15 Dec 2003

New Caledonia's FLNKS suspends its Congress until March

8:25 am on 15 December 2003

New Caledonia's pro independence FLNKS movement has suspended its weekend Congress until March after failing to overcome key difference within the coalition.

The Congress in Dumbea was to help prepare the FLNKS for next May's election of a new territorial congress and to choose a leader to fill a two year vacancy.

A spokesman, Victor, Tutugoro, says the movement is divided over how to proceed with the implementation of the 1998 Noumea Accord on greater autonomy.

The main group, the Caledonian Union, has accused the French state and the anti independence RPCR party of subverting the accord while a smaller faction, the Palika, has opted to seek more dialogue to put the agreement into place.

Mr Tutugoro also says it is vital for the FLNKS to come up with a single electoral list in the southern province where the RPCR has most support.