Japan 'mulling IWC withdrawal' to resume commercial whaling

22 December, 2018, 13:40 | Author: Kristi Owen
  • Crew members measure a minke whale caught during research whaling

Citing unnamed government sources, local news agency Kyodo said a formal decision to withdraw from the IWC would come by the end of the year.

Following an IWC moratorium on commercial whaling in 1982, Japan claimed to have stopped commercial whaling.

"There are fishermen in Japan making their living by whaling and we can't simply end it", an anonymous government official told Kyodo.

At September's IWC meeting in Florianópolis, Brazil, anti-whaling nations led by Australia, the European Union and the USA voted down a Japanese proposal to change the decision-making process - a move that would have made it easier for Japan to secure enough votes to end the commercial whaling ban.

Japan has hunted whales in the Southern Ocean since 1987 for what it calls "scientific research" purposes, but this has been criticized internationally as a cover for commercial purposes.

The country can not continue to hunt whales for research once they withdraw from the IWC.

"The International Whaling Commission is the body that is recognised under international law as being responsible for the conservation and management of whales", she said.

The government is planning the departure as there is no prospect of resumption as things stand now, due to the moratorium on commercial whaling adopted by the IWC.

Two countries have withdrawn from the global commission.

Japan needs to notify the IWC by January 1 if it wished to leave.

"If commercial whaling based on science is completely denied, and if there's no possibility for the different positions and views to coexist with mutual understanding and respect, then Japan will be pressed to undertake a fundamental reassessment of its position", the minister said.

Currently, four countries - Iceland, Norway, Canada and Indonesia - conduct commercial whaling of 13 species covered by the IWC moratorium, including blue whales.

But Masayuki Komatsu, a former fisheries official who represented Japan at IWC, questioned if Japan gains anything from withdrawing. Supposedly they wanted to waters, however, only in the own coast, as well as in Japan's economic zone, to go on whaling. Critics accuse Japan, however, has always been to use science as a cover for commercial whaling by the back door.

Moreover, in 2014, the United Nations' International Court of Justice ordered that Japan stop its annual hunts in the Antarctic Ocean, because these hunts were clearly not for scientific purposes but rather for dinner menus.



Ozil important for Arsenal despite north London derby omission, claims Emery
When asked directly if 30-year-old Ozil has a future at the club, he repeated: "I am thinking about the match on Saturday and not thinking about another situation".

Priyanka, Nick host grand reception in Mumbai
Later, he matched steps with the two Bollywood beauties on Dil Dhadkne Do song "Gallan Goodiyan" with Nick joining them. But all eyes were on the star's enormous diamond necklace from the Sabyasachi Heritage Jewelry collection.

US House passes sweeping overhaul to criminal justice system
An array of liberal and conservative advocacy groups rallied in support of the bill. The legislation clarifies faith-based organizations may provide training in prison.

DHS Secretary: From Now on Illegal Aliens Will Be Deported to Mexico
But some critics claim he is beholden to worldwide agreements to process credible asylum claims. USA officials said the changes will be rolled out gradually across the border.

Mattis Had Aides Distribute Copies Of Resignation Letter Around Pentagon
Mattis wrote in his resignation letter that Trump deserved a Pentagon chief "whose views are better aligned with yours". President Trump took to Twitter after meeting with Mattis and announced that Mattis would retire "with distinction".

Alec Baldwin Claims Trump Is 'Punishment' for America's Sins
This " It's a Wonderful Life " themed sketch on Saturday Night Live imagines a White House without President Donald Trump . Trump's attacks on the media, whether news or entertainment, have at times come with legal threats.

‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ Fastest Selling Nintendo Switch Game
By comparison, the PlayStation 4 sold 30 million units in the 24 months after its launch, according to Sony . The game also sold 3 million units in just 11 days in the United States , according to gamesindustry.biz.

Russia Is Building Military Barracks on Disputed Kuril Islands
If retrofitted, the Izumo-class ships will become Japan's first aircraft carriers since the end of World War II . In addition to the aircraft carriers and fighter jets, Japan will also be acquiring long range cruise missiles.

Mauricio Pochettino not ruling out Man United move
Though five English sides progressed past year , the last time four EPL teams made the Last-16 was in the 2013/14 season. Spurs tied Pochettino down to a new five-year deal earlier this year and do want to lose their world-class manager.

Mitchell Starc's epic celebration after incredible first-over wicket
Australia was then dismissed for 243 when swing bowler Mohammed Shami claimed a career-best 6-56. "You guys are the captains". The series, level at 1-1 following Australia's victory in Perth , continues at the MCG on Boxing Day.