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Garrett should reject whale slaughter deal

Media Release
Rachel Siewert 27 Jan 2009

The Greens are calling on Federal Environment Minister Peter Garrett to reject a secret International Whaling Commission deal that allows Japan to kill more whales in the North Pacific Ocean, in return for killing less in the Southern Ocean.

Greens Spokesperson on Whaling, Senator Rachel Siewert said the Greens would be using the next sitting of Parliament to press the Government for more details of the secret whale slaughter deal, and press the Government to withdraw from negotiations.

"These secret negotiations seem more about the politics of appeasement rather than the protection of whales."

"The negotiations have been underway for some six months, and yet the Environment Minister Peter Garrett has not informed the public. Why not?"

"Peter Garrett needs to make a full explanation and explain what is under consideration and how far he has committed Australia to this slaughter."

"Australians are flatly against whaling. It doesn't matter whether it's off Albany, off Antarctica or in the Sea of Japan - whaling should be banned."

"The Federal government should not support this deal. Environment Minister Peter Garrett says the government opposes whaling, but if Australia supports this plan it will help Japan launch many more whaleboats."

"A whale in the North Pacific is no less important than a whale in the Southern Pacific. The Federal government should not allow whales to be cynically traded in this way. Australia must stand firm in opposing whaling."

As detailed in today's Sydney Morning Herald, the secret deal to let Japan take more whales in the North Pacific instead of the Southern Ocean is being negotiated between Australia, Japan, the United States, Sweden, Brazil and New Zealand and would result in a continuation of commercial whaling.

Media contact: Robert Simms - 0417 174 302

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