A new UN ruling has ordered Japan to halt whaling at once, saying that they are engaging in commercial whaling; not whaling for scientific purposes. In the wake of the Japanese government’s announcement that it will obey the decision, RÚV reports, Sea Shepherd will soon be turning its attentions northwards.
Sea Shepherd – an anti-whaling group which has recently been most active around Antarctica in an attempt to stop Japanese whaling ships – are pleased with the UN ruling. Sea Shepherd captain Paul Watson says that while he is not sure Japan will obey the ruling, Sea Shepherd nonetheless intends to send their fleet to the North Atlantic.
The group will place its focus on Iceland, Norway and the Faeroe Islands, Watson said. He added that it had up until now been impossible for Sea Shepherd to fight on two hemispheres at once. With the UN ruling, he said, they can now turn their attention to countries other than Japan.
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. In 2011, the Icelandic government criticised Holland and Australia for offering services to Sea Shepherd, calling the group a “terrorist organisation”.
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