1 Aug 2006

New Caledonia's Lafleur launches new party

11:55 am on 1 August 2006

New Caledonia's veteran politician, Jacques Lafleur, has called for support of his new party, known as RPC.

Mr Lafleur, who last year lost the leadership of the anti-independence Rassemblement-UMP to Pierre Frogier, made the announcement of the party in his news letter.

He says that his party will be affiliated to the French UMP Party, led by the interior minister, Nicolas Sarkozy.

The official UMP representative in New Caledonia is Mr Frogier.

Also affiliated to the UMP is the dominant political force in the territory, the Future Together Party.

During talks in Paris last month, Mr Sarkozy encouraged the Rassemblement-UMP politicians to overcome their differences with the Future Together Party, which provides the territory's president and the president of the territorial congress.