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Some New Caledonia neighbourhoods no longer under state control: official

Noumea, France | May 17, 2024, Friday @ 06:54 in World » GENERAL | By: AFP | Views: 2081
Some New Caledonia neighbourhoods no longer under state control: official

A protester waves the Kanak and Socialist National Liberation Front (FLNKS) flag during a demonstration in support of Kanak people at Place de la Republique in Paris on May 16, 2024. France announced on May 16, 2023 that it would send additional security forces to New Caledonia after imposing a state of emergency, following three nights of clashes in its Pacific territory that have left five dead and hundreds wounded against a French plan to impose new voting rules on the archipelago have spiralled into the deadliest violence since the 1980s.

(Photo by Alain JOCARD / AFP)

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Areas of the Pacific territory of New Caledonia have "escaped" state control, the French government's representative said Friday, announcing fresh security deployments after days of deadly violence.

"Reinforcements will be arriving ... to control the areas that have escaped us in recent days, where control is no longer assured," the High Commissioner of the Republic in New Caledonia Louis Le Franc told reporters at a briefing.

A state of emergency was imposed on the French archipelago after opposition to Paris's plan to change voting rules there spiralled into arson, looting and violence that has left five dead and hundreds wounded.

As part of the state of emergency, about 200 of an estimated 5,000 "rioters" have been detained, French authorities have said.

One person suspected of homicide surrendered to the authorities, Le Franc said at the Friday briefing.

Earlier, he said the situation around the capital Noumea was starting to look calmer after the simmering protests turned violent on Monday.

The unrest began as French lawmakers pushed forward plans to allow those who moved to the territory at least 10 years ago to vote in local elections.

Located between Australia and Fiji, New Caledonia is one of several territories around the globe that remain part of France.

© Agence France-Presse

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