Le Monde, France's most influential newspaper, reported Tuesday that two French frogmen, whose presence in New Zealand waters had been kept secret until now, are believed to be responsible for the bombing and sinking of the Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior in New Zealand last July.
The Greenpeace affair has resulted in a good deal of acrimony between France and New Zealand and hardened New Zealand's opposition to nuclear testing. New Zealand Prime Minister David Lange, in fact, has been scathing in his criticism of the French investigation. The latest Le Monde article is sure to intensify the debate.
Le Monde said that Alain Mafarge and Dominique Prieur, the two agents now under arrest and charged with murder and arson in New Zealand, had been assigned to collect information on Greenpeace and its ships while posing as a Swiss couple touring New Zealand.