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Evening Update Thur 27 July 2017

Fires - 70 firefighters and two water bomber helicopters are once more fighting the fire at Carros which has reignited again. The new blaze, in the area of Chemin de Tuillieres, has claimed another 5,000 sq m of forest, but firefighters say they have the blaze contained. At Bormes-les-Mimosas, the 1,500 people evacuated on Tuesday, have begun returning to their homes and holiday campsites, as firefighters have brought the massive blaze there under control.  

Meanwhile, two teenagers biking in the hills near Marseilles have been arrested and are being questioned in relation to forest fires in the area. Police say the teenagers had lighters, matches and binoculars in their backpacks.

With the entire south of France on fire alert, all forest areas are closed, and people living near woodland are advised to be ready to move immediately if instructed to do so. It’s advised to have an emergency bag with legal documents, such as ID and drivers licence, as well as bottles of water, warm clothing, a torch, radio, batteries and a first-aid kit.

Pop star Madonna is facing criticism today over the fires across the South of France. Last night she was performing at a private event near St Tropez, which went well, as she tweets “Tonight in St Tropez was on fire”.

Grasse - The new sub-prefect of Grasse, Stephane Daguin, officially took office today. The official ceremony was held at the towns war memorial, in the presence of many elected officials and civil and military leaders.

Family - France’s National Assembly has voted for a new law today, banning politicians from employing family members. Currently one in six French MP’s employ a family member, which will now be punishable by a fine of up to €45,000 and up to three years in prison.

BUSINESS

Volkswagen has defended its record after allegations that it teamed up with other German car giants to breach EU cartel rules. VW said it was normal for manufacturers to exchange technical information to speed up innovation. However, it declined to comment on specific allegations that five German carmakers colluded on price and technology. Daimler has also called the allegations speculative.

Airbus has cut production of its A380 superjumbo for the second time in a year. Deliveries of the double-decker will now fall from 15 this year, to 12 next year and eight in 2019. They said the prospects of further sales of the A380 in the short-term were not necessarily high, as they have not had an A380 order for two years, and that production of the A380 continued to operate at a marginal loss.

Higher costs for Premier League rights have hit profits at Sky television despite a jump in revenues and new customers. The satellite broadcaster said total costs rose by 5%, with football rights accounting for most of the increase. While profits are down, revenues are up, with the UK and Ireland remaining Sky’s biggest market, and expansion into Germany, Austria, and Italy adding five million new customers.

SPORT

Football - Manchester City have convincingly beaten Real Madrid 4-1 in a pre-season friendly in Los Angeles. However their newest £52m signing, Benjamin Mendy who’s just moved from AS Monaco to City was missing, due to a muscle problem.

Suspended Spanish Football Federation president Angel Maria Villar has resigned from his roles as vice-president of UEFA and FIFA. He was arrested earlier this month as part of a corruption investigation and then suspended by the Spanish Football Federation. Villar, denies all the allegations.

OGC Nice were held to a 1-1 draw at the Stade Allianz Riviera by Ajax last night, in the first leg of their Champions League 3rd qualifying round. Balotelli opened the scoring for Nice on 32 minutes, only for Van de Beek to equalise for the Dutch visitors early in the second half. The return leg is in Amsterdam next week.

Golf - The BBC has announced it will broadcast live coverage of the US PGA Championship in August across its TV, radio and online channels. The 2017 event, the year's final major, takes place from 10-13 August in North Carolina.

Rugby - Australia captain Stephen Moore has announced he will quit international rugby by the end of the year and will step down as captain immediately. Flanker Michael Hooper is tipped to take over the captaincy.

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