown charleston, the mother emanuel church where the attack took place, the community is still asking why. you kind of want
to ask the question. don't you see the pain this has caused 7 hey, what were you thinking? prosecutors said they found a note in roof‘s cell which read, "i have not shed a tear for the innocent people killed." the same jury who found him guilty of hate crimes at this church will decide whether he will be given the death penalty. sarah corker, bbc news. the former finance minister of mexico, who lost his job because of his role in organising a visit to the country by donald trump last year, has returned to government. luis videgaray will become mexico's new foreign minister and will now lead negotiations with the trump administration on bilateral issues, including the border wall along the us—mexican border. i spoke to will grant, our central american correspondent. he has been present alongside president enrique pena nieto
long before he became president, when he was governor of mexico state so he is a very influential man in mexican politics and within mr pena nieto‘s cabinet. the fact they have put him in that specific position, that of foreign minister, clearly is a nod towards the incoming trump administration. when he was removed from the role of finance minister, mr trump tweeted that he was a fantastic man and that the united states and mexico would make great deals if he were still in office. now he will be in office again and if anything, leading negotiations with the trump administration. and yet he took a lot of criticism within the country for the way the trump visit was handled. how will he be with the north american free trade agreement and the wall? you're right, that visit reflected badly on president pena nieto and his whole administration
and it was luis videgaray who took the brunt of it. he was blamed in the mexican media for having engineered the visit. it was supposed to be the moment in which mexico could appeal to mr trump's better nature, could impress upon him that these were serious matters he was discussing and put their side of the story. within the day, mr trump had returned to the united states and repeated his claim that not only would they be building the wall but that mexico itsel would be paying for it. that caused a lot of reaction in mexico. how he will build from that position as he goes forward as foreign minister instead of finance minister will be interesting to find out. certainly, mr trump believes the two men can work together. stay with us on bbc news, still to come: a dinosaur on the move —
how dippy the diplodocus is about to embark on a two year tour. the japanese people are in mourning following the death of emperor hirohito. thousands converged on the imperial palace to pay their respect when it was announced he was dead. good grief. after half a century of delighting fans around the world, charlie brown and the rest of the gang are calling it quits. the singer paul simon starts his tour of south africa tomorrow in spite of protests and violence from some black activist groups. they say international artists should continue to boycott south africa until majority rule is established. teams were trying to scoop up lumps of oil as france recognises it faces an ecological crisis. three weeks ago, the authorities confidently assured these areas that oil from the broken tanker erika would head out to sea. it didn't. the world's tallest skyscraper opens today. the burj dubai has easily
overtaken its nearest rivals. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: a battle is underway in washington over barack obama's legacy as he counts down his final days in office. the israeli prime minister, benjamin netanyahu, has called for the pardon of a soldier convicted of the manslaughter of a wounded palestinian attacker. police have detained a second tunisian in germany. officials say the man had dinner and talked intensively with the killer, anis amri, ata intensively with the killer, anis amri, at a restaurant in berlin the day before. more than a fortnight since he drove a lorry into a crowded market,
police in berlin are still piecing together who may have helped anis amri. following raids at a refugee shelter in the city, it has been revealed a tunisian man suspected of meeting with anis amri the night before the attack had been detained. translation: we believe the suspect and anis amri had known each other since the end of 2015. how investigations found that they met atan investigations found that they met at an evening before the attack, at at an evening before the attack, at a restaurant, they ate together and spoke at length. a formerfor mate spoke at length. a former for mate of anis amri is also being questioned. —— flatmate. but this investigation stretches beyond germany, as police across europe try to establish who else may have been involved. belgian investigators have released this image showing anis amri at one of brussels posture the main train station is a couple of days after the attack. swiss authorities have also revealed they are looking into claims that he may have spent time
there before travelling to germany. the 24—year—old was eventually shot deadin the 24—year—old was eventually shot dead in the land, four days after going on the run, following a confrontation with police. forensic tests have revealed the gun anis amri used to shoot and wound an italian officer was the same one he used to kill the polish driver of the hijacked lorry. the german government, which has been criticised for allowing a failed asylu m criticised for allowing a failed asylum seeker the first commit this attack and then escape, says it is 110w attack and then escape, says it is now planning to strengthen security measures to prevent the failures from being repeated. a us federaljury has found six men from the gang known as the chicago hobos guilty of nine murders, racketeering, and a slew of robberies, kidnappings and shootings. paris poe is one of the members in what was the biggest gang trial in the city's recent history. the hobos rose to the top of the drug trade through extreme violence, one robbery victim was tortured with a hot iron. the hobos also shot dead a government witness in front
of his children and stole jewellery from a basketball star at gunpoint outside a nightclub. the hobos street game was as bad as it gets. these men were ruthless in their pursuit of crime and violence. they sought to join forces to enrich themselves and empower themselves through fear and through violence. police in the indian city of bangalore have arrested at least six people, after several women said they were groped and molested during the city's new year celebrations. the victims claim they were assaulted by a mob and cctv pictures have emerged of one woman being attacked. angus crawford reports. noisy, but good—natu red. it began as a celebration. crowds flocked to the centre of bangalore to see in the new year but as midnight approached the mood became darker. a series of women were groped and assaulted.
witnesses say the police took little action. i think as bangalorians, we should be ashamed, hang our heads in shame that the community, the society, onlookers, spectators took no action. the incidents have caused outrage. one politician blamed victims for wearing western clothes. it's also raised wider questions in a country where only 1% of women feel able to report such crimes. under pressure, the police have now made arrests. we did not waste time, we did not wait to look for the complainant, we have registered the case. the investigation has started. the whole team, headed by the city, is investigating and we will make all efforts, we can assure you, we will catch the culprits. cctv has now emerged of another assault on the same night. look, at the top of the screen a woman walking home.
two men on a moped stop. one attacks. she fights back and manages to escape. police are investigating. one night in bangalore has highlighted an unpleasant truth faced by many women in india. he's nothing less than a cycling legend. robert marchand has set a new world record at the age of 105. he's cycled more than 22 kilometres in one hour. the international cycling union created a categoryjust for him. he said he simply wanted to prove that there's more to life after 100 than sitting in an armchair. our paris correspondent hugh schofield has more. 92 laps, 22.5 kilometres, robert marchand has done it again. the frenchman is already holder of the hour time trial for centenarians, now he's champion of a new age category created
for cyclists aged 105. robert marchand has always been a fitness fan. in an earlier life he was a gymnastics champion and a boxer. he never smoked, he drinks only the occasional glass of wine and he exercises. translation: i do ten to 20 kilometres every day but i don't train outside any more. i'm afraid of getting the flu. with more and more people around the world living into their hundreds, the case of robert marchand can only inspire. although his coaches admit his physique is somewhat of an exception. translation: he has an exceptional heart. he has the heart of a 60—year—old. and above all his heartbeat is slow and steady. yesterday we did a 20 minute test and over 20 minutes his heart rate never surpassed 100 beats per minute.
at the end of this latest exploit, mr marchand said his legs felt fine, it was his arms that hurt. his record, though, has to be officially confirmed by international cycling's anti—doping authority. now if you've ever been to london's natural history museum you can't have missed dippy the diplodocus. it's been the centerpiece since 1905. it's appeared in two hollywood blockbusters. well, now dippy is going on a two—year tour and a blue whale is taking its place. daniela relph talked to some of those getting a final glimpse. it's busy here most days but for those queueing today there was a goodbye to be had. the first sight of dippy has been a lasting memory for so many children. it's the first thing you see when you arrive. the natural history museum estimates around 90 million people have stood here and looked up at dippy.
it's not known if the diplodocus is a he or a she but today is the last chance to see dippy at the museum. because it is the last day, people might want to see him if they haven't seen it before, so that's why they want to come over. what do you think of dippy? he goes "roar." it's amazing to think they lived a long time ago and he was walking around. i'm a bit sad that he is going but maybe i can see other dinosaurs, maybe. dippy first came to the museum more than 100 years ago. made up of 292 bones, the dinosaur arrived in 36 cases. during the second world war, the skeleton was taken to the basement to protect it. the diplodocus is a plaster cast replica of the real thing. it would have weighed 13 tons when alive. it's been cleaned up and cared for since 1979, when it took up its current position.
pulling it apart and moving the dinosaur will be detailed, delicate work. in the morning, we'll be starting to take dippy down. we take the glass barrier away and then we start working from the tail back up to the body and then the neck, and over the next month we'll be taking each bone down, each of those 292 bones, we'll be cleaning them, we'll be inspecting them and then we'll be packing up. once cleaned up and reassembled, dippy goes on tour for two years. it begins appropriately on dorset‘sjurassic coast before moving to birmingham, glasgow, newcastle, cardiff and other locations. and this is what replaces dippy, the skeleton of a blue whale, hung from the ceiling to give the impression of it diving, of it being a living species that needs protecting. but today it's all about dippy. for those feeling little sad at the departure, there are tentative plans to recast the diplodocus in bronze and place it in the museum grounds.
but, for now, it's goodbye. taking it apart will be months of work, labelling every bone, cleaning it and then putting it back together again. in terms of a replacement, the as yet unnamed blue whale should be in position by the summer. ona on a smaller scale, but steel intimidating, the united arab emirates has outlawed the keeping of wild animals as pets. for some in the oil—rich gulf state, owning the likes of a tiger or cheetah is a status symbol. images have appeared on social media of big cats out in the streets. they've included pictures of lions in the back of cars, and recently a video emerged that showed five tigers on a beach in dubai. the authorities are concerned about the obvious dangers. from now on anyone taking a wild animal out in public will face
prison or a fine. hello there, good morning. quite a widespread frost to start the day today. most of us are firmly in some really quite cold air coming down from the north. and the cold feel to things is accentuated by the northerly breeze along the eastern coast. but, elsewhere, the winds are a little bit lighter, the skies are clear, allowing temperatures to plummet away, even towns and cities around about freezing or below, rural parts in the heart of england —6 or —7 degrees. so, a really cold for most. maybe not quite so cold in southern cornwall, five or six here, but you don't have to go too far inland you find much lower temperatures, —1, —2 at eight o'clock in the morning, so it will be a cold start across the bulk of england and wales. maybe even a little bit of ice for some on untreated surfaces in eastern parts of england where we've seen some overnight showers. some parts of northern ireland seeing a touch of frost, and the frost will be quite widespread across northern england into most of scotland, although the northern and western isles just about escaping.
now, we've still have the brisk winds into the afternoon for eastern england, and maybe still a shower or two, but most places will be fine and dry. a good deal of sunshine and light winds as well. but after that cold start, temperatures will be slow to rise. maybe only two or three degrees for northern areas, fours and fives down towards cardiff and london, but sevens and eights out towards belfast and plymouth. and then early on thursday evening the frost returns to many, but, by the end of the night, as cloud and rain and the winds picks up for the north and west of the uk, by the end of the night some frost and some fog is really confined to the south—eastern corner. but it will be a pretty grey day for many of us on friday. fog slow to clear in the south—eastern corner. should do eventually. all this rain piling in the north and west becomes light and patchy with some hill fog to go with that. it's a pretty grey day. that rain eventually gets down into the south—eastern corner by the afternoon. starting to turn a little bit less cold. we get up to what, 5—7 in norwich and london. but out towards the west, belfast and plymouth, ten or 11 degrees and that milder air continues to filter its way
in through friday night and on into saturday. we start to see the winds coming from the atlantic. always a mild direction. and it will bring a fair bit of moisture with it, a lot of cloud and a little bit of rain to start the weekend but the rain will be light and patchy and i think many places will be fine and dry. and those temperatures are back up into double figures in the south of the uk, not too far away from that for some northern areas as well. so, not so cold to start the day on sunday but it will be another cloudy day. the wind still coming in from the west and temperatures will be up to, what, eight or nine degrees quite widely, tens and 11s further south and any rain i suspect will be light and patchy, so it's turning mild into the weekend, but there is going to be a lot of cloud around, not much rain but a little bit of patchy rain and drizzle. the latest headlines from bbc news, i'm mike embley. senior democrats are saying they will try as hard as possible to resist the incoming trump administration moves to dismantle obamacare, president obama's signature healthca re policy. the vice president—elect, mike pence, has said the process
will begin on donald trump's first day in the white house. israel's prime minister has supported calls for a pardon for an israeli soldier convicted of manslaughter. sergeant elor azaria shot a palestinian militant who was lying wounded on the ground. prosecutors said the killing in the occupied west bank was an act of revenge. police in the indian city of bangalore have arrested at least six people after several women said they were groped and molested during new year celebrations. the victims claim they were assaulted by mobs, and cctv pictures have emerged of one woman being attacked. now on bbc news, time for hardtalk.