Whaling Crew Sues Over Video Recordings

Two crew members on a whaling ship operated by Iceland’s only active whaling company have sued the Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority (MAST) and the Directorate of Fisheries, RÚV reports. They assert that their right to privacy was violated by a video recording made on the ship.

The recordings were made as part of authorities’ surveillance of whaling last year, which was increased in 2022 in line with new regulations. The two crew members can be identified in the video and believe this violated their right to privacy.

A newly-release report made with the help of such surveillance indicates that whaling is not in line with animal welfare legislation in Iceland. Minister of Food, Agriculture, and Fisheries Svandís Svavarsdóttir called the report “shocking” and said it called for a re-evaluation of the practice in Iceland.

Only one company currently practices whaling in Iceland, Hvalur hf., and their licence expires after the upcoming whaling season. Svandís has previously indicated that the government will not issue further whaling licence after this year.