Relevant court precedent exists between Australia and Japan in relation to whaling

12 January 2010

View the interview on YouTube - Interview with The Dean, Professor Gillian Triggs on Sky News Australia on the Aby Gil Collision

The Dean, Professor Gillian Triggs says the southern blue fin tuna dispute provides a relevant court precedent between Australia and Japan in relation to whaling activities in the Southern Ocean.

In an interview with Sky News, Professor Triggs asserts however that it is politically speaking,extremely sensitive to bring a friend, an ally, and a trading partner before an international tribunal on this sort of issue.

"I think it's fair to say to the Japanese, were there to be a ruling against them, they would very likely abide by it, when you have a major international tribunal ruling.

"For example, the southern blue fin tuna dispute which we had with the Japanese.

"The Japanese did agree to some form of arbitration under the convention that regulated southern blue fin tuna, and they were prepared to abide by the rule of, in that case, the International Tribunal of the Law of the Sea, but it's getting that final determination that's going to prove to be rather difficult in practice."

Professor Triggs also argues that New Zealand is involved.

"Each country would be able to bring the matter to the International Court of Justice or to the Law of the Sea Tribunal.

"It's perhaps worth noting that the ship which has been cut in two (The Sea Shepherd's Ady Gil) effectively is registered with New Zealand, not Australia."

View the entire transcript - Sky News

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