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PRO-BRITISH FEELING

IN NOUMEA

SYDNEY, September 4.

Dramatic. Btories of the situation in

Noumea, thc capital of New Caledonia, were brought to Sydney by thc Ameri- can visitors who have arrived in Syd- ney by flying boat from New Zealand. Mr Cornelius Vanderbilt Whitney, mil- lionaire chairman of directors of Pan American Airways, and Mr Paul Pat- terson, publisher of the " Baltimore Sun" told how practically the whole population of Noumea demonstrated in

favour of Britain and fieneral dc Gaulle

on thc quay beside thc yacht of Sir Harry Luke, British High Commissioner

for the Western Pacific.

Mr Whitney said it was a stirring and tense moment when the people, drifting to the quay in ones end twos, demonstrated in favour of General de Gaulle under the guns of a warship of the Vichy Government.

Mr Patterson said that last Wednes- day thc council of 15, the local- Parlia- ment, voted for the resignation of the Governor-General (Mr Georges Polis aier), who had resigned. The Petain Government then appointed Colonel Denis, commandant of the military forces, SB Governor. In the harbour at Noumea" was a French gunboat.

"When Sir Harry Luke soiled Into Noumea in bis yacht and tied, up under the guns of the gunboat thc council resigned as n protest against the ap- pointment of Colonel Denis," said Mr Patterson.-" I was told in Noumea that the next stjp would be a general elec- tion, but it was also pointed nut. that Colonel Denis was in a position lo pro-

claim martial law. The troops under! Colonel Deni«, the people said, would not support bim and were for free

France.

"On Saturday rooming (he Koo means staged their extraordinary demenstra tion in front of Slr Harry Lnke's yacht. The people gathered spontane' onslv carrying a latge 1'nion Jack and the flag of General de Gaulle. It wa» amazing to see French men nnd women, Javanese, Indochinese, and others patiently waiting BB two French citi- zens went on board Sir Harry Luke's yacht. The rrowd yelled : 'To Hell with Petain.' sang 'God Sang thc King* and 'The Marseillai«e' and called fur

three cheers for Sir Harry Luke."

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