French and Riviera News Tuesday 25th September 2018


West Nile Virus - The Regional Health Agency the ARS for the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur region has revealed that 20 cases of West Nile virus have been reported in the region, 19 in the Alpes Maritimes and 1 in the Vaucluse, since July 7th.  Three of the victims have been hospitalised and are now reported to be in recovery. According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control the ECDC, the West Nile virus has seen an important increase in the number of cases in 2018 compared to previous years. The West Nile fever, also known as "West Nile Virus Disease", is a viral disease transmitted by mosquitoes. In most cases, human infection with West Nile virus is asymptomatic, however in some cases, the disease is manifested by a flu-like syndrome (fever, headache, muscle aches) sometimes accompanied by a rash. More rarely, it can cause serious neurological complications. Anyone with these symptoms should consult their doctor.

Death - An inquest has begun into the death of a 15-year-old French girl, severely allergic to sesame, who died during a British Airways flight from Nice to London, after eating a sandwich that failed to list sesame as an ingredient. The inquest, which is expected to last five days, is likely to examine product-labelling laws and raise questions about whether gaps in regulation need to be tightened.

Aquarius –There’s been sharp Political reaction in  Marseille following the announcement on Monday by the director of SOS Mediterranean that the Aquarius was heading to Marseille with 58 migrants on board, including 17 women and 18 minors.  The leader of France Insoumise, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, immediately affirmed his support to the migrants in a post on Twitter while Republican MP Eric Ciotti has called for the French government to refuse them the right of entry to the city’s port.

French singer Renaud hospitalised - French singer and songwriter Renaud, who lives in Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, has been hospitalised in Montpellier. The 66 year old is reportedly suffering from chronic alcohol problems. Renaud is a popular French singer and several of his songs are popular classics in France, including the sea tale "Dès que le vent soufflera", the ballad "Morgane de toi" and the nostalgic "Mistral gagnant".


Security - According to a recent survey on behalf of the Union of Private Security Companies the USP in France. 65% of French are confident in the system. Results showed that many believed that surveillance agents working with the police was a necessary measure in the face of the threat of terrorism. The private security sector in France currently counts over 167,000 employees.

Carrefour - French supermarket giant Carrefour has denied approaching rival Casino with a tentative offer for a tie-up, as the pair became the latest chains to be swept up in Europe's retail wars. In a statement released in English, supermarket chain Casino said it "had been contacted by Carrefour over the last few days with a view to a possible combination". It said its board met to discuss the proposal, but that it rejected the bid outright. Carrefour responded on Monday by issuing a statement that "denies having solicited Casino". Adding that it was considering legal action.


Oil prices have hit a four year high after both Saudi Arabia and Russia rejected calls to increase production by President Trump.

The increase follows a meeting of between the Saudi and Russian oil ministers in Algiers over the weekend during which global supply was discussed as well as the US sanctions on Iran.

President Trump said that Opec should “get prices down now” by raising global output.

Sales of Iranian crude have been falling back with buyers cautious about penalties from US sanctions that are due to come into force in November.

There are concerns that crude prices could hit 100 dollar early next year.

Brent  Crude hit 81 dollars a barrel on Monday-up by 3 percent.


Shares in Sky TV have jumped by 9 percent following the weekend’s blind auction for the firm which resulted in the US cable giant Comcast gaining control of 69 percent of the company.

The share increase reflects the eventual price that Comcast will have to pay for the UK pay TV operator after laying down 40 billion dollars in the auction on Saturday night to see off a rival bid from Rupert Murdoch’s Fox.

In New York on Monday,investors were less convinced about the merits of the deal with Comcast shares losing 6 percent.

The largest obstacle to Comcast’s plans for Sky is the 39 percent of the firm that is still owned by Fox and is due to be sold to Disney under the terms of an existing deal between Rupert Murdoch and the US entertainment giant.

The Fox holding is valued at around 15 billion dollars based on Comcast’s offer and could give Disney distribution rights or could be used as a bargaining tool in the event of a future asset swap.


And-Reports this morning say that the Italian fashion house Versace is to be bought by Michael Kors.

Reuters says that the US group has agreed to buy Versace in a deal worth around 1.7 billion dollars.

The Italian newspaper Corriere della Serra broke the news on Monday but so far there’s been no comment from Versace.

The Versace family still owns 80 percent of the firm after selling 20 percent of it to the private equity group Blackstone four years ago.

Last year,Michael Kors bought the luxury shoemaker Jimmy Choo for nearly 900 million pounds.


Football-Luca Modric has been named as the world’s best player at the Fifa Football Awards in London.

The 33 year old Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder beat off competition from Christiano Ronaldo and Mo Salah to win the award.

Didier Deschamps was named coach of the year after guiding France to the World Cup while Peru won the Fifa fans of the year award for their outstanding support to the team at Russia 2018.

The women’s player of the year award went to Brazil’s Marta.

There are a stack of third round ties in the League Cup in England tonight.We’ll bring you the results from those games tomorrow morning.

Golf-Europe’s Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn says that the USA team is one of the strongest of all time and will create big problems at this year’s event.

The US team contains the winners of 6 of the last 8 majors  but Bjorn says that Europe don’t fear anyone and the players are all used to taking on their opponents individually.

Tiger Woods could be a major threat to Europe’s ambitions at Le Golf National when the Cup gets underway on Friday.

The former world number one is back up to 13th in the rankings and won his first tournament in 5 years at the season ending Tour Championship in Atlanta last weekend.


Rugby Union-England’s new defence coach John Mitchell says that his decision to continue living in South Africa will not affect his duties.

Mitchell has taken up the role until at least the end of next year’s World Cup and will earn a reported 300,000 pounds.

He says that his decision  to remain based in South Africa will not affect his availability  and that he’d be spending more time in the UK than at home.

Mitchell previously coached England’s forwards under Sir Clive Woodward in the late 1990’s.



Mainly fine with a moderate to strong east north easterly wind across the region.

Top temperature 25 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 16 degrees  with clear skies and remaining windy.

Wednesday and Thursday-Clear skies with highs of 23-26 degrees and remaining windy tomorrow.




















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