Evening Update Tuesday 31 October 2023

Counter-terrorism police have shot a woman at a train station in Paris. The woman, who was wearing a veil, was reportedly threatening passers-by and advocating terrorism at the Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand RER station in the 13th arrondissement this morning. She was also threatening to blow herself up. When she refused to comply with police orders, an officer opened fire. The woman is said to be in a critical but stable condition in hospital.

French Transport Minister Clement Beaune has said today that one hundred bomb threats have been made against airports in France since 18 October. He said that each threat was "not taken lightly" and an intervantion by police is made in each case. He added that the number of threats has been falling in recent days.

The Prefect of the Alpes-Maritimes has introduced a temporary ban on the sale, transport and use of combustible products and a prohibition on the sale, possession and use of so-called entertainment fireworks and pyrotechnic articles. Similar measures are in force in the Var. The prefecture said that all law enforcement agencies will be mobilized to carry out the necessary checks to ensure compliance with the measures and "will remain vigilant in the face of the terrorist risk". Due to the “Emergency Attack” level of the Vigipirate plan, the Prefect called on everyone "to use common sense and discernment in the choice of costumes", for example avoiding fake weapons in order not to generate a panic situation. The prefect also reminded everyone that false calls to the emergency and police services are not hoaxes but acts punishable by law and lead to a delay in truly urgent interventions. Full details of the measures in force can be found on the websites www.alpes-maritimes.gouv.fr and www.var.gouv.fr

The SNCF have said that disruption to train services is expected in parts of north-west France because of upcoming stormy weather in that part of the country. It said that TER services will be disrupted on Thursday in the Brittany, Pays de la Loire, Normandy and Centre Val de Loire regions. The Haut de France is also expected to be affected. Exceptionally strong winds are expected in the north-west over the coming days.

A woman in her sixties has been injured by a landslide while driving along a road in the arriere pays of Nice this morning. The landslide occurred at about 9am on the RM6202 at Utelle near the Reveston tunnel. The road is closed in both directions until further notice.

The hospital in St Tropez has announced that it's emergency reception facilities will remain closed at night during the month of November. The department has already been closed at night throughout October.


BUSINESS

Energy company BP has announced profits of $3.3bn for the July to September quarter, which is lower than expected. The figure was down from $8.1bn in the same period last year when BP made large profits following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which led to a sharp rise in oil prices.

The eurozone economy contracted by 0.1% in the July to September quarter compared with the same period in 2022, according to figures released by EU statistics office Eurostat. Eurostat also said that Euro area inflation stood at 2.9% in October, down from 4.3% in September. Food, alcohol and tobacco rose by 7.5% but energy prices fell by 11.1%.

Plans to close hundreds of rail ticket offices in England are expected to be scrapped. UK Transport Secretary Mark Harper said the government had asked train operators to withdraw their proposals. Rail operators had argued that only 12% of tickets are now bought at  station kiosks, but many rail users had objected to the plans.

 

SPORT

Rugby Union... Eddie Jones has resigned as Australia head coach after less than a year in charge. Australia failed to reach the knockout stages of the World Cup for the first time ever. Jones has said that he doesn't have another job lined up. He'll officially step down on 25 November.

Meanwhile, the victorious South African team have arrived back in Johannesburg where they were met by by huge crowds at the airport. Speaking at a press conference, captain Siya Kolisi dedicated the win to the people of South Africa.

Football... Saudi Arabia is set to host the men's 2034 World Cup after Australia decided against bidding to stage the tournament. Saudi Arabia is the only other nation to put in a bid. Football Australia said that it intends to focus its efforts on hosting the AFC Women's Asian Cup in 2026 and the Club World Cup in 2029.

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