The holding of New Caledonia’s referendum on independence from France is being challenged in the European Court of Human Rights.

Les Nouvelles Caledoniennes reports a voter wants France to be convicted in the court in Strasbourg for holding the vote in December despite pleas for its deferral.

Pro-independence parties had repeatedly asked for the vote to be postponed to this year because of the impact of the covid-19 outbreak on the indigenous Kanak people.

Paris dismissed the concerns.

More than 96 percent of the electorate rejected independence in the December vote, which was marked by a low turnout after the pro-independence parties called on its supporters to abstain.

The separatist side continues to refuse to accept the result as the legitimate outcome for the people to be decolonised.

Last month, France’s highest administrative court rejected a claim by the Kanak customary Senate that the impact of the pandemic was such that the referendum outcome was illegitimate.

The court found that neither constitutional provisions nor the organic law made the validity of the vote conditional on a minimum turnout.