Whale kill photos misleading, Japanese say
Posted 4 hours 45 minutes ago
Updated 4 hours 37 minutes ago
The Japanese body responsible for the annual whale kill in the Southern Ocean says the Australian media is using emotional propaganda to mislead the public.
A photo released by the Federal Government this morning showed a harpooned adult female minke whale and a smaller calf being hauled into a whaling ship.
Environment Minister Peter Garrett said the pair were mother and calf.
But the director-general of Japan's Institute of Cetacean Research, Minoru Morimoto, says this is not true.
"The photographs taken by the Oceanic Viking and which major Australian newspapers published today shows two minke whales, but they are not a mother and her calf as claimed by the media," he said.
"Our research program requires random sampling of the Antarctic population, and therefore there will be a range of sizes
"It is necessary to conduct random sampling of the Antarctic minke population to obtain accurate statistical
Meanwhile the Federal Opposition is calling on the Government to work for a global whaling sanctuary.
The Liberal's Environment spokesman, Greg Hunt, has welcomed the release of images and video from the customs ship the Oceanic Viking but says the Government should do more to protect the animals.
"The next great step forward is the International Whaling Commission and the push for a global whale sanctuary," he said.