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Japanese Whalers: Sixty-year-old Bob Barker Attacks Whaling Ship Shonan Maru No. 2

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TOKYO, Japan -- Japanese whalers have accused the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society of carrying out attacks on whaling ship Shonan Maru No. 2 based from the Bob Barker, an aging 1950's-era vessel.

The text of Japan's Institute of Cetacean Research press release follows:

The Japanese research vessel Shonan Maru No. 2, which has been monitoring Sea Shepherd activities in the Antarctic was subject to attack today by the Bob Barker, a 1950-built vessel sent to the Antarctic by the antiwhaling group.

The Bob Barker attack started at about 2030JST and lasted until 2220JST. The Bob Barker deployed a zodiac boat repeated times toward the Shonan Maru No. 2. Activists onboard the zodiac boat repeatedly hurled smoke bombs and deployed ropes aiming to disable the Japanese vessel’s rudder and propeller.

The Bob Barker started moving again and the Shonan Maru No. 2 has restarted its monitoring of the antiwhaling vessel. Neither injuries to the Japanese crew nor damage to the Shonan Maru No. 2 resulted from the Bob Barker attack.

Following the 6 January collision and resulting disablement of the Ady Gil, by 8 January early morning the Bob Barker had abandoned and left adrift the fuel-leaking New Zealand watercraft in order to look out for the other Japanese whale research vessels.

The Shonan Maru No. 2 has been actively following and monitoring the Bob Barker ever since. Photographs and video of the incidents in the Antarctic can be seen at: < href="http://www.icrwhale.org/gpandsea.htm" target="_blank">http://www.icrwhale.org/gpandsea.htm

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