Tuvalu Denies Japan Bought Its Vote At IWC
11 June 2006
The Pacific Island nation Tuvalu is denying Japan secured its vote at the International Whaling Commission by paying for basic infrastructure.
Japan has been accused of vote buying after IWC delegates voted narrowly in favour of its resolution calling for a resumption of commercial whaling.
The prime minister of Tuvalu says the nation favours sustainable whale management and Japan is the only country providing scientific research on the topic.
Maatia Toafa says Japan is building a deep water wharf, a power plant and other facilities in Tuvalu, but denies it has sought co-operation in return.
The New Zealand National party says New Zealand needs to ensure that its aid deals with Pacific Island nations will stop Japan buying their votes.
Meanwhile ten Greenpeace protesters have been arrested in the final hours of the International Whaling Commission talks in St Kitts and Nevis.
Four of those arrested waded ashore after leaving their ship the Arctic Sunrise, waving banners in the shape of a whale fin bearing the slogan "RIP".
Another six Greenpeace activists joined them on the beach, before all 10 were restrained with plastic cuffs by police.
The local police chief says they believe the protesters entered St Kitts and Nevis without the consent of an immigration officer.”