BREAKAWAY FCCI PARTY IN NEW CALEDONIA DEFENDS VICE-PRESIDENCY

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NOUMEA, New Caledonia (June 7, 1999 - Radio Australia)---The breakaway FCCI Party in New Caledonia has defended its teaming up with the anti-independence RPCR, saying it's time to develop an alternative direction for the territory.

FCCI won the vice-presidency of the new government last month, but the pro-independence FLNKS says the election is in conflict with the Noumea Accord, because the party is not a true independence party.

Party President Raphael Mapou says the FCCI will bring together the two sides of the independence debate, to build a common destiny for Caledonians.

"The FLNKS has fulfilled its historical mission," says Mapou, "It has accomplished its duty with the signing of the Noumea Accord last year."

" Today the challenge of the Noumea Accord is to move on, to bring people together.

"Hence, the FCCI active partnership with the RPCR. This is the only way to change people's attidue," says Mapou.

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