Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown said an international court case against Japan by the Australian Government would not stop Japanese whalers returning to the Southern Ocean next summer.
Senator Brown welcomed the announcement that Australia will prosecute Japan over whaling activities in the International Court of Justice, but questioned the timing.
"Japan's proposal for a resumption of commercial whaling will be debated at the International Whaling Commission meeting in Morocco next month.
"The Australian Government should also be acting to secure the release of Sea Shepherd Captain Pete Bethune who is facing over a decade in prison in Japan.
"Meanwhile, the captain of the Shonan Maru 2 whaling vessel, who endangered the lives of six people when he sank the Ady Gil, faces no charges."