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Wednesday, September 9, 1998 Published at 22:56 GMT 23:56 UK


World: Europe

Free Willy to be set free


The killer whale made famous by the Hollywood film, 'Free Willy' is being transported from an aquarium in Oregon back to his home waters near Iceland after nearly twenty years in captivity.

Hundreds of his fans, particularly children, have visited him in recent days to say goodbye.

The whale, named Keiko -- who weighs five tons -- is being transported in a huge tank aboard an American Air Force transport plane.

He will then be put in a sheltered bay surrounded by a large steel barrier where it is hoped he will start communicating with other whales and eventually join them.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service



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