New Greenpeace Ship Completed

The latest incarnation of Greenpeace’s flagship the Rainbow Warrior took to the water Tuesday after construction work was completed at a Polish shipyard, the global environment group said.

Jacek Winiarski, spokesman of Greenpeace’s Polish branch, told AFP that the hull of the Rainbow Warrior III was being towed by tug to Bremen, Germany, where it is to be fitted out and launched next year.

“We’re very proud that the flagship of the biggest green NGO in the world has been built in Poland,” Winiarski said. “We hope it will come back some day to help us conduct campaigns in the Baltic”.

Work on the Rainbow Warrior III began in the Polish port of Gdansk on July 10, a highly symbolic date for Greenpeace because it marked the 25th anniversary of the bombing of the first ship by French agents.

In 1985, French agents blew up the Rainbow Warrior I in the harbour of Auckland, New Zealand. One Greenpeace campaigner died when the ship went down.

At the time, Greenpeace was planning a maritime protest against France’s Pacific Ocean nuclear tests.

The Rainbow Warrior I — whose name comes from a North American Cree Indian prophecy — was a converted British fisheries research trawler built in 1955 and bought by Greenpeace in 1978.

The sunken vessel was replaced in 1989 by the Rainbow Warrior II, another converted fishing vessel.

The Rainbow Warrior III is Greenpeace’s first purpose-built version, and the organisation has said it will not only helm campaigns but also be a showcase of environmentally-friendly technology.

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