The Elsa Nature Conservancy and I have NO relationship with the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (SSCS), nor we have ever made contact with SSCS. I was very surprised and bewildered to learn that SSCS, on their website, announced that they had received information on the recent drive fishery in Futo from me. The action alert posted on SSCS’s website said: “We have received the following information from Sakae Fujiwara/Hemmi of Elsa Nature Conservancy.”

What the readers didn’t know was that the action alert was a copy of an action alert posted to CFN by another organization that ELSA works closely with.

By copying the action alert in its entirety, without mentioning the group that originally issued it, SSCS regrettably gave the impression that I had provided their organization with the information from Futo. This announcement, although later removed from SSCS’s website, is now putting my and Elsa’s work in danger. This is worsened by the fact that the announcement has been circulated to various news-groups and appears on at last one other website.

The situation of ELSA, which is a Japanese organization, is quite different from that of organizations overseas. To continue working against the drive fishery in Japan, evading the compulsory inspections from the police and getting approval from the public, we cannot be connected to SSCS in any way, due to their arrest in Taiji in 2003.

ELSA has been working on environmental and animal welfare issues for 27 years. Throughout this time, we have never interfered with other organizations’ activities or openly criticized them. We well understand that every organization implements its own policy and strategy to reach the goal of stopping the drive fishery. Our position has always been that each organization has sole responsibility for its own actions. I understand that SSCS is working with enthusiasm to stop the drive fishery in Japan, but our strategy is completely DIFFERENT from SSCS.

Working with Coalition members One Voice(France)and the Earth Island Institute (USA) and also with our colleague organizations to stop the cruel dolphin hunts in Japan, ELSA continues our peaceful and lawful strategy. I want to once again emphasize that ELSA is not connected to, or in communication with, SSCS in any way.

Sakae Fujiwara/Hemmi,
Director of Marine Mammal Project
Elsa Nature Conservancy, Japan
P.O.Box 2, Tsukuba-Gakuen Post Office
Tsukuba-shi, Ibaraki-ken, 305-8691 Japan