21 Nov 2022

Caledonian Union rejects criticism by the New Caledonia Committee of Elders

3:17 pm on 21 November 2022
Head of the Caledonian Union, Daniel Goa

Daniel Goa Photo: AFP

The pro-independence Caledonian Union has rejected criticism by the New Caledonia Committee of Elders, which condemned the party leader for his address at the recent congress.

Daniel Goa warned that if France decided unilaterally to leave the decolonisation process and the Noumea Accord, it would have irreversible consequences for peace in New Caledonia.

The Committee of Elders, which was first appointed in 2017 at the behest of a former French prime minister Edouard Philippe, said a solution can only be found through negotiation free of all pressure.

But the Caledonian Union party said it is Goa's role and duty to refer to New Caledonia's history and the risks now faced.

In a statement, it said the Committee of Elders may have reached its limit, given that it was set up by a partial French state.

It said while being quick to tackle pro-independence leaders, the Committee remains silent about the verbal provocations by the anti-independence side.

The Caledonian Union has said it will only discuss the restoration of New Caledonia's sovereignty in next week's planned talks in Noumea with the French interior minister Gerald Darmanin.

The talks are part of efforts to find a new statute for the territory after last year's independence referendum.