8 Feb 2007

France reclassifies overseas possessions

2:08 pm on 8 February 2007

The French parliament has approved changes to the status of the French overseas possessions.

The change means that the overseas territory of Wallis and Futuna and the overseas country of French Polynesia will now be classified as overseas communities.

The label community will also apply to two new entities in the Caribbean which have been created out what is the overseas department of Guadeloupe.

The realignment has also seen the atoll of Clipperton being excised from French Polynesia to be added to the so-called Austral and Antarctic lands.

The changes won't affect the various forms of self-rule approved by Paris which four years ago opted for a process of decentralisation.