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French and Riviera News Tuesday 9th October 2018

Local 

Oil Spill - French and Italian ships have been trying to contain an oil spill after two cargo ships collided off the Mediterranean island of Corsica. The wind is pushing the spill north-west, towards France's tourist beaches. The accident occurred early on Sunday, both France and Italy sent two boats to the site on Monday, where an inflatable boom has been deployed to stop the spread of a slick which now stretches some 20 kilometres.

Strike Action - Strike action across France is today expected to cause disruption to transport and schools. In Nice unions have called for demonstrators to gather from 10am at the main train station. There will be no services on the tramline or bus network and of the 154 nursery and primary schools five will remain closed today with a limited service to school dinners in other establishments.

Dispute causes disruption to tram passengers in Nice - A dispute between two individuals caused panic at a tram stop on Avenue Jean Médicin in Nice on Monday afternoon. The incident occurred shortly after 5.30pm when a man retaliated by letting off tear gas as a tram was approaching the stop leading to gas being let off amongst passengers. Firefighters at the scene said nobody was injured. 

Bad weather causes long delays at Marseille airport - There have been long delays at Marseille airport following the bad weather which hit the region on Monday. Heavy rainfall and gusts of up to 76km/h accompanied with thunder and lightning hit the region following an alert issued by Méteo France for the Bouches du Rhone and the Var region. The warning has since been lifted with the stormy conditions moving towards the South West of France with an orange alert in place for today and tomorrow. 

National

Climate change - The United Nations has warned of the dangers of temperatures rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels in what it calls one of the most important climate change reports ever published. Climate campaigners are saying the report both clarifies climate goals and shows the extent of the challenges ahead. The report also warns that if nothing is done, the 1.5 mark could be reached by 2030, and temperatures would continue to rise by up to 4 degrees.

UBS goes on trial - The Swiss banking giant UBS has gone on trial in Paris, facing accusations that it orchestrated a huge tax fraud scheme for wealthy French clients.  After a six-year investigation, judges last year charged the bank and its French subsidiary of laundering proceeds from tax fraud carried out from 2004 to 2012, allegations the bank has denied. The inquiry was opened after a former employee alerted authorities over the bank's alleged system of setting up dual bookkeeping to hide the movement of capital into Switzerland.

French doctors - French doctors have admitted they do not know why clusters of babies have been born with limbs missing, saying they cannot find any link between the cases and will not be investigating further. Thirteen children have been born missing hands, forearms or arms in three rural areas of France between 2007 and 2017. The public health authorities had initially said the incidences of abnormality were “probably down to chance”. But doctors at a research organisation said the likelihood of it being coincidental was “more than infinitesimal” and demanded a full investigation. They believe the clusters may be linked to the use of pesticides and described the French authorities’ lack of action as a “health scandal”.

Shortage of burial plots in Paris – Finally, it seems that even the dead, cannot escape the rocketing property prices in the French Capital. As a shortage of burial plots in Paris means that the wealthy are being asked to pay as much as €15,528 for a place in a city cemetery while the poor are being shipped out to the banlieues. Even fame and wealth, however, cannot guarantee a final resting place in one of Paris’s 14 inner-city cemeteries, such as Père Lachaise, where Chopin, Balzac, Oscar Wilde, Edith Piaf and Jim Morrison are buried. There are about 14,000 deaths in Paris every year, with 5,000 requests to be buried at city cemeteries. But authorities say there are now only 150 paid-for places available a year.

Business

Asian shares have hit 17 month lows this morning as China let the yuan slip below a psychologically important level amid sharp losses in domestic share markets.

The International Monetary Fund added to the negative sentiments by cutting its growth forecasts for both this year and next including downgrades for the United States,China and Europe.

Analysts JP Morgan said in a comment that “risk appetite is in a foul mood and that stocks are sinking everywhere”.

The warning continued by saying that “with Chinese economic momentum continuing to weaken alongside continuing pressure from the US,currency weakness is the obvious release valve”.

China’s central bank fixed the yuan at 6.9019 against the dollar on Tuesday,breaching the 6.9 barrier and leading speculators to push the dollar up to 6.9320.

 

The International Monetary Fund has warned that the trade war between the US and China is making the world “a poorer and more dangerous place”.

The IMF has lowered its forecast for global growth both this year and next  and said that a full-blown trade war between the US and China would put a significant dent in economic recovery.

The organisation’s chief economist Maurice Obstfeld said that further trade barriers would hit households, businesses and the wider economy.

Global economic growth is now expected to reach 3.7 percent this year  and next-down from the IMF’s prediction of 3.9 percent made in July.

 

And-Google is shutting down much of its social network Google + after user data was exposed.

The firm said that a bug in its software meant than information that people believed was private had been accessible by third parties.

Google said that up to half a million users had been affected .

The Wall Street Journal says that the firm knew about the problem in March but did not disclose it.

In a statement,Google said that the issue was not serious enough to inform the public.

 

Sport

Football-The Chelsea star Eden Hazard has said that he’s torn between staying at the club and moving to the Spanish giants Real Madrid.
Hazard has been in scintillating form this season but has yet to sign a new contract at the London club.
He said that it is a hard decision to make and described Real Madrid as “the best club in the world”.
The 27 year old is one of 11 Premier League players to make the shortlist for the Ballon d’Or award along with Liverpool’s Mo Salah and Manchester City’s Kevin de Bruyne.
Christiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are also both on the list.


Cricket-The former Australia star Matthew Hayden has fractured his neck while surfing.
The 46 year old posted a photo of himself on instragram with head injuries and a neck brace.
He said that he “dodged a bullet”in the incident during which he also sustained ligament damage.

On the pitch,Pakistan made 482 all out in the first innings of their first Test against Australia in Dubai.
In reply Australia were on 30-0 at stumps.

Rugby Union –New Zealand’s Sam Cane will miss the autumn Tests in the northern hemisphere after fracturing a bone in his neck during his side’s victory over South Africa on Saturday.
Cane is expected to be out for around 3 months and is expected to make a full recovery.


Weather

Mainly fine with light to moderate easterly winds.

Top temperature 24 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 18 degrees on the coast and 16 degrees inland with clear skies.

Wednesday and Thursday-Showers and rain arriving from the west across the region tomorrow.Sunshine and showers on Thursday.Highs of 21-23 degrees.

Finally 

Social media is fuelling a new type of addiction driven by an obsession with ourselves.

According to a new study being 'addicted to yourself' is a condition with parallels to serious alcohol, drug or gambling addiction. 

The rise of social media has allowed the issue to multiply as websites like FacebookTwitter and Instagram encourage us to obsess over how we are perceived by others.

The new theory has been developed by University of Derby researcher Dr William Van Gordon, who says it explains a third 'missing' type of addiction.

He said: 'It is generally accepted among the scientific community that there are two forms of addiction; chemical, such as addiction to drugs and alcohol, and behavioural, for example, addiction to gambling or computer games.

'However, this new theory proposes that there is a third type of addiction called ontological addiction – the addiction to how we believe we exist.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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