International Court of Justice declares Japan’s Antarctic whaling illegal and orders it to stop immediately

WDC warmly welcomes the decision of the International Court in the Hague in its comprehensive judgment on Japan’s Antarctic Whaling.

This decision will bring to an end the annual Antarctic slaughter under the guise of ‘scientific whaling.’

Between 2002 and 2011, the Japanese fleet killed 7,982 minke whales in the Antarctic.

In the 2012-2013 Antarctic season Japan killed 103 minke whales. 

More information can be found at:  http://uk.whales.org/issues/whaling-in-japan

“For too long Japan has unnecessarily killed thousands of whales, without sanction.  The ICJ has found that Japan’s whaling is not simply un-justified, but that it has failed to consider if non-lethal means could have been used.  It’s conclusion is that its Antarctic whaling is illegal.”

WDC Chief Executive Chris Butler Stroud, went on to say, “The Court has ruled that Japan’s whaling is not only unscientific according to the IWC rules, but is a contravention of the moratorium on commercial whaling.

This is an historic day in the protection of whales and may be the turning point in ending commercial whaling once and for all”

“Our thanks go out to Australia and New Zealand for bringing this case and all those who have supported this initiative. ”

In a damning ruling the Court has found,

Japan’s whaling in Antarctica does not comply with the IWC’s definition of scientific permit whaling

“…that the special permits granted by Japan in connection with  JARPA II do not fall within the provisions of Article VIII, paragraph 1, of the International  Convention for the Regulation of Whaling;”

That Japan is in contravention with the moratorium on commercial whaling

“…that Japan, by granting special permits to kill, take and treat fin,  humpback and Antarctic minke whales in pursuance of JARPA II, has not acted in conformity  with its obligations under paragraph 10 (e) of the Schedule to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling;”

That Japan is in contravention with the moratorium on factory ship whaling

“…finds, by twelve votes to four, that Japan has not acted in conformity with its obligations under paragraph 10 (d) of the Schedule to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling in relation to the killing, taking and treating of fin whales in pursuance of JARPA II;”

That Japan is in contravention of the Southern Ocean Sanctuary

“… that Japan has not acted in conformity with its obligations under  paragraph 7 (b) of the Schedule to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling  in relation to the killing, taking and treating of fin whales in the “Southern Ocean Sanctuary” in  pursuance of JARPA II;”

The Court orders Japan to cease all Antarctic whaling and not to issue any more permits to whale in Antarctica

 “… that Japan shall revoke any extant authorization, permit or licence granted in relation to JARPA II, and refrain from granting any further permits in  pursuance of that programme.” 

Japan has agreed to abide by the decision of the Court

WDC commentary and analysis of the decision can be found here http://uk.whales.org/blog/chrisbutler-stroud/2014/03/japans-antarctic-whaling-found-to-be-in-contravention-of-iwc-and

Contact: Chris Butler-Stroud (CEO) 01249 449 500 or press office 01249 449 521/07447 609424

Germany: Astrid Fuchs +49 176 9924 4144

Notes to Editors:

1.WDC, Whale and Dolphin Conservation, is the leading global charity dedicated to the conservation and protection of whales and dolphins. We defend these remarkable creatures against the many threats they face through campaigns, lobbying, advising governments, conservation projects, field research and rescue.

The full statement of the Court is to be found here  http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/148/18162.pdf

WDC commentary can be found here http://uk.whales.org/blog/chrisbutler-stroud/2014/03/japans-antarctic-whaling-found-to-be-in-contravention-of-iwc-and

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