French and Riviera News Friday 9th June 2023

News

Knife attack in Annecy - The four young children who were stabbed in a park in Annecy are reported to now be in a stable condition in hospital. Police overpowered and arrested the knifeman after he entered a children's playground to carry out the attack on Thursday morning. A three-year-old British child is among the injured, another is Dutch. Two adults were also hurt, with one in a critical condition. Police have confirmed that the suspect is a 31-year-old Syrian, who had refugee status in Sweden. French Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne and Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin went to the scene of the attack.

France’s Prime Minister told a news conference that the attacker has "no criminal or psychiatric record". Annecy prosecutor Line Bonnet-Mathis told reporters that the young victims ranged from 22 months old to three years adding that there "doesn't seem to be any kind of terrorist motivation". Police say the suspect has refugee status in Sweden and recently came to France, leaving behind a wife and three-year-old daughter. In an unsuccessful asylum application last year for refugee status in France, he said he was a Syrian Christian.

About fifty ultra-right activists gathered in Annecy near the playground where the knife attack took place, responding to a call made by several ultra-right groups on social networks. Earlier in the day, the prefect of Haute-Savoie had however published an order prohibiting any gathering "in order to prevent any risk of disturbing public order". Protesters marched, singing the Marseillaise and chanting "blue, white, red, France to the French", They also denounced the supposed laxity of the French migration policy, and verbally attacked the journalists that were present.

Malek found safe and sound - Eight-year-old Malek who was the subject of a kidnapping alert has been found safe and well with her father north of Rome. The alert had been put in place by French authorities to try to locate the girl who was last seen in the town of Dunkerque near the border with Belgium. Her father was arrested. The Dunkerque prosecutor's office has said that her father is the main suspect in the death of his partner in Dunkerque.

Heatwave – The French government has announced a plan to deal with heatwaves this summer. The government said that it is necessary to protect the elderly, children, workers and farmers. There are fifteen measures in total, including the establishment of cool islands and drinking fountains in towns, the sending of SMS messages with heatwave advice, messages of advice being announced on public transport and the promotion of steps to be taken by animal owners.

Study - A study carried out in France has shown that patients over 75 who spend a night on a stretcher in A&E rather than a proper hospital bed have a 46% higher risk of dying. The was study conducted in 97 accident and emergency departments in France.  The study also shows that between December and January, the Samu union had counted 150 avoidable deaths after a lack of care.

Demolition of the Acropolis - Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi has been visiting the demolition work at the Acropolis. He said that there had been a major asbestos removal operation as the building housed three times more asbestos than the estimated forecasts. In a social media post, he said that instead of the building, he wanted the people of Nice to enjoy an extended urban forest over an additional 8 hectares, "a place that will bring happiness to the people of Nice, more freshness and preserve biodiversity".

SNCF competition - The SNCF has announced that it will put into play 10,000 vouchers of 10 euros on Monday June 12th, as part of a competition organized on its social networks. At the same time, young people under 28 will also be able to try to acquire 10,000 Young Advantage cards for 1 euro, instead of the normal 49 euros.

Billionaire’s yacht spotted on the Riviera - Bernard Arnault's yacht has been spotted on the French Riviera, mooring in the bay between Beaulieu and Èze. Arnault purchased the $150 million superyacht in 2015 and named it “Symphony”, a musical metaphor for the billionaire's undisturbed ocean getaway. It ranks in the top 50 of biggest yachts in the world measuring roughly 333 feet with a maximum speed of 21 knots no wonder it rarely goes unnoticed. Arnault founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of the world's largest luxury goods company he and his family have an estimated net worth of 187 billion US dollars as of June 2023, according to BBC News, making him the second wealthiest person in the world.

Business

During their meeting on Thursday American President Joe Biden and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced that as part of plans to boost UK and US ties, UK firms could gain access to US green funding. The PM said the agreement, which falls short of a full trade deal would bring benefits "as quickly as possible". As the pair unveiled their partnership to bolster economic security, Mr Sunak said the UK-US relationship was an "indispensable alliance". The Atlantic Declaration includes commitments on easing trade barriers, closer defence industry ties, a data protection deal and also steps up co-operation on AI.

Recent revised figures have shown that the eurozone fell into recession this winter as consumers were hit by rising prices. The economy contracted by 0.1% between January and March, after also shrinking in the final three months of 2022. As in other regions, the eurozone has been hit by rising food and energy prices that have weighed on households. Spending by households in the bloc fell by 0.3% in the first three months of 2023, and by 1% in the previous quarter.

The GMB union has withdrawn its bid for recognition at Amazon's Coventry warehouse, accusing the shopping giant of "dirty tricks". The union claimed it had surpassed the number of members needed to secure recognition at the site, but that Amazon had taken on 1,000 extra staff to ruin the bid. Amazon denied the accusation, saying it regularly recruited new staff. It came as workers at the warehouse announced three more days of strikes.Staff will walk out from 12 to 14 June as part of a long-running dispute over pay.

Sport

Football - Thousands of West Ham supporters have gathered in the streets of east London to witness their trophy parade on Thursday evening following their Europa Conference League victory. The parade started at the Champions Statue and slowly made its way to Stratford Town Hall. The club has proudly secured its first major European trophy in 58 years. Meanwhile, Liverpool have completed a £35m deal to sign midfielder Alexis Mac Allister from Brighton on a five-year contract. The fee could rise to £55m for the Argentina playmaker, who helped Brighton finish sixth in the Premier League this season to qualify for Europe for the first time. The 24-year-old scored 20 goals in 112 appearances for the Seagulls and helped Argentina win the 2022 World Cup.

Cricket - Australia have delivered a fine performance on day two of the World Test Championship final at The Oval. Australia’s bowlers gave a preview of what England will face in the Ashes after reducing India to 71-4. Australia's goal is to win this final and claim an Ashes victory on English soil for the first time in 22 years.

Formula One – As reported last week on Riviera Radio local formula One driver Charles Leclerc had put up for auction his driving gear from the Monaco Grand Prix in aid of the flood victims in Italy and congratulations as the helmet worn by Leclerc at the Monaco Grand Prix has sold for a record 306,000 euros. Auctioneers said the amount made it the highest-priced racing helmet ever auctioned beating the previous record of 162,000 euros set in 2019 for a helmet worn by Brazilian Ayrton Senna. The 'Charles Leclerc for Emilia-Romagna' charity auction raised a total of £368,800, with the Ferrari driver's race suit fetching £52,500, his boots £17,500 and gloves £36,100. The helmet, signed by Leclerc, was a one-off item created for his home race in Monaco, where he finished sixth. The floods in the Emilia-Romagna region caused the deaths of 15 people as torrential rain saw more than 20 rivers burst their banks.

And - Formula One has said that the Canadian Grand Prix is "not at risk" despite wildfires causing air-quality issues across much of North America adding that it had been "assured that the situation in Montreal is different to other parts of the country and US".

Tennis - Serbia's Novak Djokovic, the 22-time Grand Slam champion plays Spanish world number one Carlos Alcaraz as the two finally go head-to-head at a Grand Slam when they meet at Roland Garros semi-finals today at 3pm French time.

Weather

Sunny Intervals along the coast with a light wind. Highs of 24 degrees in Nice and Monaco. 23 degrees in Saint-Tropez with a risk of light rain. 25 degrees in Cannes. This evening going down to 18 degrees along the coast with rain forecast.

The outlook for Saturday and Sunday. Expected to remain dry along the coastline in the Alpes Maritimes with sunny intervals. Chance of showers in the Var. Thundery storms inland. Highs of 24-26 degrees.

Sunrise                05.48am

Sunset                 09.10pm

London                25 degrees and sunny.

Paris                     31 degrees and sunny.

Sydney                20 degrees with sunny intervals.

Palma                  25 degrees with sunny intervals.

Cork                     20 degrees and drizzle.

Beach weather forecast

Nice – Sea temperature 21 degrees. Air temperature 23 degrees. Cloudy patches. Rain by this evening. UV level 8.

Marseille – Sea temperature 21 degrees. Air temperature 26 degrees. Scattered showers. UV level 6.

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