International Whaling Commission - Tuesday - Day 2

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Vassili Papastavrou is a whale biologist with the International Fund for Animal Welfare. In between lobbying in favour of whale conservation for IFAW he is blogging as this week’s Sky News Eyewitness

The IWC meeting always starts with an opportunity for new members to make verbal statements, laying out their position on the key issues and putting their wares on the table.

It was wonderful to hear Ecuador's representatives linking their position to that of the existing Latin American bloc of at least eight countries: all are solidly in favour of whale conservation and 'non-lethal utilisation' - IWC-speak for supporting whale watching instead of whaling.

Ecuador was followed by similar statements from the other new members, Slovenia, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece and Guatemala. On the other side, only Laos has joined to vote with Japan.

In addition several existing members that vote with Japan either haven’t paid up or haven’t turned up. So the voting situation looks better than it has been for several years. The anti-whaling countries could now push through some of their proposals.

The serious business yesterday was taken up with a review of the status of some whale populations around the world. There was a lot of discussion of the Western Pacific Gray whale, which, with only 120 animals left, is on the verge of extinction.

Four of these whales have been recently entangled and killed in fishing nets in Japan.  Many countries urged Japan to take action.

There was also a discussion about the cruelty of whaling and the refusal of Norway, Japan and Iceland to supply any data on times to death.  Delegation after delegation urged them to think again.

But it comes as no surprise that the whalers do not want the world to know how cruel their whaling is.

Comments: 4

 
Anonymous
5 years ago

Gray whales are becoming rare and it's decreasing in number. One should come forward to reserve this species instead of thinking to eat them.

 
Anonymous
6 years ago

Whaling is being outlawed in more and more countries and i believe legislations as in the case of real estate will bring the movement forward

 
Anonymous
6 years ago

ONE should do as much as possible to save the whales, not to be eaten but to be savoured in the wild.
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Anonymous
8 years ago

People concerned with the future of grey whales fought a valiant and succcessful battle to prevent Exportadora S.A. and its affiliate, Baja Salt, from siting a massive salt processing plant in grey whale spawning grounds of the coast of southern Baha Mexico.
Those who fought so valiantly may not be aware that Markos Moulitsas (DailyKos), who wants to "crash the gates" of the Democratic Party, shares a family business with the principal of Baja Salt, Carlos Alberto Delgado ZÚÑIGA. And Baja Salt is the very company that was trying to destroy the Mexican whale preserve by siting an enormous international salt processing plant there.
That's right. It's all documented in records of the Government of El Salvador that the "manager" of the hotel that Moulitsas calls his "family businesses," the Suites Jaltepeque Hotel of San Salvador, El Salavador, is Carlos Alberto Delgado ZÚÑIGA. In Salvadoran Government documents, this same person is listed as "owner" of Baja Salt, a notorious polluter of grey whale and sea turtle spawning grounds in Baja Mexico.
But don't just take my word for it. Read the article and follow the links for yourselves to confirm these astounding facts.
I know Moulitsas ZÚÑIGA says he wants to "crash the gates" of the Democratic Party and change it fundamentally. But, I've just learned from his speech at the Commonwealth Club that he spent six months interviewing with the US CIA in 2001. I think his motives are VERY suspect!
The Democratic Party ought not be taken over by people connected to notorious polluters of grey whale spawning grounds. I can't see how that would help the grey whales, the sea turtles, or anybody else!

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