21 May 2018

New Caledonia referendum commission appointed

2:18 pm on 21 May 2018

The French government has announced the members of the commission which will oversee New Caledonia's independence referendum in November.

Kanak and French flags on Ouvea island.

Kanak and French flags on Ouvea island. Photo: AFP

The overseas ministry said the commission would be headed by Francis Lamy who has been chosen by France's top courts.

The commission includes several senior members of French courts, whose first task will be to establish by 20 June which groups and parties will be allowed to campaign.

The plebiscite will also be observed by the UN.

It will be New Caledonia's first independence referendum since 1987 when more than 98 percent voted to stay with France.

That vote was boycotted by the pro-independence camp.

Opinion polls suggest this year's referendum will confirm that a majority is opposed to independence.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs