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Japan will not hunt humpack whales this year

The whaling fleet is scheduled to put to sea in a matter of days and has set a target
of 850 minke whales and 50 fin whales, according to Shigeki Takaya, a spokesman for
the Ministry of Agriculture’s Far Seas Fisheries Division.

Last year, Tokyo announced that it would also take 50 humpbacks for the first time
since the sixties, provoking outrage from anti-whaling nations. That plan was dropped
and plans to hunt the species this year have again been cancelled.

“We received a lot of pressure from around the world, but particularly Australia
and New Zealand, so we will not be catching humpbacks as part of the research
programme,” said Mr. Takaya.

Japan exploits a loophole in the rules of the International Whaling Commission
that permits “lethal research.” Critics say Tokyo’s programme is little more than
disguised commercial whaling as the meat ends up in supermarkets and restaurants in

Mr. Takuya would not reveal the exact date when the whaling fleet will put to sea
out of concerns for the safety of their crews.

The radical environmental group Sea Shepherd disrupted last year’s hunt and has
been widely criticised for threatening the safety of the whalers. On one occasion,
environmentalists hurled packages of rancid butter onto the deck of the Nisshin
Maru; the Japanese retaliated with flash grenades.

This year, Sea Shepherd has unveiled a new weapon the war against the whalers,
with Hollywood mermaid Daryl Hannah – star of the 1984 film “Splash” – scheduled
to be aboard the group’s flagship, the MV Steve Irwin.


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No Responses to “Japan will not hunt humpack whales this year”

  1. Mark Says:

    Thanks for raising awareness of this very important issue. There is absolutely no justifacation for the senseless slaughter of any Whale, and the sooner this barbaric practice is stopped the better.

    Marks last blog post..QE2 retires from service after 40 years.

  2. Linda Says:

    Hi Mark … You are correct! There is no reason to kill whales. However, the fleet left yesterday to start their research! Ha!

  3. Maureen Says:

    It’s rediculous- hopefully is will be permanently banned. I also hope to see the infamous Seal Hunt banned soon. I’ve supported efforts against Canada’s Seal Hunt every year- it’s just disgusting and simply not needed.

  4. Linda Says:

    Hi Maureen … I agree! It does not look like it. The war of words are hot and heavy between the 3 countries and unless Japan changes it “Programme” then this will be a yearly fight.

  5. wilson Says:

    Way to go, Japan. At least you’ll help to save some poor whales this year. And, it would be even better, if you can permanently stop the whale hunting, isn’t it, Linda? 🙂

    wilsons last blog post..You Are Consuming More Protein Than You Need!

  6. Linda Says:

    Hi Wilson … I would love for Japan to stop whaling altogether but they are a determined bunch.

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