The Pacific lobby against forthcoming French nuclear tests continues to dominate the diplomatic scene in Paris.
The Pacific lobby against forthcoming French nuclear tests continues to dominate the diplomatic scene in Paris. yesterday (Wednesday, 23 April), New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister Hugh Watt pressed his country's arguments against the tests during a two-hour meeting with French Foreign Minister Michel Jobert.
Last week, Australian Attorney-General Lionel Murphy failed to shake the French resolve to go ahead with the nuclear atmospheric tests planned for this summer.
After the meeting, Mr. Watt said he had been satisfied with the talks so far, and that a further discussion was planned for Friday, when he is due to meet the French Defence Minister as well.
SYNOPSIS: In Paris, protests against the impending French nuclear tests in the Pacific continued on Wednesday. French Foreign Minister Michael Jobert greeted the latest man to put the case against the tests -- New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister Hugh Watt. A similar mission by Australian Attorney-General Lionel Murphy last week failed to shake French determination to go ahead with the tests next summer. But Mr. Watt was still optimistic that his talks would succeed:
Wednesday's talks went on for two hours. As he emerged, Mr. Watt said he had been satisfied with progress and that negotiations would continue later in the week, when he would also be meeting the French Defence Minister. If the mission breaks down, both Australian and New Zealand have said that they will seek an injunction from the International Court of Justice at the Hague to halt the nuclear tests. New Zealand has also considered sending a navy frigate into the test area with a Cabinet Minister aboard in a final effort to half the tests.