Rainbow Warrior free to continue campaign to save the world’s forests
Madrid, Spain. 4 July 2003—Greenpeace received word this afternoon, that the Government of Spain through its Ministry of Public Works and Transport has resolved to lower the bond that was placed on the organisation’s flagship, the Rainbow Warrior, from €300,000 to €6,000.
In the official communiqué from the Spanish authorities, the Ministry admitted that “ the amount [€300,000] corresponds to a violation of ‘very grave’ character”, that “ The facts that have given way to the current measures have not tended to secure any personal profit or interest, therefore the existence of any commercial or lucrative gain is discarded” and that “it should be taken into account the time which has already transpired since June 13, when the ship was detained in the port, and the inherent consequences of said detention all parties have suffered.”
Greenpeace will deposit this bond as soon as possible to allow the ship to depart the Port of Valencia and continue its campaign to protect the world’s last remaining ancient forests. Moreover, Greenpeace will appeal to the appropriate courts as the facts contained within the process have already been tried.
“Common sense has finally prevailed,” said Juan Lopez de Uralde, executive director of Greenpeace in Spain. “In any case, we will continue to defend in the courts the illegality of this case, but the ship must continue its work to protect the ancient forests and the environment.”
The reduction in the amount of the bond, comes after weeks of international pressure to demand the release of the Rainbow Warrior. On 2 July, activists in 14 cities around the world protested in front of Spanish embassies. Also, over 30,000 Greenpeace supports world-wide sent e-mails to the Spanish government asking for the release of the ship.
The Rainbow Warrior was detained by Spanish authorities on 13 June after activists carried out a peaceful, non-violent protest against the timber transport ship, Honour. The Honour was carrying timber from Cameroon, belonging to companies known to be involved in illegal and destructive logging. After the demonstration, the Rainbow Warrior was boarded by the Spanish Civil Guard and detained in the Port of Valencia.
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