this is bbc news. i'm maxine mawhinney. the headlines at 103m: a plea for help from the un, which says the world faces its largest humanitarian crisis since 1945, as millions of people face famine in parts of africa and the middle east. extensive damage has been caused to guys marsh prison in dorset, after a prisoner climbed onto the roof and set a fire. more than 60 prisoners have been moved to safety. former professional cyclist jess varnish says she is relieved the truth is finally coming out, as a report is leaked which criticises the dysfunctional and inept leadership of british cycling. also in the next hour: a crackdown on ticket touts. computer software, which buys hundreds of tickets within seconds, is to be made illegal with law breakers facing an unlimited fine. and in sport, wales knock down ireland's hopes of winning the six nations, as george north hands england the chance to retain their crown today, if they can beat scotland. and in half an hour, the travel show takes an arctic
adventure in finland, when it visits lapland. good morning and welcome to bbc news. the united nations has issued a stark warning, saying the world is facing its biggest humanitarian crisis since 1945, with more than 20 million people at risk of starvation and famine. the un's humanitarian chief has given an urgent plea for help for people in yemen, somalia, south sudan and nigeria. unicef has already warned that 1.4 million children could starve to death this year. andy moore reports. a child called fatima. she lives in yemen, where two thirds of the population need food aid, and seven million are hungry.
the united nations has been told the famine across four countries is now the biggest crisis for the organisation since it was founded in 1945. we stand at a critical point in our history. already, at the beginning of the year, we are facing the largest humanitarian crisis since the creation of the united nations. now, more than 20 million people across four countries face starvation and famine. in south sudan, more than one million children are acutely malnourished, and there is a cholera outbreak to deal with as well. the un says billions of dollars is needed from the international community to feed the hungry, but so far only a fraction of that money has got through. the overall requirement for south sudan this year stands at $1.6 billion us dollars. as of now, we have received 9.3% of that amount, and more funding is urgently needed.
some food aid is being delivered. the united nations says famine can be averted, but the world needs to dig deep into its pockets, right now. around 60 inmates were evacuated after fire at a prison near shaftesbury in dorset. it is understood a prisoner clambered on to the pitched roof of one of the house blocks at hmp guys marsh, took off his clothes and set fire to them. the blaze is believed to have damaged the roof, and inmates in the block were taken to a secure area. the prisoner has been brought down from the roof and the prison service said there was no risk to the public. the conservative former chancellor, lord lamont, has criticised plans to increase national insurance for more than 1.5 million people. the peer said the proposal announced by the chancellor, philip hamond, in the budget was a "rookie error" and a "tax raid". ministers insist they haven't broken
a conservative election pledge, because the promise not to increase national insurance only extended to employees. lord lamont says he's concerned about future taxation policy. well, i think it's a dangerous error to increase national insurance contributions for the self—employed. they do get less benefit, that's why they have lower rates. most of them prefer they have lower rates. most of them p refer to they have lower rates. most of them prefer to leave it that way. this includes people like white van men, plasterers, plumbers, self—employed people like taxi drivers. this is going to be very unpopular, but also, the chancellor indicated that this was just the first increase and there might be other increases later. given the very, very strong reaction, that, ithink, would be a profound mistake to prolong this controversy. basically, ithink
profound mistake to prolong this controversy. basically, i think he ought to think again about all this. you can't please everyone, and people think that there is a box just full of money and the chancellor can give it away, but you've got to be very, very careful when you put up taxes on a particular group, particularly when it is one that is as entrepreneurial as the self—employed. the whole point about this measure is that 15% of the labour force in this country are self—employed. it's one of the reasons that we have such a flexible economy. these are people who don't have the same welfare benefits. they have the same welfare benefits. they have to knuckle down, get on with it, whatever the conditions. really, this will be much resented. i think this will be much resented. ithink in this will be much resented. i think in the interest of the government and the interest of themselves, it would be better to rethink it and certainly not go on putting more tax increases on the self—employed. the cyclistjess varnish has told the bbc she feels she was "thrown
under the bus" after making allegations of sexism in the sport. a leaked report, published in the daily mail, claims british cycling sanitised its own inquiry into the claims. the olympian told the bbc‘s sports editor, dan roan, she believed the truth was finally coming out. representing great britain, jess varnish! she is the medal winner who became a whistleblower. jess varnish‘s allegations of sexism last year plunged british cycling into crisis. it has been really hard. i've been really low. nothing has been in control, everything has been out of control. out of my control. i had nobody to turn to within the organisation. i was just sort of left on my own. coach shane sutton, who dropped varnish from the squad for the rio olympics last year, was found to have used sexist language towards her, but was cleared of eight of nine allegations against her. —— against him. he resigned, but denies wrongdoing. according to a draft report of an investigation leaked to the daily mail, findings
of an internal review into varnish‘s allegations were reversed by british cycling's board. i am relieved that the truth is coming out. i have been pulled from pillar to post just to get this, and to see that it was a cover—up is huge. in a statement, british cycling admitted it did not pay sufficient care and attention to the well—being of staff, but it said that reforms were under way. those people who say it is sour grapes because you weren't selected for rio, you will have heard those arguments, what's your response to that? when people say it's bitterness, that's all they have to say about me. if people knew me and saw what i was doing with my life and how i have turned things around, they would know the truth. they would know that i'm not bitter at all. should shane sutton work in cycling coaching again? from my experiences, no. varnish says she is now considering whether to sue british cycling for unfair dismissal. her fight for justice continues. online touts, who bulk buy tickets
and sell them for inflated prices, will face unlimited fines under government plans. an amendment to the digital economy bill means it will be illegal to use software to buy thousands of tickets, as holly hamilton reports. tickets to see some of our favourite artists can sell out in just a matter of minutes. but thousands of those tickets will not be going to fans. instead, they're being purchased by bots. used by professional touts, the software can grab hundreds of tickets in one go. within hours, they end up on secondary websites for hundreds if not thousands of pounds more than face value. this is currently legal, but now the government is taking action. now touts who use this software will face unlimited fines, while resale sites will face harsher measures if they do not prove
they are taking action to deal with the touts. it is hoped these measures will curb the growing power of secondary websites and make it easier for genuine fans to get their hands on a reasonably priced ticket. pope francis has said the catholic church should consider allowing married men to become priests. speaking to a german newspaper, he said lifting the ban on married men being ordained would only apply in specific circumstances, like remote areas of the world where priests are in short supply. a judge, who last month stopped president trump from implementing a controversial travel ban, has said he needs more time before ruling on a revised version. washington state had tried to get the new proposals stopped, butjudgejames robart said more papers needed to be filed before he could make his decision. iraqi special forces say resistance among so—called islamic state fighters is weakening in the northern city of mosul.
iraqi government troops now control about half of western mosul and are closing in on the densely populated old city. but iraq says it's found no evidence that is fighters have used chemical weapons. earlier this month, the un said 12 people had been treated for possible exposure to chemical agents in the city. supporters of the ousted south korean president, park geun—hye, have clashed with police for a second day, following ms park's removalfrom office. she's been linked to a corruption scandal involving some of south korea's top businesses. there have also been demonstrations in favour of the court decision to impeach her. the two sides are being kept apart by barricades patrolled by police officers dressed in riot gear. three people died in scuffles. stephen evans sent this from the capital, seoul. supporters of the ex—president have been out demonstrating their anger.
they say the judges who dismissed park geun—hye were motivated by politics. this is the centre of seoul. this is one of the main streets in the centre of seoul. that's the police barrier right down the middle of the street. what you can't see is that right behind that barrier there are hundreds of police and vehicles and then beyond that, anti—park people. they've set up effigies of the disgraced ex—president and the others like the head of samsung, facing corruption accusations. a left of centre government may well win here. in washington, the white house was unperturbed. it's a domestic issue, in which the united states takes no position in the outcome of that election. it's up to the korean people and their democratic institutions to determine the future of their country. in north korea, people probably speaking under
supervision, have voiced pleasure at park geun—hye's demise. he says, "during the last four years, park geun—hye has brought suffering to oui’ geun—hye has brought suffering to our people. she should be punished very severely." in north korea, leaders are not located. the news from the south may play two ways there, it shows disarray in the south, but also that leaders can be removed. stephen evans, bbc news, seoul. let me show you the scene live in seoul at the moment. it's 7pm there. what we're going to see are the opponents of the impeached president who were calling for her arrest, now that she's lost her immunity from prosecution. difficult to see, because it's very dark there. but a huge crowd of supporters, pro and anti, that's going on into the night. the us defence secretary has promised a full investigation
into military personnel, who shared nude photographs of female colleagues on social media. in a statement, james mattis said the practice was unacceptable, showed a lack of respect and undermined cohesion. andy beatt reports. the pentagon's been shocked and embarrassed by revelations of servicemen posting naked images of servicewomen online. reports last week uncovered widespread photo sharing and cyber bullying by current and former marines on facebook. fire in the hole! now the bbc has seen evidence that the problem's far more extensive, involving personnel from other branches of the us military. in some cases, names, ranks and contact information were also posted, together with a welter of offensive and demeaning comments. you know, we claim that being a marine is a special title and something that you
earn. there's honour here. but there is no honour in denigrating a fellow marine in any way, shape orform. we're going to be self—critical, self—analytical. we've got to recognise that there's a problem and we've got to figure out how to solve it. victims say the posting of photos is not just it. victims say the posting of photos is notjust a violation of trust, but a threat to their safety. multiple victims recently began speaking out about those unauthorised posts, but they received threats and backlash in an attempt to quiet them. we will not be silenced. i can tell you that this exact behaviour leads to the normalisation of sexual harassment and even sexual violence. a facebook group called marines united with 30,000 members has been shut down. the naval criminal investigative service has launched an investigation. it's asked more whistle—blowers to come forward with information. 0nly
whistle—blowers to come forward with information. only then, will the full scale of the problem be known. the headlines on bbc news: a plea for help from the un which says the world faces its largest humanitarian crisis since 1945, as millions of people face famine in parts of africa and the middle east. extensive damage has been caused to guys marsh prison, after a fire was set by a prisoner. more than 60 prisoners have been moved to safety. the former professional cyclist, jess varnish says she's relieved the truth is finally coming out, as a report is leaked which criticising the dysfunctional and inept leadership of british cycling. we are staying with sport. because mike is at the sports centre. good morning. good morning a big day of fa cup action. also in the six nations. the title is now england's there for the taking today, thanks to wales and
what happened in cardiff last night. the welsh needed to bounce back after two defeats and george north there was unstoppable. he was the difference scoring two of three welsh tries. then jamie difference scoring two of three welsh tries. thenjamie roberts rounded off the win making most of some tired looking irish defending to make it 22—9 to wales in the end on their home turf. we knew there would be a reaction and against one of the best sides in world rug by and against one of the best sides in world rugby you have to play like that, with and without the ball. there's a lot being hurt in the camp over the last couple of weeks. i'm delighted for the players. they deserve that. they've taken a lot of stick, the coaches and the players alike. we beat a good irish side emphatically. france play italy in the first of today's six nations games. after that attention turns to the calcutta cup. england could pick up the calcutta cup. england could pick up the title with victory against scotland, white the scots can go top
and claim pole position if they can get a first win at twickenham in 34 yea rs get a first win at twickenham in 34 years now. for england, 0wen farrell isa years now. for england, 0wen farrell is a doubt after falling over the coach's small dog. england have up to an hour before kickoff to finalise and announce their team for what both coaches know will be a hard—fought game. what both coaches know will be a hard-fought game. we're just concentrating on ourselves. we've had a great two—week preparation. we had a great two—week preparation. we had a great two—week preparation. we had a fantastic week at axe ford, trained well. two good days of training here. we're well prepared. we're looking to play in the historic calcutta cup. neither eddie ori historic calcutta cup. neither eddie or i are playing the game. it's about the players on the field. 0ur players know we have to be on our best performance on that day, during that 80 minutes, we'll have to string together a number of excellent plays, attack and defence and think clearly to get them to start adapting to our play. they're a very good team.
to football, the fa cup fairy—tale continues today for lincoln city, the first non—league side in the quarter final since 1914. over the first non—league side in the quarterfinal since 1914. over a century. they've beaten teams from league one, the champion shone and the premier league in this year's competition. now can they beat and heap more misery on arsenal? whatever the odds against them and their manager, who was a year ago, a pe teacher. gradual steps for us, which is always important, when you're trying to make progressions and move forward. we're going to look forward to it. for us, we have to have a belief that we can win the game. we respect the fact that it might be one in a thousand. but if that's the odds, we go there expecting it to be that one time. to the tennis, johanna konta has won
the battle of the brits at the indian wells tournament. it's the first time she's met heather watson ina wta first time she's met heather watson in a wta tournament. konta took the first set 6—4. frustrating for watson, because there are now 96 places between them in the world rankings. konta is the world number 11 and moves into round three. in the men's draw, kyle edmund is into the second round. he won 6—1, 6-3. into the second round. he won 6—1, 6—3. dan evans made even lighter work of his match against dustin brown, winning 6—1, 6—1. he faces kei nishikori in round two. that's all the sport for now. don't forget, you can keep up to date with those stories and more on the bbc sport website. bbc.co.uk/sport. more for you in the next hour. we look forward to, that mike. thank you. the german carmaker volkswagen has
pleaded guilty in an american court to three criminal charges linked to the diesel emissions scandal. vw has admitted that between 2009 and 2015 vehicles were fitted with illegal software allowing them to pass emissions tests, while still producing high levels of pollution. sarah corker reports. volkswagen's scandal over rigging emissions tests sparked a global backlash and multiple law suits and the fallout for the world's top—selling car maker continues. in court in detroit, the company admitted that for six years, diesel vehicles were fitted with illegal softwa re vehicles were fitted with illegal software to cheat emissions tests. it's the first time they've actually pleaded guilty, as they did so, they said, it is because we are guilty. i think it was also interesting that thejudge said he think it was also interesting that the judge said he wanted some time to review the finds, which are something like 4. $4.3 billion. they could have been far more without the
settlement. prosecutors didn't hold back, describing the emissions scheme as a planned offensive that went to the top of the organisation. the scandal first broke back in september 2015, when us regulators confronted vw about the results of its testing and the emissions of its diesel vehicles. the guilty plea is pa rt diesel vehicles. the guilty plea is part of a 4. $4.3 billion settlement with us authorities to pay civil and criminal fines. with us authorities to pay civil and criminalfines. vw with us authorities to pay civil and criminal fines. vw admitted to installing illegal software in half a million vehicles. the devices enabled its diesel models to emit up to 40 times the legally allowable level of pollution. in total, the scandal will cost the company as much as $25 billion in the us alone, including compensation to owners and dealers. but it's far from over. including compensation to owners and dealers. but it's farfrom over. vw has admitted that worldwide 11
million vehicles have the secret softwa re million vehicles have the secret software installed. in germany, an inquiry is looking into what the german government and the chancellor knew about breaches of emissions standards. vw is now embroiled in investigations across the globe. in the us, though, it's looking to steer away from its troubles. the firm will be sentenced in april. for 50 years the laws on abortion have remained unchanged, meaning a woman must have the consent of two doctors to end her pregnancy. under those rules a woman who takes a pill at home could potentially face life imprisonment. now a labour mp is calling for the legislation to be updated. but pro—life critics say it could pave the way for sex selective abortions and terminations on demand. my first reaction was, i don't want to have a baby. straightaway, how am i going to care for this being when i can't even care for myself? emily tells me why she had an abortion.
she was broke, she had depression, she couldn't cope. she had to wait one month for a termination. that was the worst month of my life. i was googling ways to induce miscarriage and i think that in itself proves it's too long. you're risking women's lives because i could have really hurt myself during that time. you could have faced a jail sentence? i don't have any words for that. to punish a woman who is already in such an unstable and vulnerable position, what do you think you're doing to that woman's life? just under 200,000 abortions were carried out in the uk in 2015, most in rooms like this. the nhs says women should wait around two weeks, but it can be more than twice that. figures indicate these tablets used to miscarry are increasingly being bought illegally online by women who refuse to wait. two doctors sign off every abortion. now, this is unlike any other medical procedure.
but no other procedure involves ending a life and that's what's key here, isn't it? we're in the 21st century. we trust women to make decisions about their lives, about their healthcare, and abortion should be no different. but others say the delay that comes with not one but two gps is essential when deciding the fate of not one but two lives. many women go for that initial consultation and by the time they come back they actually change their minds. it's an important step in the process to make sure women are making the right decision for them. do you have any statistics to back that argument up? we do know that about 30% of women who go for initial consultations never go through with the process. the difficulty with the termination is once you have done that, if it's a rushed process, you can't change your mind. her office later said this figure had been given by a leading clinician. we could find no evidence of it.
abortion is an emotive subject. but while the royal college of midwives has backed the the proposal, more than a thousand midwives have joined a "not in my name" petition. they fear it could pave the way for sex selection abortions on demand. we didn't achieve what i always believed was what women needed, which was choice. diana monday was a key figure calling for change in the ‘60s, just as she is today. i was a lone public voice, but i was not a lone person who had had an abortion. they were all there, the voices, but they were unheard and unfortunately they stayed unheard. they still are unheard. i am appalled. 50 years later on, we are still fighting for this. oh, my goodness. this is the hate mail? yes. she shows me the hate mail her campaign attracted in one file. letters from women who begged
for help in another. that fine line between the rights of a woman and the rights of an unborn child will be scrutinised again on monday. for refugees who have made the journey from syria, creating a new life for themselves in the uk can be very difficult. imad alarnab first made a living repairing cars, before his past career as a chef was discovered. now, he's been bringing a taste of his home country to london, as fiona lamdin reports. this is where imad alarnab feels most at home, making supperfor 40. would you please try this? hummus? yes, hummus. for 15 years, imad alarnab ran three restaurants in damascus, until war broke out. i mean, our restaurants are closed now, because of the war. we had to leave in 2015, injuly 2015. escaping for a safer life.
you know, the most hard part was leaving your family behind. and while imad had to leave his home and his family, the cooking came with him. three months, ten countries, running, cycling, taking a train, a boat, before finally arriving on the steps of a church in calais. i was on the steps of the church for 64 days. sleeping there? sleeping there, yes. so how did you get into the uk? in the back of a lorry. yes. so it wasn't easy at all. 0nce here, imad was given refugee status, which allowed him to work as a car salesman. i met him and heard his story and it became very clear that he was in london and trying to do everything he could to make ends meet, and i heard he was selling cars, and i felt really sad knowing
that he had this huge passion for food but was selling cars. ijust knew that there was more that we could do as a community to help him do something with that. i didn't really know what it would look like or what it would feel like but i knew that within my group of friends and within the broader network, there was something we could do to help bring him back into the food scene. with 36 hours of preparation, syrian food comes to a pop—up restaurant in east london. how was it received? it's been wonderful, the chicken in particular was really good, really enjoyed it. the lamb, the lamb was really good, really tender. the chicken is cooked to perfection, it's moist, which is hard when you cook chicken. he's a great chef! he should be doing this, right? thank you for coming for the first time! thank you. applause experts have revealed
that the author, jane austen, was virtually blind towards the end of her life, possibly because of arsenic poisoning. tests on her glasses show that medicine she had been taking could have contained arsenic, which may have contributed to her early death. ben moore has this exclusive report. for one of history's greatest writers, just reading her own novels would have been very difficult without these. jane austen's specs have been at the british library for 20 years, but only now can they bring focus to her life. back in the early 19th century there were prescriptions, similar to what we have today. so what we did was have somebody bring in a portable lensmeter so we could very, very carefully have it examined. austen was longsighted. firstly low perception, but her eyesight deteriorated. the final pair revealed that she would have had great trouble reading and writing. this could help reveal the mystery of why she died so young. the possibility of her being
poisoned accidentally with a heavy metal such as arsenic. we know now that arsenic poisoning can cause cataracts. arsenic was often put into medication for other types of illness, so potentially for rheumatism, which jane austen suffered from. using modern optometry, we are able to see just what jane austen's eyesight would have been like. that is 475. i cannot see your face at all. i can only see my hand when it's about there. so that's what she needed, to correct her vision. the british library wants optometrists to get in touch and offer their professional opinions. a rare chance to see things through the eyes of one of our best—loved authors.