Whaling commission meeting in Tokyo

Published: Saturday 31 March 2007

Responding to Japan's appeal, 35 members of the International Whaling Commission (iwc) recently attended the Conference for the Normalization of the International Whaling Commission at Tokyo. Experts see the meet as a show of strength by the pro-whaling lobby ahead of the annual meeting of iwc, which is scheduled for May at Anchorage, Alaska.

As many as 37 iwc member countries, including India, boycotted the meeting.

The participant countries sought to 'normalise' the role of iwc and to extend whaling quotas. Their recommendations will soon be submitted to iwc secretariat. iwc has banned commercial whaling but allows small-scale whaling in parts of Alaska, Washington, Russia, Greenland, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Pro-whaling countries, however, do not support the ban.Sources in the Union ministry of environment say the conference will not undermine iwc. This exercise was to demonstrate Japan's numerical strength with the help of small countries.

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