Evening Update Thursday 23 December 2021

The French Scientific Council has said that there may be what it called "a possible disorganisation of society" from the beginning of January because of high levels of Covid-19. It said that it is expecting "hundreds of thousands" of cases per day in France in January. In a press conference today the Council said that the Omicron variant is already in the majority in the Ile-de-France and will become the majority throughout France by the New Year. It said that problems may arise because of a high number of absences from work and the number of contact cases being required to isolate under current rules. Olivier Guerin, a member of the Scientific Council, said that the "strategic sectors of society" are at risk, such as "food distribution, security, energy, transport, communications and health".

The SNCF has said that some regional train services are being cancelled. However, it said that the problems remain "local and marginal". A spokesperson said today that the evolution of the health situation may mean local adaptation of services because of Covid-19 cases and contact cases amongst staff or because of a reduced number of passengers due to teleworking.

The Monaco government has said that children in the Principality aged 5 to 11 at risk of severe forms of Covid-19 as well as those living in the entourage of an immunocompromised person can now be vaccinated. It follows a favorable opinion issued by the Monegasque National Vaccination Committee.

The Prefect of the Var has issued three temporary prohibition orders for the end of year celebrations. They incude a prohibition of the use of fireworks and pyrotechnics and a ban on the consumption of alcoholic beverages on public roads. Those prohibitions are in force from tonight, 23 December, at midnight, through until Sunday 2 January inclusive in all municipalities of the Var. The Prefect has also bannned the purchase and retail sale, collection or transport in any transportable container of combustible and corrosive products, fuel and flammable gases. That prohibition is in operation from Monday December 27 at 8:00 a.m. to Sunday January 2 inclusive. Full details can be found on the Prefecture's website www.var.gouv.fr

The Palace in Monaco has released a statement with an update on the health of HSH Princess Charlene. The statement said that the Princess is recuperating in a satisfactory and reassuring manner, although it may take a few more months before her health has reached a full recovery. It went on to say that she will be visited by H.S.H. Prince Albert II and their children during the Christmas holidays and once her health is strong enough, the Princess looks forward to spending time with the Monegasques. The Princely Couple requested that their privacy and family environme