Evening Update Wednesday 09 August

Rescue and clean-up operations continue this afternoon after nine people died in a fire at a holiday home for disabled people in eastern France. The fire broke out at 6.30 this morning in the town of Wint-zenheim 80km south of Strazbourg. The holiday home had been rented by a charity which cares for people with learning disabilities. Seventeen other people were brought to safety. Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne is on site this afternoon, while President Macron has said his thoughts are with the victims, the injured and their families. 

The sale of alcohol has been banned outside the Allianz Riviera before all OGC Nice football matches. The decree comes into force for the teams first game of the season this Friday against Lille. The ban does not affect licenced bars, terraces or restaurants near the stadium.

Property sales on the Cote d’Azur are showing signs of a slow down due to rocketing mortgage rates. Figures from Notaries de France also show the effect of Brexit where sales to British expats are now exceeded by those to Belgians. The Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region is the most popular of all French regions with overseas buyers, who represent almost 4% of transactions.

A shopkeeper in Nice is recovering after a customer told his one of his pit-bull dogs to attack him. After the incident, which happened on Rue Gambetta yesterday evening, the shopkeeper was treated with 28 stitches and a shot to repair a severed nerve in his arm. The owner of the dogs, who is known in the area, has been reported to police.  

More gun violence in Marseilles has seen a 21-year-old man shot dead today in the 15th arrondissement north of the city. It’s believed the death was drug related, making it the 30th murder so far this year. Police are investigating. 

The Mayor of Antibes/Juan-les-Pins has welcomed a drop in crime in the area this summer. A meeting at the mairie noted the more frequent crimes this summer are the theft of tourist towels from beaches and petty fights between teenagers. While there have been some more serious thefts of luxury watches from peoples wrists, it is still rare in Antibes and nothing near levels being experienced in Cannes.

Business

Italian bank shares are rebounding today after the government eased off on its surprise 40% tax on bank profits which were derived from higher interest rates. The announcement saw a nine billion euro dive in banking market capitalization yesterday. Today, after the finance ministry has said it would cap the levy on net interest income, bank shares are back up by four to six percent on the markets. 

Amazon is said to be in talks with computer chip design company ARM who plan to list on the NASDAQ. It’s the first time Amazon has been mentioned in connection with the IPO, which is expected to raise eight to ten billion dollars next month. 

Sport

Champions League - Marseilles are in action against Pan-e-tol-ik-os tonight but will be without any support as their fans have been banned from attending the game in Greece.  The same ban holds for Greek fans hoping to attend next weeks second leg at the Vélodrome. Kick off for the game is at 8pm.

Rugby - Ulster hooker Tom Stewart says he is treating his Ireland World Cup build-up as a learning exercise! The 22-year-old said he was surprised but delighted to be named in the squad for summer training camp and three World Cup warm-up matches. He made his debut as a replacement during the second half of Saturday's 33-17 win over Italy in Dublin.

Tennis - Andy Murray is through to the second round of the Canadian Open in Toronto after a straight-set victory over Italian Lorenzo Sonego. Fellow Britons Cameron Norrie and Dan Evans are both out though after losing their respective matches. 
 

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