HISTORY. In the referendum held separately on each of the 4 islands on 22 Dec. 1974, 95–56% of the Comorans voted for independence, but the vote on Mayotte was 65% against independence. To avoid the expected separation of Mayotte, the Comoran Chamber of Deputies voted for an immediate unilateral declaration of independence on 6 July 1975. The next day it converted itself into the National Assembly and elected Ahmed Abdallah, President of the Executive Council since 26 Dec. 1972, as President of the new state. France retained responsibility for Mayotte, while the other 3 islands thus achieved de facto independence.