10 Nov 2011

Screening of Ouvea hostage crisis leads to reconciliation ceremony

2:55 pm on 10 November 2011

The advance screening of a French feature film about the 1988 Ouvea hostage crisis has led to a reconciliation ceremony between some Kanaks and families of the French forces involved in the events.

One of the film producers, Christophe Rossignon, says the reconciliation took place in his Paris office in what he described as a very emotional occasion.

He says among those present was the sister of Alphonse Dianou, who led the Kanak separatists' unit that took 27 people hostage at the Ouvea police station.

Mr Rossignon says the meeting was also attended by the widow of one of the French officers killed when special forces ended the hostage crisis, leaving a total of 21 people dead.

The movie, whose English title is Rebellion, is to be launched next week, but New Caledonia's monopoly cinema operator has already said it won't screen it.