France Blames Deadly New Caledonia Uprising On TikTok, Russia, & Azerbaijan

According to a recently published report in Politico, French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin and other officials blame the deadly New Caledonia uprising on TikTok, Russia, and Azerbaijan.

France Blames Deadly New Caledonia Uprising On TikTok, Russia, & Azerbaijan 1

Further disturbing photos from the ongoing rioting and turmoil in the French Pacific island of New Caledonia have surfaced, and more French troops—including reportedly elite security forces—are en route to assist authorities in re-establishing order.

To quell the unrest that has resulted in at least four fatalities and hundreds of injuries, France on Wednesday proclaimed a state of emergency, sending soldiers, outlawing the TikTok social media app, and giving law enforcement more authority. The authorities claim that to prevent the rioters from organizing and inciting, the TikTok shutdown is essential.

The unrest began after France enacted laws granting all citizens who have resided in New Caledonia for more than ten years the ability to vote in local elections. The pro-independence elements in the territory interpret the conduct as a calculated attempt to undermine the authority of the native Kanaks.

However, rather than concentrating on resolving the intricate and long-standing problems within the archipelago, the authorities in Paris are now drawing attention to a “foreign hand” that they claim is to blame for the violence against France. As per a recently published report in Politico on Thursday:

French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said that the violence, which has claimed the lives of three indigenous Kanak people and a police officer, had been actively supported by Azerbaijan.

“This isn’t a fantasy,” he insisted on Thursday. “I regret that some of the separatists have made a deal with Azerbaijan.” However, “even if there are attempts at interference, … France is sovereign on its own territory, and so much the better,” he added.

Naturally, the accusation of ‘interfering’ was also made concerning the name Russia:

Speaking to POLITICO, a French intelligence official granted anonymity to discuss sensitive issues of national security, said that “we’ve detected activities from Russia and Azerbaijan in New Caledonia for weeks, even a few months. They’re pushing the narrative of France being a colonialist state.”

However, the starker truth is that there are significant income differences in the region between those of European and native descent. The French government may be planning to postpone the new vote rule because it has invited both independence supporters and opponents to negotiations in Paris.

“Protests turned violent Monday night, with shots fired at security forces, vehicles torched, and shops looted in the worst unrest the French overseas territory has seen since the 1980s,” according to France24. Thus far, around 130 persons have been taken into custody. 64 police officers and gendarmes were hurt.

“Shots were fired at the gendarmes using high caliber weapons and hunting rifles,” French High Commissioner of the Republic Louis Le Franc told reporters on Monday. Among the many places targeted by arson are automobile dealerships and bottling facilities. Supermarkets and retail establishments have been plundered, and crude roadblocks have been up on highways. Some owners are pleading with the rioters to leave their buildings alone while willingly turning over their inventory.

France Blames Deadly New Caledonia Uprising On TikTok, Russia, & Azerbaijan 2
An arson attack utterly devastated this dealership in Noumea, New Caledonia (AFP via Telegraph)

“The police station nearby was on fire and a car was too, in front of my house,” a woman whose family’s Caledonia roots go back generations told The Telegraph. “There was non-stop shouting and explosions, I felt like I was in a war. We are alone. Who is going to protect us?”

France Blames Deadly New Caledonia Uprising On TikTok, Russia, & Azerbaijan 3
Some citizens are banding together to take security into their own hands: This neighborhood installed a barrier to keep rioters out (Théo Ruby, AFP via France24)  

The next twelve days are covered by the current state of emergency. It gives police the authority to carry out searches, seize firearms, make home arrests, and impose mobility restrictions on people. There is a curfew in place and public gatherings are prohibited. The security of the territory’s ports and its closed international airport is the primary goal of troop deployments. There will be 500 more police officers deployed to the region.

French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal declared, “No violence will be tolerated,” adding that the additional state authority “will allow us to roll out massive means to restore order.” One of the deceased is a French gendarme, 24, who was shot in the head after removing his helmet to talk to locals.

One of the last remnants of the French empire is New Caledonia, which is situated roughly 900 miles east of Australia. It is made up of multiple island groups, the largest of which is the main island, also known as New Caledonia, which is 240 miles long and 25 miles wide. After Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, its surrounding barrier reef is the second largest in the world.

France Blames Deadly New Caledonia Uprising On TikTok, Russia, & Azerbaijan 4

With 7% of global production, New Caledonia is fourth in the world for nickel production, behind Indonesia, the Philippines, and Russia. But its nickel industry is in serious trouble. Due to exorbitant prices and the persistent political unrest that precedes the present crisis, its three processing facilities are on the verge of going bankrupt, reported in February. This has sparked talks about French bailouts.

The US Congress passed legislation earlier this month that, if not sold by Beijing-based parent company ByteDance, would effectively ban TikTok in the US.

Despite the US government’s insistence that the popular platform is a Chinese weapon that targets Americans’ information, France’s ban on TikTok in New Caledonia serves as a reminder that the US prohibition is actually about information control.

As previously reported by GreatGameIndia, the President of France, Emmanuel Macron, declared a state of emergency to quell deadly riots in New Caledonia, which erupted following a vote in the National Assembly of France allowing those who have lived in New Caledonia for ten years to vote in provincial elections.

GreatGameIndia is being actively targeted by powerful forces who do not wish us to survive. Your contribution, however small help us keep afloat. We accept voluntary payment for the content available for free on this website via UPI, PayPal and Bitcoin.

Support GreatGameIndia

Leave a Reply