Another vote for independence: New Caledonia's second referendum on self-determination

The French Pacific dependency of New Caledonia will hold a second referendum on self-determination in September 2020. A meeting this month in Paris between the French government, the independence movement Front de Liberation Nationale Kanak et Socialiste (FLNKS) and leaders of anti-independence parties has agreed to another vote on New Caledonia’s political status under the Noumea Accord, following the November 2018 referendum which saw an unprecedented 43 per cent vote for independence.

Charles Wea is the FLNKS representative to Australia and Nic Maclellan is a journalist and researcher on the francophone Pacific. They discuss the latest developments in New Caledonia, following May 2019 elections and the creation of a new government in July. The seminar discusses current debates in New Caledonia over who can vote in 2020, political relationships within and between the FLNKS and loyalist parties, and prospects for independence.

Charles Wea is the FLNKS representative to Australia and has represented New Caledonia’s independence movement at the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

Nic Maclellan is a correspondent for Islands Business magazine (Fiji) and co-author of La France dans le Pacifique – de Bougainville à Moruroa (Editions La Découverte, Paris), and After Moruroa – France in the South Pacific (Ocean Press, New York and Melbourne). His latest book “Grappling with the Bomb” (ANU Press) was shortlisted for Scholarly Book of the Year by the Australian Publishers Association.

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