Evening Update 21 June

Former American President Barak Obama is in Eze this afternoon as the guest rock group U2. Two of the band members and the Obama family enjoyed lunch before retiring to the home of Bono and the Edge on the beach at Eze.Former American President Barak Obama is in Eze this afternoon as the guest rock group U2. Two of the band members and the Obama family enjoyed lunch before retiring to the home of Bono and the Edge on the beach at Eze.

A visit to Nice today by the Minister of the Interior included a tribute to victims of July 14 which was held at ‘Villa Massena’. The Minister continued his visit by greeting Vigi-Pirate soldiers on Place Massena and inaugurating the new police head-quarters which will be located at the former St Roch hospital.

Students sitting the Maths Baccalaureate exam this morning, have encountered several errors on the paper. The ‘Ministry of Education’ says the necessary measures have been taken to correct the errors and candidates will not be penalized following the incident.

After months of negotiations, a brand direct flight between Nice and China has been announced. David Lisnard, the ‘Mayor of Cannes’ and President of the Côte d'Azur Regional Tourism Committee, said Air China are to fly a three times weekly service to Beijing using an A330 aircraft, carrying 200 economy and 28 business class passengers. The new intercontinental flight is the first in France, outside of Paris, and compliments other direct links from Nice to New York, Montreal, Dubai, and Doha.

And finally, there are many road closures and diversions in place around Nice this afternoon in preparation for this evenings Fete de la Musique concert, which features nearly a dozen of Frances best-selling singer-superstars including; Patrick Bruel, BigFlo & Ollie and Mika. 27,000 people are expected on Place Massena for the free concert which is also being broadcast nationally on France 2 television.

BUSINESS

Gold prices are shooting up hitting a six year high earlier today of just over $1,400 an ounce. The increase is due to rising tensions with Iran and the Middle East, along with plans by the US Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank to cut interest rates.

The Italian Prime Minister has said he is optimistic  that the European Commission will not pursue an excessive deficit procedure against his government for the continued high levels of Italian sovereign debt. Rome says it will respect and abide by current fiscal rules that form part of a treaty agreement known as the “growth and stability” pact.

SPORT

Formula 1 - Lewis Hamilton led Valtteri Bottas in a Mercedes one-two in first practice at the French Grand Prix. Hamilton was just 0.069 seconds ahead of the Finn, with Ferrari's Charles Leclerc third. Ferrari spent the session trialling upgrades to their car, including a new front wing, that they hope will start moving them more towards Mercedes' pace.

Basketball - Monaco’s Roca Team enjoyed a very convincing win over the men of Zvez.dan Mit.rovic winning 97-62 at the Jeep Elite Finals last night. The return game will be played tomorrow Saturday.

WORLD CUP - In the final group games last night, the USA beat Sweden 2-0 to top Group F and Chile beat Thailand 2-0. In Group E an injury time winner for Cameroon gave them a 2-1 win over New Zealand and put them into the last 16  while the Netherlands beat Canada 2-1. The knockout stage of the competition starts tomorrow with games including England v Cameroon and the hosts France against Brazil on Sunday.

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