this is bbc news. i'm rachel schofield. the headlines at 11:00: sinn fein agreed to re—enter devolved government, meaning the stormont assembly will sit again tomorrow. i believe that power can work. that requires everyone to step up. sinn fein‘s commitment is to do all in oui’ fein‘s commitment is to do all in our power to make this happen. we believe this is a firm, balanced deal. we believe it is a deal that can form the basis for allowing us to go back into government and to deal with all the difficult issues we need to deal with. vigils in canada for the victims of the ukrainian plane crash, as iran rejects claims that it shot it down. the home office has requested american anne sacoolas to be extradited to the uk over the death of teenager harry dunn. and the cheshire teenager helped
during a seizure by his online gaming friend 5,000 miles away. and at 11:30 we'll be taking an in—depth look at the papers with our reviewers, the political commentator and former conservative advisor, jo—anne nadler and political writer and academic, maya goodfellow. after three years of deadlock, power sharing will return to northern ireland. a deal aimed at restoring devolved government was agreed by the main political parties, sinn fein and the democratic unionists, this afternoon. the northern ireland assembly will sit for the first time in 36 months tomorrow after it was suspended in 2017, after a political dispute. the vacuum created has had a big impact on public services, affecting schools, the nhs and key projects. it's hoped the agreement will bring about improvement and reform.
but sinn fein and the dup are warning that serious challenges remain. there's flash photography in this report by our ireland correspondent emma vardy. after three years of resistance, the final steps to an agreement. faces from northern ireland to's past here to witness a new future. i believe that power—sharing can work. that requires everyone to step up. sinn fein‘s commitment is to do all in our power to make this happened. it marks the end of a bitter stand—off between sinn fein and the democratic unionists. it is a fair and balanced deal. i know there will be
challenges in the deal, not least we need to make sure that we have the finances to be able to deal with all of the issues in northern ireland that are present at the moment. events were set in motion when an ultimatum was given late last night in dramatic fashion. the british and irish government chose to go public with the deal, saying, take it or leave it. but the gamble paid off. the new agreement contains wide—ranging promises. firstly, to tackle a crisis in the health service and resolve a pay dispute which has seen health workers on strike. there will be more money for schools after months of head teachers saying they face an unprecedented shortfall. and northern ireland will get around 800 more police to increase numbers to 7500. but the biggest ask was getting agreement for that much fought over legal protection of the irish language. sings in irish. decades of conflict
in northern ireland, the issues of british and irish identity, often lead to tension. some unionists believe giving the irish language more prominence with new laws proposed in the deal is a step too far. i don't see how one identity can erode another. i think if you are secure enough in your own identity, it shouldn't be an issue. while the dup has agreed to the new legislation, some of their most staunch supporters have rejected it. they once said that every word spoken in irish was a shot fired for irish freedom. people would say that would be a blunt instrument to further irish unity. the secretary of state tried to reassure voters in loyalist heartlands today that the deal is fair. but in this city, compromise never comes easily. what is the problem with having laws to protect the irish language? none of us want it. we don't want the irish language. we have to protect it, it has gone on for three years now.
without a government, public services have been in steady decline. parts of the health service have come close to collapse. for northern ireland's nurses, who are striking for the first time in their history, today's deal will bring an end to these picket lines. there is extra cash from the british government to raise wages and measures to reduce the crippling waiting lists at hospitals. but parties know the devil is in the detail, and the new provisions for a change in northern ireland will mean plenty of rows to come. but now that can happen within a devolved government, not outside it. 0ur ireland correspondent emma vardy with that report there. well, earlier i spoke to professorjon tonge, a specialist in northern irish politics from the university of liverpool, and he told me that following last month's general election, a return to power sharing was inevitable. frankly, people have called time. it is not that the people of northern ireland have ever given up on devolved power—sharing. every single survey showed that was what the
electorate in northern ireland overwhelmingly wanted. but they were getting sick and tired of the fact that the big two parties had not gone back into stormont. there was a big blame game going on and irrespective of who was to blame, frankly the electorate had had enough. i think the parties got the message from last december‘s election and as soon as that exit poll appeared and as soon as we got the results in on election night, really, the devolution show was getting back on the road from then on. some people have suggested part of the reason that their minds were very focused on this deadline is that the northern ireland secretary, julian smith, had said two things. first, if this didn't happen he would hold money, and secondly, he would hold money, and secondly, he would say another election was needed. how much did those two things focused the minds of the politicians? i think they both concentrated their minds. julian smith is not a bluff. his two predecessors let loads and loads of deadlines go, whereas this time the parties got the messagejulian smith was not to be messed around, he
would go to elections. and they were big risks for the dup and sinn fein in those elections, because voters have been gravitating to other parties, most notably the alliance party. 0n parties, most notably the alliance party. on a more positive note, that was an awful lot of cash attached to this devolution settlement. you can argue there is more money attached to this devolution deal than there was obtained by dup, that £1 billion, which they got from the conservatives for northern ireland in 2017. huge amounts of money, huge financial carrot attached to this. so it made good sense for the parties to go back into government together. but there are still issues that will be difficult. i mean, today's deal is a fudge. it is a fudge on the irish language act, it is not a stand—alone act sinn fein wanted, but something close to it. there are various issues which have been put in the hands of commissioners to deal with which is not necessarily a solution to those vexed issues. we have got, for example, an office of culture and identity and expression set up today. well, but could be a repository for all sorts of grievances within a restored executive. so we shouldn't imagine
that the parties will necessarily live happily ever after. that is not just think about the last three yea rs. let's just think about the last three years. let's remember that since the devolved power—sharing executive was set up in december 1999, it has been absolute for 46% of the time. —— absent. so there has been long—standing problems with involvement in northern ireland, which today's deal, welcome as it may be, will not automatically solve. it is interesting that the title of the deal is "a new decade, new approach". it sounds like one is very much needed but may not be forthcoming stop you have had successful periods of devolution in northern ireland. from about 2007 to 2016, firstly we had the chuckle brothers, the jawdropping deal between martin mcguinness and ian paisley, followed by a pragmatic working relationship between peter robinson and martin mcguinness. ten yea rs of robinson and martin mcguinness. ten years of relatively successful devolved power—sharing. in some ways you could argue that was the exception and not the rule. ultimately, the two parties have very different constitutional ambitions. they are certainly not on
the same page about brexit, other than the fact that neither of them like boris johnson's form than the fact that neither of them like borisjohnson‘s form of brexit. you have still got difficult issues like the rhi report, which will be coming very, very soon. so let's not pretend this is anything other than a loveless marriage at this stage. but the fact they are going back to work will please an awful lot of people in northern ireland tonight. vigils have been held in canada for some of the victims of the ukrainian plane crash on wednesday. iran has again rejected suggestions that the aircraft was brought down by one of its missiles killing 176 people. the picture still remains unclear but what we do know is the flight took off from tehran just after 6:00 in the morning, butjust two minutes later, the data on the flight stopped. the plane came down to the south—west of the capital tehran. 63 of the victims were canadian. 0ur north america correspondent aleem maqbool has sent this report from toronto.
so this is about two weeks ago when they got to iran... the siddiqi family travelled to iran from canada to plan a wedding. they never came back. alvar and his wife negar, his sister sohand and her five—year—old daughter sufi all died in the crash. it's left close friend utterly dazed. first, it was shock and denial because, you know, you can't fathom it, itjust doesn't make sense, you never hear of such a story but then as you keep reading and looking at the, you know, news and videos and there is this anger, like, why did it happen to these people? they are the nicest people. why them? the us, canada and britain say there is evidence of an iranian missile hit the plane. tehran calls those "illogical allegations" and says it could take one or two years to complete its investigation. but these pictures show it's already chosen to clear much of the crash site, potentially
burying important leads. and even before the data has been analysed from the flight recorders, its officials already say they are sure of one thing. translation: an aviation authority cannot speculate. we aren't sure of the causes yet but what we can say for certain is that a missile did not strike the plane, but the fire and its causes we still need to work out. but this mobile phone footage does appear to back up the theory the plane was struck by a missile. a small outgoing speck of light suddenly exploding. with the impact following. the iranians insist if it really was a missile strike, the debris would have been spread over a larger area.
it's not what us secretary of state mike pompeo thinks. we do believe that it's likely that that plane was shot down by an iranian missile. he announced new sanctions on iran. we want iran to simply behave like a normal nation. we believe the sanctions that we've imposed today further that the strategic objective. but forfamilies in iran, ukraine, britain and more than 60 in canada, the focus is on grieving. there is no question, though, that the sense this tragedy could have been a consequence of those regional tensions has only added to the anger and despair. the home office has requested a 42—year—old us woman to be extradited to the uk over the death of a teenager in a road crash. 19—year—old harry dunn died when his motorbike collided with a car allegedly driven on the wrong side of the road by 42—year—old anne sacoolas outside
raf croughton in august. she returned to the states claiming diplomatic immunity. in the last few minutes, the us state department has issued a statement saying the extradition of anne sacoolas "would be highly imappropriate." the statement goes on to say, "the use of an extradition treaty to attempt to return the spouse of a former diplomat by force would establish an extraordinarily troubling precedent." a little earlier the family's spokesman, radd seiger, explained how important it was for harry's parents that the extradition order was issued. it is obviously a huge day. a few months ago they were told they had no chance of ever having anyone held accountable for harry's death, and this is a monumentally big step in the right direction. and clearly, as you say, it has been a huge fight for harry's mum and dad. give us a
sense of their reaction? because i guess while this is progress, there is still a long way to go in what they are looking for? yeah, absolutely. in these circumstances let's not forget these parents lost their lovely son. so can we say we are pleased? their lovely son. so can we say we are pleased ? well, their lovely son. so can we say we are pleased? well, look, actually that was their reaction, in the circumstances, considering all they have been through. they are please, they are relieved. but unlike a lot of the nonsense that is coming out of the nonsense that is coming out of the nonsense that is coming out of the us administration at the moment, but anne sacoolas will not be returned, the parents continue to be returned, the parents continue to be dignified and measured and respectful, and they will simply step back now and allow the legal process to unfold. —— that anne sacoolas. i would simply urge everybody in the administration of the united states to hop off the airwaves, roll up their sleeves and get down to dealing with the request and get the lawyers onto it. you describe does nonsense the suggestion she will not be returned,
but do you expect this extradition request to be acted upon? 10096. there is no doubt in my mind, and rachel, than it has been. whether it is today, or tomorrow, rachel, than it has been. whether it is today, ortomorrow, or rachel, than it has been. whether it is today, or tomorrow, or in five yea rs or is today, or tomorrow, or in five years or in ten years, anne sacoolas will come back stop she has to come back stop there is no other way forward. so whether they put up a fight, whether they actually refuse it, we will only know in time and the parents are determined to just ta ke the parents are determined to just take this one step at a time. it is being handled by the officials now, by the lawyers, and we are not going to get ahead of ourselves. let's just see what happens. the headlines on bbc news: after 3 years of deadlock, power sharing will return to northern ireland. a deal aimed at restoring devolved government has been agreed by the main political parties sinn fein and the democratic unionists. vigils are held in canada for some of the victims of the ukrainian plane crash that killed 176 people. iran rejects suggestions that one
of its missiles brought down the aircraft the home office has requested american anne sacoolas to be extradited to the uk over the death of teenager harry dunn. a woman who posed as a teenaged boy to groom and sexually assault girls as young as 13 has been jailed for eight years. gemma watts, who's 21 and from north london, admitted the offences at an earlier hearing at winchester crown court. police believe she may have assaulted up to 50 victims. our news correspondent duncan kennedy reports. two phases but one person. on the left, the real gemma watts, on the right, her fake creation. left, the real gemma watts, on the right, herfake creation. she pretended to be jake online, two full girls into meeting her. what is
claimed —— she came to be jake on instagram spending months could ring her victims. the girls were so convinced they were in touch with a boy, they arranged to meet up. and when they did, watts disclosed and had some baggy clothes and convinced even the girls parents that she was a boy. for a number of victims, it was the first serious relationship with a boy. and for some of them it's been their first time they have been intimate, than find out that is actually a female that has groomed, manipulated and then abuse the trust are placed in them has been my changing. this was gemma watts as herself. as jake she travelled across the country meeting up with her victims. in court, she admitted seven evidences of grooming and sexual assault, involving four girls under 16. this was a highly unusual
case. but only because it involved online grooming by a woman but also because of the pretence of being a boy. and although the court heard that watts suffered from gender identity issues, thejudge that watts suffered from gender identity issues, the judge said she had caused psychological harm to all the girls involved. please think this online real—life case may actually involve up to 50 victims. real girls duped by a woman posing asa real girls duped by a woman posing as a boy, making them feel abused, angry and ashamed. gale force winds in australia have merged two big bushfires creating one huge single blaze. the fire on the border of the states of new south wales and victoria border is said to be four times the area of greater london. almost a 250,000 people nationwide are being urged to flee their homes as the blustery, changing winds create unpredictable conditions. our correspondent katy watson has
been to wandiligong in victoria where troops are preparing to move residents out of the town. a sleepy town in the line of fire, police getting ready to tell an entire town to background before it's too late. going house—to—house, speaking to everyone. it's too late. going house—to—house, speaking to eve ryonelj it's too late. going house—to—house, speaking to everyone. i will certainly be watching and the wind changes. not would take me advice to leave. it's too late now. i suppose it isa leave. it's too late now. i suppose it is a resistance but we do expect the same time a lot of people will stay. it's perhaps a bit of an australian then people do. they want to stay and protect the property. this is a rural part, where dog communities, one or two houses miles apart much other. it's a massive job
to tell everybody to evacuate. we and tony have structuring calls from relatives, they told them they would be in touch if there's a problem. they're prepping the house in case of fa ns they're prepping the house in case of fans approach. that got the masks and goggles are ready and they are feeling pretty positive. i think we will know when it's time to go. there's a hunch. the gut instinct. but the gut instinct of your neighbours is to get out now. but they got little children so that's their priority. got other priorities. there is still birdlife around. when the reds desert, it's time to go. the quitters know stuff we don't. listen to the critters. 0h, we don't. listen to the critters. oh, yes. they are more endued. high temperatures and strong winds have found bushfires across south—eastern australia, the seasons and usually get started to vibrate in victoria so this year authorities are stretched. it's urged people to
reschedule massive demonstrations to a less risky fide. dozens of people turned out: the government to do more. this has been a bushfire season like no other. but renata and tony are not afraid. a bit like their approach to the fires, what will be, will be. stars from across the sporting world have been donating to help those affected by the australian bushfires. australian cricket veteran shane warne sold his baggy green cap to an anonymous bidder for1 million australian dollars, that's just over £500,000. brighton goalkeeper maty ryan, who is from new south wales, says he will give £260 for every save by premier league goalkeepers this weekend.
nick kyrgios is among a number of australian tennis players fundraising. he has pledged to donate more than £100 for each ace he hits, while world number one ashleigh barty gave her winnings from the brisbane international. us president donald trump has expressed sympathy for the queen following the decision by the duke and duchess of sussex to step back as senior members of royal family. in an interview this evening, he was asked if had any advice for the british monarch. i think it's sad. i do, she is a great woman, she has never made a mistake because options have all this time was up i think harry should go and come back. i think, i don't want to get into the whole thing but i find it... i have such respect for the queen, i do think that should be happening to have a stop ——i that should be happening to have a stop —— i don't think this should be happening to her. police investigating the disappearance of an off—duty firefighter in east sussex three weeks ago, say they believe they've found his body. 33 year—old anthony knott, a father of four went missing after going to a pub
in lewes with colleagues. a body was recovered this morning from the river ouse at newhaven. the tv and radio presenter samira ahmed has won her equal pay case against the bbc. ahmed argued successfully that she'd been underpaid for hosting the programme newswatch, compared to fellow presenter jeremy vine, for his work on points of view. our media editor amol rajan has the story. hello and welcome to newswatch, with me, samira ahmed. samira ahmed claimed that there was no material difference between what she did as presenter of newswatch on the bbc news channel, which was also shown on bbc one. first this week: and whatjeremy vine did as presenter of points of view on bbc one. for the bbc, the repeat of newswatch on bbc one undermined their case. cheering and clapping. samira ahmed always argued that this wasn't just about a single individual but a systemic injustice. now she's been vindicated. no woman wants to have to take action against their own employer. i love working for the bbc,
i'm really glad it's been resolved. vine was paid £3,000 per programme for points of view, more than six times as much as ahmed for newswatch. we're doing a show. welcome to the first newswatch of 2020 and a happy new year. the burden of proof fell on the bbc to show that the difference was not explained by sex discrimination but other factors, such as skill or charisma. it failed. we've always believed that samira and jeremy vine's pay was not based on their gender. presenters, female as well as male, have always been paid more on points of view than on newswatch. we are sorry the tribunal didn't think the bbc provided enough evidence about a specific decisions in this case. gender and equality issues have led to many bad headlines for the bbc in recent years. this will add a fresh batch. the central issue here goes beyond the bbc. whether recognisability — in other words, fame or profile — has an economic value
which justifies paying different presenters different amounts for equivalent work, regardless of their race or gender. the tribunal says it doesn't, which means countless contracts across the whole of the industry no need to be revisited. it's really important, because it demonstrates a failure within the bbc which is a common problem across the whole of uk industry. and that is a failure to undertake job evaluation at the very beginning and to pay people according to a job evaluation scheme. can you just tell us how you feel? however, the tribunal found that, following changes to its pay structure in 2018, any difference in pay between ahmed and vine could no longer have been attributed to sex discrimination. amol rajan, bbc news. parents are always warning their children to be careful about who they speak to online. but for one teenager in cheshire, befriending a stranger may have saved his life. 17—year—old aidan jackson
was chatting to a woman in texas, 5,000 miles away, when he suddenly fell ill. his family were downstairs and had no idea. judith mortiz reports. aidanjackson spends hours playing video games against opponents from around the world. online gaming can be a test of fast reflexes. luckily for him, it was one of his gamer friends from texas who did the quick thinking and called for help when aidan started to feel unwell. that caller was dia lathora, who lives 5,000 miles away from aidan's home in cheshire. today, we spoke to her online.
i could hear him and seizing and breathing really hard. it sounded like he was choking and crying. automatically, that sets off the red flag of he's in trouble, what's going on? aidan had passed out. used to him being a silent teenager, his parents thought nothing of him being quiet upstairs until the police turned up. i'm sitting there watching tv, then seeing two police cars outside with flashing lights. when they came in, the police, what did they say to you? theyjust said they had had a call from america, that there was an unresponsive male, possible seizure. so then i ran upstairs to check on aidan. since this has all happened, have you had the chance to thank dia and tell her what you think? i thank her every day. because life could have been over like that. and seizures are dangerous things. sometimes, obviously, we don't know, had it gone on for longer, we don't know what would have happened. one day aidan would like to meet his online saviour and thank her for staging
a real world rescue. judith moritz, bbc news, widnes. the drum and there is is from the canadian rock band brushed has died aged two to seven. just make brushed. the musician is seen as one of the best rock drummers in history, died on tuesday. after a 3.5 year battle with brain cancer. they were one of the most successful rock groups in the 70s and 80s and sold more than 110 million albums. we'll have the papers in a moment, but that's could look at the weather. —— lets get a look at the weather. the fighter we did have a long in proceedings with many areas remaining dry with a good deal of sunshine on offer. assuming u nsettled sunshine on offer. assuming unsettled into the beacon. why is it happening? there's contraction
temperatures across america which is helping to energise the jetstream and oversee the undulations, that allows low pressure systems to form. the jet stream then acting like a conveyor belt, sending low pressure systems our way. we stopped saturday with a band of rain stretching out of northern ireland adapters got them, sipping it in northern england, accompanied by strong brands, particularly so for parts of scotland, northern england and north wales. it's a windy across—the—board logic by drive further south you come. a fair amount of cloud. fresh conditions were follow behind with a few showers, some of which could be wintry. away from the far north of scotla nd wintry. away from the far north of scotland it will feel noticeably milder. any areas of seeing the temperatures in double—digit. as we have a saturday night and into sunday, he was a weather front, squeezing out the milder air, cooler conditions following behind but would be given quite a contrasting temperatures. when we keep the cloud
in the outbreaks of rain, and the stronger went down to the south—east, temperatures won't away south—east, temperatures won't away so far. that wet and windy weather will gradually sink its way south eastwards during sunday. behind it will all be in the fresher conditions, some sunshine to be had but some showers which could be wintry over the high ground of scotland. and you will notice a difference in temperatures but some sunshine to compensate on sunday. so next week while more unsettled conditions follow, i think we will begin monday on a dry note but look what is waiting in the wings. another area of low pressure, and that will make inroads as we head to the day on monday. a bright start, sunshine on offer, not to drive it asa sunshine on offer, not to drive it as a day goes by to a crowd of the west as the rain stops to move in. accompanied by strong winds, gales for some question areas through the day on monday. temperature wise there is —— they are a little above average for the time of year. we are sticking with the type —— sticking with that them as we