The French government was annoyed by New Zealand’s strong opposition to France’s testing of nuclear weapons at Moruroa (Mururoa) atoll in the South Pacific, as explained by David Lange in this radio interview. In July 1985 frogmen from the French secret service mined and sank the Greenpeace vessel Rainbow warrior while it was berthed at Auckland, prior to sailing to Moruroa to protest against the tests. Two of the agents were caught, convicted of the manslaughter of one of the Greenpeace activists, and sentenced to 10 years in prison. This led to tense relations between France and New Zealand for several years.
Sound file from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright. To request a copy of the recording, contact Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero (Compilation of David Lange tracks/Reference number TXCDR3406 tr6).
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