NOUMEA, New Caledonia | Voters in Pacific territory choose to keep ties with France

NOUMEA, New Caledonia | Voters in Pacific territory choose to keep ties with France

NOUMEA, New Caledonia — A majority of voters in the South Pacific territory of New Caledonia chose to remain part of France instead of backing independence, election officials announced Sunday as French President Emmanuel Macron promised a full dialogue on the region’s future.

The decision to keep ties with France was watershed moment for the archipelago that lies east of Australia and has sun-kissed lagoons as well as a nickel mining industry. The independence referendum itself was a milestone in New Caledonia’s three-decades-long decolonization process, which was borne out of deep resentment by the region’s native Kanaks of decades of ill treatment by their European colonizer.

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