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Australia to kill sharks on sight
28 September 2012 09:51 AM
A rise in the number of shark attacks has prompted Australia to introduce a controversial "kill on sight" policy, designed to protect beachgoers from Great Whites that get too close.
Five fatal attacks in the last ten month off the West Australian coast caused panic for locals and tourists. In response, the government this week announced a $6.85 million package of "shark mitigation" measures that include the tracking and killing of sharks who venture near swimmers.
Colin Barnet, Premier of Western Australia, said: "We will always put the lives and safety of beachgoers ahead of the shark...This is, after all, a fish - let's keep it in perspective."
Conservation groups have accused the government of fear-mongering - arguing that not all sharks are killers.
Others might be skeptical of the decision to spend $150,000 on community awareness programs that include a smartphone application.