Sea Shepherd Society prepares for high-seas encounters with Japanese whalers
The Sea Shepherd Society has sent three vessels from Australia on their way to the Antarctic to defend whales under attack from Japanese hunters.
The Steve Irwin, The Sam Simon, and The Bob Barker are going there because, in the words of Captain Peter Hammarstedt, Japan's "whale poaching fleet is an offence to an international community".
There will be more than 100 Sea Shepherd Society volunteers from 24 countries travelling on the vessels.
The society maintains that Japan is violating a 1986 ban on commercial whaling, whereas the Japanese claim that it's allowed to take nearly 1,000 whales under the category of "scientific research".
Meanwhile, Australia has asked the International Court of Justice to revoke Japan's permits, making the argument that its annual slaughter has little to do with science.
AFP has reported that Sea Shepherd Society founder and former Georgia Straight writer Paul Watson has been banned from going on this year's expedition because of a U.S. court injunction.