Japanese Claims of Injuries are Bogus

Japanese claims that two whalers were injured on Friday, February 9 (Auckland, NZ time), during a confrontation with Sea Shepherd activists is bogus, claims Sea Shepherd campaign leader and the organization's President and Founder Captain Paul Watson.

"My crew did not injure anyone," said Captain Watson. "This is just a spin designed to get public sympathy for men who are themselves vicious and ruthless killers of whales."

The Japanese claim that two whalers were injured when six liters of butyric acid were tossed onto the flensing deck of the Nisshin Maru.

According to Japan's Fisheries Agency spokesman, Hideki Moronuki, the two Japanese crewmen sustained injuries from the attack after one was hit by an empty container of acid and the other had acid squirted in his eye.

"Nice try, but a total fabrication," said Captain Watson. "The butyric acid is contained in one-liter glass bottles, all of which broke upon contact with the flensing deck of the Nisshin Maru. These bottles are sealed and the acid released after being broke, so it is impossible to be hit by an empty bottle. Secondly, no one squirted butyric acid into anyone's eye, and even if they did, this is a simple non-toxic butter acid, basically rancid butter. It will not cause eye injury. If we had tossed marshmallows on the deck of the Nisshin Maru, I'm sure the whalers would try to claim they were injured by them"

On this same day, two Sea Shepherd crew were lost in dense fog for 8 hours after their Zodiac inflatable was damaged in a collision with the hull of the Nisshin Maru. Captain Watson organized a search grid and issued a Maritime distress alert in response to the missing crew. The Japanese factory ship Nisshin Maru responded to the distress alert and participated in the search. Captain Watson thanked the Japanese captain after the men were found and then politely informed him that Sea Shepherd would return to the business of upholding international conservation law against illegal Japanese whaling operations.

The Sea Shepherd ships had been searching for the Japanese whaling fleet for five weeks. The Japanese fleet was finally tracked down and located at 0500 Hours on February 9 (Auckland, NZ time) .

Both Sea Shepherd ships, the Farley Mowat and the Robert Hunter, are pursuing the Nisshin Maru in foul weather conditions.

"We will continue to intercept illegal Japanese whaling operations," said Captain Watson.

Click here to learn more about Sea Shepherd's mission to save whales!