Dec 13, 2012

Don’t arrest me: Sea Shepherd boss plans Australian visit

Militant anti-whaling protester Paul Watson wants to come to Australia -- but he could be arrested and extradited to Japan or Costa Rica if he does. Will Australian authorities respond to requests and strike?

Cathy Alexander — Freelance journalist and PhD candidate in politics at the University of Melbourne

Cathy Alexander

Freelance journalist and PhD candidate in politics at the University of Melbourne

Anti-whaling crusader Paul Watson hopes to come to Australia early next year. But he may face arrest if he does — and he’s challenged the Australian Federal Police to leave him alone.

Watson is currently on a Sea Shepherd ship off New Zealand, heading to Antarctic waters to harass the Japanese whaling fleet. The protest mission has four ships, 120 crew and aerial drones to locate the whalers.

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8 thoughts on “Don’t arrest me: Sea Shepherd boss plans Australian visit

  1. Ian

    It would surprise me if Australia did not treat Paul Watson in the same way it has/would treat Julian Assange, ie disregard the rule of law, moral or ethical considerations or whatever you might call it and bow to the will of a western ally like Japan. If need be the government would change our laws to comply.

  2. zut alors

    I agree with Ian. No doubt ministerial advisers are dusting off the Assange handbook, “Problematic Pest Treatment’, as we read this.

    Watson not being arrested in Oz after the Interpol notice charged him with ‘hooliganism’ comes as no surprise. Japan failed to understand it’s a badge of honour in our country.

  3. POV 888

    Paul Watson has the balls to stand up to countries like Japan and defend the inhumane killing of mammals and other creatures who cohabitate this earth. His dedication is admirable, unlike the current governments on this issue,whose testicles have shrunk to the extent they could cough them up as hair balls!

  4. Joel

    @Ian: remember, the government opposes Assange’s cause, but not Watson’s. I suspect that that will be the driving consideration here.

  5. Bjorne Sorensen

    This article contains a factual error. It states that an Interpol Red Notice was issued “some time ago” by Japan and that Watson has visited Australia since then. That is incorrect. A Blue Notice was issued by Japan some time ago, but the Red Notice is new and Watson has not entered Australia since then.

    And I would ask – why does the article not speak of Watson’s history of violence? The man himself makes no secret of his violence that includes ramming ships, throwing acid at Japanese mariners, shining weapons-grade lasers into the eyes of Japanese sailors, facilitating the illegal boarding of foreign vessels etc. In 2010 a member of his organisation was convicted of assault for burning a Japanese mariner with an acid projectile. Surely these issues are relevant for the article?

    As for Bob Brown’s claims that Japan is violating international law and Paul Watson is somehow “upholding” it – what an absurd and factually incorrect notion. Why was this published without qualification? Surely the author could have confirmed with Don Rothwell (despite his being a vocal anti-whaling advocate and biased source)that Japan is in fact complying with all relevant international laws and that Sea Shepherd’s violence has absolutely no legal basis.

    In light of the above, perhaps a correction is warranted?

  6. Edward James

    The government is supposed to present the will of the people! Our government Federal State and Local have forgotten that! Edward James

  7. Ian

    Bjorn, I’m not sure of the precise facts regarding Watson but I will say about law and legality. These are simply man mad constructs. eg it can be made legal to render people to various countries or to hold them indefinitely without trial as in the US or to allow extinction of a species or commercial whaling to be conducted under the guise of research. It can also be made legal to lie through ones teeth in order to create doubt about climate change etc. So I treat the law with a great deal of caution.

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