Lunchtime News Tuesday 22nd September 2020



Weather warning - Météo France has extended a yellow weather warning in the Var. The warning issued on Monday remains in place today with heavy rain and storms forecast throughout the day.

New measures to be extended to the entire Alpes Maritimes region - The region’s prefect has said that “Covid-19 does not stop at city borders.” Speaking to French media this morning Bernard Gonzalez defended recent health measures confirming that measures adopted in Nice have now been extended to the whole of the Alpes Maritimes region in the fight against the coronavirus.

The measures include gatherings now limited to 10 people in parks and beaches, major events are limited to 1,000 people and bars must close at 12.30am.

The goal concluded the prefect is that the "protection" of the population is the same everywhere, and that the activity of restaurants and drinking establishments do not “unfairly suffer”.

Lyon tighter restrictions – Meanwhile tighter coronavirus restrictions have been announced for Lyon from today to counter a sharp increase in new coronavirus cases and a surge in intensive care admissions,

Attendance at major outdoor events including festivals will be limited to 1,000 people. The sale and consumption of alcohol outdoors will be prohibited from 8 p.m., and visits to nursing home residents restricted to two per week. Bars and restaurants will be permitted to serve only at tables; dancing and drinking standing at the bar will be prohibited.

The new rules for Lyon, France’s third largest city, follow similar measures already in place in Marseille, Bordeaux and Nice.

Italy introduces testing to people arriving from eight departments of France - The Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur region has been classified as one of eight French departments put on a health risk alert by Italy’s Health Minister, due to Covid-19.

Travellers arriving from Paris the Auvergne-Rhône Alpes, Corsica, the Hauts-de-France, the Nouvelle-Acquitaine, the Occitanie, and the Paca region will be obliged to undergo testing for the coronavirus upon arriving in Italy.

The move however according to reports, will not apply to cross-border workers or French Riviera residents travelling for the day to shop for less than 72 hours.

The move announced on Monday shows Italy is tightening access to the country as the number of Covid-19 cases rise across Europe.

The announcement comes as most of France is now declared to be a “red zone” for the circulation of the virus.

Covid-19 figures released on Monday evening show 5,298 new cases and 53 deaths in France in the last 24 hours.

In addition, 52 additional clusters have been detected with 4,103 people hospitalised over the last seven days, of which 638 patients were admitted to intensive care. The test positivity rate is now 5.9%.

Covid-19 testing to be made available for employees of small business in the region - Meanwhile in a move to allow employees of small businesses in the region to continue their activity and guarantee protection of both employees and customers, the Provence-Alpes-Côte d´Azur Region has announced that it will make 30,000 rapid screening tests available free of charge.  

The rapid blood test which checks the presence of antibodies in the blood is easy to use and give results withing fifteen to thirty minutes.

Tourist shot in possible hunting accident - A 61-year-old Dutch tourist has been shot while in his car on a motorway in south western France. The incident occurred at 1pm on Sunday while the car was on the A63 motorway in the Landes region. The passenger was taken to hospital where his wounds are not thought to be life-threatening.

A hunt was taking place in the area at the time and police believe the tourist's injuries may be linked to the hunt. The investigation continues.

Man threatens to kill people on the Promenade in Nice - A man has been placed in police custody in Nice after threatening to kill everyone on the Promenade des Anglais.

The incident occurred in the early hours of Monday morning when the man following a marital dispute, left the family home under the influence of alcohol on the Rue de France in Nice armed with a hunting rifle. Police quickly intervened arresting the individual at the wheel of his car on the Promenade des Anglais.

Napoleon - The fate of a statue of Napoleon has caused tension between the mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi and the mayor of Rouen.

The mayor of Rouen Nicolas Mayer-Rossignol had suggested that the bronze work, which has been sent to Paris for restoration work, be replaced by a female figure. The tweet published at the weekend led to Estrosi offering “to give the statue a home”.

However, the mayor of Rouen assured that there was never “any question of parting with the statue, but that while in restoration for at least a year, a female figure could replace it”.

Estrosi went on to emphasis “the great history of Rouen and the importance of Napoleon keeping his place in the city”.

It’s not the first time that the mayor of Nice has defended the historical figure, back in November of last year, to mark the 120th anniversary of the birth of Napoleon Bonaparte the mayor of Nice renamed the Quai Cassini to "Quai Napoléon-Ier" causing some controversy at the time.


Emmanuel Macron visits care home today- French President Emmanuel Macron is to visit a care home in the Loir-et-Cher today as part of the fight against the coronavirus in France.

The Head of State will meet caregivers and residents. His visit comes as the French government calls on the elderly to protect themselves against Covid-19.

Emmanuel Macron reiterated last week, during a visit to the Tour de France, the need to protect "the most vulnerable, people over 65 and people who have dangerous diseases” asking them to “to reduce their trips, to isolate themselves and not to go to sporting and cultural events".

However, many in the sector insist on the particularly harmful effects of restrictive measures on the well-being and health of the elderly.

Tattooed schoolteacher - A young schoolteacher tattooed from head to toe has been threatened with no longer being able to teach at a nursery school due to his appearance, which bothers some parents.

The teacher who has taught at all levels from nursery to secondary school students as well as in England is currently working at the school in the Paris region. France’s teaching academy has reportedly requested that he no longer attends work after letters of complaint were received from parents.

World’s first zero-emission commercial planes - Airbus has unveiled plans to produce the world's first zero-emission commercial planes to run on hydrogen by 2035.

On Monday the company released three different aircraft concepts, each exploring a different approach to achieving zero-emission flight but all relying on hydrogen as a primary power source.

According to the EU Commission direct emissions from aviation account for about three per cent of the European Union's total greenhouse gas emissions and more than two per cent of global emissions.

Casino supermarket - A coalition of NGOs have threatened legal action against French supermarket giant Casino accusing the chain of selling  beef linked to illegal deforestation in the Amazon. 

French, American and Colombian NGOs have warned Casino that it has three months to comply with duty of vigilance laws regarding its supply chains in South America, where it is a leading supermarket retailer.

The move follows an investigation in June by a French NGO Envol Vert, which found that Casino’s suppliers “regularly purchased” beef from four farms involved in deforestation and land grabbing activities in the Amazon.

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