25 Mar 2004

Oil slick threatens southern New Caledonia

5:04 am on 25 March 2004

Authorities in the south of New Caledonia have put up barriers around a popular tourist island which is being threatened by a huge toxic oil slick.

The roughly 20-square-kilometre slick is from a boat wrecked several decades ago on a coral reef.

Officials fear it is about to reach the unspoilt island of Amedee, which is popular with tourists.