French and Riviera News Thursday 21st November 2019

Local

Police investigation into suspected kidnapping attempt - Police in Cannes are carrying out an investigation after reports of an attempted kidnapping of a 10-year-old girl near a school in the city. Several students have spoken of a van and suspicious individuals sighted in the area on Wednesday. Police have confirmed that “while there is no concrete evidence at the moment, they are taking the reports very seriously”.

Trans Remembrance Day - About fifty people have gathered at Place Garibaldi in Nice to pay tribute to transgender people who have been killed in hate crimes. The tribute organised on Wednesday evening by the association transgender Côte d'Azur + (ATCA +) and the LGBT Côte d'Azur centre was to mark Trans Remembrance Day. According to figures a transgender person is killed every 26 hours.

Mountain guide - A French appeal court is due to rule today on the case of Pierre Mumber, a mountain guide convicted of “facilitating irregular entry” of asylum-seekers in the Alps last year. The mountaineer faces a three-month suspended sentence if the court upholds his conviction.However , Mumber and his advocates, including human rights group Amnesty International, say the mountaineer only offered hot tea and warm clothes to four West Africans who arrived in France through the mountains from Italy.

Woman claims to have detained in villa in the Var - The prosecutor's office in Draguignan has opened a judicial investigation after a woman claimed to have been detained in a villa near St. Raphael for the past five years. The 31-year-old was found wandering down a road near Agay at the weekend. According to reports, the paternal grandmother of the woman’s son, with whom she was living, has been arrested. Investigations are continuing.

Former mayor sentenced - The former mayor of Roquebrune-sur-Argens Luc Jousse has been sentenced to prison. He received an 18-month sentence, including 6 months suspended, and an 8,000 euro fine and two years of ineligibility after being found guilty of fraud, the illegal taking of interest and undermining the equality of candidates in public contracts. The court also found the current mayor of Roquebrune-sur-Argens, Jean-Paul Ollivier guilty of violating the freedom of access to public markets for which he was fined 1,000 euros.

VTC drivers - VTC private hire drivers staged an operation escargot go-slow in Marseille during Wednesday’s morning rush hour. They moved in a convoy from the boulevard de Paris to the Marseille city hall. They were protesting at their working conditions.

Truffle lovers - Truffle lovers are getting ready to descend on Aups in the Var for the first black truffle market of the season. Producers say that there are limited quantities but excellent quality. Reports say that the price is about 600 euros per kilo, compared to 400 euros at this time last year. The market gets underway tomorrow morning in the place Mistral in Aups.

Céline Dion - Tickets for Céline Dion's unique concert on July 18th on the Place du Casino in Monaco have gone on sale today at prices ranging from 600 to 1,600 euros. A major event for the Principality which promises to mark next year’s festivities in Monaco.

National

Circulation of fake bank notes - French police say they have seen an increase in the circulation of fake bank notes, warning the public to be vigilant. The fake euro notes are film props, and while at first glance they look like genuine tender, they have a message written across one end stating: “This is not legal. It is to be used for motion props”. The Gendarmerie for the Haute-Savoie region in eastern France warned it had been seeing the notes in circulation for a few weeks.

Earlier this year Spanish police launched a campaign on social media instructing people to "TOUCH, TURN AND LOOK!", as a way to ensure the bank notes they had were genuine.

Child pornography - France has announced plans to impose stronger penalties for those convicted of possessing child pornography. In a speech to mark the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child at Unesco in Paris, president Emmanuel Macron also pressured pornography websites to restrict access to minors. France presented a three-year plan to end violence against children.

As part of the plan, the minimum sentence for possessing and looking at  child pornography will be upped from three to five years in prison, and those convicted will automatically be included on a registry that will ban them from working with children.

Health care - The French state will take on €10 billion of public hospital debt over the next three years as part of an emergency package unveiled by the government on Wednesday in response to months of protests in the health sector. French hospital workers have been striking for months in protest over years of cutbacks they say have harmed care in a country with a public health system that was once the envy of the world.

Business

Global shares are on the slide this morning after China warned that bills in Congress supporting anti-government protestors in Hong Kong could complicate trade negotiations and delay a “phase one” deal that investors were hoping would be signed in the near future.

The Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell by 2 percent on the news with Japan’s Nikkae 225 down 1.6 percent and S&P futures down by half a percent.

All three major US indexes fell on Wednesday.

The Chinese government is extremely sensitive to overseas criticism over how it’s dealing with the situation in Kong Kong and  moves by the US Congress to pass bills supporting anti-government protestors will be viewed in a dim light by Beijing which considers it to be a sovereign matter.

The bills have now been sent to President Trump for final approval.The President is expected to sign it which will be viewed by China as interference in its domestic affairs.

Trade experts say that a “phase one” agreement between Washington and Beijing could now be pushed back into next year which has dented recent confidence in financial markets.

 

Google says that it will no longer allow political campaigns to target advertising at people based on their political leanings.

The internet giant also says that campaigns will be unable to match their own database of prospective voters against Google’s own database or to target individuals across platforms including YouTube and Google search.

The policy is to start in the UK within a week with just under three weeks to go until the general election and will be applied to other countries in the near future.

Campaigns that target age ,gender and location will still be allowed.

Google added that it would take robust action against any obviously misleading statements in political adverts putting it at odds with rival Facebook.

The social media giant has previously said that it will not fact-check advertising from political candidates or campaigns.

 

And-A Spanish court has ruled that Ryanair’s policy of charging a fee for hand luggage is “excessive” after a passenger was handed a fee for taking a carry-on bag onto a flight without a special ticket.

Ryanair allows only small bags as hand luggage if they can be stowed under the seat in front.

Recently ,a passenger was fined 20 euros for taking a 10 kilo bag on board for a flight from Madrid to Brussels.

Ryanair says that it will not change its baggage policy but the court ruled that the airline should reimburse the passenger with interest.

The court ordered Ryanair to remove the policy from its terms and conditions but the airline is adamant that no changes will be made.

Sport

Cricket-It’s stumps on day 1 of the first Test between New Zealand and England at Tauranga.

England won the toss and decided to bat.Opener Rory Burns made 52 but debutant Dom Sibley fell for 22 and skipper Joe Root fell for just 2.

Joe Denly made 74 before being caught by Watling off the bowling of Tim Southee but Ben Stokes was still there at the close on  67   not out.

At stumps England had reached   241-4.   

It’s day 1 of the first Test between Australia and Pakistan at the GABBA in Brisbane.

Pakistan won the toss and decided to bat which looks like completely the wrong decision.

The tourists had been reduced to 144-6 midway through the afternoon session with Hazelwood ,Cummins ,Starc and Lyon all among the wickets.

Football-The new Spurs manager Jose Mourinho has promised to bring “happiness and passion” to the club after signing a three and a half year contract.

Mourinho ,who’s been out of work since being sacked by Manchester United in December last year ,replaces Mauricio Pochettino who was dismissed by the club on Tuesday after a poor start to the season.

Mourinho said that he “couldn’t be happier” and was looking forward to the challenge.

Spurs are currently in 14th place in the English Premier League table 6 points off the relegation zone.

Tennis-Great Britain have won their opening match at the new look Davis Cup with a 2-1 victory over the Netherlands.

They’ll play Kazakhstan today with victory putting them through to the quarter finals.

Spain reached the last 8 with victory over Croatia  while Serbia moved a step close to the quarter finals after beating Japan 3-0.

Germany beat Argentina 3-0.

Weather.

Overcast with rain and light to moderate easterly winds.

Top temperature 14 degrees.

Overnight lows of 10 degrees on the coast and 8 degrees inland with more rain and scattered thunderstorms.

Friday and the start of the weekend-Overcast with more rain.

Finally 

French has been ranked as world's best nationality for the eighth year running. France is set to see its nationality ranked best in the world once again, followed by Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. 

.The index is based on the quality of life and opportunities for personal growth within a country -

It also looks at the external value of nationality, and how influential it is on giving people opportunities outside their country of origin.  

Areas including the level of expected welfare, education, healthcare, life chances, and global travel and settlement are assessed

This year, France is set to hold on to the top spot for the eighth consecutive time, earning a score of 83.5 per cent out of a possible 100 per cent.

Positions five to ten are held by Iceland (81.4 per cent), Finland (81.2 per cent), Italy (80.7 per cent), the UK (80.3 per cent), Ireland (80.2 per cent), and Spain (80.0 per cent), in that order. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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