31 Oct 2016

Fresh New Caledonia unrest contained

2:11 pm on 31 October 2016

Police in New Caledonia have used armoured vehicles to clear the main road north of Noumea after burning cars blocked it for part of the night.

Noumea municipal police facade

Noumea municipal police facade Photo: RNZ

The public broadcaster said gunfire was heard along the road near Tamoa in a disturbance linked to the clashes near St Louis south of Noumea.

In St Louis, six police officers were injured over the weekend, with two of them suffering gunshot wounds after being fired upon by unidentifed gunmen.

The road south of Noumea has been closed since Saturday when police fatally wounded a prison escapee using a stolen vehicle.

The government has been in talks with the local community in a bid to restore order.

A naval vessel has been made available by the authorities to provide basic transport.

The French High Commissioner, who is responsible for security and who was bound for Paris, has decided to return to Noumea.