The Netherlands to investigate Sea Shepard – Japan whaler incident

Dutch transport ministry inspectors are to investigate a collision between a Japanese whaler and a ship owned by the Sea Shepherd organisation which sails under the Dutch flag.

Japan has requested a formal investigation of the incident, which took place south of New Zealand on February 2. Japan has accused the ship – the Bob Barker – of engaging in ‘extremely dangerous sabotage’ and deliberately ramming the Japanese boat.

The Sea Shepherd activists, however, claim they were attacked by Japanese ships without any provocation.

In 2010, a Sea Shepherd speed boat was sunk after a run-in with Japanese whalers. The organisation claims Japan uses ‘scientific research’ as an excuse to carry on hunting whales for food.

Australia has also begun an investigation into the most recent incident.

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