"The French government strongly condemns illegal Japanese whaling in the Southern Ocean Whaling Sanctuary".
Quoting a statement by the TAAF Prefect endorsed by the District Chief who signed the letter addressed to the MS "Steve Irwin" her Master has concluded that this is official French government policy.
The time is now to have the supporting or clarifying statement from the French Foreign Office stating the National Position. At present it would seem that minor overseas diplomats are setting French National Policy. This is behaviour which if tolerated could cause serious diplomatic misunderstandings.
Students of history will recall how French Colonial Rule collapsed in Algeria in the 1960's through ill judged behaviour by French local officials of similar diplomatic ranks. This was an experience which members of my family suffered through, one is thus wary of diplomats stepping above their assigned duty position.