French and Riviera News Thursday 20th July 2023

News

Investigation into online collection for officer who shot dead Nahel M - An investigation has been opened into an online collection for the policeman who shot dead teenager Nahel M in a Paris suburb in late June sparking nationwide riots in France. The GoFundMe.com, was launched by far-right media commentator Jean Messiha and received pledges of more than €1.6m before it was closed in early July. The 38-year-old motorbike traffic officer who shot French-Algerian teenager Nahel M on 27 June has been detained and charged with voluntary manslaughter. Messiha said the fund, which was intended for the officer’s family, was “a cry from French people to demand order, a cry of love for their security forces”. But news of the collection prompted outrage from politicians on the left who described it as “indecent”.

French law prohibits the “opening of or public announcement of subscriptions whose purpose is to compensate for fines, costs and damages awarded by judicial sentences in criminal and correctional matters”. The penalties include a six-month prison sentence or a €45,000. A spokesperson for GoFundMe told the French magazine Capital that the fund did not break any rules as the money would not go to fund the police officer’s legal fees or defence.

Survey on French Prime Minister - French President Emmanuel Macron confirmed this week that his Prime Minister would remain at the head of Matignon. However according to a new survey conducted by the Elabe Insititue 55% of French people believe that Macron was wrong to keep Elisabeth Borne as Prime Minister. The survey showed that 56% of French people think she is a bad Prime Minister, 29% of those polled considered her to be "rather bad" and 27% describe her as a "very bad" Prime Minister. In addition, 77% of French people believe that Elisabeth Borne only applies Emmanuel Macron's decisions without really influencing them.

Heatwave continues – Locally, the orange heat wave alert remains in place for the Alpes-Maritimes and the Var, this Thursday. For the twelfth consecutive day in the Alpes Maritimes the region is expected to experience very high temperatures. According to forecasters, the thermometer could rise reaching 40 degrees inland in the Var. Elsewhere the maximum will generally range from between 32 to 36 degrees.

Fire risk - Meanwhile, access to five forests in the Var region has been prohibited this Thursday due to the severe risk of fire. The ban concerns the Monts Toulonnais, the Corniche des Maures, the Maures, the Centre-Var and the Esterel.

Nice attack - The Nice prosecutor has asked an investigation into the attack of July 14, 2016 to re-classify the facts as "involuntary homicides and injuries". In a document submitted to investigating judges, Xavier Bonhomme said that failures in security measures on that evening or a series of shortcomings are "likely to have contributed to the realisation" of the attack. The terrorist aspects of the attack were investigated by a court in Paris last year but there is also a continuing investigation into the circumstances surrounding the attack.

Fatal canyoning accident - A 58 year old British man has died in a canyoning accident in the Hautes-Alpes. According to the local prosecutor, the man was on a river with his family yesterday evening when the accident happened near the town of Champcella.

Bardot - Brigitte Bardot has reportedly been admitted to hospital, suffering from respiratory distress. Firefighters were called to her home in St Tropez on Wednesday morning and she was later taken to hospital where she is undergoing tests.

Concert - Due to a concert by The Weeknd at the Allianz Riviera Stadium, bus lines 17, 52 and 69 on the Lignes d'Azur network are diverted this Saturday July 22 and Sunday July 23, from 4:00 p.m. to the end of service. You can get more information on https://lignesdazur.com/

Business

Wheat prices have risen sharply on global markets after Russia said it would treat ships heading for Ukrainian ports as potential military targets. Moscow pulled out of a deal this week that had guaranteed safe passage for grain shipments through the Black Sea. A White House spokesperson accused Russia of planning to blame Ukraine for attacks on civilian ships. Russia's President Vladimir Putin said he would return to the grain agreement immediately if his demands were met. They include reconnecting Russia's agricultural bank to a global payment system.

A trade union in the UK has warned that the country is falling behind in protecting workers from artificial intelligence (AI). The TUC said the UK had no plans, like the EU's AI Act, to regulate its use in hiring, firing and setting work conditions. The union has asked a taskforce to draft legal protections. The government said it was committed to improving and upholding worker rights. It comes as the boss of Octopus Energy told the BBC its customers prefer emails written by AI over his staff. Business leaders are hailing the potential of AI to spur innovation, productivity and improve customer service. But unions say they are "deeply worried" that UK employment law is not keeping pace with the AI revolution.

And - Streaming giant Netflix’s crack down on password sharing seem to have paid off as the platform has seen a burst of people sign up for the service.  The company ended June with more than 238 million subscribers, adding 5.9 million members since March. That was bigger than expected and follows efforts by the company to re-ignite growth following unusual subscriber losses last spring. It is also facing challenges from ongoing strikes in the US by writers and actors.

Sport

Football - A deadly shooting just hours before Auckland was due to host the opening match of the Women's World Cup has cast a shadow over what was supposed to be a day of celebration. The incident in the centre of New Zealand's largest city, close to where hundreds of football supporters were due to gather at a fan park, left two people dead and six others injured. Fifa said it had been informed it was an isolated incident and Thursday's match between New Zealand and Norway at Eden Park would go ahead as planned. People have travelled to the city from across the globe for the start of the World Cup, which has been labelled the biggest women's sports event ever to be staged.

Cricket - England chipped away at Australia's batting on a tense and fluctuating first day of the crucial fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford. At 2-1 down and needing to win to force a series decider at The Oval, England struck at regular intervals to leave the tourists 299-8 at the close.

Formula One – 28-year-old Nyck de Vries has said that losing his seat at Alpha Tauri just 10 races into his Formula 1 career "hurts". The Dutchman was dropped by team owners Red Bull last week and replaced by Daniel Ricciardo from this weekend's Hungarian Grand Prix.

Rugby Union - The British and Irish Lions will play a New Zealand and Australia invitational XV as part of their nine-match tour down under in 2025. The historic fixture in Adelaide will precede Test matches with the Wallabies in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. A sell-out at the 100,000-capacity Melbourne Cricket Ground would smash records for a Lions Test match.

Weather

Mostly cloudy to begin with, clearing as the day goes on. The orange heatwave alert remains in place for the Alpes Maritimes and the Var. Highs of 38 degrees in Saint-Tropez and Draguignan, with moderate to strong winds in the Var. 33 degrees in Vence. 31 degrees in Nice and Monaco, with a gentle breeze. This evening going down to 24 degrees in Nice, 28 degrees in Saint-Tropez with clear skies.

The outlook for Friday and the weekend. High temperatures are set to continue into the weekend with 34-38 degrees.

Sunrise  06.06am

Sunset   09.06pm

Beach weather

Nice – Sea temperature is 28 degrees. Air temperature is 29 degrees. UV level is 10.

Cavalaire sur mere – Sea temperature 28 degrees

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