France in full 5th wave, tribute to Giscard and China deprived of tennis tournament

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The numbers don’t lie: the fifth wave is here. Nearly 50,000 new cases of Covid-19 have been recorded in 24 hours in France, according to the latest figures released Wednesday by Public Health. Over the last seven days (which smooths out the effects of non-working days) the average of new daily cases stands at 34,547, against just under 22,000 a week ago (+ 54%). And it could get worse, with the Omicron variant, deemed “extremely worrying” by the World Health Organization.

On December 2, 2020, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing disappeared at the age of 94, a victim of Covid-19. To celebrate the memory of this “great European”, Emmanuel Macron and the leaders of the EU are expected this Thursday in Strasbourg. At 11 am, in the hemicycle of the European Parliament, the President of the parliamentary body David Sassoli, the President of the Commission Ursula von der Leyen and the President of the European Council Charles Michel will take turns speaking. Then, celebrating the Franco-German friendship, the German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Emmanuel Macron will speak, who will close this ceremony in which the wife of the former president, Anne-Aymone Giscard d’Estaing, her children and grandchildren, but also Nicolas Sarkozy. The tribute will be followed by a mass, open to the public, in memory of “VGE” in the city’s cathedral at 3 pm.

The world tennis body is toughening up its tone a little more against China. The WTA is still demanding to know more about Peng Shuai, whose real fate is uncertain since his accusations of sexual abuse against a former top Chinese Communist leader. The president of the association, Steve Simon, therefore decided on Wednesday “the suspension of tournaments in China including Hong Kong”, according to a statement from the body which manages the women’s tennis circuit. This choice could have major economic consequences.

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