Evening Update 16 April

Firefighters are investigating a blaze at a building on Boulevard Gambetta in Nice last night. The fire which spread to several floors, destroyed four apartments and seriously damaged another seven. Several people were taken to hospital but there were no fatalities.

Meanwhile in Paris, almost half a billion euro has been donated to repair the Cathedral of Notre-Dame including donations from France’s richest men François-Henri Pinault, husband to actress Salma Hayek; Louis Vitton’s Bernard Arnoult; French energy firm Total and global cosmetics brand l’Oreal.  

The owner of the company who were refurbishing the cathedral, has said all security and safety measures were in place at the site, and they more than anyone want to see light shed on what caused the tragedy.

A mass will be said in Nice this evening in honour of Notre-Dame. It will be celebrated by Bishop Marceau at St Pierre Church on Rue de la Buffa.

Meanwhile President Macron who cancelled last night’s address the nation on the government’s response to the gillets jaunes movement, has said he will speak in due time but for now the press conference scheduled for tomorrow remains cancelled.

Two pilots convicted of smuggling drugs into France on their private jet are to appeal their six year sentence.  The pair were caught leaving the Dominican Republic with 26 suitcases full of cocaine on their jet but the pair claim they did not know what was in the cases. In total seven people were convicted in the so-called Air Cocaine trail at the Assize Court in Bouches-du-Rhône.

BUSINESS

The European Parliament has approved new rules to protect workers in the so-called gig economy. The rules will set minimum rights for those working in  on-demand jobs like Uber or Deliveroo. It proposes more predictable hours, compensation for cancelled work and an end to abusive practices around casual contracts.

Indian airline Jet Airways has failed to secure emergency funding from its lenders. India's second-largest airline has had dozens of its planes seized by creditors, leaving the firm with only seven operational aircraft. As a result, the company has extended its ban on all international flights until Thursday.

SPORT

Champions League - Cristiano Ronaldo will return to Juventus to face Ajax in tonight’s quarter-final second leg. He was one of several players rested for the weekend game. Meanwhile in Barcelona, Manchester United are the underdogs entering their second-leg with the Spaniards. But then again, that’s what they said when the UK superclub met Paris St Germain a few weeks ago. Kick-off for both games is at 9pm tonight.

Formula 1 - The sport's commerical boss has been having several meetings in China today in the hope of starting a second annual race in the Peoples Republic. He has met with delegates from six potential host cities including Beijing.

 

TENNIS MASTERS

It’s been a mixed day for France with Gilles Simon and Pierre Herbert both progressing, however Jo Wilfried Tsonga is a surprise departure after being beaten by American Taylor Fritz.

France's Adrian Mann.arino is also out after a defeat at the hands of Britain’s Cameron Norrie.

This eveing, on the main court, Novak Djokovic struggling in his match against Germany’s Philip Kohl.Schreiber.  When that game concludes, Stan Wawrinka  plays Italian Marco Cecchinato.

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