Hayden Panettiere has voiced her support for President Obama’s stance on Iceland’s whaling.
In 2006, Iceland resumed its whaling operations despite a moratorium on commercial whaling established by the International Whaling Commission in 1986. While many have criticized Obama for backing down on his campaign promises to protect whales and supporting efforts to lift the ban on commercial whaling, the president is now condemning Iceland’s disregard for the moratorium. According to the Associated Press, Obama’s administration “will cite Iceland under a domestic law that allows the president to act against foreign nationals or countries who flout international animal conservation rules.” The United States has now threatened political and trade sanctions against Iceland.
Hayden Panettiere, a vegetarian and spokesperson for The Whaleman Foundation‘s Save The Whales Again campaign, has said “We commend President Obama and his administration for taking this strong action against Iceland and its barbaric whaling industry…and we urge the President to take similar action against Japan and Norway as well!” Japan and Norway continue to whale, with Japan claiming that their hunt is for research purposes, however the Obama administration has said they are especially concerned with Iceland’s hunt of endangered fin whales and exporting of whale meat to pro-whaling countries.
Hayden has also gone to Japan in defense of dolphins. She was featured in the documentary The Cove, which brought light to the annual dolphin slaughter in Taiji. In 2007, she joined activists from Surfers for Cetaceans in a peaceful protest in the waters of the cove, before they were chased out by the dolphin hunters in boats. On her decision to stand up for whales and dolphins, the actress has said “because I am in the public eye I feel the need to be a voice of worthy and important causes whose efforts impact the lives of every person on Earth. These animals are being brutally and unnecessarily slaughtered – and who are we to say to they have less of a right to exist than we do.”