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French and Riviera News Friday 22nd September 2017

Local

A second case of Chikungunya - A second case of chikungunya has been reported in the Var. The first case was reported early August. In both cases the patients fell ill from the disease which is spread by Mosquitos, on national territory and had not travelled to contaminated areas. In an attempt to prevent the spread of the virus health authorities in the Var have launched a door-to-door information campaign. Residents are advised to not leave stagnant water lying around and to empty plant pots of water as well as clear away garden waste.   

Strike – 500 people have gathered on Place Garibaldi in Nice, to demonstrate against the new labour reforms. Thursday’s national strike by the CGT union saw fewer people take to the streets compared to last week’s protests. The reforms will be presented to Ministers today following which, some will take effect as early as next week.

While protests were taking place throughout France, President Emmanuel Macron was in Marseille accompanied by the French Sports Minister. Mr Macron spent the day visiting the site which will host the sailing events at the Olympic Games. The visit comes following the announcement that France is to host the 2024 summer Olympics.

Bomb Scare - 400 students have been evacuated from the University in Avignon following a bomb threat. The incident occurred on Thursday morning. After extensive security checks it was reportedly a false alert and students were able to return to the premises by late afternoon.

Attack - Sandra Bertin, the Nice police officer accused of defaming the Minister of the Interior, by claiming she was pressured into making a false report, on the events of July 14th, has been acquitted by a court in  Paris. The court freed her after saying that the immense pressure on the night of the attack most likely led to her claims which they believed were said in good faith.

Roads - Users of the A8 motorway are warned of a change in the traffic flow around the peage at Nice St Isidore and the Canta tunnel. Starting on Monday, roadworks will necessitate the closing of that stretch of motorway from 8pm each evening. Diversions will be in place.

Porsche - Porsche has launched its very own super-yacht which will set owners back £12million and come complete with a spa pool, al-fresco dining area and space for up to four guests below decks.  The stunning craft was launched at Viareggio, in Italy, and will now travel to Monaco in time for the annual Yacht Show which runs from September 27 to 30. Just seven of the yachts will be made, guaranteeing the owners an almost-unique slice of boating history.

National

Bettencourt - Heir to the French L’Oreal empire and the world’s wealthiest woman, Lilian Bettencourt has died aged 94. Bettencourt, whose net worth was estimated at about €33billion euros, was the face of one of France’s biggest cosmetics company and had once captured the public’s imagination as the nation’s poor little rich girl. Bettencourt hit the headlines in 2007 when members of her entourage were charged with exploiting her failing mental health – leading to a vast inquiry that threatened to engulf the then-president Nicolas Sarkozy.

National Front Party - The French far-right leader Marine Le Pen has suffered a blow to her crisis-stricken National Front party after Florian Philippot quit. Philippot was Le Pen’s right-hand man for eight years he announced he was leaving the party in an angry breakfast television interview, saying he had been pushed out.

Montparnasse Tower - The Montparnasse Tower in Paris is set to undergo 300 million euro revamp. The 1970s skyscraper which has in the past been considered to be the ugliest building in Paris is to become a stunning, ecological landmark for when Paris hosts the 2024 Olympic Games.

Business

Asian stocks have fallen back this morning and the yen and Swiss Franc have both strengthened after North Korea said that it was considering conducting another hydrogen bomb test-this time in the Pacific Ocean. The North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho said earlier today that the country could consider another nuclear test on an “unprecedented scale”. Gold prices have also risen on the news.

Tensions between North Korea and the United States were ratcheted up on Thursday after President Trump announced a tightening of sanctions against Kim Jong-Un including a targeting of firms and financial institutions doing business with Pyongyang. In response,the North Korean leader said that he would “surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged US dotard with fire”.

The British Prime Minister Theresa May is to make a major speech on Brexit in Florence today during which she’s expected to ask the EU for a two year transitional deal in return for payment of 20 billion pounds on condition that the UK will have access to the single market and some form of customs union. Mrs May prepared for the speech with a two and a half hour cabinet meeting in Downing Street on Thursday. Analysts say that the British government is hoping that the speech could overcome the current blockage in Brexit negotiations. European Union negotiators meanwhile will be looking for concrete proposals written down in legalistic documents and are unlikely to be swayed simply by Mrs May’s words. Major stumbling blocks continue over EU citizens rights in the UK and the rights of UK nationals living in Europe as well as the Irish border situation. The 4th round of negotiations is due to start next Monday.

And-The US Securities and Exchange Commission has been heavily criticised after admitting that hackers had breached its database of corporate announcements in 2016 and may have used it for insider trading. Wall Street’s top regulator said that its EDGAR filing system which houses market moving information with millions of filings ranging from quarterly earnings to statements on acquisitions had been accessed by cyber criminals. The SEC says that it continues to investigate the matter  but that the breach may have been exploited for trading gains.

Sport

Football-Chelsea have agreed to sell Diego Costa back to Athletico Madrid. Reports say that the Brazilian born Spanish international will rejoin Athletico in January subject to a medical which will take place in the next few days. Costa hasn’t played for Chelsea this season after being told that he was not part of manager Antonio Conte’s plans.The two had a public falling out last season and Costa’s exit seemed only to be a question of time.

In the English Premier League tomorrow,West Ham play Spurs in the lunchtime game and then its Burnley against Huddersfield.Everton versus Bournemouth.Manchester City play Crystal Palace.Southampton face Manchester United.Stoke play Chelsea.Swansea host Watford and the late game is between Leicester and Liverpool. On Sunday Brighton play Newcastle  and Arsenal play West Brom on Monday.

Cricket-The second one day international between England and West Indies was abandoned because of rain with only 2 overs bowled at Trent Bridge on Thursday. England lead the 5 match series 1-0.The third match is due to be played in Bristol on Sunday.

Formula 1-The Mexican Grand Prix will go ahead next month despite the devastating earthquake that hit Mexico City on Tuesday. Organisers say that the Hermanos Rodrigues circuit or buildings were not damaged and the race will go ahead as planned. Meanwhile,Force India’s Mexican driver Sergio Perez has donated 3 million pesos to the victims of the earthquake.

Rugby Union.There’s 1 game in the Aviva Premiership tonight.Gloucester play Worcester. In the Guinness Pro 14 Cheetas play Leinster.Treviso host Ospreys.Glasgow play Munster and Ulster play Dragons.

Golf-Kyle Stanley of the United States leads heading into the second round of the season-ending Tour Championship in Atlanta. Stanley carded a first round 6 under par 64 to lead by two shots from Webb Simpson. The FedEx Cup points leader Jordan Speith shot a 3 under par 67 and is back in 6th place.

Weather

Mainly fine  with light,variable winds. Top temperatures 23 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 15 degrees on the coast and 12 degrees inland with partially cloudy  skies.  

The weekend-Partially cloudy with highs of 21-24 degrees.

Finally 

It's the lottery jackpot mystery that has left a small island off the southern tip of the Republic of Ireland feeling lucky. There is one winning ticket, with a 500,000 euro (£442,555) jackpot - and only 180 possible local winners. That's the population of Bere Island, County Cork, where the ticket was sold.

And, in a twist reminiscent of comedy film Waking Ned, no one has yet come forward to claim the prize.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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