a very warm welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to our viewers in north america and around the globe — my name's gavin grey. our top stories: brazilian police question the greek ambassador‘s wife on suspicion of involvement in her husband's killing. as russian diplomats prepare to leave the united states, donald trump praises president putin for not expelling us staff staff in retaliation. 2a hours on — syria's ceasefire is generally holding. the un security council will be asked to endorse the agreement and back new peace talks. and recognition for excellence in sport , fashion and public life — we'll have a look at queen elizabeth's new years honours list. police in brazil have accused the greek ambassador‘s wife
of colluding with her lover in the murder of her husband, kyriakos amiridis. a police investigator said francoise amiridis had admitted having an affair with a policeman who she blamed for the killing.catriona renton reports. the greek ambassador's wife francoise amiridis arriving at a police station in rio de janeiro. her husband kyriakos amiridis had been missing since monday. his body was found in the boot of a burnt—out car on the outskirts of rio on thursday. his wife told police he left in his rented car and did not tell her where he was going. it's been claimed mrs amiridis was having an affair with a policeman called sergio moreira. he has now confessed to killing her husband. it's understood he told detectives she told him to do it. investigators say the two had been planning this for days. mrs amiridis admitted to the affair but denies ordering the murder. a cousin of the policeman has been accused of taking part in the crime
and moving the body. investigations have been carried out at a house in the north of rio where mr amiridis and his family were thought to have been staying. he had apparently travelled from brasilia to spend christmas with his wife and her parents. it's thought this is where he was fatally wounded. the president of brazil has written to the greek prime minister expressing his profound sadness and condolences to the family of ambassador amiridis and the greek people. donald trump has praised the russian president, vladimir putin, for his decision not to retaliate after the us expelled 35 russian diplomats. the outgoing obama administration said it was throwing out the diplomats in a row over hacking during the american election — a suggestion rejected by the kremlin. with the latest from moscow, here's steve rosenberg. near the kremlin tonight, they were putting on a seasonal
show, ahead of the new year celebrations. there was song and dance, and some musical theatre. but that was nothing compared to the political theatre being played out inside. first up on stage, the foreign minister. he advised president putin to expel 35 us diplomats. america had expelled 35 russians. in other words, tit for tat, cold war—style. it seemed inevitable. but no, vladimir putin said, he wasn't going to stoop to the level of irresponsible diplomacy. he wasn't going to expel any americans. he even invited the children of all us diplomats in moscow to a new year's party here in the kremlin. that was a surprise,
but it didn't change what america's top intelligence agencies believe to be true, that state—sponsored hackers, backed by the highest levels of the russian government, had interfered in the us presidential election with a cyber attack on the democratic party. was president putin behind it? last week, i got a chance to ask him myself. mr president, your country has been accused of state—sponsored hacking with the aim of influencing the result of the us presidential election, and president obama revealed that he told you personally to cut it out. so, what did you tell him in response? speaks russian the kremlin leader refused to tell me, dismissing all the talk of hacking as sour grapes from the democratic party. today, president putin said he would work to restore relations with america under donald trump. and this evening, mr trump responded by praising him for not engaging in tit—for—tat expulsions, saying in a tweet, saying... what putin and trump expect
from each other is a certain kind of decency, a certain kind of frankness, and no hypocrisy and no political correctness. by not expelling diplomats today, the kremlin was sending a new year's gift to the new man in the white house. russia wants to mend ties with trump's america, and come in from the cold. let's round—up some of the other main stories: the german chancellor, angela merkel, says islamist terrorism is the biggest challenge facing her country. in her new year message, mrs merkel, referred to the deadly truck attack carried out in berlin by a tunisian asylum seeker. she said it was sickening when acts of terror were carried out by people who had sought
protection in germany. mediators trying to resolve the political crisis in the democratic republic of congo say the government and opposition have agreed the main points of a deal. they've decided that presidentjoseph kabila can remain in office for another year but elections must be organised within twelve months. china has announced that it'll ban the trade in ivory by the end of next year. environmental groups have welcomed the decision as "historic" and say it represents a significant boost to international efforts to tackle the elephant poaching crisis in africa. it's thought up to 70% of the world's ivory ends up in china. the un security council will vote later today on a russian resolution endorsing the ceasefire agreement in syria. the draft text calls for rapid delivery of humanitarian aid and expresses support for a political process to end the conflict. while the ceasefire appears to be holding in most areas, it's emerged that not all rebel forces consider themselves
to be involved. our middle east correspondent alan johnston reports. there is a ceasefire but many on the frontlines won't put aside their guns just yet. they'll watch and wait, suspicious after years of war. translation: as fsa, we are committed to this ceasefire to keep civilian people safe, but we are here in the frontline ready in case the regime try to break the ceasefire at any time. we think this ceasefire is a game but we are committed to it to keep the civilian souls safe. while the fighters draw breath in the new tense calm, others focus on the politics of the truce. in this rebel stronghold, the northern city of idlib, they protested against president bashar al—assad. people here said they would support
the ceasefire if it meant he was ousted, and if the demands of the opposition were met. but the president's supporters will see things very differently. events have moved in his favour. his army has dealt the rebels a major defeat in aleppo. mr assad is stronger now than ever and his great ally, russia, is the majorforce behind the truce agreement. translation: this reflects the reality that, after aleppo‘s liberation, the situation is now different. there is a real opportunity to reach a political solution for the crisis in syria that ends the bloodshed and establishes the roots for the future of the country. those who want the truce to hold worry about the part played by these men, rebels from what used to be called the nusra front, which had links to al-qaeda. they've rejected the ceasefire deal and the syrian military says they're still a target.
but if it goes after these men in the depths of rebel territory, the truce could unravel. but across this shattered land, on its first day, the ceasefire appears to be largely holding. despite reports of scattered clashes and some airstrikes, many syrians will desperately hope that the truce will endure. translation: the ceasefire is good, it's good for the people to get a break from the aircraft, the hit and kill. the people are tired. we want our god to realise this with a ceasefire or with anything. we don't have any problem because we want to finish this death and destruction that happen to us. if his prayers are answered and the guns go quiet, the route to new peace talks will open up. alan johnston, bbc news. britain's new year's honours list
has been published — marking out exceptional achievement or service in the world of sport, the arts and all aspects of society. the vast majority of honours go to people out of the public eye for work in their communities, but among the many sports stars named is the somali—born british athlete, mo farah. he receives one of the highest accolades from queen elizabeth — a knighthood. he'll now be known as sir mo. the 33—year—old retained both his 5,000 and 10,000 metre titles at the rio olympics. and the tennis player, andy murray, is also now a sir. the wimbledon champion, olympic gold—medallist and world number one is knighted for his services to tennis. in the world of entertainment and the arts — ray davies — front man for the rock band the kinks is awarded a knighthood. and the editor of the fashion magazine, american vogue, anna wintour becomes a dame. in a short statement she said she's touched to receive the honour. equestrian lee pearson — who was flag bearer for team gb at rio 2016 paralympic games —
has also been knighted. he's won 12 paralympic medals, including ten golds in four games and is now a sir. but as he told the bbc he wont let the honour go to his head. been through so many emotions once i received the latter. the, excitement, intrigue —— letter. —— fear. from there, on which a severe disability, i had many operations to iron me out. 15 major operations, lots of barracking of bones. that was before i started riding horses. —— braking. today, receiving this nomination for the knighthood is just really, really surreal. i want
my teammates in the equestrian to share in this knighthood. also friends, family, staff and supporters that have all contributed towards this. i love and try to enjoy every day. as i said before, making people laugh, trained to be a bit cheeky, i hope everybody still calls me lee. if they still say the other words, so be it. and for a full honours list just go to our website. that's bbc.com/news. a rescue operation is under way at a theme park in california after a ride got stuck. 17 people have been stranded for 17 hours after the ride got stuck 30 metres india. fire ci’ews a re got stuck 30 metres india. fire crews are lowering people to the ground by rope and so far there are no reports of any injuries.
stay with us on bbc news, still to come: if everyone has their price, what should we make of cristiano ronaldo turning down $100 million a year to play football in china 7 the most ambitious financial and political change ever attempted has got underway with the introduction of the euro. tomorrow, in holland, we're gonna use money we picked up in belgium today, then we'll be in france, and again it'll be the same money. it has just got to be the way to go. george harrison, the former beatle, is recovering in hospital after being stabbed in his oxfordshire home. a 33—year—old man from liverpool is being interviewed by police on suspicion of attempted murder. i think it was good. just good? no, fantastic. that's better. this is bbc news.
i'm gavin grey. the latest headlines: brazilian police are questioning the greek ambassador‘s wife on suspicion of involvement in her husband's killing. as russian diplomats prepare to leave the united states, donald trump praises president putin for not expelling us diplomats in retaliation. the un secretary general, ban ki—moon, has spent his last full day in office before standing down. this was the scene at the united nations building in new york as he said goodbye to staff. he'll be replaced from the 1st ofjanuary by antonio guterres, the former prime minister of portugal. mr ban was in a cheerful mood as he made these farewell remarks.
he was saying goodbye to staff there. well, preparations are also under way around the world, and security is being tightened in a number of european cities ahead of the big event. this was the scene in paris on friday, where additional concrete barriers have been placed in areas thought to be vulnerable to attack. more than 10,000 police and other security officials will be on patrol on saturday evening. and more than 90,000 police and soldiers will be on duty across france. in the german capital, berlin, several areas have been closed. additional police will also be on patrol in madrid, milan, rome and naples. from sunday, consumers in sweden will be given tax breaks to repair their possessions rather
than throwing them away and buying new ones. a new law comes into force on the 1st of january, part of a package of measures proposed by the green party intended to reduce waste and encourage small businesses. however, the cost is estimated to be around $100 million. bill hayton reports. sweden is changing gear. already very environmentally conscious, it is taking another step. from the new year, repairs like this will be cheaper. and notjust bikes. sales taxes on fixing clothes and shoes will be cut, too. the plan has been pushed by sweden's green party, part of the governing coalition for the past two years. translation: with the repairs, you get the products to last longer. people will buy quality and get things fixed, instead of throwing them away. people getting household appliances repaired will be able to claim back some of the cost on their annual tax return, and the greens hope it will encourage small businesses.
translation: we'll need more people in spring, in order to serve everyone. then, i think we'll see a big difference. it is a good way to get more people into work. the cost of all the measures has been estimated at $100 million. the policy's success or failure will depend on whether sweden's voters think that is worth the environmental benefits. cristiano ronaldo‘s agent says the real madrid football star has been offered more than $100 million per season to move to the chinese super league — and he's turned it down. but can every player resist the lure of the cash as china uses its financial muscle to try to attract the game's biggest stars? joe wilson reports. china wants football, it wants footballers. earlier this year, bbc sport filmed at one of china's first designated football schools, two hours east of beijing. but the country can't simply wait for its grassroots to grow. in the meantime, there is money. according to his agent,
cristiano ronaldo turned down £85 million a year, offered by a club in the chinese super league. well, maybe, but the relocation is already happening. here is carlos tevez, once of manchester united and city, saying goodbye to his beloved buenos aires to begin the new year in shanghai, apparently becoming the world's highest—paid footballer. £32 million a season in the csl, it is rumoured. trevor watkins, a sports lawyer who has worked in china, told me these deals will force the world to pay attention. we have a situation where the csl is commanding the way in which the transfer market is moving. they're the ones with the big money, they're the ones who are prepared to put it down on the table. they have a slightly different transfer window to european football. and arguably they are distorting, or actually advancing, the european market. consider oscar, 25, at his peak, and leaving chelsea tojoin a different shanghai side. so are chinese clubs now a threat to the premier league?
sam allardyce said today he had rejected a chance to manage in china, but thinks more players will go there. with their population, and the fact that the people will go out and watch football at that level, only time will tell whether it's the right thing to do or not. but the clubs are not going to turn that money down, and certainly the player isn't. it is possible to build a successful football league with foreign talent, in a country where the national team fails. they could ask england fans. china aims to win the world cup. if so, the next generation must be better than the current one. in a recent world cup qualifier, china lost to syria. joe wilson, bbc news. as it continues to open up its economy to the rest of the world, the cuban government is keen for more young people to speak english. it's now made it a requirement for all high school and university students to learn the language. the new attitude is in stark contrast to cold war times,
when russian was the preferred language for many schoolchildren. will grant reports from havana. morning assembly atjesus suarez gayol secondary in havana. the school is named after one of the guerrillas who fought alongside che guevara. but these teenagers are growing up in a very different cuba than jesus suarez did. the recently deceased fidel castro will have less sway over them, and they are also more intellectually aware than their parents' generation. and it shows, especially in english class. english is now a requirement of all secondary school pupils and university graduates. during the cold war, cuban students could choose between english or russian. but with the communist—run island fast opening up to the world, english is considered a vital skill for the nation's youth. translation: as an international language, english always had a place in our curriculum. but we're now rolling out new techniques to enhance our
learning of the english language. language—teaching methods in cuba are still quite traditional, relying on textbooks and limited internet access, but the authorities say they are working to change that. we'll have, in the future, not only internet. we also are dreaming of having languages laboratories in every school. but it is notjust in the classrooms that more english can be heard. it is on the streets, as well. as cuba experiences a record year in tourism, many ordinary cubans are taking on the task of learning english for themselves, or at least improving their basic skills. and many are not relying on formal classes, but are completely self—taught. welcome to cuba. thank you. for example, darbis luis, who sells second—hand books and posters to tourists, learned his english through computer games and rock songs. i have to make conversation, because i need to make money
to eat, you know. so i have to learn to speak to them, you know, and i have to get better and better, and i have to tell them a story, because books are not so easy to sell. you have to make them believe what you are saying. resources for anglophiles and budding english—language students are scarce in cuba, but there is one place they can go. cuba libro is the country's only english language bookstore, and has become so popular they sometimes have to turn customers away. the recent thaw in relations with the united states has undoubtedly brought cubans and americans closer together. but there is a lingering suspicion it could all be reversed, especially by the trump administration. for now, parents and students are not thinking far ahead. they are just keen to keep improving their ability to communicate with the rest of the world. jamaica has long been a hotbed for new musical styles — giving the world reggae, ska, and now dancehall. if you're not familiar with it,
it involves a dj ‘toasting', or rapping, over music. and its popularity is spreading. zimbabwe has been won over, and is now home to its own dancehall stars. we went to meet one of them, wallace chirumiko, who goes by the name of winky d. here's his story. raps over music we might have problems, but happiness starts from within, right? so we just say, ok, my problems disappear. whatever i'm facing right now, those are challenges. they're going to make me a better person at the end of the day. that is a little bit what this song is all about. i grew up in an environment whereby people around me were hooked to dancehall.
the likes of the bounty killer, terror fabulous, those were some of the great dancehall artists from jamaica in the ‘90s. so we grew up listening to those others. that is where the inspiration came from. i sing about whatever bits i come across within life. that is what i sing about. things we see, things we practise, that is what i put into my music. this is the family. we have lion soldier, we have bobo. so right now we are in kambuzuma, and this is the place i was born and raised. some prefer calling it the ghetto. but as for me, i call it the university, because this is the place where i acquired my knowledge. when i do my stuff here,
people feel me more. the interaction is — it is easy to interpret. because that is my language, so to speak. and some people might tend to differ, and say, yo, winky d, if you want to take this thing to that different level, you have to do your music in english, and stuff like that. but i beg to differ, because music itself is a language. music is a language which can be felt. donald trump has praised president putin for not getting involved in the tit—for—tat expulsion. he said he has always been very smart. good morning.
some contrasting weather conditions to close out our final few days of 2016. take, for example, yesterday. it was cold and foggy in the south—east pretty much all day for some of us. temperatures just a couple of degrees above freezing, and not much to be seen from the london eye. by contrast, into the south—west, it was a beautiful afternoon with plenty of sunshine, as seen by this weather watcher's photo in st ives. 12 degrees the high here, and it was mild in the north and west of scotland as well. but it is going to turn increasingly wet and windy. high pressure, though, into the south just hangs on, and so fog certainly going to be an issue. it is certainly worth bearing in mind if you are out and about on the roads early on, there could be further disruption to travel, as that fog may well be dense in places. so temperatures struggling just a couple of degrees above freezing, and it will be a pretty murky start. mild to the north—west, but that rain is on its way. but let's concentrate with the fog across east anglia, down into the south—east corner, and to the south of the m4 corridor. here, some of the fog could be dense in places. so it is going to be a cold,
grey start, eventually that fog lifting to low cloud. there will be a little bit of brightness, though, across much of wales and the north of england. you should get to see some sunshine, and that will stay with you for much of the day. across northern ireland, southern scotland, the winds picking up, the rain into the north—west, some of that turning quite heavy for a time, and that will gradually drift its way south through the day. we should get to see a little bit of sunshine into the north of england and north wales. hopefully the fog lifts away, and it may well feel just that little bit milder. a bit more of a breeze around, at eight or nine degrees here, ten or 11 further north. now, as we go into new year's eve celebrations, unfortunately that weather front a bit of a nuisance through northern ireland and northern england, perhaps into north wales as well. so it means a wet end to the year. behind it, colder, and there will be some snow showers. so i suspect, as the clock ticks towards midnight, that weather front will be sitting, really, through the north of england and into wales. to the north of it, showery, those showers turning increasingly wintry. to the south of it, it
stays mild and quiet. now, eventually, as that front sinks south once again, the colder air digs in from the north. so we start off new year's day with some wet weather moving your way through the midlands, eventually pushing into the south—east corner. so a pretty miserable new year's day here. further north, it stays cold and showery. it will be a colder day on monday, but at least there will be some decent spells of sunshine, and it stays largely dry as well. the latest headlines from bbc news. i'm gavin gray. president—elect donald trump has praised russian president vladimir putin, after mr putin said he will not expel any us diplomats in response to washington's expulsion of 35 russians. writing on social media mrtrump said: police in rio dejaneiro are questioning the greek ambassador‘s wife and two other people on suspicion of involvement in the envoy‘s killing.
investigators say the ambassador‘s body was found in the boot of a burnt—out car. the nationwide ceasefire in syria is now over 2a hours old. while it appears to be holding in most areas — moscow says it calls on the un security council to back the deal and support new peace talks. and now on our world, a symphony for syria. first broadcast last summer, it's a touching story of four syrian musicians as they prepare for a ground—breaking series