It’s no ‘fluke’ that Japanese whaling was banned: it’s just not science

Wednesday, 1 April, 2015

(Sydney, 30 March) Tomorrow marks 12 months since the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordered Japan to stop killing whales in the Antarctic, saying its whaling programme was not research, just commercial slaughter which violated an International Whaling Commission global moratorium.

However, shortly after the ICJ decision, Japan announced its intention to return to the Southern Ocean, then submitted a new whaling plan to the IWC at the end of last year.  The first report from the IWC’s review process is due by 9 April. 


“In the three decades since the global whaling moratorium was introduced, the IWC has failed to resolve the issue of Japan's scientific whaling; it would be foolish to rely solely on that process now,” said Matt Collis, IFAW’s Marine Campaigns Manager. 


“IFAW urges the Australian Government to increase diplomatic pressure on Japan not to resume whaling. The Prime Minister of New Zealand John Key understood this when he raised it last week with his Japanese counterpart and we need the Australian Government to make similar high level representations.


“Japan plans to kill 4000 whales over the next 12 years for products nobody needs and science nobody respects,” he said.


“The massive success last year of a win in the ICJ provides the greatest opportunity in a generation to end Antarctic whaling. Australians expect our Government not to squander it,” Mr Collis said.

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Brian Sharp, Emergency Relief Officer, Stranding Coordinator
Manager, Marine Mammal Rescue and Research
Dr. Maria (Masha) N. Vorontsova, Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Matt Collis, Director, International Policy
Director, International Policy
Patrick Ramage, Program Director, Whales
Program Director, Marine Conservation