French and Riviera News Thursday 14th March 2024

 National News France

Emmanuel Macron to speak about the situation in Ukraine on French television this evening - French President Emmanuel Macron is to speak on the situation in Ukraine this Thursday evening. Macron is to appear live at 8pm on France 2 and TF1. The French head of State has been heavily criticised recently following comments made during an international conference on February 26th where he declared that sending western troops into Ukraine could “not be excluded”.

Poll shows that 61% of French people believe Vladimir Putin is a threat to France - Meanwhile ahead of Macron’s interview this evening a recent poll has revealed that 61% of French people believe that Russian President Vladimir Putin is a threat to France. The poll by the Elabe Institute for BFMTV comes after the National Assembly voted in favour on Tuesday of the security agreement between France and Ukraine, signed a few weeks earlier by Emmanuel Macron and Volodymyr Zelensky. The agreement provides for military aid of three billion euros to the Ukrainian army. An amount to which 51% of French people are opposed. Nevertheless, 54% believe that we must continue to help Ukraine against Russia, but that France must not get too involved in this war and risks conflict with Russia, even if it means defeat for Ukraine. 24% want unlimited defence to prevent Vladimir Putin from winning the war and 21% think that Ukraine should now be left to defend itself against Russia.

The choice of French female singer sparks almighty row - In other national news in France while she may be the most listened-to French female singer in the world, is Aya Nakamura the right fit for the Paris Olympics? President Emmanuel Macron's reported idea that the 28-year-old Franco-Malian singer should perform at the opening ceremony in July has sparked an almighty row in France about identity and language. On one side are ranged her supporters, who say there could be no better way of showcasing the vibrancy of modern-day Francophone culture - a culture that revels in its diversity. On the other are the detractors, who say her music owes more to Africa and the United States than it does to France - and that her use of the French language only debases it. Ministers, fellow musicians and the Olympics organisers have rushed to Nakamura's defence, accusing her opponents of rejecting her because of her foreign origin.

Local

Death toll from storm Monica rises to seven - Following the bad weather which affected the south of France last weekend the number of victims now stands at seven after the body of a man discovered in the Ardeche on Tuesday was identified on Wednesday. A 13-year-old child is still missing. Storm Monica, saw heavy rain and gusts of wind hit the south of France particularly in the Gard and the Ardeche.

Unsafe bridges - Out of the 10,000 bridges in France which require repair work 800 will be repaired.  After the collapse of the Morandi motorway viaduct in Genoa (Italy), which left 43 dead in 2018, a Senate report drew up an alarming inventory, with "at least 25,000 bridges" considered in France to be in "poor condition" with structural problems and unsafe.  France has between 200,000 and 250,000 bridges, including 100,000 municipal ones.

Parents with pushchairs protest for better sharing of public spaces - Parents with pushchairs in Marseille have protested demanding better sharing of public spaces in the city. On Wednesday parents with pushchairs walked from the Palais Longchamp to the Vieux Port. The protest had been organized by the “Syndicat des Poussettes Enragées” to make as many people as possible understand that Marseille must allow pedestrians with pushchairs to be able to move without being faced by constant obstacles such as badly parked cars and delivery vans.

Belem docks in the port of Toulon - The famous sailboat the Belem will be stopping in Toulon this weekend. After La Seyne the famous sailboat opens its deck to the public in Toulon on Saturday March 16th and Sunday March 17.th Registrations are now open. The Belem, the last of the large French commercial sailing ships of the 19th century still sailing, will offer paid tours of the famous three-masted ship at the Quai de la Corse, in the commercial port of Toulon.

A very Happy Birthday to HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco - Finally, today in Monaco is a celebration day as the community comes together in support of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco to celebrate his 66th birthday. A community gathering in honour of Prince Albert will be taking place at 11am on the Place du Palais. The event is a chance for residents and citizens of the Principality to come together. 

Business

A landmark bill has been passed by the US House of Representatives which could see TikTok banned in America. It would give the social media giant's Chinese parent company, ByteDance, six months to sell its controlling stake or the app would be blocked in the US. The bill still needs to clear the Senate and be signed by the president to become law. Lawmakers have long held concerns about China's influence over TikTok. TikTok is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, founded in 2012.

Meanwhile in the UK the government has said that foreign governments will be banned from owning UK newspapers and news magazines. The move comes following criticism of a proposed takeover of the Daily Telegraph and Spectator by a United Arab Emirates-backed investment firm, RedBird IMI. The government said the proposed legislation would "deliver additional protections for a free press".

The maker of Marlboro cigarettes has said that it will sell more than $2.2bn (£1.7bn) of shares in AB InBev, the owner of the Bud Light and Stella Artois beer brands. The move will see the company offloading 35 million AB InBev shares. The tobacco giant currently owns around 10% of the world's biggest brewer, worth about $12.7bn.

Sport

Football – The Premier League witnessed its biggest comeback win in more than 20 years on Wednesday evening with despite having been three goals down at half time Bournemouth beat Luton 4-3. Described as one of the most extraordinary Premier League matches of this or any recent season.

Meanwhile in the Champions League Atletico Madrid dramatically beat Inter Milan on penalties to reach the quarterfinals. It finished 2-2 on aggregate at the end of extra time after Inter had thrown away a two-goal advantage.

And in the French Cup PSG beat Nice 3-1 at the Parc des Princes and will now join Rennes in the semi-finals.

Formula One - After making his debut at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Oliver Bearman says he wants to fulfil a "childhood dream" by earning a Formula 1 seat next year. The 18-year-old became the youngest Briton to start a Grand Prix when he was called up by Ferrari to replace Carlos Sainz, who had appendicitis. Bearman finished ahead of seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton.

Cricket - England batter Harry Brook has made the "difficult decision" to withdraw from this year's Indian Premier League following the death of his grandmother. The 25-year-old Yorkshireman was set to play for Delhi Capitals. The 2024 IPL starts on March 22nd, with the final taking place on 25 or 26 May.

Weather

Sunny intervals with a gentle breeze. Highs of 16 degrees in Nice and Marseille. 14 degrees in Monaco, 15 degrees in Saint-Tropez. This evening going down to 9 degrees with cloudy skies.

The outlook for Friday sunny intervals in Nice, light cloud in Monaco. Highs of 15-16 degrees. Saturday clear skies with highs of 16 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes and the Var.

Sunrise       06.43am

Sunset        06.35pm

Sea temperature

Monaco   13.7°

Weather elsewhere

Cardiff      13° light rain

Belfast      12° heavy rain 

Madrid       18° sunny.

Lisbon         18° ligth rain

And Finally..

A new survey has revealed that almost half of people in their fifties in the UK are experiencing sleeping difficulties. The study showed that 46 per cent of people aged 50 to 59 reported that they have not been sleeping well during the last 12 months, while 42 per cent said they were more anxious over the same timeframe. As many as one in eight people aged 50 and over said they rarely or never had social contact with others in person, over the phone or online. Other findings included over a third of 50 to 59-year-olds reported finding it harder to remember things, while a quarter (26 per cent) said they were finding it harder to process new information.

 

 

 

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