On March 17, 2008 Paul Watson claimed that he was shot by the Japanese crew or coast guard personnel during the campaign. The incident is heavily documented during the show in the final episode, and the first six episodes are covered as a buildup to what is portrayed as the major incident during the campaign. The footage in Whale Wars shows Watson standing on the deck of the Steve Irwin while Sea Shepherd crew throws glass bottles filled with butyric acid at the Nisshin Maru whaling vessel. The Japanese respond by throwing flashbang devices. Watson is then shown reaching inside his jacket and bullet-proof vest and remarking "I've been hit. " Back inside the bridge of the Steve Irwin, a metal fragment is found inside the vest. The Institute of Cetacean Research has dismissed Sea Shepherd's statements as lies. The Institute and Coast Guard said that they used seven flashbang devices designed to flash and make noise in the air without causing harm. Neither of the two conflicting accounts have been independently verified. The Australian Foreign Affairs Department had condemned "actions by crew members of any vessel that cause injury". Two media releases were made on the same day from the office. One said that the Australian Embassy in Tokyo had been informed by the Japanese that the whalers had "fired warning shots" while the updated version used the phrase "'warning balls' – also known as 'flashbangs' – had been fired", and that no gunshots had occurred.