French and Riviera News Monday 30th August 2021

Local News

Free diver drowns - A free diver has drowned in Nice. On Saturday, Cross med coordinated a search near Nice Côte d’Azur airport after the alarm was raised by the victim’s family. At around 11 p.m. the victim in his forties, was found at a depth of 28 meters. The free diver is believed to have left alone to go spearfishing. An investigation by the maritime gendarmerie is underway.

Building evacuated following gas leak - Two buildings have been evacuated in Nice following a gas leak on Sunday afternoon. Emergency services intervened shortly after 4pm at a residential building, in the Riquier district. 17 people were evacuated during the intervention at an apartment on the fourth floor. The intervention ended at around 8.30pm.

Hikers found safe and sound - A couple of hikers have been found safe and sound after spending a night at an altitude of 2,900m. The couple found themselves stranded at the top of La Cougourde in the Alpes-Maritimes. La Cougourde is a border summit located in the Mercantour massif in the Alpes-Maritimes. The couple were rescued by helicopter in the earlier hours of Sunday morning.

Meanwhile a woman reported missing on Saturday near a motorway rest area on the A8 motorway at Mougins has been found. After more than 24 hours of wandering, the Ukrainian national was found on Sunday and taken into care.

National News

1.8 million employees required to have a health pass from today - From today, Monday 30th August, some 1.8 million employees in France will be required to have a health pass. Many sectors of activity are concerned in both public and private sectors with the risk of fines being applied for offenders. The health pass is now an obligation for all employees, volunteers, service providers, temporary workers, subcontractors who work in establishments which welcome the public. For a full list of workplaces concerned go to the service-public website.

There are some exceptions as the measure does not apply to people working in spaces not accessible to the public, such as offices, and employees under the age of 18 will not be affected by this obligation until September 30th.

Protests against health pass - On Saturday more than 200 rallies were organised in France to protest against the ‘health pass’, a measure introduced by the government to stem the spread of covid. It was the seventh consecutive weekend that demonstrators have taken to the streets against this measure. According to the Interior Ministry, a total of 160,000 people protested across France on Saturday, angered at the country's covid health pass system which they say unfairly restricts the unvaccinated. Sixteen arrests were made, and three police officers were slightly injured.

France and Britain push for creation of “safe zone” in Afghanistan - French President Emmanuel Macron has said that France and Britain will today Monday 30th August, urge the United Nations to work for the creation of a "safe zone" in the Afghan capital Kabul to protect humanitarian operations. Speaking to the French weekly Journal du Dimanche, the head of state said that “the “safe zone” would provide a framework for the United Nations to act in an emergency and above would allow the international community to maintain pressure on the Taliban”. His comments come as international efforts to airlift foreign nationals and vulnerable Afghans out of the country comes to an end. France ended its evacuation efforts on Friday and the United Kingdom followed suit on Saturday.


The Australian government is considering new laws that would tighten the regulation of digital payment services by tech giants such as Apple and Alphabet's Google.

Meanwhile researchers who discovered a massive flaw in the main databases stored in the Microsoft cloud platform on Saturday have urged all users to change their digital access keys.

The pandemic has hit the trend for casual wear as Marks & Spencer no longer sells men's suits at more than half of its 254 bigger stores. Wes Taylor, director of menswear at M&S, said: "Covid fast forwarded the trend to more casual dressing." Now the retailer only sells men's suits at 110 large shops. According to market research in total, sales of suits in the UK have fallen by 2.3 million over five years. It said men purchased two million of them in the year to July compared to 4.3 million for the same period in 2017.

Thinking about a working getaway? Holidu’s workcation index for 2021 has ranked 150 cities as working vacation destinations using factors ranging from the monthly rent on a one-bedroom apartment and cost of after-work drinks to average hours of sunshine, wi-fi speeds and the number of things to do.  Bangkok, Thailand tops the list this year, followed by New Delhi ranked second and Lisbon third.