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Macron goes to New Caledonia to face the crisis in an unstable territory – POLITICO

Macron’s ultimatum

His plan: push the two parties to negotiate an agreement to end the protests.

In a letter sent last week to New Caledonian representatives, for and against independence, the French president described the reform of the electoral body as a “democratic principle”. Macron added that it was now “his responsibility” to convene an ad hoc session, but opened the door to abandoning the bill in favor of broader constitutional reform if local political forces managed to find a deal.

Under Macron’s departure, the strategy has not changed: a presidential adviser said Macron would adopt a “listening posture” but remained determined to summon lawmakers to a vote before July unless he saw the possibility of an imminent agreement. There is a delicate balance here for Macron, as postponing the vote could be seen as a surrender to violence.

Attempts at mediation have so far failed: a three-way video meeting between New Caledonian lawmakers on both sides of the independence debate and Macron was canceled last week after the French presidency said local officials were not not willing to talk to each other.

In a statement, the Kanak and socialist independence National Liberation Front said “the only response to this crisis is political” and called on the French state to put in place “a final step in the independence process.” Nicolas Metzdorf, a fiercely anti-independence parliamentarian and member of the pro-Macron Renaissance group in the National Assembly, said he would remain “vigilant to ensure that the democratic values ​​that we defend are defended” during interviews organized during the visit of Macron.

Three referendums on New Caledonia’s independence took place between 2018 and 2021. Voters chose to stay in France in the first two votes, but the third was marked by low turnout as separatists called their supporters to boycott the vote due to the state’s refusal to postpone it due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Sarah Paillou contributed to this report.


Sara Adm

Aimant les mots, Sara Smith a commencé à écrire dès son plus jeune âge. En tant qu'éditeur en chef de son journal scolaire, il met en valeur ses compétences en racontant des récits impactants. Smith a ensuite étudié le journalisme à l'université Columbia, où il est diplômé en tête de sa classe. Après avoir étudié au New York Times, Sara décroche un poste de journaliste de nouvelles. Depuis dix ans, il a couvert des événements majeurs tels que les élections présidentielles et les catastrophes naturelles. Il a été acclamé pour sa capacité à créer des récits captivants qui capturent l'expérience humaine.
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