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FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris
FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris, France, May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/File Photo

May 25, 2019

By Inti Landauro

PARIS (Reuters) – Yellow vest protesters clashed with riot police in Paris and the northern city of Amiens on Saturday as the French anti-government movement waned on its 28th straight weekend.

Police in Amiens, hometown of President Emmanuel Macron, fired teargas at about 1,200 demonstrators after a group pelted stones at police, attacked local bank branches and set fire to rubbish cans, the local police chief’s office said.

Police detained 27 people in the city.

A few hundred protesters also clashed with police in downtown Paris, in and around the Place de la Republique.

After more than six months, the grassroots movement protesting over the cost of living and Macron’s perceived indifference seems to be losing steam.

Around the country only 12,500 demonstrators took to the streets during the latest day of protests, the lowest turnout since the movement started, the French interior ministry said. At the peak in November more than 300,000 were taking part nationally.

The prolonged protests, named after the high-visibility jackets worn by participants and which began in opposition to fuel tax increases, have hampered Macron’s efforts to push his reform timetable and forced him into costly concessions.

Despite Macron’s swift reversal of the tax hikes and introduction of other measures worth more than 10 billion euros ($11 billion) to boost the purchasing power of lower-income voters, protests and riots continued all over the country.

As he was celebrating his second anniversary in power, Macron last month offered more tax cuts worth 5 billion euros, along with other measures.

The protests also battered Macron’s party in its campaign for European elections to be held on Sunday. La Republique en Marche is polling neck-and-neck with the far-right National Rally.

(Reporting by Inti Landauro; Editing by David Holmes)

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FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris
FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris, France, May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/File Photo

May 25, 2019

By Inti Landauro

PARIS (Reuters) – Yellow vest protesters clashed with riot police in Paris and the northern city of Amiens on Saturday as the French anti-government movement waned on its 28th straight weekend.

Police in Amiens, hometown of President Emmanuel Macron, fired teargas at about 1,200 demonstrators after a group pelted stones at police, attacked local bank branches and set fire to rubbish cans, the local police chief’s office said.

Police detained 27 people in the city.

A few hundred protesters also clashed with police in downtown Paris, in and around the Place de la Republique.

After more than six months, the grassroots movement protesting over the cost of living and Macron’s perceived indifference seems to be losing steam.

Around the country only 12,500 demonstrators took to the streets during the latest day of protests, the lowest turnout since the movement started, the French interior ministry said. At the peak in November more than 300,000 were taking part nationally.

The prolonged protests, named after the high-visibility jackets worn by participants and which began in opposition to fuel tax increases, have hampered Macron’s efforts to push his reform timetable and forced him into costly concessions.

Despite Macron’s swift reversal of the tax hikes and introduction of other measures worth more than 10 billion euros ($11 billion) to boost the purchasing power of lower-income voters, protests and riots continued all over the country.

As he was celebrating his second anniversary in power, Macron last month offered more tax cuts worth 5 billion euros, along with other measures.

The protests also battered Macron’s party in its campaign for European elections to be held on Sunday. La Republique en Marche is polling neck-and-neck with the far-right National Rally.

(Reporting by Inti Landauro; Editing by David Holmes)

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FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris
FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris, France, May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/File Photo

May 25, 2019

By Inti Landauro

PARIS (Reuters) – Yellow vest protesters clashed with riot police in Paris and the northern city of Amiens on Saturday as the French anti-government movement waned on its 28th straight weekend.

Police in Amiens, hometown of President Emmanuel Macron, fired teargas at about 1,200 demonstrators after a group pelted stones at police, attacked local bank branches and set fire to rubbish cans, the local police chief’s office said.

Police detained 27 people in the city.

A few hundred protesters also clashed with police in downtown Paris, in and around the Place de la Republique.

After more than six months, the grassroots movement protesting over the cost of living and Macron’s perceived indifference seems to be losing steam.

Around the country only 12,500 demonstrators took to the streets during the latest day of protests, the lowest turnout since the movement started, the French interior ministry said. At the peak in November more than 300,000 were taking part nationally.

The prolonged protests, named after the high-visibility jackets worn by participants and which began in opposition to fuel tax increases, have hampered Macron’s efforts to push his reform timetable and forced him into costly concessions.

Despite Macron’s swift reversal of the tax hikes and introduction of other measures worth more than 10 billion euros ($11 billion) to boost the purchasing power of lower-income voters, protests and riots continued all over the country.

As he was celebrating his second anniversary in power, Macron last month offered more tax cuts worth 5 billion euros, along with other measures.

The protests also battered Macron’s party in its campaign for European elections to be held on Sunday. La Republique en Marche is polling neck-and-neck with the far-right National Rally.

(Reporting by Inti Landauro; Editing by David Holmes)

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Monaco Grand Prix
Formula One F1 – Monaco Grand Prix – Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco – May 23, 2019 Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto during practice REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

May 25, 2019

By Alan Baldwin

MONACO (Reuters) – Ferrari messed up on the biggest stage of all on Saturday, leaving local hero Charles Leclerc’s Monaco Grand Prix hopes in tatters.

With the 21-year-old Monegasque demanding answers after being left 16th on the starting grid, Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto accepted the sport’s oldest and most successful team had, not for the first time, got their sums wrong.

“It is not a good day for us certainly,” the Italian told reporters in the team’s harbourside hospitality after a session that saw Ferrari’s qualifying blunder broadcast around the world.

“I think we made a mistake. It has been a misjudgment, a wrong evaluation of what we call the cut-off time.”

Leclerc had been told he did not need to do another lap in the first phase of qualifying, Ferrari believing his time was good enough for him to go through and that they could save a set of tyres.

It proved otherwise, with the drop triggered by his own team mate Sebastian Vettel, who had crashed in final practice, putting in a fast lap in the dying seconds to escape the bottom five and top the session.

Leclerc, pushed over the edge into the bottom five, was already in the garage and could do nothing.

“What happened today was the margin that we applied was not sufficient,” said Binotto, explaining that track conditions had improved significantly late in the session and the team’s calculations had not allowed enough for that.

Binotto said that, with dominant Mercedes having won the first five races in one-two formation and running away with both championships for the sixth season in a row, Ferrari had to be bold to close the gap.

“When you need to catch up, you need to take some risks as well,” he said.

“Today we took some risks to perform as well as we could in Q2 and Q3 (the second and third phases) against our competitors,” continued Binotto.

The risk, however, was also of not even getting to the later phases.

“We’ve got the right people,” added Binotto. “We’ve got the right procedures but we need to improve our tools. We are open to new opportunities of looking at what we did and how we may do it differently in the future.”

Leclerc, who had gone into the weekend hoping to become the first Monegasque to stand on his home podium since Louis Chiron in 1950, was stunned by the blunder that left him hoping for rain or chaos.

Monaco is famed as a circuit where overtaking is hard in the extreme, with the showcase race around the tight city streets one of the most watched but often processional and won by the driver on pole position.

“It’s disappointing to be out in Q1 in a Ferrari but even more so at home and even more on a track like this where you can’t overtake,” said the youngster.

“We can’t afford to do these things. It’s just a big, big disappointment.”

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Clare Fallon)

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72nd Cannes Film Festival - Closing ceremony
72nd Cannes Film Festival – Closing ceremony – Cannes, France, May 25, 2019. Director Bong Joon-ho, Palme d’Or award winner for his film “Parasite” (Gisaengchung), reacts. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

May 25, 2019

CANNES, France (Reuters) – “Parasite”, a dark comedy by South Korean director Bong Joon-Ho, won the top Palme d’Or prize at the Cannes Film Festival on Saturday.

The Cannes film festival also shone a light on newcomers.

“Atlantics”, a haunting ghost story about migrants directed by Franco-Senegalese filmmaker Mati Diop, won the runner-up Grand Prix award.

The movie, based on her 2009 short documentary, was Diop’s first ever feature length film.

(Reporting by Sarah White, Editing by Inti Landauro)

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FILE PHOTO: Voters queue to cast their ballots in Malawi's presidential and legislative elections, in Lilongwe
FILE PHOTO: Voters queue to cast their ballots in Malawi’s presidential and legislative elections, in Lilongwe, Malawi, May 21, 2019. Picture taken May 21, 2019. REUTERS/Eldson Chagara

May 25, 2019

By Frank Phiri and Mabvuto Banda

BLANTYRE/LILONGWE, Malawi (Reuters) – Final results of Malawi’s presidential elections will be delayed, the electoral commission (MEC) said on Saturday after the high court ordered a review of the polls following opposition allegations of tampering.

Voters cast ballots for a president, parliament and ward councillors on May 21, with President Peter Mutharika’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) facing stiff competition from the Malawi Congress Party (MCP), which filed the complaints alleging intimidation and tampering by the DPP.

The Malawian High Court ordered the MEC not to release results of the presidential vote until a judicial review of the complaints had been heard and results from 10 districts were verified.

Malawian law says complaints must be resolved within the maximum eight days between polling and the announcement of results. But chairwoman of the MEC Justice Jane Ansah said the results would be delayed until matters cited by the court were resolved.

“Presidential results have been withheld until we resolve the issue of the court injunction which we have received. We are dealing with all complaints,” Ansah told a press briefing.

The MEC has confirmed receiving 147 cases of irregularities, most to do with the use of results sheets which had sections blotted out and altered with correction fluid.

Protests have broken out in Malawi’s administrative capital Lilongwe, an opposition stronghold, prompting police to deploy armored trucks to the area where people were tearing down ruling DDP posters and hurling rocks at government buildings.

President Mutharika, 78, came to power in 2014 and is credited with improving infrastructure and lowering inflation, but has recently faced accusations of corruption and of favoring rural regions where his support is strongest.

(Reporting by Frank Phiri in Blantyre and Mabvuto Banda in Lilongwe; Writing by Mfuneko Toyana; Editing by David Holmes)

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Naresh Goyal, Chairman of Jet Airways speaks during a news conference in Mumbai
Naresh Goyal, Chairman of Jet Airways speaks during a news conference in Mumbai, November 29, 2017. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui/File Photo

May 25, 2019

(Reuters) – Indian carrier Jet Airways (India) Ltd founder Naresh Goyal and his wife Anita Goyal were stopped from leaving India on Saturday at Mumbai airport, according to an airport official who asked not to be named.

The couple were taken into custody by immigration officers, the Indian Express reported, citing sources.

The airport official did not confirm that the couple had been detained.

It was not immediately clear why the couple had been prevented from traveling, or whether it was related to reported regulatory probes into the airline.

It was not immediately possible to reach either the Goyals or Jet for comment late Saturday.

Local media said the Goyals had been traveling to Dubai for a connecting flight to London.

Local media, citing sources, reported earlier this month that the ministry of corporate affairs had been looking into Jet’s books and had asked for a corporate fraud investigation into the airline, suspecting that its promoters siphoned off funds.

Jet said at the time that it had complied with all regulations. The Goyals did not comment on the reports at the time.

Once one of India’s largest carriers, Jet was forced to ground all flights last month after running out of money and failing to secure funds, crippled by mounting losses as it attempted to compete with low-cost rivals.

The carrier is saddled with some $1.2 billion in bank debt, and Goyal and his wife stepped down from the airline’s board in March amid the crisis.

(Reporting by Maria Ponnezhath, Rajendra Jadhav, and Zeba Siddiqui; Editing by Frances Kerry)

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FILE PHOTO: A Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) sign is seen at its U.S. headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan
FILE PHOTO: A Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) sign is seen at its U.S. headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S. May 25, 2018. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook/File Photo

May 25, 2019

LONDON (Reuters) – Fiat Chrysler is in advanced discussions to forge extensive ties with Frances’s Renault, the Financial Times reported on Saturday, citing multiple people informed on the talks.

The paper said the carmakers were seeking to join forces to tackle structural challenges facing the global auto industry.

An agreement might ultimately lead FCA to join the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance in the future, some of these people added, while also warning that this outcome would mean taking a complicated path that would involve winning over Japan’s Nissan.

The paper cited Renault and FCA as declining to comment and said a spokesman for Nissan did not reply to a request for comment.

Renault spokespeople did not return phone calls seeking comment.

(Additional reporting by Inti Landauro in Paris; Writing by Frances Kerry)

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IndyCar: 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500-Drivers Meeting
May 25, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; All 33 NTT IndyCar series drivers starting in the 2019 Indianapolis 500 attend the drivers meeting for the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

May 25, 2019

The forecast for Sunday’s Indianapolis 500 calls for an 80-90 percent chance of rain, with thunderstorms throughout the day.

“I would just tell everyone to remember: This is Indiana,” Indianapolis Motor Speedway President Doug Boles said Saturday, referring to the state’s unpredictable weather.

IndyCar President Jay Frye told reporters that the race, schedule to begin at noon ET, could start as late as 6 p.m. because of the amount of daylight at this time of year.

The Indy 500 has been pushed back to Monday three times in 102 previous races, most recently in 1997. That year, more rain delayed the finish to Tuesday, with Arie Luyendyk finishing first.

The race becomes official after 101 laps of the scheduled 200-lap race. The last time it was shortened was 2007, when winner Dario Franchitti completed 166 laps before rain moved in.

The 2 1/2-mile track was resurfaced last year with a new sealant that helps water run off the track rather than soak in.

–Field Level Media

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FILE PHOTO: Tennis: Miami Open
FILE PHOTO: Mar 21, 2019; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Bianca Andreescu of Canada hits a backhand against Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania (not pictured) in the first round of the Miami Open at Miami Open Tennis Complex. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports -/File Photo

May 25, 2019

By Martyn Herman

LONDON (Reuters) – Injury breaks are not usually welcomed by tennis players but when Bianca Andreescu’s shoulder began troubling her in Miami it offered her the chance to take stock of a stunning breakthrough.

The 18-year-old Canadian became the first wildcard to win the Indian Wells title the week before — a feat that shook the tennis world and had Rod Laver remarking that a star had been born.

Andreescu has only played in two Grand Slams and at the start of the year said just making the French Open main draw was her goal. She will debut as the 22nd seed.

When she takes on 20-year-old Czech Marie Bouzkova it will be her first match on clay this season and her first anywhere since a sore shoulder forced her to retire in her last 16 clash with Anett Kontaveit in Miami.

It ended the incredible 10-match winning streak that has catapulted the Ontario-born Andreescu into the big time.

“I think the injury helped me in the way that I could have the chance to let everything soak in and spend time with my family and friends,” Andreescu, whose exploits have trumped those of compatriots and close friends Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime, told Reuters in a phone interview.

“I have amazing family and friends and they really helped me stay grounded because the media when I got home were all over me. It was certainly a different feeling but I’m getting used to it slowly but surely.”

Andreescu says her shoulder is ready to go in Paris, having opted to skip the warm-up tournaments and head to Mallorca to tune up her claycourt game at the Rafael Nadal Academy.

“I’m completely healed,” she said. “It was a wide decision because if I had continued the tear could have got worse.

“The facilities at Rafa’s academy were amazing, really good physios, really good food, the people were nice and they accommodated me really well.

“On my days off I could just stroll around and get my mind off the game and focus on relaxing which was really helpful. It was a good two-week period and I feel that I needed that.”

Andreescu, who moved back to her parents’ native Romania soon after she was born, says her career has been a “crazy ride” since returning to Canada to become part of the development program that produced Milos Raonic, Eugenie Bouchard, Auger-Aliassime and Shapovalov.

“Happy days for Canadian tennis,” she said. “We are just feeding off each other’s success and energy. I played juniors with Felix and Denis, we grew up together and just seeing them, all of us doing well at the same time, it’s just incredible.

“Tennis Canada is doing a great job. Without them I wouldn’t be here today. I’m so grateful. I can’t begin to repay them.”

TITLE RUN

Andreescu’s title run in Indian Wells began slowly but she soon got on a roll, beating seeds Dominica Cibulkova and Qiang Wang before obliterating former French Open and Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza 6-0 6-1.

In the final she downed reigning Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber, banked the $1.3 million winner’s check and celebrated with a burger.

Her performances were likened to a more powerful version of Martina Hingis — full of variety and not just belting balls.

Naturally curious, Andreescu says finding different ways to win matches is her biggest strength.

“I’ve always been like, even as a junior,” she said. “I think I just get bored easy! I kept improving on that and its paying off. A lot of the players have only got one game style.

“I’m one of few that can give a variety of shots back and I think they don’t like that.”

Andreescu said her rise from ending 2018 ranked 178th to her current 22 is “a dream come true”.

“You get treated a bit differently, for sure,” she said. “And not having to go through qualifying for the French is so much better for body and mind.

“I can now use all my fuel for the first round.”

Unsurprisingly, she names Romanian Simona Halep as one of her inspirations, and said it was a chat with the current French Open champion in 2016 that launched her career.

“We shared a ride at the Rogers Cup in 2016 I asked her if she could give me one piece of advice. She told me I should stop playing juniors and focus on the pros.

“That was a really good decision.”

(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Ed Osmond)

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