Japan’s attack on international whaling ban

Stephen Wiggins Studies Leave a Comment


Japan has spent more than 30 years slaughtering whales despite an international ban on commercial whaling and is now proposing measures which would effectively lift the global ban on for-profit whaling. Japan’s so-called Reform Proposal is being considered at the Brazil meeting of the International Whaling Commission, taking place at the moment. Our report, ‘Commercial Whaling: Unsustainable, Inhumane, Unnecessary‘, exposes commercial whaling and makes the case against weakening the moratorium” – Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), September 2018

EIA website linkUnsustainable, Inhumane, Unnecessary


Further Reading:

Australia could launch legal challenge to Japan’s ‘scientific’ whaling hunts,” The Guardian, 21 September 2018

Brazil meeting votes to protect world’s whale population,” BBC News, 14 September 2018

Whaling vote: Australia tells Japan it has lost argument for killings, The Guardian, 14 September 2018

Japan says it’s time to allow sustainable whaling,” BBC News, 7 September 2018

Whaling in Japan,” Whale and Dolphin Conservation

Japan killed 50 whales in Antarctic protected area, data shows,” The Guardian, 4 September 2018

The International Court of Justice ruled in 2014 that Japan should cancel all existing “scientific whaling” permits in the Southern Ocean but Japan simply issued itself a new permit for the killing of hundreds of Antarctic minke whales each year until 2027.

Petition to End Japanese Whale Hunting,” IWB, 22 September 2015

Despite the International Whaling Commission (IWC) banning commercial whaling in 1986, Japan  continued to hunt whales under the pretence of “research.”

Japan said it would abide by the 31 March 2014 ruling from the United Nations’ International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordering Japan to stop hunting whales off Antarctica.

Japan had long claimed that its programme to take minke, fin, and humpback whales in the waters surrounding Antarctica (referred to in the ruling as the Southern Ocean) was aimed at collecting “scientific data.”

The ICJ, headquartered at the Hague in the Netherlands, found that Japanese programme was not “scientific in nature” and that it could be considered “commercial whaling.”

Before the ICJ ruling, Japan was hunting a quantity which was close to 900 whales per season.

In light of the ICJ ruling, Japan suspended its annual whale hunt in 2014, but has since ‘made plans’ for the next twelve years to take a ‘quota’ of 3,996 whales (or 333 whales per year) starting in 2015.

Whale killing: DNA shows Iceland whale was rare hybrid,” BBC News, 20 July 2018


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