16 Feb 2013

Sea Shepherd activists 'confront whalers'

10:02 pm on 16 February 2013

Anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd says the killing of a minke whale in Australian Antarctic waters has led to a confrontation with Japanese whalers.

The group alleges the Yushin Maru No 2 harpooned the whale on Friday inside Australia's Antarctic Territory, some 92 kilometres from Australia's Davis research station, AAP reports.

The Sea Shepherd vessel Bob Barker positioned itself between the whale and the mothership Nisshin Maru to prevent the transfer of the dead whale from the harpooning ship.

Japan and some other countries do not accept Australia's claim over Australian Antarctic waters.

The confrontation comes the same day the US Supreme Court upheld an injunction ordering Sea Shepherd to keep away from Japanese whaling ships in the Southern Ocean.

Australian govt should do more - Bob Brown

Meanwhile the ABC reports that the former leader of the Australian Green Party, Bob Brown, says the government must do more to uphold its own whaling laws.

Canberra is arguing in the International Court of Justice that all Japanese whaling is illegal, regardless of where it occurs, and says there is little more it can do.

But Dr Brown says whaling in Australian waters is illegal and the government should send naval or customs vessels to assert its laws.

"This Government needs to uphold Australian laws, this Government needs to be doing much more to prevent this illegal, violent, bloody, brutal, nasty slaughter of these whales by this Japanese whaling fleet infringing international law," he said.

Dr Brown says the government should have sought an injunction to stop Japan's whaling while the case in the International Court is ongoing.