LIVE – Riots in New Caledonia: “In the coming hours, the State will regain total control”

New Caledonia is in the grip of an insurrectional situation, against a backdrop of protests against the constitutional reform voted on Tuesday by the National Assembly. The human toll shows 4 deaths, including a police officer. A state of emergency is declared.

THE ESSENTIAL

  • The French territory in the South Pacific faces major urban tensions. A police officer died, raising the human toll four deaths.
  • Emergency state was announced, and took effect at 8 p.m. this Wednesday evening. It is renewed permanently, until further notice.
  • Gabriel Attal announced the deployment of the army to secure ports and airports, as well as the ban on the social network TikTok.

LIVE

8:45 a.m. | Riots in New Caledonia: Darmanin accuses Azerbaijan of interference

The Minister of the Interior and Overseas Territories Gérald Darmanin on Thursday accused Azerbaijan of interference in New Caledonia, while the archipelago is in the grip of unprecedented riots since 1988.

As he was asked if this pro-Russian country was interfering in New Caledonia, the minister responded on France 2: “Azerbaijan is not a fantasy, it is a reality”, in regretting “that some of the independence activists have made a deal” with this country.

8:20 a.m. | Ten house arrests tonight

Gérald Darmanin announced ten house arrests last night. “The state of emergency allows me to do it. There will be more than twenty additional people today. The administrative searches will begin,” he said.

The Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin.


8:05 a.m. | The leaders of the CCAT are “mafiosi”, according to Darmanin

Just like Louis Le Franc, high commissioner in New Caledonia, Gérald Darmanin strongly condemns the actions of the CCAT, the cell for coordinating field actions. The Minister of the Interior defined the leaders of the CCAT as being “mafiosi”.

The CCAT is a small group which calls itself pro-independence but which in fact commits looting, clearly commits murders, commits violence. And he should not be confused with political activists.

Gérard Darmanin

“In the coming hours, the State will regain total control,” promised the Minister of the Interior, announcing that we are “going from 1,700 to 2,700 police officers and gendarmes” on site.


7:58 a.m. | No withdrawal of the envisaged text

The government is not considering withdrawing the text, assured Gérald Darmanin. “What does this crisis in New Caledonia mean? Does it mean that violence, looting, murders can put political pressure on democracy? So it would be enough to carry out looting and murders for Parliament does not vote on a text or even worse that a referendum is not respected?”, he asks.


7:55 a.m. | “Calm has not been restored everywhere”

Guest on Télématin, on France 2, Gérald Darmanin announced the arrest of more than 206 people since Monday. “Calm has not been restored everywhere,” declared the Minister of the Interior.

“At the request of the President of the Republic, I proposed police protection for all political leaders in New Caledonia, separatists and non-separatists,” he added.


7:40 a.m. | A defense council this Thursday morning

Emmanuel Macron postponed a planned trip to the Flamanville nuclear power plant to chair a defense and national security council on the situation in New Caledonia at the end of the morning. The Head of State proposed to New Caledonian elected officials to have “an exchange by videoconference” at the end.

A new crisis unit will be chaired by Prime Minister Gabriel Attal at 8:30 a.m. this Thursday morning.

premium Why the expansion of the electorate in New Caledonia risks provoking a new civil war


7:35 a.m. | A “less violent” night

This night from Wednesday to Thursday “was less violent” than the previous ones, declared the high commissioner on the French Pacific territory, Louis Le Franc. However, “very significant clashes” were recorded. The Nouméa metropolitan area has once again fallen prey to looting and fires, he added, while nearly 200 arrests have taken place since Monday in the region.

“There are also traps set for the police,” who were subjected to “heavy fire from high-speed rifles,” he said.


7:30 a.m. | Good morning !

Welcome to this live commentary on the situation in New Caledonia.

Why these tensions? Point of tension in the anger of the separatists, the constitutional reform project on the electorate was adopted by the deputies in Paris on the night of Tuesday to Wednesday. He must still obtain three-fifths of the votes of the parliamentarians meeting in Congress. This text aims to expand the electorate in provincial elections, crucial in the archipelago, to all native Caledonians and residents for at least ten years. Supporters of independence judge that this thaw risks “even further minimizing the indigenous Kanak people”.

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