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Harassment / Sabotage by Sea Shepherd vessel Bob Barker

MEDIA RELEASE
24 February 2014

Harassment / Sabotage by Sea Shepherd vessel Bob Barker

On February 23 around 1730 Japan Standard Time (JST)  until about 0000JST February 24 the Antarctic whale research (JARPAII) vessels Yushin Maru (YS1) and Yushin Maru No.3 (YS3) were subject to sabotage by the Sea Shepherd ship Bob Barker (BB).

During the Sea Shepherd attack two rigid inflatable boats (RIBs) sent from the BB came to the YS1 and YS3 deployed each more than a dozen wire-entwined ropes fitted with heavy metal weights just in front to the bow of each of the YS1 and YS3. At least one of the ropes deployed by the activists entangled to the YS1 propeller and at least another one entangled to the YS3 propeller. Also, the rudder plate of the YS3 suffered damage due to contact with the heavy metal weights fitted to the entangled rope.  Furthermore, the BB fired 8 flare signals to the YS1 and 5 of the same projectiles to the YS3.

There were neither injuries to the Japanese crews or damage to both vessels from the BB’s attack.

On 17 December 2012 the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued an Injunction Order enjoining SSCS, Paul Watson and anyone acting in concert with them from physically attacking the Japanese research vessels or any person on them and from navigating in a manner that is likely to endanger the safe navigation at sea of any such vessel. The Injunction Order also prohibits them from approaching any vessel engaged by the Institute of Cetacean Research (ICR) or Kyodo Senpaku (KS) any closer than 500 yards (about 457 meters) when the research vessels are navigating on the open sea. Since last year the ICR and KS filed a Motion for Contempt against SSCS in violation of the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Injunction Order.

Japan’s research whaling in the Antarctic (JARPAII) is a perfectly legal activity carried out under the International Whaling Convention for the Regulation of Whaling (ICRW). Sea Shepherd actions threaten safety of our research ships and lives of crews on it and is therefore unacceptable. Once again, we strongly call on all related countries including the Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand which are flag states and/or port State of SS vessels, and United States in which headquarter of SS is based to take every measure available to restrain them and deal with their criminal actions in a strict and objective manner.

IMAGES AND VIDEO CAN BE FOUND AT http://www.icrwhale.org/gpandsea.html

ENDS

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