Reports from Iceland have revealed that a Norwegian veterinarian who worked as a consultant to the Icelandic company responsible for killing whales, also designed a part the exploding grenade harpoons used by the company.
Egil Ole Øen, a whaling expert. had a patent on the designs for 20 years. The patent, for a mechanism that is meant to ensure the harpoon explodes on entering the whale, was registered in Norway, and effectively means that he profited each time the device was used in harpoons fired by the Icelandic whaling company (Hvalur hf.) to kill a whale since hunts resumed off Iceland in 2006.
In addition to having worked as a fishing consultant for Hvalur hf. Egil Ole has also been an advisor to the Icelandic government regarding whaling.
This is yet another strange twist in recent events in Iceland regarding whale hunts, which have been suspended after WDC and partner, Hard to Port helped alert government officials to serious issues around cruel killing methods used, and that were later criticised in an official report that declared whaling (using the very same harpoons) should cease as it breaks Iceland’s own animal welfare laws.