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McCully Gives Green Light to Japanese Whalers to Kill Kiwi’s

January 10, 2010

McCully Gives Green Light to Japanese Whalers to Kill Kiwi’s

Kiwi Foreign Affairs Minister Should Apologize or Resign Demands Our Sea Shepherd Kiwi Crew

New Zealand Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has basically given the Japanese the green light to escalate their violence at sea against eleven New Zealand crewmembers onboard Sea Shepherd Conservation Society’s marine conservation ships Bob Barker and Steve Irwin.

A New Zealand vessel with four New Zealand crew and one New Zealand cameraman was deliberately rammed by a Japanese whaling vessel. The New Zealand vessel was destroyed and sunk and the New Zealand Foreign Minister blames the victims.

This kind of attitude will surely encourage the Japanese whalers to escalate their violence towards the Sea Shepherd crew.

Sea Shepherd is appalled, shocked, and offended by these grossly irresponsible statements from New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully.

In response to the deliberate ramming of a New Zealand registered vessel with a New Zealand skipper, three additional New Zealand crewmembers, and a New Zealand cameraman and the request for intervention to stop Japanese violence, Murry McCully made these statements:

"If people are determined to break the law and determined to kill other people on the high seas then it is not the responsibility of the New Zealand government or any other government to send armed vessels down there or something of that sort to stop them."

-           Murray McCully, New Zealand Foreign Minister

AND

"We've got New Zealand citizens that have clearly been behaving in a manner that has put life at risk," he said. "If they are going to go down there looking for trouble and determined to find it then there's nothing we can do to stop them, except urge them to improve their conduct."

-           Murray McCully, New Zealand Foreign Minister

Captain Paul Watson responds, “The Minister of Foreign Affairs has made ignorant and unsubstantiated accusations and he should apologize and if he refuses to apologize he should be asked to resign. How dare he take Japan’s side in this issue against his own citizens? Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has undertaken six campaigns to the Southern Ocean without causing a single injury, without being charged with a single crime, without being charged with a single maritime violation and without being sued by any government, corporation or individual. The Society demands to know on what grounds and upon what evidence this ridiculous accusation was made.”

“Perhaps Murray McCully should review the video evidence of the Shonan Maru No. 2 deliberately ramming a New Zealand registered vessel, the Ady Gil, before he fires off asinine statements half-cocked concerning issues he has not obviously been briefed on,” Captain Watson continues.

In the 30+ years since Sea Shepherd was founded in 1977, the organization has not caused or sustained a single serious injury or fatality to any person, has never been the subject of a legal suit, and has never had an officer or crewmember convicted of a felony crime. Its record of non-violent, although aggressive, intervention is unblemished.

Sea Shepherd is an anti-poaching marine wildlife conservation organization.

The Japanese whaling fleet is targeting endangered and protected whales (Minke, fins, and humpbacks) in an established international whale sanctuary in violation of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) global moratorium on commercial whaling, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), an Australian Federal Court Order of January 2008, the Antarctic Treaty—both for conducting prohibited commercial whaling activity in the treaty zone and for unlawful refueling below sixty degrees latitude, and more.

If a Sea Shepherd ship had rammed and sunk a Japanese ship, there would be no hesitation in sending a Navy ship to the Southern Ocean with a warrant of arrest. Yet we now have a New Zealand vessel sunk, New Zealand lives threatened, and one New Zealander with broken ribs, and New Zealand is doing nothing.,

Sea Shepherd’s current Antarctic Whale Defense Campaign: Operation Waltzing Matilda has 77 crewmembers from 16 different nations, including 22 Australians and 12 New Zealanders.

The 12 crew from New Zealand are:

Captain Peter Bethune 44 of Auckland
|Scott Behrnes 38 of Christchurch
James Burrowes 24 of Ashburton
John Graham 38 of Auckland
Brent King 34 (Maori) from Takapuna
Brad Latimer 25 of Dunedin
David Neale 36 of Lower Hut
Larry Routledge 41 of New Plymouth
Michael Smith 39 of Maungauvi
Jason Stewart 41 of Auckland
Bevin Washer 30 of New Plymouth

Including cameraman:
Simeon Houtman 27 of Papakura


 

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