Evening Update Tuesday 22 August 2023

Fifteen departments have been placed on a top-level Meteo France red alert for heat from tomorrow. The departments are in southern areas of the country. The Var and the Alpes-Maritimes are still on an orange level warning for high temperatures until at least midnight tomorrow night. Meteo France have said that a heatwave "unprecedented in its duration and intensity at this time of year" is affecting the country. Yesterday was the hottest day observed in France after August 15 since 1947 with an average temperature of 26.4 degrees.  Locally, Meteo France said that record highs for overnight were recorded last night in Nice and Valbonne, with temperatures of 28.6 and 29.1 degrees respectively. 29.3 degrees was the overnight minimum in Menton. A temperature of 41.4 degrees was recorded in Cogolin this afternoon.

The A8 motorway was closed in both directions near the Menton interchange, junction 59, early this evening. The closure was made to enable firefighters to access a vehicle which caught fire on the motorway at just after 4pm. The A8 was re-opened to traffic in the direction of Italy at about 6pm.

A ten year old has died in a shooting in Nimes in the Gard department last night. A local resident was driving back from a restaurant with his two nephews when the car was caught in gunfire. Interior minister Gerald Darmanin said that the incident appears to be a settling of accounts between drugs traffickers and is "a huge tragedy that will not go unpunished".

A man in his seventies has drowned in Frejus this morning. Emergency services arrived at a beach in the town at about 10am and the man was taken to hospital but didn't survive. The incident follows another drowning in the Var yesterday in which a woman in her sixties died at Hyeres.

The new prefect of the Var, Philippe Mahé, officially took up office yesterday. As one of his first acts in office, the prefect laid a wreath at the war memorials in Toulon. He replaces Evence Richard who had held the office since August 2020.

In Paris, a migrant camp in front of the town hall has been dismantled by authorities. The Prefecture of the Ile-de-France and the Police Prefect said that 226 people had been taken to a temporary reception centre. from there they will, with their agreement, be transferred to reception centres in the regions where they will be offered accomodation. It's the 19th time this year that similar camps have been dismantled in Paris.



Microsoft has made a new bid to buy gaming company Activision Blizzard after its original $69bn deal was blocked by UK regulators. Microsoft and Activision have agreed a new, restructured deal, which has been submitted to the UK Competition and Markets Authority to review in a new investigation. The statutory deadline for a decision is 18 October. Microsoft has stated that the restructured deal is intended to address the concerns set out in the CMA’s Final Report in April.

UK government borrowing came in at a lower than expected 4.3 billion pounds in July, helped by rising self assessment tax revenues, but debt interest payments hit a July record. Borrowing for the financial year to date has now reached £56.6bn, according to the Office for National Statistics, which is £11.3bn lower than the amount predicted in March by the Office for Budget Responsibility.

Former Bank of England governor Mark Carney has been named chairman of a new board of directors at US financial information and media company Bloomberg. Mr Carney has previously worked with company founder Mike Bloomberg on climate-related projects.



Football... Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is set to miss the club's next two Premier League matches after undergoing back surgery. The 52 year old had been suffering with what City said was "severe" back pain and travelled to Barcelona for an "emergency" but "minor" operation.

Meanwhile, Manchester City have agreed to sign Belgium winger Jeremy Doku. He joins from French club Rennes in a deal worth 65 million euros. He is expected in Manchester today to have a medical.

Newcastle United have signed England Under-21’s defender Lewis Hall on loan from Chelsea. The deal will be made permanent next summer.

Rugby Union...Italy have named former Wasps winger Paolo Odogwu in their World Cup squad. He'll make his debut in the match against Ireland on 5 August.



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