The fact that Indonesian authorities ordered the whaling ship out of Indonesian waters is a major political victory for the anti-whaling movement. The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society ship Steve Irwin will reach the whaling fleet at least a week before the Yushin Maru #2.
The answer to the question of where is the Yushin Maru #2 is that we don't quite know. What we do know for certain is that it will not be killing whales for at least two more weeks. The Greenpeace report that it is headed back to Japan can be discounted. Greenpeace was calling the office of Jakarta Animal Aid to get information. They then issued a media release saying the whaler had rudder damage and was heading back to Japan. They are certainly in error on the first count and most likely in error on the second.
Not having a ship in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary this year means that Greenpeace is scrambling to appear that they are involved in some way so as to justify the millions of dollars they have raised over the last year to oppose whaling.
The Yushin Maru #2 was seen and reported transiting the Lombok Strait heading south a few days ago which would put the vessel off the Northwest coast of Australia. If this report is accurate, the ship is indeed heading back to the fleet and the Japanese statement to this effect is accurate. The crew of the Steve Irwin will be looking out for the Yushin Maru #2 in two weeks.
"Hopefully they will give us the opportunity to chase them into the ice again," said Captain Paul Watson.