The Icelandic government has criticised Holland and Australia for offering services to environmentalist activist group Sea Shepherd, calling the group a “terrorist organisation”.
Tómas H. Heiðar, chairperson of the Icelandic representation at the International Whaling Commission (IWC), told Fréttablaðið, “Iceland emphasised that the focus should not be on the terrorist organisation Sea Shepherd but rather on those countries who help them, directly or indirectly.”
Sea Shepherd, officially known as the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, has used direct action to block whale and seal hunts, mostly in international waters. Their methods have included flashing laser pointers in the eyes of whalers, vandalising nets, and blocking whaling ships.
Sea Shepherd has a special history with Iceland. In 1986, the group claimed responsibility for sinking two whaling boats in Reykjavík harbour. The act has never been forgotten by many Icelanders.
While Sea Shepherd have been called “terrorists” in the past, there have never been any fatalities resulting from their direct action methods.