Martini Gotjé

First mate (Netherlands)


Photograph: David Robie

crew picture

Martini Gotjé, 65, lives on Waiheke Island near Auckland, New Zealand with his ex-wife and three children. His eldest daughter, Brenna, is an activist and works for Greenpeace in Auckland. These days he is a researcher for Greenpeace maintaining a blacklist of illegal fishing vessels and investigating the ownership of dubious fishing companies, plotting tracks of seismic testing and nuclear transport vessels and producing a daily report on nuclear energy issues.


A qualified navigator and sailor, Martini moved to New Zealand from the Netherlands in 1973 where he joined the boat Fri for the Peace Media organised voyage to protest French nuclear testing at Moruroa. The Fri was to become his home for most of the next four years as the boat sailed halfway around the world to deliver its anti-nuclear message to China, the US, Russia, France and the UK. Martini continued to work aboard Greenpeace boats, including sailing to protest at Moruroa on the new Rainbow Warrior in 1992. After a break to work on a merchant ship in the Pacific between 1994 and 1997, he returned to head the marine division of Greenpeace International. In 2001 Martini and his family moved back to New Zealand.

Martini Gotjé talks to PMC's Onehou Strickland about anti-nuclear protests at Moruroa, the Rongelap evacuation, crew-life on the Rainbow Warrior and being on board the ship when the bombs went off.