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Kanak killed by gendarme: ‘act of war’ according to New Caledonia independence activists

Kanak killed by gendarme: ‘act of war’ according to New Caledonia independence activists

Kanak killed by gendarme: ‘act of war’ according to New Caledonia independence activists

Tensions in New Caledonia continue. The “French state” is accused this Thursday of committing an “act of war” by the FLNKS and CCAT separatists in New Caledonia, a collective that brings together several separatist unions, following the death of a Kanak killed on Wednesday by police shooting, east of Noumea.

“The French state has committed an act of war on the traditional lands of the Saint-Louis tribe,” the leaders of the independence movements grouped under the FLNKS (Kanak and Socialist National Liberation Front) and the CGAF (Groupe des Actions Coordinées des Fields), as well as the traditional leaders of the Kanak peoples, denounced in a joint statement. In the same press release, they demanded “the immediate repatriation of the representative of the French state, Louis Le Franc (High Commissioner of the Republic, editor’s note), as well as the prosecutor Yves Dupas, who continue to adhere to a militant colonial approach.”

On Wednesday, a 38-year-old man, a second cousin of the great traditional Kanak chief and president of the New Caledonia Congress, Roch Wamitana, was killed in a shootout with the GIGN. The death toll since the mid-May crisis has now reached ten, including two gendarmes.

According to Noumea prosecutor Yves Dupas, the gendarmes of the GIGN, an elite unit, had just been “shot several times” and the soldier “used his service weapon.” At this stage of the investigation, the prosecution is citing “the possibility of self-defense.”

Thirteen activists face charges

For the Separatists, the story of Roque Victorien Vamitan’s death is entirely different. The death of the man nicknamed “Banana” would be “a consequence of speech, a militant approach” on the part of the Republic’s high committee.

The uprising was sparked by a project to reform the electoral body, which was put on hold after Emmanuel Macron dissolved the National Assembly in June. Tensions were renewed after a major raid on pro-independence circles on June 19. Thirteen activists were charged and seven were remanded in custody.

Among them, five were jailed in France, including Christian Thein, the leader of the CCAT, the cell for the coordination of field actions, an organization for independence. From the beginning of the uprisings, the organization, which Gérald Darmanin called a “mafia”, has been the subject of judicial investigations. This collective was created in late 2023 to mobilize against the upcoming electoral reform.

According to the separatists, “with this militant act, the state has just passed a new milestone by killing Roca Victorin Vamitan, who has been added to the list of young Kanaks killed since May 13.” They call on the “future government” in Paris to abandon the process of constitutional reform that ignited the gunpowder and “free our political prisoners.”

Source: Le Parisien

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