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French and Riviera News Wednesday 11th October 2017

Local

Strike Action - According to figures from the Prefecture 1,900 people have demonstrated in Nice against the new Labour reforms. Protestors gathered at Place Massena on Tuesday as a call by several unions for strike action was made on a national level throughout France.  For the first time in about 10 years all of the trade unions backed the call to strike and demonstrate, angered by the government's plan to shed 120,000 jobs during President Emmanuel Macron's five-year term, freeze basic wages, end payment for the first day of sick leave and raise the CSG payroll tax.

Dead body found at L’Archet College in Nice - An investigation into the dead body found on Tuesday morning on the grounds of l’Archet College in Nice has suggested that the cause of death was accidental. Police believe that the man in his thirties fell from the bus terminal which is located above the college. The investigation continues.

A8 motorway accidentAt least one person has been injured and traffic came to a standstill on the A8 motorway on Tuesday afternoon after an accident involving six vehicles occurred at the  Villeneuve Loubet exit . There were long tail backs as firefighters intervened - the cause of the accident remains unknown.

Air - Very small traces of radioactive material have appeared in the air across the Riviera. Experts believe the traces, also discovered in Austria, Norway and Switzerland, could have come from the southern region of the Urals in Russia. The traces are too small to be a health risk.

Arrests - Two more people have been arrested, in connection with last week’s knife murder at the train station in Marseilles. It’s believed the two are Tunisian asylum seekers, who were arrested while trying to cross the border into Switzerland.

Baker from Nice bids to save the quality of the croissant - A baker from Nice has launched a campaign to make sure that the quality of the “croissant” is protected. Fredieric Roy who is concerned about the fact that 85 percent of croissants sold in bakeries are now industrially manufactured is asking the French government to create an official status for the 'traditional' French croissant.  According to Roy's criteria, to be considered a truly 'traditional' croissant, the pastry should be made by the baker themselves, made with traditional flour - and that means without additives - and made with real French butter. 

National

Inmates placed under investigation - Two radicalised inmates in a French prison have been placed under formal investigation on suspicion of plotting attacks, only days before their expected release from jail. The two men, who were due to be released mid-October after completing sentences for non-terrorist crimes, were known in jail for being radicalized. Reports say the men were plotting attacks against jail wardens and police forces, while a source close to the probe said they also had other targets planned. The suspects were planning to use methods including hostage-taking and gun attacks.

France qualify for World Cup - France has secured its place at next year's World Cup finals by beating Belarus 2-1 at the Stade de France on Tuesday nights in their last Group A  qualifying game.  The result put France, who will take part in their sixth consecutive World Cup finals, on 23 points after 10 games, four ahead of second-placed Sweden. France coach Didier Deschamps told a news conference "We did the job, our goal was to qualify first in our group,"

Flavoured Oysters - A young French oyster farmer has shaken things up with a new flavoured twist. His new approach sees the luxury seafood flavoured with raspberry, ginger and shallots and he says other flavours are on the way. To achieve the effect, the oysters are gathered and placed in 400-litre trays containing the chosen flavor.

Business

The world’s largest retailer Wal-Mart says that it expects a 40 percent increase in online sales next year as it seeks to ramp up competition with Amazon. The news saw the firm’s shares rise by 4.5 percent to 84 dollars 13,giving blue chips a big boost on the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Wal-Mart  said that it was going to boost investment in technology and e-commerce.It also announced a 20 billion dollar share buyback scheme. The company is already offering two day shipping and is planning to nearly double its number of locations for online grocery orders. Wal-Mart expects online sales to hit around 11.5 billion dollars for the fiscal year ending in January.

The pharmaceutical giant Pfizer is considering the sale of its consumer health business which includes brands such as Advil and ChapStick. The firm’s chief executive Ian Read says that Pfizer is looking to “maximise value” for shareholders and options include a full or partial sale as well as an option to retain full control of the unit. Pfizer’s consumer health business had revenues of 3.4 billion dollars last year  which accounted for 6 percent of the firm’s total revenue. So far this year,Pfizer’s revenue is down by around 2 percent.

And-New research has suggested that the profitability of the average farm in the UK could fall by as much as half after Brexit. The research,carried out by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board(AHDB) says that the worst case scenario would cut average farm profits from 38,000 pounds a year to just 15,000. The analysis focused on the effects of cheaper imported food,reduced subsidies and more expensive labour. A government spokesman said that the report was based on highly unlikely scenarios.

Sport

Football-Argentina have made it to the World Cup finals following a 3-1 win over Ecuador.Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick after Ecuador had taken the lead.A defeat would have seen Argentina fail to qualify. Portugal and France have also made it to the finals but the Netherlands failed to qualify despite beating Sweden 2-0. The USA are also out after losing at Trinidad and Tobago.

Cricket-A rock has been thrown at the Australia team bus after their 8 wicket victory over India in a T20 international in Guwahati. The rock smashed a window of the bus but no one was injured. Australia team officials say that the players’ were shaken up by the incident. Last month,a rock was thrown at the Australia team bus in Chittagong during the second Test against Bangladesh.

Rugby Union-The Republic of Ireland born Italy international Ian McKinley has been name in the squad for the three autumn internationals 6 years after losing an eye. McKinley was playing for Leinster when he received an accidental boot to the eye which resulted in him retiring. He later resumed playing wearing protective goggles and is now in the Treviso side. Italy have games against Fiji,Argentina and South Africa next month.

Tennis-The Australian Open tournament director has said that he expects both Andy Murray and Serena Williams to play at the event next January. Murray has been recovering from a hip injury while Serena Williams has been absent from the circuit due to maternity leave. Craig Tiley says that all the top players will be present in Melbourne.

Weather

Mainly fine with light south westerly  winds. Top temperatures 23 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 15 degrees in coastal areas and 11 degrees inland with clear skies.  

Thursday and Friday–Mainly fine with highs of 21-25 degrees

Finally 

As the cold weather draws in, one consolation is the chance to spend cosy nights snuggled up on the sofa with a loved one. But all too often this can lead to a row over the heating – Research has found a third of couples argue over the ideal home temperature.

The study suggests men are setting the thermostat too low, leading to four in ten women turning it up behind their partner’s back. The gender heating split is leading to one in three couples admitting they regularly row over the temperature in the household ‘battle for the thermostat’.

The difficulties emerge because the difference in the speed of men and women’s metabolism mean that men like to be in a colder environment than women.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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