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Goff Will Not Attend Whaling Conference

Foreign Minister Phil Goff said today that he will be declining an invitation to address the World Council of Whalers's conference in Nelson this November.

"New Zealand's stance on whaling is well known. We are opposed to commercial whaling of any kind.

"New Zealand has been a leading advocate of conservation of whale stocks, and in particular the South Pacific Whaling Sanctuary.

"The only instances where we accept whaling, and these are few, is where the terms of the International Whaling Commission's provisions for Aboriginal and Subsistance whaling are met.

"The World Council of Whalers is supposedly about promoting the interests of indigenous groups with whale-related traditions. However, with backing from those those who advocate commercial whaling it risks being seen as a front for those interests.

"That's not something I want to be associated with.

"New Zealand will continue to pursue its goal of ensuring the maximum conservation of whale species and stocks through the appropriate channels," Mr Goff concluded.

ENDS




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