Macron Halts Controversial Voting Reforms in New Caledonia Amid Deadly Unrest

French President Emmanuel Macron suspended controversial voting reforms in New Caledonia after violent unrest erupted. These reforms, feared by the Indigenous Kanak people, have led to decades' worst violence. A state of emergency was declared, and troops were rushed to the area. The French government extended an overnight curfew until June 17.


PTI | Paris | Updated: 12-06-2024 23:47 IST | Created: 12-06-2024 23:47 IST
Macron Halts Controversial Voting Reforms in New Caledonia Amid Deadly Unrest
Emmanuel Macron
  • Country:
  • France

French President Emmanuel Macron announced on Wednesday the suspension of controversial voting reforms in New Caledonia, following a spate of deadly unrest in the French Pacific territory.

The reforms, feared by the Indigenous Kanak people for potentially further marginalizing them, caused the worst violence on the archipelago in decades. The unrest began on May 13, fueled by attempts to amend the French Constitution and alter voting lists.

To quell the violence that included shootings, clashes, looting, and arson, France declared a state of emergency on May 15 and rushed hundreds of reinforcements to the territory. Protesters from both sides of New Caledonia's divide — Indigenous Kanaks seeking independence and French loyalists — erected barricades, turning parts of the capital, Noumea, into no-go zones.

Macron said, "The constitutional bill regarding New Caledonia... I have decided to suspend to give full strength to dialogue and a return to order." The French Justice Ministry confirmed the death of a 34-year-old man, injured during a confrontation with police, adding to the urgency for resolution.

New Caledonia's government president, Louis Mapou, called for calm and urged the removal of barricades. The French government has extended a nightly curfew across the archipelago until June 17.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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