Lunchtime News.Wednesday July 29th 2020

Yellow alert-The Alpes-Maritimes has been placed on a yellow weather alert for this afternoon.

Thundery showers are forecast for inland areas and the Mecantour Park some of which could be heavy and violent.

Hill walkers are advised to take extra care.The alert is in force until tonight at midnight.

The weather is expected to become increasingly hot on Thursday and Friday with temperatures ranging from 30-37 degrees.

The south east is forecast to escape the worst of the heatwave which is likely to affect large parts of France.

 

Murder crisis-There have been 7 gang related murders in the Toulon area since the start of March with police calling for reinforcements in a bid to crack down on the bloodshed.

Rival gangs have been fighting a vicious turf war in the Sainte-Musse district of the city with guns being increasingly used to settle accounts.

The French Prime Minister Jean Castex has pledged to crack down on violent crime and has promised to increase the presence of police and gendarmes in problem areas of the country.

 

Covid-19 checks-Passengers arriving at Nice Cote d’Azur Airport from coronavirus hotspots will be tested for Covid-19 from Saturday.

16 countries are on the list including the United States ,South Africa and Turkey.

Ten testing posts are being set up at Terminal 2 to handle passengers as they arrive.

There are direct flights to Nice from four of the countries on the list-Algeria ,Israel ,Turkey and Serbia.

 

Water safety-Lifeguards on public beaches in Antibes Juan les Pins have raised the alarm about increasing numbers of accidents in the water.

Of the 9 fatal accidents in the water so far this summer ,two have been in Antibes and lifeguards are urging bathers to be sensible and not take risks.

There are 14 manned lifeguard positions along the coast between Antibes and Juan les Pins and elderly swimmers are posing the biggest problems for lifeguards with the majority of accidents reported to be among people aged between 60 and 87.

Providing lifeguards on public beaches costs the town council around half a million euros a year and the service operates until the 15th of September.

Among the most common accidents are jelly fish stings ,abrasions caused by rocks and severe sunburn.

 

In National News.

 

Police violence-The French Interior Minister has told parliament that the term “police violence” is inappropriate and should be referred to as “legitimate violence”.

Addressing the National Assembly ,Gerald Darmanin  said that he “choked” when he heard the term “police violence” being used and said that officers used force in a controlled and proportionate manner.

Mr Darmanin’s predecessor Christophe Castaner was replaced three weeks ago after becoming embroiled in controversy over police use of chokeholds.

Two African men died in custody after being restrained using the method ,sparking widespread protests.

Castaner banned the use of chokeholds but later backtracked after police complaints.

 

Covid-19-The French Health Minister Olivier Veran has said this morning that there is no sign of a second wave of coronavirus affecting the country but has appealed to the public to “maintain vigilance”.

Mr Veran ,speaking on LCL news ,said that it was true that new clusters of the virus are being detected daily and some hospitals are reporting increasing numbers of admissions but he stressed that this was ,in part due to greater test and trace efforts.

France has reported 14 new deaths from the virus in the past 24 hours but Mr Veran maintains that the spread of Covid-19 is “under control”.

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