NZ And Australia Asked To Respect Tuvalu's Position On Whaling
Tuesday: June 7, 2005 Pacific Nius Service
The Prime Minister of Tuvalu, Maatia Toafa says Australia and New Zealand should
not pressure his government to change its decision in supporting the sustainable
hunting of whales.
Mr Toafa believes that the two countries are mistaken in their interpretation of
Tuvalu’s stance on whaling.
“The position is that we support the harvesting of marine resources, including
whales, but at a sustainable level,” Mr Toafa said.
“It is unfortunate that both Australia and New Zealand interpret that as
pro-whaling. I respect their interpretation and I ask if they could allow Tuvalu
to make its own decision without putting pressure on us.”
“I believe that sustainable harvesting of all marine resources or any other
resources for that matter that has been given by the heaven god. We need to
respect the Japanese or whoever who prefer to make use of the whales,” he said.
Tuvalu joined the International Whaling Commission last year.
Meanwhile, Australia’s environment minister, Ian Campbell is on a whirlwind tour
of the South Pacific to gather support for an extension of the 20-year
moratorium on commercial whaling.
Australia needs the support of a majority of International Whaling Commission (IWC)
nations at its annual meeting in South Korea later this month to withstand the
Describing his trip as a “life and death mission for whales,” Senator Campbell
said only a handful of votes would decide whether a 20-year moratorium on
commercial whale hunting was lifted…. PNS