Riviera Radio News - Monday 24th April

Local News

More Saucepan Protests Planned - Protests against the proposed retirement age increase continue across the Côte d'Azur today. A new series of "casserolades" or noisy pot-banging protests are planned at 8pm this evening in front of a number of town halls including Nice, Draguignan, Brignoles, and Toulon. These protests are in response to the government's decision to raise the retirement age, and follow similar protests that took place on April 17th during President Emmanuel Macron's speech. The movement has gained momentum, with the May 1st being highlighted as a key day for further demonstrations.

Le Pen Attack - Meanwhile Marine Le Pen has accused French President Emmanuel Macron of causing a "total rupture" between him and the people. The leader of France's National Rally party argued that Macron is "bunkered" and unable to leave the presidential palace without facing public anger. Macron faced booing from crowds during his recent public appearances and was even left partially in the dark during a factory visit due to a union-claimed power outage. According to a recent poll, Mme Le Pen has overtaken the president in public popularity and plans to run for president for the fourth time in France's next presidential election in 2027.

Energy Disruption - CGT Energy has threatened to disrupt several major events in May, including the Cannes Film Festival, as part of ongoing protests against retirement reforms. The CGT has called for “100 days of anger" and has the technical means to potentially black out the festival. The Cannes Film Festival is scheduled from May 16th to 27th.

Evacuation Of French Nationals from Sudan - France has begun a "rapid evacuation operation" of its citizens and diplomatic personnel from Sudan, where violent clashes have entered their second week. According to the World Health Organisation, the clashes in Sudan have resulted in over 420 deaths and 3,700 injuries.

Tapie Debts - Dominique Tapie, the wife of Bernard Tapie has revealed the extent of her debt in a new book. Mme Tapie has revealed that she has had to sell their properties in Saint-Tropez and Paris in order to keep up with the interest payments. She revealed that their bank accounts had been frozen and that she had just been left with only a pension of 1,600 euros per month from her late husband's retirement benefits. She is facing debts of over 642 million euros, with daily interest accruing at 80,000 euros.

Most Expensive Streets In Nice - MeilleursAgents, a French online property estimation site, has ranked the most expensive areas for real estate in major cities in France. Nice has some of the highest property prices, particularly in the Port district and Mont-Boron neighborhood, with Avenue Jean-Lorrain being the most expensive at €10,692 per square meter. Other pricey streets in Nice include Avenue Germaine, Avenue Montfleury, Boulevard Princesse-Grâce-de-Monaco, and Chemin Forestier. Despite these high prices, they are still lower than some areas in Paris, such as Quai des Orfèvres where prices exceed €23,000 per square meter.

Pool Drowning - A 2-year-old child has drowned in a pool accident this weekend in Cannes. Despite being quickly rescued by family members, the child was taken to the hospital in critical condition and sadly passed away yesterday morning.

Knife Attack - Two men suffered knife injuries during a brawl near Rue Barla in Nice on Saturday night. Both were taken to the Pasteur hospital for treatment. A police investigation underway to determine the circumstances of the incident.

Car Accident - Two women in their mid-20s were seriously injured in a car accident on RD 252 in Le Bourguet, Haut-Var yesterday afternoon. The vehicle rolled over, and the occupants had to be extracted by firefighters, then airlifted to hospital. Thirteen firefighters were involved in the rescue operation.

73 Year Old Woman Missing - A 73-year-old woman from Aubagne has disappeared, sparking a huge police search in the town and surrounding area. The septuagenarian reportedly left her home in Aubagne around 8:30 a.m. yesterday morning.

Accident In Roquefort Les Pins - There was a horrible accident in Roquefort Les Pins yesterday evening involving a car and a scooter just before 7 p.m. The scooter driver in his thirties suffered serious injuries and received medical treatment on site before being transported to the Pasteur Hospital. The driver of the car in her forties sustained minor injuries and was taken to Antibes Hospital.

Wild Rave Party in the Alpes - An undeclared rave party has been taking place over the weekend at the Col d'Arron in the Alps, with an estimated 1,500 to 2,000 participants and up to 500 vehicles. The authorities have deployed police officers, but no incidents have been reported. Gendarmes were dispatched to conduct alcohol and drug tests on the surrounding roads. At the time of writing, the police have not yet made contact with the organizers of the event.

Monte Carlo Dance Festival Returns - After a successful first edition in 2017, the Dance Festival is finally returning to Monaco this summer. Despite cancellations and setbacks, the second edition will take place on July 8th in front of the Monte-Carlo casino. The festival aims to celebrate dance in all its diversity with the emphasis on taking part rather than watching.

Celebrity Wedding In Cap d’Antibes - There was a celebrity wedding on the French Riviera this weekend, as Sofia Richie, daughter of Lionel Richie, tied the knot with music producer Elliot Grainge in a romantic ceremony at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc in Antibes. The star-studded event included Hollywood celebrities such as Cameron Diaz, Paris Hilton, and TikTok influencer Jake Shane. Sofia Richie, a model who has worked with Vogue, Tommy Hilfiger, and Adidas, wore three custom Chanel dresses for the occasion, including a white short dress reminiscent of Claudia Schiffer's iconic look from the 90s.

Business

NBC Boss Resigns - The chief executive of NBCUniversal, Jeff Shell, has left the US media and entertainment giant over an "inappropriate relationship" he had with a female colleague. The announcement comes after the firm conducted an investigation over a complaint about Mr Shell's conduct. Parent company Comcast has not yet said who will be the new NBCUniversal boss.

Nuclear power is making a comeback in France - Nuclear power is making a comeback in France. President Emmanuel Macron is pushing for the first of six new reactors to be up and running by 2035. The plan, which could be extended by at least another eight reactors, is part of France's efforts to reduce net emissions to zero by 2050.

However, the country faces a shortage of nuclear specialists, including engineers, project supervisors, boilermakers, and electricians. The government estimates it needs to find 100,000 of them over the next six years. The challenge is to know how to orchestrate such a large industrial project, which is something Europe no longer does. In addition, France is facing opposition to its renewed push for nuclear power, with some people arguing that the country should pursue renewable energy instead.

The European Parliament Wants to Make it Easier to Move Across the Bloc - The European Parliament is proposing to reduce the period required for non-EU residents living in EU countries to obtain long-term resident status from five to three years, making it easier for them to move across the bloc. The proposed measures also aim to combine periods of legal residence in different EU member states, calculate time spent for studying, seasonal work and vocational training, and recognise long-term residence permits automatically at EU level.

However, EU governments must agree to these proposals before they can be approved. Some opposition groups, including the European Conservatives and Reformists and Identity and Democracy groups, object to the plan, arguing that migration issues should be decided at national level. The European Parliament opinion was adopted with 391 votes in favour, 140 against and 25 abstentions, but the opposition groups' opinions will re-emerge in the discussion among EU governments.

Recovery of The Eurozone - The eurozone's recovery from last year's energy price shock is expected to be confirmed. The release of GDP figures shows a return to positive growth in Q1. Economists predict Q1 GDP to rise 0.2% from the previous quarter and 1.3% from a year ago, compared with zero growth in Q4. A continued decline in energy prices, particularly in natural gas, has given a boost to economic activity, with industrial production and construction rebounding. However, retail spending fell 0.8% in February, wiping out January's gain. Trade provided "a significant boost" to eurozone GDP this year, with exports helped by China lifting zero-Covid policies, while imports fell due to lower energy prices.

Fire At Disneyland - Crowds enjoying a live performance at Disneyland in California were left stunned on Saturday night when a giant animatronic dragon caught fire. Videos online show Maleficent, the 13m high fire-breathing dragon, quickly being engulfed in flames, as firefighters try to control the blaze. It happened during Fantasmic, a live performance featuring gravity-defying water displays, pyrotechnics and Mickey Mouse (usually) saving the day. No-one was injured in the fire.

Sport

Football - The FA Cup Final this year will be between Manchester City and Manchester United. City continued their excellent form with a 3-0 win against Sheffield United thanks to a Riyhad Mahrez hatrick. City are still on-course for the treble. Man Utd eventually beat Brighton in a tense penalty shoot-out.

There were 2 big wins in the Premier League yesterday. A sensational performance by Newcastle consolidated their position in 3rd place after a 6-1 win over Spurs, including 5 goals in the first 21 minutes. West Ham moved clear of the relegation zone with a 5-0 thrashing of Bournemouth.

In France, Monaco were soundly beaten by Lens 3-0 on Saturday, while OGC Nice lost at home to Clermont. Marseille remain in 2nd place after a 2-1 away win yesterday at Lyon.

Tennis - World number one Iga Swiatek defended her Stuttgart Open title with a straight-set win over Aryna Sabalenka. Poland's Swiatek defeated the Belarusian world number two 6-3 6-4 in a repeat of last year's final.

Motor Sports - Elfyn Evans won the Croatia Rally yesteday and then paid tribute to Irish driver Craig Breen, who was killed during testing for the World Rally Championship event. Toyota driver Evans finished 27 seconds ahead of Estonian Ott Tanak's Ford Puma for his first victory of the season. The Welshman held an Irish flag on the podium during a minute's silence for Breen.

London Marathon - Kenya's Kelvin Kiptum smashed compatriot Eliud Kipchoge's course record to win the men's London Marathon in the second-fastest time ever. The 23-year-old was just 16 seconds outside Kipchoge's world record, finishing in two hours one minute 25 seconds. Sifan Hassan also produced a remarkable run to win the women's race. The Dutch Olympic track champion suffered with a hip injury but battled to win on her debut at the distance.

Rugby - This Saturday saw the 11th edition of the Sainte Dévote Rugby Tournament organized by the Monegasque Rugby Federation in partnership with the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation. The tournament was won by South Africa's Blue Bulls Pretoria following their victory in the final against the Barbarians from Georgia.

The trophy for the best female player was awarded to Erin Shire of the Monegasque team and that of the best male player of the tournament to Sandile Majola of the South African team.

Basketball - Congratulations to AS Roca Monaco who won their first ever French Basketball Cup this weekend. The Roca team beat Asvel by 90 points to 70.

Weather

Expect another springlike sunshine day with some light cloudy spells but fairly strong winds peaking this morning at 58km/h from the WNW. Temperatures today could reach 23° along the coast, up to 25° inland in the Var. From this afternoon, it will be increasingly cloudy, although no rain is expected. Lows of 13°.

Tomorrow will be mostly clear with just a few cloudy spells, particularly in the afternoon. Again, no rain is expected. Temperatures are back down again peaking at 19° around Monaco.

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