Man killed, bombs hit holiday homes on French island of Corsica

PARIS Sat Dec 8, 2012 7:46am EST

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PARIS (Reuters) - A man was killed and bombs caused damage to around 20 holiday homes in a spate of overnight violence in Corsica ahead of the French Mediterranean island's national identity day on Saturday.

Corsica has long been dogged by bloodshed linked to demands for independence from France as well as feuding criminal gangs.

The latest violence came two weeks after Interior Minister Manuel Valls and Justice Minister Christiane Taubira visited from Paris to promise increased resources to improve security.

Investigative sources said a 32-year-old man who claimed to be a member of the National Front for the Liberation of Corsica (FLNC) was arrested in the town of Calvi on Friday, just before the violence erupted, when explosives were found in his car.

A 32-year-old man was shot dead in his car in Calvi during the violence. He had been under police surveillance after being released from prison, police officials said.

About 20 holiday homes, unoccupied at the time, were damaged or destroyed by bomb explosions.

Since the start of the year there have been 55 politically motivated attacks and 19 killings on the island, including two high-profile figures - lawyer Antoine Sollacaro and local official Jacques Nacer.

(Reporting By Roger Nicoli; Writing by Vicky Buffery; Editing by Mark Heinrich)

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