French and Riviera News Tuesday 1st March 2022

News

Diver dies in the port of Villefranche - A 40-year-old diver has died in the port of La Darse in Villefranche-sur-Mer. The accident occurred at around 1pm on Monday afternoon, while underwater work was being carried out. The exact circumstances remain unclear and an investigation has been opened into the cause of death.

Road accident - Four people have suffered minor injuries in a road accident. The accident occurred around 6pm on Monday when two cars collided on the RDN7, near the town of Pourcieux near Brignoles. Police have opened an investigation to determine the cause of the crash.

Missing person found - Reported missing last Wednesday Mélanie Ramos from Hyeres in the Var has been found alive and well. Police had launched a missing persons appeal last week but reported on Monday February 28th that she had been found in her car in the town of Rocboran.

Prince Albert condemns invasion of Ukraine – HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco has strongly condemned the invasion of Ukraine. In a statement released on Monday the Prince expressed his full solidarity with the people of Ukraine and victims of military operations and bombings, calling for an immediate ceasefire.

Prince Albert went on to say that the Principality of Monaco reaffirms its attachment to “respect for international law, sovereignty, integrity and independence of States, believing that disagreements and conflicts should be resolved through the sole means of dialogue and diplomacy”. The Sovereign Prince supports all initiatives aimed at ending the fighting and the withdrawal of the Russian armed forces from the territory. Monaco stands with the people of Ukraine and calls for respect for humanitarian law. The Principality is ready to provide assistance to humanitarian organizations courageously engaged in the field and in accordance with its international commitments, the Principality has adopted and implemented, without delay, fund freezing and sanction procedures identical to those adopted by most European States.

Macron speaks with Putin - Meanwhile President Macron has spoken to President Putin in a phone call lasting one and a half hours. The Elysee said that President Macron had asked the Russian president to halt all strikes and attacks against civilians and residences, preserve civil infrastructure and secure main roads. The statement from the Elysee said that President Putin confirmed his willingness to commit to those requests. It also said that President Macron had asked his Russian counterpart to stay in touch in the coming days to prevent an escalation of the conflict, to which he is said to have agreed.

Fundraising campaign for Ukraine - The mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi has announced the launch of a major fundraising campaign for Ukraine in our region. The campaign aims to send the Ukrainian people the basic necessities they need such as medicines, warm clothes, dry food and products for children. He said that the services of the region will ensure the collection and delivery of the humanitarian aid to the most efficient distribution channels under the control of the Health, Environmental and Risk Management Agency. The annex town halls and the AnimaNice leisure centres will soon be able to receive donations. Estrosi also expressed his thanks to the mayors of the region for organizing collections in their locality.

Macron cancels trip to Marseille - President Macron's election campaign team has announced that the President will not be visiting Marseille this Saturday as planned.

Football – OGC Nice will face Versailles in the French Cup semi-final this evening. Kick off is at 9pm at the Allianz Riviera stadium in Nice.

Business

Asian markets have steadied this morning and gold has slipped slightly as investors watched the Ukraine conflict unfold and weighed up the economic implications. Global markets have tumbled in recent days following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the ramping up of sanctions by the West which have cut off some Russian banks from the SWIFT international payments system. High level talks between Kyiv and Moscow in Belarus on Monday failed to make a breakthrough but both sides have agreed to continue negotiations. Markets are now focused on the implications of the crisis and its effect on energy prices and inflation. Brent Crude futures are up by 0.63 percent this morning to 98 dollars 59 after touching a seven year high of 105 dollars 79 after the Russian invasion started last week. Currency markets have been relatively quiet this morning with the euro recovering some ground against the dollar and the Russian Rouble steadying after losing 30 percent of its value on Monday.

Royal Dutch Shell is to end all of its joint ventures with the Russian energy firm Gazprom as a result of the invasion of Ukraine. The move includes Shell’s 27.5 percent stake in a major liquified natural gas plant and 50 percent stakes in two Siberian oilfield projects. Shell will also end its involvement in the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline from Russia to Germany which it helped to finance. Shell’s chief executive Ben van Beurden says that the firm is “shocked by the loss of life in Ukraine”. The latest development follows BP’s decision to offload its share in the Russian state-owned oil firm Rosneft. Chief executive Bernard Looney has said that he’s resigning from the board of Rosneft with immediate effect having been involved since 2000.

Hollywood studios Disney, Warner Bros and Sony Pictures Entertainment have all said that they’re pausing cinema releases of upcoming films in Russia in response to the invasion of Ukraine. Over the weekend, the Ukrainian Film Academy called for an international boycott of Russian cinema and the Russian film industry following the invasion. Russia is an important market for Hollywood accounting for 601 million dollars in box office receipts last year. Several films scheduled for global release including “The Batman” will now not be shown in Russia.

Sport 

Football - Russian clubs and national teams have been suspended from all competitions by Fifa and Uefa in response to the invasion of Ukraine. Both the world and European football governing bodies say that they’ll be suspended “until further notice”. The decision means that the Russian men’s team will not play their World Cup playoff matches next month and the women’s team has been banned from this summer’s Euro 2020. Spartak Moscow have been kicked out of the Europa League and Uefa has also ended its sponsorship deal with the Russian energy giant Gazprom.

There was one game in the English Championship last night. Steve Bruce still can’t get a win as West Brom manager as his side went down 2-0 at home to Swansea.

There’s one game in the English Premier League tonight. Burnley will be attempting to take another step towards safety when they host Leicester.

Cricket - South Africa have beaten New Zealand by 198 runs in the second Test in Christchurch. The home side were bowled out for 227 in their second innings on the final day of the match.The series ends in a draw.

Tennis - Russia’s Daniil Medvedev has climbed to the top of the men’s ATP rankings. It’s the first time since Andy Roddick 18 years ago that someone other than Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray or Novak Djokovic has held the top spot. He lives in Monaco  and says that his aim is to become more consistent on clay and grass.

Weather

Partially cloudy with moderate easterly winds. Top temperature 13 degrees. Overnight lows of 3-5 degrees in coastal areas and -1 degree inland with clear skies.

Wednesday and Thursday - Hazy sunshine tomorrow with some rain overnight into Thursday. Then partially cloudy with highs of 12-14 degrees.

And Finally

A study has suggested that reminiscing about the 'good old times' could help to ease the pain of a bad migraine. Academics say nostalgia acts like a mild painkiller and can in fact reduce the soreness of headaches by an average of 10 per cent. Nostalgia has previously been associated with reductions in stress and sadness.

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