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Monday 16 November 2015 | Published in Regional

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NOUMEA – About 250 people in New Caledonia gathered in central Noumea to express their solidarity with the victims of the attacks in Paris.

The mayor of Noumea, Sonia Lagarde, says all of France, be it the mainland or the overseas territories, is touched by the events.

A state of heightened alert has been declared in the overseas territories, with security tightened at key points, such as airports and New Caledonia’s nickel plants.

Political parties have issued statements, condemning barbarity and calling for strong action in response.

One party closed its weekend Congress in Noumea early when news broke of the attacks in France.

French Polynesian mayors had flown off for the annual meeting of French mayors when news broke that the bombings prompted the cancellation of this week’s conference.

The President of French Polynesia, Edouard Fritch, expressed sympathy and support “of the Polynesians to the families of the victims and assured that the community, the farthest from the mainland in the Pacific” – answering the call for national unity launched by French President Francois President Hollande.

In Wallis and Futuna, flags are being flown at half mast.

- RNZI/PNC