Greenpeace Ship Scatters Japanese Whalers

Hunt for 1,000 whales disrupted in sea chase
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 14, 2008 4:04 AM CST
Humpback whales feed near the Greenpeace ship Esperanza.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – The Greenpeace pursuit of Japanese whaling ships continued yesterday after a ship operated by the environmental group earlier chased down and scattered a fleet of six Japanese whaling vessels in the waters off Antarctica. The Japanese fleet plans to hunt down 1,000 whales in what operators call a "scientific" expedition, but Greenpeace officials consider a thin cover for commercial whaling.

A ship operated by a separate group of environmentalists, the more militant Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, is also pursuing the hunting ships, which it plans to ram. But Greenpeace isn't cooperating with the other group because organizers oppose Sea Shepherd's tactics. The leader of the Greenpeace expedition said their ship is slightly faster than the Nisshin Maru, the whalers'  factory mother ship, and was less than 3 miles behind the vessel last night.