Ship carrying whale meat skips Durban amid protest

2014-04-14 08:52

A ship carrying 2 000 tonnes of fin whale meat skipped the Durban port after South Africans called on government to deny it entry, Greenpeace said.

The cargo ship Alma was sailing from Iceland en route to Japan, and wanted to refuel at the halfway point of Durban, Greenpeace Africa’s executive director Michael O’Brien-Onyeka said in a statement at the weekend.

“In three days, over 21 000 South Africans joined Greenpeace in its request to the port authorities to deny entrance and service to the Alma,” he said.

“Greenpeace is calling on the South African government to add pressure to other African ports to continue to deny services to the Alma when it reaches their shores.”

He said the trade of endangered species is being met with international moral rejection.

“Whale meat – just like rhino horn – is illegal in South Africa. The shipping company underestimated South African citizens’ commitment to abolish the trade of illegal and endangered species and wildlife,” said O’Brien-Onyeka.

“Now, the vessel has left South African waters without the possibility to refuel. It is up to other port states on the route to continue to deny it access.”

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