France declares state of emergency in New Caledonia – four die in riots

0
262
SHARE
Devastation on a Nouméa road as security forces try to clear pro-independence barricades
Devastation on a Nouméa road as security forces try to clear pro-independence barricades after the rioting. Image: Caledonia TV screenshot APR

Asia Pacific Report

France has declared a state of emergency on the Pacific territory of New Caledonia — New Zealand’s closest neighbour — after four people, including a police officer, have been killed in pro-independence riots over voting changes that further marginalise indigenous Kanaks, news agencies report.

The move came as the French government confirmed an additional 500 members of the French national police and gendarmerie were being sent to the territory to reinforce the 1800 already there and to try and quell the violence.

The state of emergency will last 12 days and give authorities additional powers to ban gatherings and forbid people from moving around the French-ruled territory.

The last time France imposed such measures on one of its overseas territories was in 1985 —  also in New Caledonia in the middle of a similar upheaval known as “Les événements“, the Interior Ministry said.

Rioters torched vehicles and businesses and looted stores and this video below (in French) from the local Caledonia TV shows the destruction in the wake of the protests.


Deaths amid the third day of rioting.               Video: Caledonia TV

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

NO COMMENTS