Arrival of Emmanuel Macron in New Caledonia for a visit

Arrival of Emmanuel Macron in New Caledonia for a visit
Arrival of Emmanuel Macron in New Caledonia for a visit
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Keystone-SDA

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May 23, 2024 – 01:58

(Keystone-ATS) President Emmanuel Macron arrived early Thursday morning in New Caledonia for a whirlwind visit aimed at re-establishing dialogue and accelerating the return to order on the French archipelago in the South Pacific, noted an AFP journalist.

Mr. Macron landed around 11:20 p.m. Swiss time on Wednesday (8:20 a.m. Thursday local time) at Nouméa airport. In particular, he must meet for at least two hours with elected officials and economic players in the archipelago at the high commission from Wednesday 10:00 a.m. local time.

Macron must also install a mission made up of three senior officials, who will stay on site “as long as necessary” and “will aim to bring about a local political dialogue with the aim of reaching a global political agreement,” said Wednesday. Prime Minister Gabriel Attal in front of the Senate.

On the ground, after nine days of violence, “the night was calm,” High Commissioner Louis Le Franc told AFP. “The reactions of the political class” to the arrival of the president “are rather positive on both camps. There was no additional damage but there are so many things that are destroyed,” he further argued.

Since the start of the violence, six people have been killed, including two mobile gendarmes. Some 86 police officers and gendarmes were injured, according to Minister of Local Authorities Dominique Faure, who spoke to deputies on Wednesday about the number of “320 arrests” in total since the start of the crisis. “Several dozen violent leaders have been brought under control thanks to house arrest,” she said.

The police made nearly 300 arrests, including 269 leading to police custody, 35 to removals and 17 to committal warrants, Nouméa prosecutor Yves Dupas also detailed on Wednesday.

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