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The World

September 13, 1987

New Caledonians vote today on independence for the French territory in the South Pacific about 1,000 miles east of Australia. They were expected to reject independence in the first vote on the question since France annexed the island group in 1853. A group representing pro-independence ethnic Melanesians, or Kanaks, called for a boycott of the referendum on the grounds that only native New Caledonians should be allowed to vote.

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