French and Riviera News Monday 9th January 2023


French President condemns invasion of several institutions in Brazil - French president Emmanuel Macron has called for "respect for democratic institutions" in Brazil and underlined France's "unwavering support" for President Lula, after the invasion of several institutions. According to a separate statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, "France condemns in the strongest terms the ongoing violence against three institutions of Brazilian democracy: the Congress, the Presidency of the Republic and the Supreme Court" saying that “these attacks constitute an unacceptable challenge to the result of a democratic election, won without ambiguity on October 30th by President Lula, who took office as President of the Federative Republic of Brazil on January 1st”. Adding that “the will of the Brazilian people, who have spoken sovereignly, must be respected”.

Pension Reform – Meanwhile, in other news, as the French government prepares to unveil its pension reform tomorrow Tuesday, January 10th unions are planning to take action against it. The text will be examined by the Council of Ministers on January 23rd and the bill must pass in committee at the National Assembly from January 30th. The reform is expected to postpone the legal age of retirement to 64 years instead of the current 62.

President of the FFF asked to apologise for comments about Zidane - France’s Sports Minister has demanded an apology from the president of the French Football Federation following his comments about Zinedine Zidane on French radio on Sunday. Asked about the extension of Didier Deschamps for four years as coach of the French team, Noël Le Graët responded to those who demanded the arrival of Zinedine Zidane saying that "Zidane does what he wants, it's none of my business. I've never met him, we never considered parting with Didier”.

Paris court backs organisers of Miss France - A Paris court has backed the organisers of Miss France, dismissing claims from a leading feminist organisation that the beauty contest selection process was discriminatory. The group is considering the possibility of an appeal. Osez-le-Féminisme (Dare to be Feminist), along with three failed contestants, filed a suit against the promoters and producers of Miss France in October 2021, alleging they were breaking French labour laws.


Investigation into death after man falls into river in Menton - Police have opened an investigation following the death of a man in his forties after he fell into a river in Menton at the weekend. Little is known of the exact circumstances. Emergency services were unable to resuscitate the victim who for an unknown reason had fallen into the waters of the Caréi river on Saturday night at around 11.30pm.

8-year-old child found alone on bus after sleepwalking - An 8-year-old child has been found alone on a bus in Cannes after sleepwalking. The child was discovered on Sunday morning and is believed to have left the family apartment in Cannes in the early hours of Sunday and was found safe and sound more than 7km from his home on the bus.

Prom’Classic - Despite the rain some 8,500 people took part in Sunday’s Prom’Classic. Amongst them was 15-year-old Raphaël Courouble who was running to raise awareness and collect funding for research into Lewy body disease which leads to a form of dementia which is a little less known than Alzheimer's but is the second disease which affects the most people in France".  Raphaël completed the Prom'Classic in 43 minutes and 57 seconds, finishing in 13th place in his category.

Tourism - The Côte d'Azur Regional Tourism Committee (CRT) has announced that 2022 has "definitely marked a return to normal" following a drop-in tourist activity in the Alpes Maritimes and Monaco due to covid lockdowns and restrictions. Over the past year, attendance is estimated at more than 10 million stays, leisure, or business which is close to that of 2019, a record year with 11 million visitors.


The UK government has confirmed that single-use items like plastic cutlery, plates and trays will be banned in England. It is not clear when the ban will come into effect, but it follows similar moves already made by Scotland and Wales. Campaigners welcomed the ban but called for a wider-ranging plastic reduction strategy. Government figures suggest that 1.1 billion single-use plates and more than four billion pieces of plastic cutlery are used in England every year.

Tractor maker John Deere has agreed to give its US customers the right to fix their own equipment. Previously, farmers were only allowed to use authorised parts and service facilities rather than cheaper independent repair options. Deere and Co. is one of the world's largest makers farming equipment. Consumer groups have for years been calling on companies to allow their cus