Sweden has reacted strongly after Icelandic whalers made their first kill following the country's decision to resume commercial whaling, local media reported on Monday.
In a press statement, the Swedish government urges Iceland not to implement its decision. In Sweden's view Iceland is breaking the international moratorium on commercial whaling imposed by the International Whaling Commission.
Sweden's environment minister Andreas Carlgren challenged Iceland to "immediately stop hunting whales." He told the newspaper Dagens Nyheter that the move amounts to a "provocation against all those countries which are working in the International Whaling Commission to restore the decimated whale population."
Carlgren said Sweden will actively work with other countries to ensure the decision to resume whaling is not implemented.
Icelandic television showed on Sunday footage of a large fin whale being towed by a whaling boat. The whale was harpooned in the north Atlantic about 300 kilometers west of Iceland, according to the report.
Fin whales are an endangered species on the International Conservation Union's red list. Despite this, Iceland has granted permission for nine whales to be killed between now and August.