New Caledonia: strong tensions after the sale of a nickel plant

New Caledonia: strong tensions after the sale of a nickel plant

In New Caledonia, dams were put in place and a gas station was set on fire: separatists protest against the sale of a nickel factory on Wednesday, December 9.

New Caledonia: strong tensions after the sale of a nickel plant

In Mont-Dore, in New Caledonia, for the past few days, the atmosphere has been electric. Kanak separatists block the roads to protest against the sale by the Brazilian group Vale of its nickel factory. This resource is the main wealth of the archipelago. Located near the Goro mine, the plant had been in deficit for years. On Wednesday 9 December, it was taken over by a company which promises to guarantee the maintenance of 3,000 jobs.

47 arrests

The separatists were campaigning for another buyer, closer to their interests but who threw in the towel. The new buyer is supported by the anti-separatists who also express their anger at the violence and blockades. They denounce the inaction of the public authorities, and in turn have set up roadblocks. The day before, a gas station was burnt down and ransacked. Monday, December 7, clashes took place in Noumea between the police and the separatists. 47 people were arrested.