One of the whaling boats involved in the latest hunts in Iceland has been kept in port after yet more controversy surrounding welfare breaches.
Vessels were allowed to go out hunting just a few days ago after the government in Iceland lifted its own suspension of the hunts because they broke animal welfare laws.
The vessel in question (Hvals 8) is one of two that have been operating at sea in the past week, killing 11 fin whales between them. It was deemed by observers onboard that crew took too long to fire a second grenade harpoon after the first harpoon fired did not kill the stricken whale outright. This was one of the main welfare issues that brought about the original suspension of the hunts by the government earlier in the summer, and so nothing appears to have changed.
The remaining vessel (Hvals 9) also appears to have needed two harpoons to bring about the death of another whale, and so we will continue to push hard for a suspension for this vessel too for the remainder of this hunt season.
This news comes as political momentum within Iceland against the hunts grows. Members of four parties in the country have indicated that they want the practice to stop. A Bill has now been published on the subject of banning whaling, and bringing whales under the Icelandic wildlife law that protects nature in Iceland.
Although a Bill like this might take a while to progress, it is a very positive move and, if the Icelandic public get behind it, then it will put a lot of pressure on the government to not renew hunting permits in the future.
We will continue to galvanise support from within Iceland and continue to expose the cruelty of the Icelandic hunts.