24 Jan 2014

Vandalism at New Caledonia mining site

6:27 am on 24 January 2014

There has been an unprecedented wave of vandalism at a mining site in New Caledonia, causing damage estimated to be in the millions of dollars.

At the Nakety mine near Canala, light vehicles were found crushed by huge mining trucks, which in turn were dumped in ditches.

Diggers were used to wreck technical installations, some of which were set on fire.

A nearby Kanak tribe has handed over a group of young people, suspected of causing the destruction, to the police.

A local official is quoted as saying those involved appear to have a sense of impunity.

He says some of them had been arrested a few weeks ago for stealing from a school but were set free pending a trial.

The destruction at the mine has left more than a hundred people out of work.