French and Riviera News Friday 24th June 2022

News

European Council grants Kyiv the status of EU candidate - The European Council has granted kyiv the status of EU candidate, but the process could take several years. Ukraine, accompanied by Moldova, was designated as an official candidate for membership of the European Union (EU) by the European Council on Thursday 23rd June. The granting of this status, demanded by kyiv since the start of the war with Russia in February, is highly symbolic making it possible to begin the process of discussion with the 27 member countries and the Commission. However French President Emmanuel Macron has warned that could "take decades".

Monkeypox - The World Health Organisation has called on countries to be vigilant and transparent in the face of a rare outbreak of more than 3,200 cases of monkeypox worldwide, while waiting to decide whether it triggers its highest level of alert. France to date has 330 confirmed cases of infection.

Eight men convicted of theft - A French court has convicted eight men for the theft and handling of a Banksy painting, "the sad girl", which paid tribute to the victims of the 2015 attack on the Bataclan concert hall in Paris. Three men in their 30s who admitted to the 2019 theft were given prison sentences, one of four years and two of three, although they will be able to serve them wearing electronic tracking bracelets rather than behind bars. Another man, a 41-year-old millionaire lottery winner and street art fan accused of being the mastermind of the theft, was given three years in jail for handling stolen goods after judges found the main allegation unproven. His sentence will also be served with a bracelet. British street artist Banksy painted "sad girl" on the metal door of the Bataclan in memory of the 90 people killed there on 13 November 2015.

Residents save woman - Residents of the Ariane district in Nice have saved the life of a woman as she attempted to jump from a seventh-floor window on an apartment block. The incident occurred on Wednesday afternoon as several neighbours intervened before police and emergency services arrived and took over the rescue operation.

Weather warning - The Var region has been placed on a yellow weather warning with storms forecast today Friday 24th June. The warning is in place until early evening. Meanwhile fifteen other departments in the northeast of France remain on an orange weather alert today with thunderstorms forecast and possible hailstorms and strong winds.

Two apartment fires in the centre of Nice - There have been two apartment fires in the centre of Nice. Firefighters were deployed on Thursday afternoon on the route de Turin after a