Tuesday, March 31, 2015   

Japanese insist on other whale hunts
(04-03 11:58)

Japan said it will cancel its annual Antarctic whaling hunt for the first time in more than a quarter century in line with a UN court ruling that the program was a commercial activity disguised as science.
A “deeply disappointed'' Tokyo earlier this week said it would honor Monday's judgemnt by the United Nations' Hague-based International Court of Justice but did not exclude the possibility of future whaling program.
Officials said the next Antarctic hunt, which would have started in late 2014, had been scrapped, just weeks after the most recent one finished.
“We have decided to cancel research whaling [in the Antarctic] for the fiscal year starting in April because of the recent ruling,'' a fisheries agency official told AFP.
But he added that “we plan to go ahead with research whaling in other areas as scheduled,’’ including the northern Pacific. Japan also has a coastal whaling program that is not covered by a commercial whaling ban.
Australia, backed by New Zealand, hauled Japan before the ICJ in 2010 in a bid to end the annual Southern Ocean hunt.
   
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