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The evacuation of Australians stranded by the unrest in New Caledonia has begun with more than 80 arriving home to be reunited with their families.

The elderly, the pregnant and those most vulnerable were the first to be airlifted home by the Royal Australian Air Force. Two planes brought 84 Aussies and 24 other nationals into Brisbane last night.

Some 200 Australians remain stranded in the South Pacific destination that has been rocked by civil unrest and rioting that has left at least six people dead.

The unrest has been caused by proposed changes to voting rights with buildings razed, shops looted and roads barricaded. The damage bill is likely to be in the millions as French troops try and quell further trouble.

A 6pm to 6am curfew remains in place and the international airport is closed to commercial flights.

“We’ll continue to work with the French government to make sure we get every Australian out of New Caledonia who does want to leave,” said Pat Conroy, Pacific Minister, on Channel Nine’s Today Show.

The French government is allegedly planning more flights from Noumea to Brisbane later today.

Fadi Chemali was holidaying with his wife and daughter when they got caught up in the disturbances. They were on the first plane to arrive home.

“Everyone clapped once we landed, we were all just so happy,” he told AAP shortly after landing in Brisbane on Tuesday night.