French and Riviera News Tuesday 25th June 2024

National News France

Parliamentary elections in France - French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal has declared that the upcoming parliamentary elections in France are “not a referendum for or against the President of the Republic”. Attal also claimed that the far left La France Insoumise party fuels the far-right National Rally and vice versa.  Meanwhile, it was in a podcast on Monday that French president Emmanuel Macron affirmed that both the political programs of the two “extremes” would lead “to a civil war” while the leader of La France insoumise said that Jean-Luc Mélenchon "is not the leader of the New Popular Front and that he will not be Prime Minister". On the far-right, leader Jordan Bardella revealed that "the priorities of the government would be for national unity" and that amongst other things his party would “revive purchasing power for the French”, “install security across the country as far as immigration is concerned and put in place "a big bang of authority" in French schools "from the start of the school year in September", with the ban on mobile phones and the introduction of school uniforms. Bardella claimed he “is a candidate of truth and will not promise what he cannot keep”.

Local News

Once again, the Vésubie valley is hit by flooding - The Vésubie valley in the Alpes-Maritimes has been affected by floods leading to homes being evacuated and bridges washed away. Monday June 24th, saw significant rainfall in the region with authorities and emergency services fully mobilised. Around 50 people are stranded about ten kilometres from Siant-Martin-Vésubie as the president of the PACA region Renaud Muselier has said that he is “following the situation very closely”. It was in 2020 with storm Alex and then again in 2023 with storm Aline that the village of Saint-Martin-Vésubie had already been affected by severe bad weather and flooding.

Strike action is causing rubbish to pile up at main train station of Marseille and on the city’s metro - Cleaning workers at the Saint-Charles train station in Marseille and the city’s metro network are continuing their strike action. Rubbish is piling up in the hall of the Saint-Charles station and on metro platforms, a scene of déjà vu, as it was last summer that the employees of the cleaning company used by the SNCF were also on strike for the same reason, due to payments missing on their pay slips.  According to the inter-union association, 200 people are employed on the SNCF station sites and RTM stations and cleaning workers are demanding payment of unpaid salaries and bonuses. In a press release, the management of company cited a software problem and assured that it will regularise the situation. With just five weeks before the Olympic Games, the new conflict does not look good for the city as strikers say that they “will not hesitate to toughen up the movement if the problem is not resolved and salaries paid”.

Town fall files complaint - The town hall of Tourrettes has filed a complaint after nearly six hundred people from a traveling community took over the airfield. Nearly 170 families and potentially twice as many caravans have moved to the Fayence-Tourrettes site and are not scheduled to leave until July 7th and 8th.

Town in the Var goes green - A former waste to energy facility in Cavalaire sur mer in the Var has been turned into a Nature House. From the 1970s to 1999 the incineration plant burnt up to 50 tonnes of waste per day with black smoke a daily sight, as in those days no sorting was carried out. Today, however the site is dedicated to the environment with the creation of the “Maison de la nature” which opened to the public on Sunday June 23rd. The mayor of the town Philippe Leonelli said “we decided to do something beneficial for our planet by carrying out this transformation as well as raise awareness and educate schoolchildren about the environment. The house is located in a 15-hectare protected estate, on the Corniche des Maures and is open to the public from Tuesday to Sunday.

OGC Nice to celebrate 120th anniversary – Finally, local football club OGC Nice will celebrate its 120th anniversary on July 9th at the Château in Nice. The club invites its supporters, residents and tourists to celebrate the club's anniversary from 11am to 9pm. Activities on the theme of football and the Riviera will be on offer, along with local gastronomy, the opportunity to meet with players past and present, as well as the unveiling of the club’s new kit.

Business

European Union regulators have accused Apple of being in breach of new laws designed to rein in big tech companies. The European Commission, said Apple's App Store squeezes out rival marketplaces, marking the first time it has found a company in breach of the Digital Markets Act (DMA). The firm faces a potential fine of up to 10% of its global revenue if it fails to comply with the rules. Apple said it is "confident our plan complies with the law".

And - The world's biggest record labels are suing two artificial intelligence (AI) start-ups over alleged copyright violation in a potentially landmark case. Firms including Sony Music, Universal Music Group and Warner Records say Suno and Udio have committed copyright infringement on an "almost unimaginable scale". They claim the pair's software steals music to "spit out" similar work and ask for compensation of $150,000 per work. The lawsuits, announced on Monday by the Recording Industry Association of America, are part of a wave of lawsuits from authors, news organisations and other groups that are challenging the rights of AI firms to use their work.

Sport 

Football – Spain have managed to maintain their 100% record at Euro 2024 as they defeated and eliminated Albania 1-0 on Monday night. The result means that England, France and the Netherlands all secure last-16 places. And it was a dramatic last minute late equaliser which sent Italy through and brought tears to the eyes of Croatia.

In Group D today the Netherlands play Austria and France face Poland with a 6pm kick off French time. Meanwhile, in Group C England play Slovenia and Denmark play Serbia with a 9pm kick off French time.

Tennis - Seven-time champion Novak Djokovic has said he will only play at this year's Wimbledon if he can "fight for the title", but his recovery from knee surgery is going "in the right direction". Djokovic suffered a knee injury at the French Open and had surgery less than three weeks ago. He intends to make a decision on whether he will play at this year's Championships, which start on 1 July, before the draw is made on Friday.

Formula One – McLaren driver Lando Norris has said that he still has hopes of challenging Max Verstappen for the Formula 1 title this year despite losing out to the Red Bull driver in a Grand Prix which he felt he should have won for a second consecutive time. Norris crossed the line at the end of the Spanish Grand Prix at the weekend just two seconds behind the world champion.

Weather  

Remaining unsettled with a yellow thunderstorm alert still in place for the Alpes Maritimes. Cloudy with the risk of showers by the afternoon. Highs of 24 degrees in Nice and Cannes, 21 degrees in Monaco and 23 degrees in Saint-Tropez. This evening going down to 18 degrees with cloudy skies.

The outlook for Wednesday, sunny intervals mostly cloudy, but remaining dry along the coast with showers forecast inland. Highs of 26 degrees. Thursday, mainly fine with some scattered showers. Highs of 30 degrees inland 25 degrees along the coast.

Sunrise 05.49am

Sunset 09.16pm

Sea temperature

Saint-Tropez – 20.7°

UV level 6

Weather elsewhere 

Amsterdam     28° sunshine.

Liverpool           22° sunny intervals.

Milan                   24° thundery showers.

And Finally 

Wild Thang, an eight-year-old Pekingese, has been crowned the winner of this year's World's Ugliest Dog competition. Held during the 2024 Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California, this year's contest included nine contenders - the majority rescues who came from shelters before finding their forever families

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