IWC: NETHERLANDS PUSHING WHALE HUNT AT AUSTRALIA IWC MEETING (fwd)

From: Mike Williamson (pita@www1.wheelock.edu)
Date: Thu Jun 29 2000 - 08:56:27 EDT


Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2000 21:57:20 -0700
From: Andrew Christie <Andrew@seashepherd.org>
Reply-To: seashepherd <seashepherd@lists.estreet.com>
To: seashepherd <seashepherd@lists.estreet.com>
Subject: NETHERLANDS PUSHING WHALE HUNT AT AUSTRALIA IWC MEETING

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 28, 2000
 NETHERLANDS BETRAYING THE WHALES
Dutch IWC delegation pushing for worldwide whale hunt at Australia meeting

The head of the Netherlands delegation to the annual meeting of the
International Whaling Commission in Adelaide, Australia, is spearheading the
efforts to resume commercial whale hunting.

Commissioner Fer von der Assen, chair of the IWC Working Group on the
Revised Management Scheme, has drafted a proposed amendment change to the
Schedule of the IWC that would implement the RMS - the protocol to pave the
way back to worldwide whaling. The working group will conclude its
deliberations on Thursday.

"I doubt that the people of the Netherlands are aware of their
Commissioner's actions, or would approve," said Paul Watson, president of
Sea Shepherd International, speaking from the SSI flagship Ocean Warrior in
Amsterdam. "The recent brief, disastrous revival of the African ivory trade
should be a sufficient object lesson to the IWC delegates: The resumption of
commercial trade is paradise for poachers, smugglers, and black marketers.
It cannot be controlled."

Sea Shepherd International rejects the underlying assumption of the Revised
Management Scheme and the Revised Management Procedure - that whales are a
commodity existing to serve another species.

In addition, SSI rejects any attempt to implement the Revised Management
Scheme or move for its adoption in the Schedule of the Convention as an
attempt to legitimize the resumption of commercial whaling using dubious
science and largely theoretical data. The fragmentary data and vague
computer modeling of the quota formula in the Revised Management Procedure
cannot serve as a reliable basis for the RMS. In addition to its inherent
unreliability, all population data compiled through 1994 was revealed to be
useless in light of the revelation that year of the former Soviet Union's
covert policy of killing up to 30 times more whales than it had reported to
the IWC, a massive program of cheating that went on for two decades.

The RMS does not address pirate whaling, whale meat smuggling, or increasing
pollution and environmental threats to large cetaceans. It largely relies on
the whaling industry's willingness and ability to police itself - which,
based on history, is alone sufficient cause to oppose adoption of the
Revised Management Scheme.

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