welcome to bbc news. i'm simon pusey. our top stories: american prosecutors charge the parents of a teenager accused of a massacre at a school, saying they share responsibility. i will reiterate today that gun ownership is a right and with that right comes great responsibility. the first data on the omicron variant of covid suggests vaccines are less effective at stopping it spreading, but they do make the symptoms less serious. it's possible that the omicron variant is able to overcome and cause infections even in previously vaccinated people. however, if they develop only mild illness, that which means that the vaccines are still providing protection. scientist say they can now use gene—editing technology to determine the sex of mice,
creating female or male—only litters. and the religions reinventing themselves on social media as spiritual content on tiktok grows at a rapid rate. we begin in the us state of michigan where, in a rare move, prosecutors have charged the parents of an alleged school shooter with involuntary manslaughter. this was the scene at oxford high school on tuesday. four people were killed and seven injured in the shooting. ethan crumbley was charged as an adult with one count of terrorism causing death and four counts of first—degree murder. authorities have now issued a fugitive warrant forjames and jennifer crumbley. but in a joint statement to the bbc,
the family's lawyers said the crumbleys "are not fleeing from law enforcement" and had left town on the night of the shooting "for their own safety." here's the oakland county prosecutor announcing the charges a little earlier. it's imperative we prevent this from happening again. no other parent or community should have to live through this nightmare. i have shared previously, and i will reiterate today, that gun ownership is a right and with that right comes great responsibility. based on the information and evidence i have received, today i'm announcing charges against the shooter's parents, jennifer and james crumbley. the charges are as follows — james crumbley is charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter. jennifer crumbley is also charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter. let's explore this a little more. steven greenberg is a prominent criminal defence attorney usually based in chicago, but he joins us now
from seattle. a fascinating case with potentially quite a few implications. it potentially quite a few implications.— implications. it is fascinating. - implications. it is fascinating. i - implications. it is| fascinating. ithink implications. it is - fascinating. i think the prosecutor is trying to send a message here, an involuntary manslaughter charge is a way of saying someone was legend ——... someone gets in a traffic accident or kill someone when they are speeding, you can get charged with involuntary manslaughter. i am charged with involuntary manslaughter. iam not charged with involuntary manslaughter. i am not sure what was negligent about what occurred here so i really don't know where they are going with these charges do you think a civil case might have a higher chance of success potentially? sure, a civil case will have a greater chance of success. what we have seen already that the parents had some inkling that their son was having problems, that he was dangerous, he had drawn pictures. there is a text exchange apparently between the mother and the sun where she says to him, don't get caught
doing anything. civil is a much lower power, but if you have involuntary manslaughter, what the prosecutor is saying that the prosecutor is saying that the parents were aware something was off and i didn't do something. so was the school, and the school let him remain in the school. why didn't they send him home? parents decision not to come forward is obviously making the story even bigger and interesting, and obviously pushes the story on because there is more to come so to speak. will that help their case or hinder it?- speak. will that help their case or hinder it? they are not turnin: case or hinder it? they are not turning themselves _ case or hinder it? they are not turning themselves in, - case or hinder it? they are not turning themselves in, it - case or hinder it? they are not turning themselves in, it can't| turning themselves in, it can't help them because it makes them look like they are hiding from something stop if they didn't do anything wrong, they should turn themselves in. it seems from everything i have seen that these parents are a little bit off the charts when it comes to gun ownership and what they think people should be able to have with guns. it wouldn't surprise me if we ultimately find out that they are trying to scrape their phones and social media and
cover—up whatever evidence might be up there. i cover-up whatever evidence might be up there.- cover-up whatever evidence might be up there. i guess what ou are might be up there. i guess what you are saying _ might be up there. i guess what you are saying is _ might be up there. i guess what you are saying is there - might be up there. i guess what you are saying is there is - might be up there. i guess what you are saying is there is just i you are saying is there is just so many different potential people responsible in a case like this in terms of negligence, that it is hard to pin down one reason or one person or one authority that is responsible.— responsible. the same prosecutor _ responsible. the same prosecutor has - responsible. the same prosecutor has said - responsible. the same | prosecutor has said this responsible. the same i prosecutor has said this is responsible. the same - prosecutor has said this is a murder, murder is an intentional act. you can't have an accident that them leads to an accident that them leads to an intentional act. so they either helped him to commit this murder or they didn't. she is sort of trying to go down as weir road but i think she is just trying to send a message understatement. 50 just trying to send a message understatement.— just trying to send a message understatement. so you think in terms of gun — understatement. so you think in terms of gun ownership - understatement. so you think in terms of gun ownership in - terms of gun ownership in america, obviously that is such a big topic, you don't think really this case will have many implications regarding that? gun ownership in america is a political topic. gun ownership in america is a politicaltopic. i gun ownership in america is a political topic. i am a lawyer so politics are not my area, but frankly, i don't understand why anyone needs to have a gun in their home.— in their home. yeah, i think this story — in their home. yeah, i think this story is _ in their home. yeah, i think this story is probably - in their home. yeah, i think
this story is probably going | in their home. yeah, i think i this story is probably going to have further legs and we will be talking about it more. irate be talking about it more. we have had _ be talking about it more. we have had a — be talking about it more. - have had a bunch of these school shootings and nothing has changed.— has changed. that is the unfortunate _ has changed. that is the unfortunate part. - has changed. that is the - unfortunate part. absolutely. that is all we have time for. thank you forjoining us. to the coronavirus pandemic now. the chief scientist of the world health organization says the new omicron variant could become dominant around the world. the number of countries detecting the coronavirus variant is increasing every day. but the who also says it's too soon to know if omicron causes a more serious illness, and people shouldn't panic. the surge in south africa, where the variant was first identified, has accelerated further. there were more than 16,000 new cases announced on friday, up from 11,500 the day before. doctors say there's a higher rate of admissions to hospitals of young children. and after germany announced new restrictions for the unvaccinated on thursday, ireland has announced limits on the size of attendances at indoor events for its entire population,
and a restriction of no more than four households socialising in a private home. as more cases emerge, so does the data about the effectiveness of the treatments. here's the world health organization's chief scientist with what we know so far. it's possible that the omicron variant is able to overcome and cause infections, even in previously vaccinated people — we are seeing that now with a lot of previously vaccinated people who are the first to be reported with omicron. however, the fact that they are not getting sick — and again, we have to waitand see — but if they develop only mild illness, that means that the vaccines are still providing protection. here in the uk, the decision to offerjust the pfizer or moderna vaccines as a covid booster appears to have paid off after trials showed that they give the best overall response. seven different jabs were tested. researchers also said there were signs that the vaccines still protect against the omicron variant. our medical editor fergus walsh reports.
amid the gloom over omicron and its potential threat, some encouraging news. it was back in the summer that nearly 3,000 uk volunteers got one of seven different covid vaccines as a booster shot three months after their second dose. thank you very much indeed, everybody. for those boosted with pfizer after two doses of astrazeneca, their antibody levels were 25 times higher than a control group after one month. when pfizer was given after two pfizer shots, antibody levels rose eightfold, but from a much higher initial level. moderna and other combinations also worked well. the study didn't look at omicron. it has mutations in the spike protein, which may make antibodies less able to bind onto it and prevent infection, but the bigger the antibody army, the better. t cells, another part of the immune system, were also
significantly boosted. these can spot and destroy infected cells. the study showed boosters worked well against beta and delta variants, so it's likely they will also protect from serious disease with omicron. all of the vaccines actually showed a good t cell response. for the antibodies, moderna and pfizer were very high. we're very hopeful that the vaccines will provide a broad protection against multiple variants, although we can't say for certain at this moment whether they're going to work very well against omicron or not. in south africa, the first real—world evidence has shown omicron may evade some of our immunity — scientists have found a surge in the number of people being reinfected with covid. but we still don't know whether omicron causes more serious illness, and what ability it may have to spread in the uk, where so much of the population
is double or triple jabbed. fergus walsh, bbc news. scientists in britain have eugene editing technology to read female only and mail only litters of mice. they say the technique could eventually be applied to chickens to ensure that only egg producing females are hatched. how science correspondence reports. —— our science correspondent pallab ghosh reports. half of these chicks are useless to the farming industry because they're male and don't lay eggs so they have to be killed. that problem could be solved thanks to a breakthrough that enables scientists to reprogramme animals to produce only females. some 6 to 7 billion male layer chicks are killed every year shortly after birth at a point when they have a nervous system and are capable of suffering. we would like to be able to move to a system where those same eggs are laid, but instead, never hatch. scientists at the francis crick institute in london have found that the system was successful in mice and they think
it'll work on chickens. the researchers here have found a way of deactivating a gene involved with embryo development. the system can be programmed to stop either male orfemale embryos from developing using a technique called gene editing. the sex of a mammal is determined by its chromosomes. females have a pair of xs, males have an x and y. the process involves inserting half the gene editing molecule into the father's y chromosome, and the other half into the mother's dna. after mating, male xy embryos containing both halves of the gene—editing molecule will not develop, but female embryos will grow normally. gene editing can be used to make other genetic changes. these piglets are resistant to a lung disease that often devastates herds. the government is considering whether to allow the use of the technology by the farming industry.
pallab ghosh, bbc news. this is bbc news. the latest headlines: in a rare move, us prosecutors have filed involuntary manslaughter charges against the parents of a teenager accused of shooting dead four students at his school in michigan. the world health organization says vaccines may not be able to prevent people from infection with the omicron strain, but they do seem to make its effects far less serious. talks in vienna aimed at reviving the international nuclear deal with iran have faltered with european diplomats expressing disappointment and concern. they say tehran has "back—tracked on diplomatic progress made." iran's top negotiator has responded by suggesting that his counterparts should come up with their own suggestions. talks are due to continue next week. the us secretary of state, antony blinken, says iran has some very important decisions to make in the days ahead.
we will not allow iran to drag out this process while continuing to move forward in building up its programme. we have said all along that if the path to a return to compliance with the agreement turns out to be a dead end, we will pursue other options. trita parsi is executive vice president of the quincy institute for responsible statecraft, and an expert on us—iranian relations. he joins us from washington. initial indications not looking too promising in terms of progress between, with relations between the us and iran. ., , , relations between the us and iran. . , , ., iran. certainly, but at the same time, _ iran. certainly, but at the same time, the _ iran. certainly, but at the same time, the outcome | iran. certainly, but at the - same time, the outcome that we saw from vienna is exactly the one that all sides expected, but after five months of a cause when the new iranian team comes into the negotiations, they are going to take stronger more forward leaning positions in the us and europe will reject those. this is exactly
what we expected to happen. the good news is that they have decided to reconvene and reconvene soon, and the next round that we will really see whether the appetite for compromise is sufficient on both sides or not. the compromise is sufficient on both sides or not.— compromise is sufficient on both sides or not. the us and iran so often _ both sides or not. the us and iran so often coming - both sides or not. the us and iran so often coming in - both sides or not. the us and iran so often coming in topicsj iran so often coming in topics from completely different angles and so often at loggerheads. is there not a chance that this could be a wasted opportunity for the us to rebuild relations, obviously out of the trump administration? ., , administration? certainly. i think the — administration? certainly. i think the opportunity - administration? certainly. i think the opportunity that l administration? certainly. i. think the opportunity that was lost is truly one in which the trump administration withdrew from the deal because at that point, all sides were living up to the agreement, they were adhering to the elements of the agreement, and if it had continued to be successful, they would have been an opportunity to be able to expend on to other issues, other areas of dispute in which tensions between those two countries, but also between iran and neighbouring countries in the region could be reduced.
that opportunity was lost, now unfortunately i think the path at the biden administration chose was to negotiate —— negotiated return rather than returning to the executive order increasingly looks like it may have been the wrong path to go forward. you it may have been the wrong path to go forward-— to go forward. you are saying the wrong — to go forward. you are saying the wrong path _ to go forward. you are saying the wrong path there. - to go forward. you are saying the wrong path there. just i to go forward. you are saying l the wrong path there. just how different is the current us administration to trump's one, and what have we seen so far that really suggests they will take a different path to what trump has done?— take a different path to what trump has done? first of all, i think the _ trump has done? first of all, i think the biden _ trump has done? first of all, i think the biden administration | think the biden administration had a genuine intent to go back to the agreement. i still think they do, so in that sense obviously they are fundamentally different from trump. but if you are an ordinary uranian, you are not seeing any difference because the maximum pressure strategy of the trump administration, all of those functions that he reimposed and added onto the, they are still in effect, biden has not lifted a single one of them, not even as a form of goodwill gesture to show he is different. you are not saying
that much of a difference. in terms of iran, we often turn — let's talk about a commentator system in iran. what kind of actions are at play here? are there different factions in terms of the country and what they want to come out of this deal? . ' deal? there are different factions. _ deal? there are different factions, but _ deal? there are different factions, but what - deal? there are different factions, but what you i deal? there are different i factions, but what you have any run right now is a situation in which the hardliners have essentially consolidated all levels of power in iran in their own hands. it is less of a divided government that it was one it was being negotiated. this new government nevertheless seems to have a bit of a chip on his shoulder and it was to prove that it can get a better deal and it will bargain harder than the previous government, and mindful of the fact that most of the people who are currently in the negotiations were not in the negotiation team before, they did not have this experience of negotiating with the united states, it is a lack of experience may well enough proving it was decisive in a negative way. irate proving it was decisive in a negative way.— proving it was decisive in a negative way. we will know a lot more in —
negative way. we will know a lot more in the _ negative way. we will know a lot more in the coming i negative way. we will know a lot more in the coming days. lot more in the coming days about how these talks go. thank you so much indeed. pope francis has addressed thousands of roman catholic worshippers at a football stadium in the cypriot city of nicosia. it's the second day of the pope's trip to the divided island. his visit has focused heavily on the plight of migrants. our rome correspondent mark lowen reports. to the world's last divided capital came a preacher of unity. pope francis on the 35th trip of his papacy held mass in the cypriot capital nicosia, split between its turkish and greek community for almost half a century. some 7000 faithful came — mostly domestic workers from the philippines and the middle east among the tiny catholic minority here. and in a country where reconciliation between greek and turkish cypriots have stalled, an appeal for peace. translation: dear| brothers and sisters. in the presence of any personal
darkness and the challenges faced by the church and society, we are called to renew our paternity. if we stay divided among each other and everyone only thinks about themselves or their group if we don't come together and if we don't have dialogue and if we don't walk together, we cannot properly healfrom blindness. francis becomes the second pope to visit the country fractured since 1974 when turkey invaded the north, fearing that greece would attempt to annex the island. many hope today's politicians will heed the homely. ——homily. those are the messages we want to hear. unfortunately, we don't hear them very often. i was very excited because listening to stories and seeing videos on the internet about the pope in the vatican city, but i never expected i would see him live in cyprus. beyond politics, migration is the pope's other focus
on this trip, leading a service for those who fled to the island. cyprus is a key eu entry point for migrants and refugees, and the greek south accuses the turkish north of sending them across the divide. 50 migrants will soon be relocated from cyprus to italy in a papal gesture of welcome. rapprochement was theme of the pope's meeting with the orthodox archbishop, aiming to bridge a schism between the two churches that lasted almost a thousand years. the path of friendship one that pope francis hopes all on this scarred island may eventually take. mark lowen, bbc news. the actor sir antony sher has died aged 72. sir antony, who had cancer, was widely regarded as one of the country's finest contemporary classical actors, with a long association with the royal shakespeare company. david sillito looks back at his life. deformed, unfinished, sent before my time into this breathing world,
scarce half made up. antony sher�*s richard iii, a scuttling, spidery malevolence. it went beyond mere good reviews to become the portrayal against which all others are measured. when they are gone, then i must count my gains. your hair's nice. howard kirk in the history man, the defining �*70s campus radical. perhaps we should just add his name... i think my biggest problem is being young and beautiful. it is my biggest problem, because i have never been young and beautiful. arnold, the drag queen in torch song trilogy, another olivier award—winning role. oh, i've been beautiful. antony sher was also an accomplished writer and painter, but this career had begun with rejection from rada. they sent a letter saying, "we strongly recommend that you think about another career," which, you know, at that time, you know, really puts you on the line.
gay, jewish, south african — growing up, he felt very much the outsider. he liked the idea of disguise, and his home became the shakespearean stage. many of his greatest roles directed by the man who would become his husband, greg doran. hail, rome! titus andronicus. victorious in thy mourning weeds. iago. the moor already changes with my poison. lear. do not make me mad! troubled, complex, compelling. the characters of sir antony sher. sir antony sher, who has died at the age of 72. religions are reinventing themselves on social media. from nunsjumping on the latest online trends, to imams and otherfaith leaders preaching on instagram. now research commissioned by the bbc shows that religious content, especially on tiktok, is growing faster than average. our global religion reporter sofia bettiza has the story.
religion is adapting to new social media trends fast. short videos like these are becoming really popular. on tiktok this hashtag has nine billion views. diwali has over 2 billion. the hashtag #islam more than 60 billion hits. these nuns dedicate their entire lives tojesus christ but after they're finished praying, this is what they get up to. they're making a video on tiktok. we gotta go, we gotta go, we gotta go... don't you think that some people might not take you seriously? i think there's a lot of stereotypes about nuns out there. there is an idea that you lock yourself into an institution, like, all the rules, all you are giving up. so when we share those videos, we really want to show that we are human and we live.
and to say they have fun is an understatement. they do pranks... (screams) orjump on the latest tiktok trend. what kind of comments do you get? 0h, they range. yeah, they range. there is like a whole strand of folks who are like, "i don't even know how i got on nuntok. like, how did they appear, but i'm here to stay". from a convent to a mosque and this is the biggest in the uk. for thousands of years people have come into places of worship to learn more about theirfaith. but now religious messages are echoing through tiktok, instagram and other social media platforms and that means they're reaching people who might never come to a place like this, or speak to a priest, an imam ora rabbi.
sabah decided to became an imam when he was 17. i don't want you to ever give up. just start by reading one verse a day, because it puts life into perspective. thanks to his videos people have found him online and have come to him with all sorts of problems. it's also been a platform where people turn to me with questions that might not relate to faith. they might be dealing with drug abuse, they might be dealing with relationship issues and i try to help them to the best of my ability. it's happening in every major faith around the world. in china, these buddhist monks have gained such a large following on douyin, the chinese version of tiktok, that tourists travel to their temples just so they can meet them. the nuns pray for everyone who comments on their videos. would you pray for someone who has left a hateful comment? oh, more. absolutely. yeah, watch out. we pray our senior sisters on those comments. sofia bettiza, bbc news.
and before we go, as we get closer to the holidays, you may have noticed father christmas popping up in a lot of places — shopping centres, parades, and even in this aquarium in budapest! these seasonal divers are there to feed the fish, avoid the sharks, and spread some christmas cheer to visitors. there's even a small tree decorated with shells at the bottom of the tank. aquarium officials say they started the tradition a few years ago. the sharks and fish are given extra food during the holiday season. a quick reminder of our top story now. prosecutors in michigan have charged the parents of a teenager accused of murdering four students at his high school. james and jennifer crumbley have also been charged with manslaughter. there is some ethan carried out the mass shooting with a semiautomatic pestle bought by his father. that's all for now.
you can reach me on twitter, i'm @sipusey. stay with us on bbc news. hello. we have a rather cold and windy weekend to come and there'll be some wet weather at times, especially on saturday — some showers or some showery rain and hill snow. drier for many on sunday. throughout the weekend, though, a chilly wind to contend with. what's going on? low pressure close to scotland as saturday begins will run south through the north sea as the weekend goes on. around it, showers or some longer spells of rain and hill snow, especially on saturday, and it's also dragging in another push of chilly air from the north—west. and it's not what those without power or working to restore power after storm arwen want to hear but it is going to be a rather cold weekend ahead with temperatures starting like this for saturday morning. just a few spots close to freezing, just a hint of frost here and there.
there'll be early rain across eastern england clearing away to sunny spells, but then this curl of rain and hill snow through scotland, northern ireland, pushing into more of northern england, wales and the midlands as we go on through the day. north—west scotland starting to brighten up in the afternoon — just a few showers. the far south of wales and much of southern england, a lot of the day is going to be dry. it's blustery wherever you are — these are average speeds. some stronger gusts around particularly western coasts — 40—115 mph or so, so a risk of gales here — so it will feel colder than these temperatures might suggest, which are already down compared with what we had on friday. saturday evening and night, it's central and eastern parts of england with outbreaks of rain. some snow to the higher parts of the pennines and peak district. a few showers in the west but some clear spells, too, and where you have the clear spells, a greater chance of a frost going into sunday morning, especially in the countryside. and on sunday, well, the low pressure's here. for many, it's far enough away to allow a drier day but close
to that across especially eastern parts of england, there'll be some outbreaks of rain around. they may just fringe into eastern scotland at times and also push a little further west towards the midlands. much of scotland, northern ireland, wales and the western side of england, bar the odd shower, will stay mainly dry. there'll still be a very brisk north—northwesterly breeze to contend with, so it will feel colder than these temperatures might suggest. and temperatures don't change much in the week ahead and especially during the first half of the week, it looks like we're going to have to contend with more wet and, at times, very windy weather. about how these talks go. thank you so much indeed.
this is bbc news. the latest headlines: prosecutors in michigan have charged the parents of a teenager accused of murdering four students at his high school. james and jennifer crumbley have also been charged with manslaughter. theirson, ethan, carried out the mass shooting with a semiautomatic pistol bought by his father. the first data on the omicron variant of covid suggests vaccines are less effective at stopping it spreading. scientists in south africa have reported a huge surge in the number of people being infected. it's the first real—world evidence indicating the new variant may evade immune defences. a team of british scientists have used gene editing technology to create female—only and male—only litters of mice. the technique could prevent the destruction of hundreds of thousands of unwanted mammals used in research and millions of male chickens, culled because they don't lay eggs.