French and Riviera News Tuesday 18th August 2020


French President commemorative ceremony in Bormes les Mimosas - During the commemorative ceremony for the 76th anniversary of the liberation of Bormes-les-Mimosas in the Var, French President Emmanuel Macron has said that there was "no history to review". The Head of State was addressing local elected officials, the prefect, veterans and associations during the ceremony which took place on Monday. 

Referring to the anti-racist movement which wants to destroy the statues of personalities associated with slavery, the President of the Republic who is currently on holiday in the Var at the Presidential holiday home of Fort de Brégançon,  said "We are still learning, our historians continue to work, to reveal the truth, to better understand. But we do not seek to remove statues or erase names”. He concluded that there are “undoubtedly forgotten heroes.  But there is no history to review."

Covid-19 - 17 new cluster cases of Covid-19 have been reported in France in the last 24 hours. Public Health France reported 493 additional positive cases on Monday with 2.9% of tests carried out being positive this marks a notable drop after two days of cases increasing at the weekend with 3,000 cases recorded on Saturday and Sunday, the highest figure since the end of lockdown.  

In total, 268 clusters have been identified across the country. The number of hospitalized patients now stands at 4,925 people and the number of patients in intensive care has increased very slightly compared to the day before (384 on Monday compared to 376 on Sunday). 19 additional deaths from Covid have occurred in the last 24 hours in hospitals.

The Directorate General of Health (DGS) specifies that the Île-de-France, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, Hauts-de-France and Grand Est regions account for 69% of patients in intensive care. 24 other departments are on a moderate or high vulnerability including the Alpes Maritimes.

Two new cases of Covid-19 in Monaco – Meanwhile two new positive cases of Covid-19 have been declared in the Principality on Monday, August 17. After a weekend of no new cases Monday saw two cases admitted to Princess Grace hospital where in total four people are being treated for Covid-19. To date the total number of cases of people affected by the coronavirus in Monaco is 148.

The number of patients who have recovered stands at 114 with 13 still being followed by the Home Monitoring Centre.

Cannes imposes wearing a mask in “collective private enclosed places” from today - The Mayor of Cannes, David Lisnard, has imposed the wearing of a protective mask in all public and "collective private enclosed places", where physical distancing measures cannot be respected. The town hall said that the new measure which comes into force today, August 18, applies to anyone over the age of eleven. It said that the places concerned are all spaces accessible to the public, but also, for example, common private spaces such as those in apartment blocks such as entrances and elevators and "those of professional sites." The High Council for Public Health has recently recommended the “systematic” wearing of masks in all closed collective, public and private places.

Paris-Nice TGV makes exceptional stop due to passenger not wearing a mask - A Paris-Nice TGV has been forced to make an exceptional stop in the middle of nowhere due to a passenger who refused to wear a mask. The incident occurred on Sunday afternoon after controllers spotted the man without a mask which is now compulsory on all public transport in France.

Following the passenger’s refusal to wear a mask and a fine of 135 euros he was ordered off the train at the next stop which happened to be the remote station of Creusot in the Saône et Loire in southern Burgundy.  

Antoine Lacassagne centre in Nice draws attention to a genetic predisposition in Covid-19 infection - In a study published by researchers from the Antoine Lacassagne centre, which specializes in cancer care and research in Nice, it’s been highlighted that there is a genetic predisposition in Covid-19 infection.

In an attempt to answer the common question as to why some individuals are more vulnerable than others to the coronavirus researchers and doctors from the Antoine Lacassagne center claim to have found an explanation. For them, genetics play a major role in how vulnerable some people are to Covid-19.

The study has shown that an individual genetic characterisation can determine the risk of developing Covid-19 infection and this could be determined by a simple and inexpensive genetic test.

Researchers say that the test would make it possible to highlight the risks of each patient. The research concluded that it will be “a question of time and money” before these inexpensive genetic tests could be carried out on a large scale.

Toulon-Hyeres airport - Two flights arriving at Toulon-Hyeres airport were diverted to Marseille on Monday morning after the discovery of a World War II shell. Workers found the shell during works at the airport and a bomb disposal team was called in. One departure was also cancelled on Monday afternoon.


Domestic violence in France - According to a national study on domestic violence in France, 146 women and 27 men have been killed by their partner in 2019.

Figures show an increase of 16% compared to 2018, when 149 people were killed as a result of domestic violence. On average, a death is recorded every two days. The report specifies that “Women represent 84% of victims, most often of French nationality, aged 30 to 49 or 70 years and over, and no longer has a professional activity",

Marcel the rooster - A petition calling for "justice for Marcel the rooster" has collected more than 75,000 signatures. Marcel was killed last May by an exasperated neighbour.

The owner of the animal, Sébastien Verney, who lives in Ardèche in a small commune of 450 inhabitants, where Marcel was killed by a gunshot says he “has been left deeply shocked by the barbaric act”. The suspect who has admitted the facts will appear in court early December.

The conflict at the time had prompted France’s National Assembly to vote in January a bill introducing the notion of "rural sensory heritage" of the countryside into French law which will soon be presented to the French parliament’s upper house.


The Financial Times has reported that Oracle Corp has held preliminary talks with TikTok’s Chinese owner, ByteDance, and was seriously considering buying the app’s operations in the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Oracle was working with some U.S. investors that already have a stake in ByteDance. ByteDance and TikTok did not have a comment on the FT report, while Oracle declined to comment.

Earlier this month it was reported that Twitter Inc had approached ByteDance to express interest in acquiring the U.S. operations of TikTok, while Microsoft Corp was still the favorite to clinch a deal.

Due to a drop in bookings Ryanair is to cancel almost one in five flights scheduled for September and October.  Europe’s biggest carrier said forward bookings had “noticeably weakened” in the past 10 days and that it would reduce capacity to reflect lower demand, mainly by cutting flight frequencies rather than entire routes.

The airline said passengers affected by the hundreds of daily flight cancellations in September had already been notified of their options by email.

Drinks are on Ryan? Hollywood actor Ryan Reynolds is set to celebrate a big payday after a US gin brand he invested in was bought by the world's largest spirits maker.

Diageo said on Monday that it was to pay £466m for Aviation American Gin, co-owned by the Deadpool star, and its majority owner Davos Brands.

Under the terms, Reynolds will remain the public face of the gin brand for the next 10 years and retain a stake.


Football - Barcelona have sacked their manager three days after his side's humiliating 8-2 defeat by Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

And Premier League stars arriving back in the UK from their holidays may face a lengthy wait to begin pre-season training due to strict government measures, according to reports.

It has emerged that several top-flight players may have attempted to bend the rules by visiting countries not on the UK's red list, after initially jetting off to destinations which have experienced high levels of coronavirus.

Cricket - England and Pakistan played out a draw in the second Test on Monday. The result was already all but confirmed with bad weather killing the Test.

More rain prevented play starting until the captains agreed to a draw at 18:05.

England will take a 1-0 lead into the third and final Test, which begins on Friday.

Golf - The re-arranged Scottish Open will take place a week earlier on 1-4 October.

The event at The Renaissance Club will be staged a week before the PGA Championship at Wentworth - which has also been brought forward a week.


Sunny intervals with highs of 29 here in Monaco and Nice, 31 in Cannes and 34 in Saint Tropez and the Var with a gentle breeze.

This evening going down to 22 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes and 19 in the Var with clear skies.

The outlook for Wednesday highs of 34 degrees starting off fine clouding over by the afternoon in the Alpes Maritimes. Thursday fine and sunny.


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