Teacher honoured- Rallies and vigils have been taking place across France in memory of the college teacher who was decapitated outside the school near Paris at which he taught last Friday.
The country has been left in shock at the murder of 47 year old history and geography teacher Samuel Paty who was beheaded by an 18 year old radicalised Chechen refugee after he’d shown students cartoon images of the Prophet Muhammad as part of a class centred around freedom of speech.
Police shot the murderer dead shortly after the incident . He’s been named as Abdoullakh Anzorov who was born in Moscow to Chechen parents and who was granted a French residency permit as recently as March this year.
A number of rallies in support of the dead teacher and French values of freedom of expression have been staged in cities around the country including Paris ,Lyon and Bordeaux.
The French President Emmanuel Macron has said that the country is engaged in an “existential” battle against Islamist terrorism.
10 people are in police custody being questioned in connection with the murder.
Covid 19- Paris and several other large French cities have entered a curfew period of at least a month as authorities attempt to reduce spiraling coronavirus infection rates with hospital admission rates steadily rising.
People in affected areas are required to be off the streets between 9pm and 6am with fines of 130 euros for offenders.
Some exceptions have been made for people working at the affected times or traveling.
France has registered an extra 32,000 cases of Covid-19 in the past 24 hours and the country has become a hot spot for the second wave of the virus.
Locally, new cases of her virus are continuing to increase but neither the Alpes-Maritimes or the Var are yet at the level where curfew measures will have to be introduced.
However ,the prefect of the Alpes-Maritimes Bernard Gonzalez and the Mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi have both warned that the region could quite easily be forced to introduce a curfew unless people act more responsibly and maintain good hygiene practices.
On a national level ,the French Health Minister Olivier Veran says that the country has a total of 5,800 hospital intensive care beds available with 1,900 of them currently occupied.
The virus has so far killed 33,392 people in France with 867,197 recorded infections.
Post-Brexit residency portal-The Brexit withdrawal agreement residency portal for British nationals living in France goes live today and people are being advised not to delay their application.
All British nationals living in France will have to apply for the new permit by no later than the 30th of June 2021.
The British Ambassador to France Ed Llewelyn says that the new process is considerably easier than the old system and that the French State recognises and values the contribution that British residents make to the country.
The new process is user friendly and in English for those who may be struggling with the language.
Applicants are required to fill in details and then state how long they have been in the country. They are then directed to the relevant section to compete the process and upload relevant documents.
Everybody applying will be required to attend their local prefecture to provide biometric details such as fingerprints and photographs. A receipt will then be issued and cards sent out in the post.
Vallauris Fire- A 38 year old man is in a critical condition in hospital today after fire swept through an apartment block in Vallauris in the early hours of Sunday.
Authorities say that the blaze started in a first floor flat at the block on the rue de Belgique.
20 residents had to be evacuated as firefighters dealt with the flames. The injured man was pulled from the building unconscious and is being treated in Cannes.
Move out-30 people living in a run-down apartment block in Cannes-sur-Mer say that they’re being forced to move out by the 31st of December as the building as been sold and is being pulled down.
Residents at the Marinamer building say that bailiffs have told them they have to go by the end of the year and that they are not covered by winter expulsion legislation as the sale is a private transaction .
The owner of the building is selling so that it can be demolished with two new blocks erected in its place.
Some of those currently occupying flats are on low salaries or unemployed and several children are involved.
Those who haven’t found somewhere else to live by the 31st of December will be entitled to an appeal against eviction but the final decision will be in the hands of the bailiffs.
For the birds- Authorities in La Lavandou are taking action to reduce the number of pigeons in the town.
The birds are costing the local council tens of thousands of euros a year with buildings and public monuments and recreation areas needing to be regularly cleaned or their droppings.
As a solution ,a new ‘contraceptive’ pigeon loft has been constructed in a municipal car park which has been approved by a local animal rights group.
The birds are prevented from leaving the loft and are provided with enough food and water until the females lay their eggs which are then removed and destroyed.
The pigeons are then allowed to go free.
Talks on a post-Brexit trading relationship between Britain and the EU will resume this week despite a Downing Street spokesman saying that there was “no point” in continuing discussions.
The British government has said that there is no point in talking unless the EU is prepared to discuss the detailed legal text of a partnership.
It’s understood that discussions will take place over the phone as the two sides attempt to discover if there is any way forward.
The EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has said that discussions need to be “intensified” while the French Europe Minister Clement Beaune says that while the EU will not pursue a deal at any cost ,the views of the UK side will be listened to.
On Friday ,the ratings agency Moody’s downgraded the UK’s credit status citing falling economic power due to the coronavirus pandemic and uncertainty over Brexit.
OPEC and it’s allies will meet to assess the state of the market although no policy decisions will be taken before December.
With the price of crude hovering at around 40 dollars and more supply coming online from Libya ,the cartel is under pressure to act and there have been increasing telephone conversations between Saudi and Russian leaders over the past two weeks to discuss the options.
On Thursday OPEC’s Secretary General conceded that demand is “anaemic” and that the cartel will have to act to prevent a market “relapse”.
It’s thought that some of supply curbs which were due to be eased in January may be scaled back or scrapped altogether.
Analysts say that adding oil to the market in the current climate would not an advisable.
And American Airlines is planning to return Boeing 737 Max jets to the skies by the end of this year depending on certification of the aircraft from the US Federal Aviation Administration.
American says that it plans to offer a daily 737 Max flight from New York to Miami from December the 29th to January the 4th and would start accepting online bookings from this coming Saturday.
The firm says that it remains in consultation with the FAA and Boeing on the certification process and would update its plans when and if necessary.
The Boeing 737 Max has been grounded since March 2019 after two fatal crashes killed 346 people but the FAA is expected to lift the ban sometime in November.
Football-There were four games in the English Premier League on Sunday with Sheffield United and Fulham drawing 1-1 and Crystal Palace and Brighton also drawing 101.
Spurs let a 3 goal lead slip against West Ham with the match ending in a 3-3 draw and Aston Villa moved up to second in the table thanks to a 1-0 win at Leicester.
There are two games tonight.West Brom play Burnley and Leeds play Wolves.
There was one game in the English Championship on Sunday. Preston lost 1-0 at home to Cardiff.
Rugby Union-New Zealand have beaten Australia 27-7 in the second Bledisloe Cup game at a near capacity Eden Park.
The All Blacks were leading 10-7 at half time and pressed home their advantage in the second half .scoring 3 quick tries after the break.
New Zealand haven’t lost in 44 Tests at Eden Park since 1994 while Australia haven’t won there since 1986.
Tennis-Andy Murray has pulled out of this week’s ATP event in Cologne with a recurring pelvic problem.
The former world number one says that he became aware of the niggle at last month’s US Open and that tendonitis has been diagnosed.
Murray said that he’d decided to pull out after practicing on Sunday.
Golf-Adrian Otaegui has won the Scottish Championship at Fairmont Saint Andrews.
The 27 year old world number 248 came from 4 shots down as he carded a stunning final round of 63 to reach 23 under par.Overnight leader Matt Wallace of England finished second on 19 under.
Mainly fine with light south easterly winds.
Top temperatures 19 degrees.
Overnight lows of 13 degrees on the coast and 11 degrees inland with partially cloudy skies.
Tuesday and Wednesday-Mainly fine with highs of 19-20 degrees.
The Regional Health Agency has confirmed on Tuesday 25th January, that the Omicron variant is now the dominant strain of covid in the Provence Alpes C... Read More