Lunchtime News Tuesday 31st August 2021


Weather warning – Meteo France has placed the Alpes-Maritimes on a yellow weather warning, with thunderstorms forecast inland this afternoon. The warning is in place from 2pm to 6pm.

American nationals advised not to travel to Switzerland - The American authorities have advised their nationals not to travel to Switzerland, due to the health situation linked to covid.  In a bulletin published Monday, the State Department raised to level 4 its level of alert relating to Switzerland, urging Americans "not to travel" to Switzerland. Like a large number of European countries, Switzerland has experienced a resurgence in the number of covid cases since the appearance of the Delta variant. According to data from the Office Swiss Federal of Public Health 35,150 cases have been recorded since August 16th.

The United States had already issued a similar notice on August 10 for France, again due to an increase in the number of Covid-19 cases.

European Union reimpose restrictions - Meanwhile the European Union has decided to reimpose restrictions on non-essential travel to its territory from five countries, including the United States and Israel, as part of the fight against the covid pandemic, according to a recommendation published on Monday 30th August. Member States can, however, lift restrictions for this type of travel for fully vaccinated people.

The five countries removed from the list for which the EU recommends lifting restrictions on non-essential travel are: besides the United States and Israel, Lebanon, North Macedonia, Montenegro.

The statement said however that member states retain the possibility of lifting these restrictions for this type of travel for fully vaccinated people. The Delta variant has caused contamination to rise again in the United States as well as in Israel, which was one of the first countries to launch a vast campaign of vaccinations. The US borders remain closed for the moment to international travelers, whether tested or vaccinated.

The EU is expected to announce in the coming days that it has achieved its goal of a complete vaccination of 70% of its adult population, marked however by disparities between its member states.

Firefighters attacked during an intervention - Firefighters have been shot at after being called to rescue a man who was threatening to kill himself. The incident occurred in the village of Mouriès in the Bouches du Rhone. Nobody was injured in the incident as the shots hit the firefighter’s vehicle. The man fled before being arrested by the police. 

A complaint has since been filed and the fire department strongly condemns the attack. Faced with a rise of attacks towards firefighters France’s interior minister Gérald Darmanin relaunched this summer a plan to prevent and fight against such attacks.  According to a report in the last ten years, attacks towards firefighters have jumped 213% . The National Observatory on Delinquency and Criminal Responses (ONDPR) says that in the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur 294 firefighters were victims of assault.


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