A polar bear has been shot dead after attacking and injuring a guard employed to protect passengers on the Hapag-Lloyd Cruises expedition vessel Bremen.
It also said the second employee shot the bear in "self-defence" and confirmed the injured man was taken by helicopter to Longyearbyen, a town on Spitsbergen island.
Authorities searched the coastline, Saturday, after a polar bear attacked and injured a polar bear guard who was leading tourists off a cruise ship on the Svalbard archipelago between mainland Norway and the North Pole. Tanya Rivero has more.
The guard was said to be responsive, not in a life-threatening condition, and was on Saturday undergoing medical treatment.
A polar bear was shot and killed after it attacked a guard guiding tourists off a cruise ship on Saturday, officials said.
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Arctic tourism, now in high season, has been on the rise in recent years.
A spokeswoman for the German operator is quoted as saying:"He was flown out, was responsive, and is now undergoing medical treatment".
The German cruise ship operator Hapag Lloyd Cruises said on its Facebook page that the objective of the landing on Svalbard was not "to serve the goal of polar bear observation, on the contrary: polar bears are only observed from aboard ships, from a safe distance". When there's only 25,000 polar bears left on the planet, every one matters. They then set up a land station and check the area again to make sure that there are no polar bears in sight. "Once such an animal approaches, the shore leave would be stopped immediately".
The death of a polar bear in the arctic is the latest incident to spark outrage and concern over wildlife tourism. All cruise ships sailing in the region are obliged to have polar bear guards aboard, according to Ms Etminan.