These two small island nations have had their politicians bought and paid for by the Japanese fishing industry. They kill humpback whales in St. Vincent and slaughter pilot whales and dolphins in St. Lucia and market the meat as "Caribbean beef." In August of 2003, conservationist Jane Tipson was mysteriously murdered in connection with her efforts to oppose whaling and the capture of dolphins.
At the annual International Whaling Commission (IWC) meetings, six small Caribbean states continue to vote down whale sanctuaries in favor of undermining restrictions on whaling. Antigua, Grenada, St. Lucia, Dominica, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, and St. Kitts-Nevis have done so every year since the government of Japan bought their IWC memberships for them almost ten years ago and proceeded to pour more than $100 million in "fisheries development" aid into their economies in exchange for cooperation on whaling issues at the IWC.
Sea Shepherd - Actions Defending the Whales of St. Lucia & St. Vincent
In 2001, the Farley Mowat patrolled St. Lucia and St. Vincent and engaged in confrontations with the authorities in both nations after documenting and exposing the illegal killing of pilot whales. In 2003, the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society posted a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of Jane Tipson's killer or killers.
SEA SHEPHERD DOCUMENTED CARIBBEAN WHALERS IN THE ACT
JULY 19, 2001, CASTRIES, ST. LUCIA -- After repeated denials from St. Lucian authorities that whales are being killed here, Sea Shepherd documented proof to the contrary.
At 1700 Hours on July 19, one of numerous suspected whale killing boats that Sea Shepherd had under surveillance returned to Castries harbor. Two Sea Shepherd inflatables moved to intercept and documented the bleeding body of a juvenile pilot whale on the deck. The whale measured less than six feet and clearly showed gunshot wounds on the body. The agitated whale killer threatened the Sea Shepherd crew with a knife. The dead whale was transported into the harbor alongside the Norwegian cruise ship Monarch of the Sea, and many tourists had a full view of the mutilated body of the young whale as its blood trailed into the water.
The killing of the whale was unreported, demonstrating that the fishermen slaughtering pilot whales operate without regulations.
"Now we know why the St. Lucian authorities can deny whaling," said Captain Paul Watson. "They have chosen to ignore the issue and are willfully ignorant of the slaughter. The whale was cut up within view of the government office buildings in Castries."
St. Lucia votes with Japan against all whale conservation measures brought before the International Whaling Commission (IWC).
Sea Shepherd has seen the evidence in St. Lucia of Japanese influence. Japan built a fishery complex, supplied millions of dollars worth of development grants, and supplied fiberglass boats to the fishermen in return for St. Lucia's vote at the IWC.
Many representatives of St. Lucia's strongest industry - tourism - worry about the image this Caribbean island nation is presenting to the rest of the world.
"The Eastern Caribbean is the key to protecting the whales worldwide. It was the Caribbean nations siding with Japan that defeated the Southern Pacific Whale Sanctuary in 2000, and year after year they attempt to help Japan in its attempt to overturn the worldwide moratorium on whaling," said Captain Watson.
St. Lucia One of the Windward Islands of the eastern Caribbean, St. Lucia lies just south of Martinique. It is of volcanic origin. A chain of wooded mountains runs from north to south and from them flow many streams into fertile valleys. As of 2005, the population is estimated at 166,312.
St. Lucia is a parliamentary democracy within the Commonwealth of Nations. Queen Elizabeth II is head of state and is represented on the island by a governor general. Control of the government rests with the prime minister and the cabinet.
St. Vincent & The Grenadines St. Vincent, chief island of the chain, is 18 miles (29 km) long and 11 miles (18 km) wide and is located 100 miles (161 km) west of Barbados. The island is mountainous and well forested. St. Vincent is dominated by the volcano Mount Soufrière, which rises to 4,048 ft (1,234 m). As of 2005, the population estimate is 117,534.
The main islands in the Grenadines are Bequia, Balliceau, Canouan, Mayreau, Mustique, Isle D'Quatre, Petit Saint Vincent, and Union Island.
St. Vincent and the Grenadines is a parliamentary democracy within the Commonwealth of Nations. Queen Elizabeth II is head of state and is represented on the island by a governor general, an office with mostly ceremonial functions. Control of the government rests with the prime minister and the cabinet.