Drehu is a member of the Oceanic branch of the Malayo-Polynesian language family spoken by about 12,000 people on Lifou Island (Île Loyauté), one of the Loyalty Islands, which are part of New Caledonia (Nouvelle-Calédonie). It has status as a French regional language and is taught in schools and universities in New Calendonia and Paris.
Drehu was first written during the 1840s by missionaries from Polynesia and England, with help from native speakers. A complete Drehu translation of the bible was published in 1890. A revised spelling system was introduced in the 1970s.