Evening Update Friday 24th of May

NEWS
7th Death in New Caledonia - A seventh person was killed today, for the first time by a member of the police force, in New Caledonia, still in a state of uncertainty in the wake of a visit by President Emmanuel Macron, who promised that the electoral reform contested by the pro-independence movement would not be "forced through".

Prime Minister's Juvenile Deliquency Bill - During his visit to Valence, Prime Minister Gabriel Attal announced measures to combat juvenile delinquency, aiming for a bill by year-end. He proposed immediate prosecution for repeat offenders over 16, opposed by magistrates' unions. He also wants to impose fines on both parents, not just the mother, and introduce a school "contract of rights and duties" for parents. Additionally, he plans to address leniency for minors and consider community service for negligent parents, with a goal to expand parenting support to 30% by 2027.

Potential Strike in Orly this WeekendTraffic is likely to be disrupted at Orly airport this weekend. One of the main air traffic controllers' unions called on its members to go on strike at Paris-Orly airport, to demand "adequate staffing levels", which it said were not guaranteed by a recent agreement.

Wolf Population in Decline - The estimated number of wolves present in France in 2023 is 1,003, down 9% year-on-year. This is the first decline in the wolf population in almost ten years, and the fate of the wolf is a matter of dispute between the farming community and environmentalists.

Synergia Clinic Debt - The shareholders of the Synergia clinic in Cavaillon have not paid the promised €2 million to help reduce their debt. The commercial court may propose that the clinic be wound up in the next few days. The management would like to transfer the surgical operations to the Cavaillon hospital.

Place Nette Operation - Police conducted the "Place nette" operation against drug trafficking in Carpentras' Pous-du-Plan district. Over three days, they stopped 89 people and arrested 13. They seized over 200 grams of cannabis and cocaine and €7,400 in cash. The operation aimed to show a police presence and deter drug dealers, though it is not a complete solution to the district's drug trafficking issues.

Avignon Festival - The Avignon festival is just around the corner. Ticket sales open this Saturday at the box office in the Saint-Louis cloister, just over two months before the start of this 2024 edition.

Slow Traffic in Avignon 19th June - Traffic will be tricky in Avignon on 19 June, the day the Olympic flame passes through Vaucluse. The Town Hall advises to use the park-and-ride facilities on the outskirts of the city.

 

BUSINESS
British tech magnate Mike Lynch appeared in a US court to deny fraud claims related to the 2011 sale of his company, Autonomy, to Hewlett-Packard (HP). Lynch, co-founder of Autonomy, faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted. Prosecutors allege he inflated Autonomy's value through fraudulent means, leading HP to overpay by $8.8bn. Lynch argues that he focused on technology and marketing, leaving financial matters to others. Extradited after losing a similar UK case, he maintains HP failed to vet the deal properly. Autonomy's former finance executive, Stephen Chamberlain, is also on trial.

The construction industry remains largely manual, similar to 100 years ago. While digital advancements have been slow, technologies like 3D printing and modular construction are emerging. However, these methods face challenges in cost, practicality, and regulatory delays. Companies like Automated Architecture aim to innovate with micro-factories and robots for more efficient building. Despite these efforts, the industry’s fragmented nature hinders uniform technological adoption. Digitization in planning, design, and management is improving efficiency, but major transformations are still needed.

 

SPORTS
Golf - The police officer who arrested world number one Scottie Scheffler last week has been disciplined for not activating his body camera. Scheffler was arrested on May 17 and charged with second-degree assault, third-degree criminal mischief, reckless driving, and disregarding traffic signals while trying to drive into Valhalla Golf Club for his second round at the US PGA Championship. All of which he denies. Scheffler's court date, initially set for May 21, has been postponed to June 3.

Rugby Union - Wales face a second-row injury problem for their summer programme against South Africa and Australia. Cardiff lock Teddy Williams joins Ospreys duo Adam Beard and Rhys Davies in missing the matches due to a shoulder, ankle and knee injury respectively.

Athletics - Britain's Dan Pembroke retained his F13 javelin title at the World Para Athletics Championships in Kobe, Japan. After beating his previous best, his new record is now of 66.96m in the final round. Pembroke will also be aiming to retain his Paralympic title in Paris later this year.

 

MONACO GRAND PRIX FORMULA ONE
Max Verstappen says this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix will be “one of the more difficult races” for his Red Bull team. McLaren’s Lando Norris has emerged as a major threat to the world champion in the past two events, the Briton taking his maiden win in Miami and finishing a close second in Imola on Sunday.
Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc said the challenge of the tight and twisty street circuit was arguably the greatest on the calendar. He took pole position in Monaco in both 2021 and 2022

 

WEATHER
Meteo France announces showers and risks of thunderstorm in all the PACA region today with highs of 21 degrees in Nice and Marseille, 22 in Toulon, 23 in Cannes and 24 degrees in Saint-Tropez, the only town planned to remain clear throughout the afternoon.
Tonight, back to clear skies with lows of 14 degrees.
Tomorrow, light coverings with highs of 20 degrees, Sunday, much the same and highs of 21 degrees, and Monday, back to risks of thunderstorms in the afternoon with highs of 21 degrees.

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