French and Riviera News Tuesday 21st December 2021

News 

Investigation opened into health passes - An investigation has been opened after several doctors from Nice have been victims of a vast fraud in health passes. Head of the Nice prosecutor's office Xavier Bonhomme, estimates that several hundred "real fake health passes" have been created, and sold for "several hundred euros". To obtain the fake passes the fraudsters connected to the platform using a real doctor's identification able to provide a "real fake health pass" within hours. According to the latest figures from France's Ministry of the Interior, 182,000 fake health passes have been issued since June throughout France.

France's health authority gives the green light for vaccination of 5- to 11-year-olds - The High Authority for Health in France has given the green light to the vaccination of 5–11-year-olds, "without obligation". In a statement issued on Monday the HAS said that "it considers that the Pfizer vaccine can be used from the age of 5." From this Thursday 23rd December the hospital centre of Antibes Juan les Pins is offering vaccination for young children.

Approval of Novavax covid vaccine by Europe - Meanwhile Europe's medicines watchdog has approved the covid vaccine by US-based Novavax, which uses a more conventional technology which the biotech firm hopes will reduce vaccine hesitancy. In a statement released on Monday, the European Medicines Agency said: "EMA has recommended granting a conditional marketing authorisation for Novavax's Covid-19 vaccine Nuvaxovid to prevent covid in people from 18 years of age." Novavax is the fifth vaccine to be recommended for authorisation in the European Union.

Paris cancels New Year celebrations - The city of Paris has announced the cancellation of the fireworks and concerts planned on the Champs-Elysées for New Year's Eve, in order to apply the measures requested by the French government in the fight against the spread of covid. In a statement the town hall said that "in view of the resurgence of the pandemic and the new government announcements, the City of Paris regrets having to cancel all the festivities planned on the Champs-Élysées on December 31st".

Principality holds new record in the South Pole - The Principality of Monaco holds a new record in the South Pole having deployed the first electric motor vehicle to crisscross the "white continent" without emitting any pollutants. The polar exploration vehicle of the Venturi brand, from the Monegasque specialized in high-performance electric vehicles, arrived