IN FOCUS

 
Published: Saturday 04 July 2015

The war of whales goes on. With the whaling season about to begin in the north Atlantic and the north Pacific, leading conservation groups recently urged US President Bill Clinton to take immediate action to protect the worlds endangered whales. The groups including Greenpeace and tW World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) are gearmig up to put up a fight against Japan and Norway. Both countries have been the targets of international criticism for persistently violating a global moratorimn on whaling.

During Clinton's tenure, global whaling has almost tripled. Since 1992, Norway has increased it self whale hunts by five times while Japan continues to hunt whales in an international whale sanctuary established in the Antarctk in 1994. The Inter-national Whaling Commission (IWC), a 43-nation body, has been strongly opposing whaling by these two nations. The conservation groups have asked Clinton to call upon Norway, as he did upon Japan last month, to demand their immediate compliance with international conservation agreements. "The international whaling ban has never been more threatened. We are truly on the mercial whaling," said Bar] Dudley, executive director Greenpeace. The groups' conc h.@@ hppn rn;epel h-v a r.-rpr whale meat trade in east Asia. DNA tests have revealed that meat from endangered whale species such as fin and Bryde's whales, are openly sold in Japanese markets.

Both Norway and Japan have been pressing the IWC to allow regulated hunting of selected stocks of whales. Recently, whalers across the world established a World Council for Whalers with its headquarters in Vancouver, Canada. The whalers are seeking to remove the minke whale from the list of threatened species at the ongoing Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species in Ziirnbabwe.

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