Riviera and French News Friday 13th January 2017

UPDATE 18:00

Attack - A second terror attack was planned for Nice on August 15th last year according to investigators at the Directorate of Internal Security. They say several text messages and photos on the phone of Mohamed Bouhlel indicated two attack dates, and one of the last messages on his phone before he drove into the crowd on July 14th said ‘Chokri and his friends are ready for next month’. Six months after the July 14th attacks three people remain in hospital. During a visit to Nice yesterday, Secretary of State Juliette Méadel, said 2,300 compensation cases have been opened and that 12 million euro has already been paid to a thousand victims or relatives of victims.

Santa - Police are treating the burning of the Father Christmas outside the Lenval Childrens Hospital on the promenade in Nice as arson. They say the presence of hydro-carbon leaves no doubt about the malicious nature of the fire.  Mayor Philippe Pradal denounced the burning of the huge Santa statue as a heinous act of delinquency and vowed those responsible will face the strongest penalty for their actions.

Murder - A 23 year-old man is awaiting a court verdict after being accused of murder in Moulins. It’s alleged he murdered a petty criminal associate in an elevator in September 2015. He claimed self-defence, but the prosecution refuted that saying the victim was stabbed over 20 times. Both men were known to police.


An international bank body investigation into October's flash crash of Sterling says it was caused by several factors including the time of day. The crash caused the pound to fall by 9% against the dollar, which the investigation says was caused by a lack of sterling dealers, as the trade took place in Asian markets, at a time of day when key sterling traders in London were not operating.

JP Morgan has reported a rise in fourth-quarter profits on a busy day for US bank results. America's biggest bank by assets said profit rose 24% to $6.73bn helped by investor activity around the US election. Bank of America, the country's second biggest bank, said income rose nearly 50%, but Wells Fargo, reported its fifth straight decline in quarterly profit.


Football - Tributes have been paid to the former England manager Graham Taylor who died suddenly yesteday at 72. Sir Elton John, who appointed Taylor as his Watford manager in 1977, and took them from the fourth to the first divisions, said he had ‘lost a brother’. Tributes will be paid to Taylor at English fixtures across the weekend including a minutes applause before a number of games.

Rugby - Sale Sharks are being investigated for a potential breach in their concussion management protocol during an incident involving TJ Ioane. At last Saturdays game with Harlequins, the forward fell to the floor after an attempted tackle but played on for the rest of the game. He was not treated on the field after the incident but has not been named in the team that travels to Toulon in the Champions Cup on Sunday. The Concussion Management Review Group will convene to review the incident and an update will be given on 20 January.

Formula 1 - Attempts to save the Manor team have been boosted by a decision to keep all staff employed until at least the end of January. The team's operating company, Just Racing, went into administration last week and will collapse if a buyer is not found. However the administrator has found the money to pay staff giving Manor a week more than expected to find a buyer before having to consider whether to lay off the team.

Tennis - British number one Johanna Konta has won the Sydney International with an impressive 6-4 6-2 victory in Australia. The win will give her confidence going into the year's first Grand Slam when she starts her Australian Open challenge next week.

UPDATE 07:00

Death - A 43 year old woman has died this morning after being hit by a falling tree in Saint Jeannet in the Alpes Maritimes. Violent winds caused the accident which happened shortly after 7.40am.

Nice Attack - The French Secretary of State Juliette Méadel, who is in charge of helping the victims of the Nice attack, has announced during a visit to Nice on Thursday that three people are still in hospital six months after the incident. A total of 458 people were injured during the attack which killed 86 people. Méadel clarified that 2,300 compensation cases had been opened with the Guarantee Fund for Victims of Terrorism the (FGTI) adding that "12 million euros has already been paid globally to a thousand victims or relatives of victims".

Hospitals - The hospital in Grasse has reportedly rescheduled surgical operations due to the current flu epidemic. Hospitals in the region have seen a sharp increase in the number of emergencies since the flu outbreak and are taking exceptional measures. Nice Hospital said between December 26th and January 10th the number of emergencies increased by 7.5% compared to the same period last year.

Cable Car - A cable car project between Monaco and La Turbie to avoid traffic jams has been revived by the mayor of La Turbie. Fourteen thousand vehicles pass each day through La Turbie, in the Alpes-Maritimes, on their way to Monaco. In 1893 a cog railway linked La Turbie to Monte Carlo however it has since disappeared and today’s traffic is constantly increasing. The mayor  thinks the project  could become a reality by 2021.

Collecting Rubbish – The Facebook group “Run Eco Team” are organizing a jog this Sunday in Monaco to promote collecting rubbish while out for a jog. Created by a jogger from Nantes, the group has more than 12,000 members. The event on Sunday will be organized simultaneously in 44 other cities. Joggers are invited to meet in front of Décathlon in Fontvieille at 10am.

Auron Ski Resort - To mark its 80th birthday Auron ski resort is organizing a photo competition with the opportunity to win several great prizes including a lifelong ski pass valued at 10,000 euros. All participants must be over 13 years old and have until March 15th to participate.


Weather Alert - School transport has been cancelled this morning in parts of Northern France due to the winter storm “Egon” which hit the region on Thursday evening. Meteo France had forecast a mixture of wind and snowfall for 33 departments. Thursday saw 190,000 homes in Normandy without electricity and winds with gusts of upto 146km/h were recorded in Dieppe.

Suspended sentences - A French couple have been given suspended sentences for selling flags of the Islamic State armed group online. They were caught after neighbours saw them boasting about their business in a television documentary. Officials on Thursday confirmed reports that the couple had been found guilty of justifying terrorism and sentenced on Tuesday.


Fiat Chrysler has been accused by US authorities of concealing software that regulates emissions in thousands of its diesel vehicles. The US Environmental Protection Agency says that the firm broke the law by installing but failing to disclose the technology in thousands of Jeeps and Dodge vehicles. Fiat Chrysler says that it’s done nothing illegal but the EPA says that the software caused higher nitrogen oxide levels. Shares in Fiat Chrysler ended 10.3 percent lower in New York  and 16 percent down in Milan. The EPA says that the firm could be liable for fines of around 44,000 dollars per vehicle which would mean a total of some 4.3 billion dollars.

A US judge has ordered a Volkswagen executive at the centre of the diesel emissions scandal to be held without bail pending trial. Oliver Schmidt was arrested at Miami International Airport last Saturday as he was preparing to fly home from holiday.He’s one of 6 current and former VW executives to be charged in the US District Court in Detroit this week.The other 5 are in Germany and are unlikely to be extradited. Judge William Turnoff has ruled that Mr Schmidt is a flight risk and must be detained pending trial.His lawyers say that they’ll appeal.

And-Figures from the German Federal Statistical Office suggest that the economy stepped up its pace of growth in 2016 thanks to higher household and government spending. Estimated figures from the Office show that GDP was 1.9 percent higher last year than in 2015. The annualised figure is based on estimates that growth was around 0.5 percent in the fourth quarter. The actual 4th quarter figure will not be released until next month.


Football-Tributes have been paid to the former Watford,Aston Villa and England manager Graham Taylor who’s died suddenly at the age of 72. Taylor was appointed by Sir Elton John as Watford manager in 1977 and took them from the old 4th division of English football to runners up in the old first division in the space of just 5 years.He also took the side to an FA Cup final and went on to have a successful spell as Aston Villa manager before taking the England job in 1990. Sir Elton John said that he had “lost a brother” while the former England striker Alan Shearer said that he’d had a “huge amount of respect”for him and that he had been a good,honest and fine” man.

In the English Premier League this weekend. On Saturday Spurs play West Brom in the lunchtime game and then its Burnley against Southampton.Hull against Bournemouth.Sunderland play Stoke.Swansea host Arsenal.Watford face Middlesbrough.West Ham play Crystal Palace and Leicester play Chelsea. On Sunday Everton play Manchester City and Manchester United host Liverpool. There was one game in the English Championship last night.Reading lost 1-0 at home to QPR.

Cricket-South Africa are on top heading into day 2 of the 3rd and final Test against Sri Lanka in Johannesburg. The home side had reached 338-3 at stumps on day 1.JP Duminy made 155 and Hashim Amla is 125 not out.

Rugby Union-There’s 1 game in the European Champions Cup tonight.Leinster play Montpellier in Pool 4.

Tennis-The draw has been made for the first round of the Australian Open in Melbourne. Men’s top seed Andy Murray will play Ilya Marachenko while the women’s top seed Angelique Kerber plays world number 61 Lesia Tsurenko.

Racing-The jockey Brian Fletcher has died at the age of 69. Fletcher won the Grand National 3 times including twice on the legendary Red Rum.He also won the Scottish National in 1974 and finished as runner up to champion jockey Josh Gifford. 


Partially cloudy with a strong westerly wind with gusts of up to 75 km/h in the Var.

Top temperature 13 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 6 degrees on the coast and 2 degrees inland with some frost in places.

The weekend-Partially cloudy and quite windy in the Var tomorrow.Highs of 12-13 degrees.







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