26 Jun 2013

New Caledonia marks 25 years since Matignon Accords signing

3:04 pm on 26 June 2013

New Caledonia today marks the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Matignon Accords which ended years of political discord and violence.

The deal was reached between the anti-independence leader, Jacques Lafleur, and Jean-MarieTjibaou of the pro-independence camp.

It lasted for ten years when again under French leadership a successor agreement, the Noumea Accord, was signed to provide the current roadmap to the phased and irreversible transfer of power from Paris to New Caledonia.

The Noumea Accord provides for a possible referendum on independence between 2014 and 2018.

The day has been marked by one signatory, the Rassemblement-UMP, which says that since the party's inception in 1977 its only target has been to retain New Caledonia within the French republic.