Australia to monitor Japanese whalers as conflict looms
SYDNEY (AFP) - Australia will send a government jet to conduct aerial surveillance of the Southern Ocean as an annual showdown brews between Japanese whalers and militant conservationists, the environment minister said on Sunday.
Greg Hunt said Canberra would dispatch an Airbus A-319 Customs and Border Protection crew to monitor exchanges between Japan's harpoon fleet and the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.
"The purpose of the Customs mission will be to record the incidents on the high seas. It will be to ensure there is a presence to make sure that there is no conflict between the parties," Hunt said.
"It will also be to ensure that there is awareness from all parties that the world is watching."