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French and Riviera News Wednesday 29th November 2017

Local

Nice Attack - One of the nine people remanded in custody following the Nice attack which killed 86 and wounded more than 400 has been released. The 43 year old Franco-Albanian  woman was, at the time the girlfriend of the drug trafficker who had supplied the gun to the attacker Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel.She had fiercely denied any involvement in the terror attack claiming she had never been in contact with the killer.

Strike - The SCNF has announced another 24 hour strike is to take place, starting this evening at 7pm, through to Thursday evening. Significant disruption is expected to services. The severely reduced timetable is available from SNCF.com.

The train operator has also announced a complete cancellation of trains between Menton and Ventimiglia for a full week, starting this Friday. The disruption is to allow essential works to correct an earlier landfall on the line at Roquebrune.

Police presence on the Port of Nice - There was an important police presence on the Port of Nice on Tuesday following resident’s demands to put an end to illegal parking and dirty pavements. More than a hundred vehicles were fined for double parking or parking on pedestrian crossings and a homeless camp which had set up in front of the Notre-Dame-du-Port Church located on Place île-de-Beauté was removed. 

Petition against the regions traffic - A petition against the constant traffic jams on the regions road has collected more than 3,000 signatures after just one week. It was launched by a father who works in Sophia Antipolis and claims that it takes more than an hour to cover the 6 km between Pointe de Contes and the entrance of the motorway at Nice-est.

Motorist receives compensation after damage from a speed bump – Meanwhile the city council of Roquebrune sur Argens has agreed to compensate a motorist after he reported damage caused to his Ferrari after driving over a speed bump. The driver immediately reported the damage and after a second opinion the Mayor has reportedly agreed to pay 2,000 euros in compensation for repairs to the vehicle.

Train - A drunk tourist, who followed a sudden urge to drive the tourist train through Nice, has been given a two month suspended sentence.  The man, from Poland, had been drinking for two days non-stop, when he climbed aboard and attempted to start the well-known tourist train on Saturday afternoon.

Fake - Residents across the coast are warned not to engage with people selling calendars who purport to be from waste or fire services. The selling of calendars at this time of year is a popular scam, and if you have any doubts, you’re advised to simply ask the seller for ID.

National

Macron’s Africa Tour - France’s President Emmanuel Macron has told African youths in Burkina Faso that he belonged to a new generation of French leaders who would build a partnership with the continent rather than tell it what to do. Macron promised a break with a past in which France often seemed to call the shots to former colonies. The three-day visit to Burkina Faso, Ghana and the Ivory Coast is aimed at boosting cooperation in education, the digital economy and migration.

Greenpeace call for tighter security - A group of Greenpeace activists have broken into a French nuclear plant to highlight security shortcomings at the facility. Around 20 activists took part on Tuesday in the latest stunt by the environmental campaign group aimed at showing that France's 58 nuclear reactors are vulnerable to attack. The group said the protest at the plant in the Ardeche region, proved that the plant was lacking security.

French government plans to simplify French administration - The French government has announced a series of measures that should dramatically simplify the way administration is done. Renowned for its unforgiving and burdensome bureaucracy, France’s budget minister Gérald Darmanin has presented a new bill this week featuring 48 measures that are aimed at dramatically simplifying the relationship between the state and the public when it comes to administration.

Grand Prix of political humour 2017 - Former president François Hollande has received the Grand Prix of political humour 2017. Awarded on Tuesday, he was distinguished for all his sense of humour. The ceremony created in 1988, awards several prizes each year voted for by a jury of journalists and comedians. While accepting his award Hollande defended his use of humour, which was sometimes criticized saying that "In the most serious moments, in the most painful circumstances, one must have a form of self-control, serenity, and humour is part of it.  The fanatics have no sense of humor. "

Business

Media reports say that the UK government has reached an agreement with the EU over the “divorce bill” which could amount to some 55 billion euros.
Several newspapers including the Daily Telegraph are reporting that an agreement has been reached while the BBC says that no final sum has been settled upon but a “larger offer from the UK has been given a broad welcome in Brussels”.
The UK is keen to move on to talks about trade with Europe following its departure from the European Union in March 2019.The amount of money to be paid as part of the settlement has been a major sticking point in negotiations so far.
Last night,Downing Street played down reports that an agreement had been reached.

The value of Bitcoin has passed 10,000 dollars.
The virtual currency surged past the benchmark on Tuesday after rising above 9,000 dollars on Monday.
At the start of the year,Bitcoin was trading below 1,000 dollars.
Opinion is divided as to whether the virtual currency will continue to rise or if it’s a speculative bubble which could burst at any moment.
The total value of bitcoins in existence has now passed 167 billion dollars.
Another virtual currency,Ethereum has been performing extremely well over the past few days and is now worth 476 dollars-At the start of the year it was worth only 10 dollars.

And-President Trump’s choice to lead the US Federal Reserve has been appearing before the Senate at his confirmation hearing.
Jerome Powell said that he expects US GDP to grow by 2.5 percent this year  and continue at a similar pace in 2018.
Mr Powell said that the case for an additional interest rate increase is “coming together” and added that he expects the Fed’s balance sheet to shrink to between 2.5 and 3 trillion dollars over the next three to four years.
He added that increased growth coupled with a low  unemployment rate of 4.1 percent would allow the Fed to scrap accommodation policies put in place to boost economic activity following the financial crisis.

Sport

Football-There were 4 games in the English Premier League last night with second placed Manchester City winning 4-2 at Watford.
In the other results Brighton and Crystal Palace drew 0-0.Leicester beat Spurs 2-1 and West Brom drew 2-2 with Newcastle.


In the English Championship last night Derby lost 1-0 at home to Ipswich and Reading beat Barnsley 3-0.

There are 6 games in the Premier League tonight.Arsenal play Huddersfield.Bournemouth host Burnley.Chelsea play Swansea.Everton host West Ham.Manchester City play Southampton and Stoke host Liverpool.

Formula 1-The British supercar firm Aston Martin has said that it will “probably” enter Formula 1 in 2021 as an engine supplier if the rules are changed to make it more affordable.
The sport’s management has proposed new engine rules to reduce costs and complexity in a bid to attract new entrants although there have been objections from existing manufacturers.
The head of Aston Martin Andy Palmer said that the existing rules are “annoying the public and driving them from Formula 1”.He added that Aston Martin would like to use the sport as a marketing platform as it seeks to expand its range of road cars.

Robert Kubica has tested for Williams in Abu Dhabi as he seeks a return to Formula 1.
The 32 year old pole is looking to get back into the sport 7 years after a serious rally crash almost cost him his life and left him with only partial movement in his right arm.
He finished 9th quickest in a Pirelli tyre test at the circuit on Tuesday and said afterwards that he had some limitations and would have to adapt.


Cricket-England’s troubled all rounder Ben Stokes could play some cricket in New Zealand where he’s gone to see family.
The England and Wales Cricket Board has denied reports that the 26 year old,who’s under police investigation for an allegation of actual bodily harm,had been recalled to the Ashes squad.
It’s understood that the New Zealand side Canterbury have spoken informally to Stokes about playing some club cricket for them while he’s in the country.

Rugby Union-Jake Ball and Justin Tipuric will both miss Saturday’s Test for Wales against South Africa through injury.
Ball requires shoulder surgery after being forced off during last weekend’s defeat by New Zealand while Tipuric has a thigh injury.
 

Weather

Clear skies  with a brisk  westerly wind developing.

Top temperature 13 degrees.

Overnight lows of 6 degrees on the coast and 1 degree inland with clear skies and a widespread frost.

Thursday and Friday-Clear skies with a high of 11-13 degrees and a brisk westerly wind .

 

 

 

 

 

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