Icelandic Whalers Accused of Killing Protected Whale

Blue whale

"If this were a blue whale it would be against the regulations of the worldwide whaling commision but if it's a hybrid there are no rules that have been broken".

Iceland resumed commercial whaling in 2006.

Gísli Arnór Víkingsson at the Iceland Marine Institute, said: "We heard about this odd whale straight away and an employee reports that it's in many ways similar to a hybrid which has been brought to us quite a lot recently which is unusual".

A massive whale, believed to be a blue whale, slaughtered in Iceland, is being butchered. "There are a lot of blue whales off the Iceland coast, when we see the blows and sail to it, and we realize it is a blue and then we leave it and go and look for fin whales".

Icelandic fishing magnate Kristjan Loftsson views the whale, believed to be a blue whale.

Anti-whaling group Hard to Port published photos of what many experts have identified as a blue whale being dragged into Hvalur hf processing facility on its Facebook page on Tuesday.

They claimed the animal was killed by Kristján Loftsson's whaling company, which has been allowed to slaughter fin whales by Iceland's government despite an global moratorium on whaling and the endangered status of the fin whales.

"There is nearly no possibility that an experienced observer would have misidentified it as anything else at sea".

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If confirmed, this will cause serious problems for the whalers in question, as it's illegal to deliberately kill blue whales in Iceland, and it highlights a troubling whaling practice.

The Hvalur 8 bringing in slaughtered whales.

Heart-breaking photos have emerged appearing to show that hunters in Iceland killing a rare blue whale, which are protected after they almost became extinct due to commercial whaling.

"Iceland's whaling is rogue and archaic and should command diplomatic criticism at the highest levels".

While blue whales are protected, there is no designated status for hybrid blue-fin whales because they are typically extremely rarely encountered.

Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watson, who has spent over a half a century defending whales, appealed to Icelandic authorities to stop Loftsson "from ruthlessly violating worldwide conservation law and bringing such disrepute to the nation of Iceland". "We see them in the ocean". Prior to the catastrophic commercial whaling of the 20 century it is estimated that there were in the region of a quarter of a million blue whales, but their populations crashed in the 1950s and 60s.

"Loftsson ordered his crew to butcher the whale just like it was another Fin whale, ' the anti-whaling group claimed".

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