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Evening Update Mon 19 June 2017

Paris - A suspected attacker has driven his car directly into a police vehicle on the Champs-Elysees in Paris, exploding in a ball of flame. A huge security operation is currently under way with two metro stations on the Champs-Elysees, closed. Despite a statement saying there were no casualties, it’s thought the driver is most probably dead.

Rail - The train line from Ventimellia to Cannes is becoming a ‘railway of death’ for immigrants, with the latest this morning, causing morning rush hour chaos. So far this year, there have been multiple accidents on the tracks, with two migrants wounded and four killed by electrocution. Today, the body of a 27 year-old migrant, who jumped on the roof of the train in Italy, was discovered electrocuted, shutting down the line. At the Franco-Italian border, the number of migrants from Africa has risen sharply since January, as well as fatalities. SNCF have leaflets and posters in several languages in Ventimiglia, warning of the dangers of jumping trains.

Elections - The new French parliament has the fourth largest number of female public representatives in Europe. After yesterday elections, 38% of the assembly are women, up from 26% in the previous French parliament. Only the Swedes, Finns and Spanish have more women MP’s. In the election, President Emmanuel Macron won a commanding majority, securing a powerful mandate for pro-business reforms. However, that mandate was not as strong in the Alpes-Maritimes which bucked the national trend, electing six Republicans, twice as many as the three elected for Macrons new République en Marche party.

Heatwave - The Riviera is to escape the worst of a heatwave sweeping across France and northern Europe. Today Météo France issued an ‘orange heatwave alert’ for twelve departments in the west and south-west, where temperatures are expected to reach up to 39°. That’s as hot as the severe heatwave of 2003 which killed over 14,000 people. In the Alpes-Maritimes, people are asked people to check on the elderly and authorities have announced they are to increase their forest fire watch in the coming days.

BUSINESS

Boeing is maintaining pressure on Airbus, with the launch of the launch of the 737 Max at the Paris Air Show today. The Max can carry up to 230 passengers over 3,000 miles, and already has about 3,700 orders. Meanwhile Airbus has announced an upgrade to its A380, the worlds largest passenger jet. The A380 Plus will allow up to 80 extra seats, with no compromise on comfort, and can cut airline costs by 13% per seat.

UK television host and businessman, Noel Edmonds has revealed in an interview that he attempted suicide when his business fell victim to financial fraudsters. It happened in 2005 as Unique Group collapsed during the historic £245m loans scam by HBOS employees in Reading, who were jailed earlier this year. Mr Edmonds is reported to be seeking £50m compensation from Lloyds Banking Group, which rescued HBOS at the height of the financial crisis in 2008.

SPORT

Tennis - The warm up for Wimbledon starts today with the Queens Club Championships. This morning Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga easily went through to Round Two after a straight-sets win over fellow Frenchman Adrian Mannarino. This afternoon, Australia's Nick Kyrgios quit his opening match after he slipped awkwardly in the first set of his match against Donald Young. The ninth seed lay on court for a few minutes, and had lengthy treatment on the sideline before resuming, but after squandering two set points, he quit after losing a tie-break. Later today, Britains Kyle Edmund takes on Canadian Denis Shapo.valov

Rugby - Toulon legend and ex-France international Eric Melville has died at the age of 55, after suffering a heart attack. He first arrived in France, aged 19 and became the first South African to become a French international, winning six caps and playing in the Five Nations before joining Toulon, where he won the French title in 1987 and 1992.

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