20 Oct 2008

French authorities to declassify secret service documents relating to French Polynesian journalist

5:59 am on 20 October 2008

The French authorities have agreed to declassify secret service documents that could be relevant in the probe into the disappearance of a French Polynesian journalist 11 years ago.

Jean-Pascal Couraud vanished and his family lodged a murder complaint in 2004 after a man linked to an illegal local espionage service claimed he had been kidnapped and drowned.

There have been allegations that he may have had information about an account of the former French president, Jacques Chirac, in Japan.

This has been denied by Mr Chirac, but the relevant commission in Paris has now approved a request by the investigative judge in Tahiti to look into the files of the secret service.

Two years ago, a former top French agent mentioned the alleged Japanese account when he was questioned in connection with the so-called Clearstream affair.