Japan’s Institute for Cetacean Research (ICR) Shames Themselves in Defiance of World Court Ruling

THE AMAZON PINK DOLPHIN’S VOICE

SELVA-Vida Sin Fronteras:21/04/2014

Japan’s Institute for Cetacean Research (ICR) Shames Themselves in Defiance of World Court Ruling

The ICR Today Filed Court Briefs Stating They Intend to Return to Antarctica to Hunt Whales in 2015-2016; Will Seek to Enjoin Other Sea Shepherd Entities from Obstructing Their Operations

news-140411-1-090206_crew_aboard_the_Yushin_Maru_No_3,_fire_a_shotgun_to_kill_a_minke_whale-270w

In this 2009 File photo, crew aboard the Yushin Maru No 3 are seen firing a shotgun to kill a minke whaleIn a blatant show of defiance of the recent landmark ruling in The Hague by the International Court of Justice (ICJ), Japan’s Institute of Cetacean Research (ICR) has today filed court briefs stating they intend to return to hunt whales in the Southern Ocean for the 2015-2016 season with a newly designed “research” program and will seek a permanent injunction against Sea Shepherd USA — despite the fact the USA entity is no longer operating in the Southern Ocean — and will also seek to enjoin other Sea Shepherd entities.

The case of Australia vs. Japan was heard by the ICJ in July of last year to decide whether Japan was in breach of its international obligations in implementing their JARPA II “research” program in the Southern Ocean, and to demand that Japan cease implementation of JARPA II and revoke any related permits until Japan can make assurances that their operations conform with international law.

In a vote of 12 to 4 handed down on March 31st, the ICJ ruled that Japan’s whaling program JARPA II was not conducted for the purposes of scientific research as defined under International Whaling Commission regulations. It ordered that Japan revoke the scientific permits given under JARPA II and refrain from granting any further permits under that program. Today, however, the ICR filed briefs in the U.S. District Court in Seattle clearly stating their intent to continue to hunt whales in defiance of this ruling.

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Founder Captain Paul Watson had this to say in response to today’s filing: “When the ICJ verdict was issued, I knew that although it was a great victory that vindicated our opposition to illegal whaling in the Southern Ocean, I could see the potential for the ICR to re-write their program and to return. My prediction was they would return for the 2015-2016 season. It seems that this is exactly what they intend to do,” he said. “The statement that Japan issued that they would comply with the ICJ ruling was I believe insincere. Japan has a history of duplicity with regard to whaling. I fully expect that Sea Shepherd Global will be prepared to return to the Southern Ocean in December 2015 to once again defend the integrity of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary,“ Captain Watson added.

Upon learning of ICR’s plans, Sea Shepherd USA’s Director of Intelligence and Investigations Scott West stated: “The Japanese clearly intend to violate the intent, if not the letter, of the World Court’s judgment. They are making a mockery of the International Court of Justice and come before the US Courts with very unclean hands. They are the first to cry foul when someone dares to challenge their lies, yet they expect the world to respect the court’s decisions that are in their favor. They are poachers and operate without integrity.”

Clearly, the ICR is unsettled not only by the favorable ICJ ruling but also by Commissioner Peter Shaw’s recent recommendation to the Ninth Circuit Court that Sea Shepherd USA not be held in contempt. In their court brief, the ICR threatened: “If the Ninth Circuit finds it was not Defendants who committed contempt, then Plaintiffs may need to add to this action the parties who did commit the contempt.” They also noted: “Plaintiffs expect additional parties they may seek to add to this action would include foreign parties.” However, how they intend to bring foreign entities before a U.S. court has yet to be seen.

A status conference will take place at 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 16 in the United States District Court, Western District of Washington, 700 Stewart Street, Seattle, Wash. 98101 to set the trial date for a permanent injunction case brought against Sea Shepherd USA from obstructing illegal whaling operations in the Southern Ocean. The meeting is open to the public.

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In this 2009 File photo, the factory ship Nisshin Maru hauls a minke whale up its slipway

Source: Sea Shepherd

Japan prepares for reduced Pacific Ocean whale hunt

whale ship by John via Flickr

Japan is to launch a reduced whale hunt next week after an International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruling prohibited the country from whaling off Antarctica.

Japanese officials said that they aimed to catch around 210 whales – around half their current catch – in the Pacific Ocean.

The move is believed to anger environmentalists across the world, after the ruling by the court said that Japan’s whaling programme is for commercial gain, and not for scientific purposes as officials had argued.

Japan’s fisheries minister Yoshimasa Hayashi said, “Our basic policy lies with [continued] research whaling. Research whaling is a means to seek a way out of the current situation of moratorium by collecting scientific data. So, we aim to resume commercial whaling at the earliest possible date, by conducting research whaling.”

The case was brought before the ICJ by Australia in May 2010, and the court ruled in March that Japan should review its whaling policies, stating that officials had failed to explain why it needed to kill so many whales in its research exercises.

International judges produced a 12 against four majority for the ban in the Antarctic in March, with presiding judge Peter Tomka commenting that “the evidence does not establish that the programme’s design and implementation are reasonable in relation to achieving its stated objectives”.

At the time, Japan’s foreign affairs ministry’s spokesman Noriyuki Shikata said the Japanese government “regrets and is deeply disappointed by the decision”.

The country has received international condemnation over its disregard for marine life in recent years. In January, the US ambassador to Japan said she was “deeply concerned” over the drive to kill dolphins, which takes place every year in a cove in Taiji, south-eastern Japan.

Source: Blue & Green

 

Editorial: SELVA-Vida Sin Fronteras

Selvavidasinfronteras.wordpress.com

Editorial Committee

David Dunham

Arno Ambrosius

Gustavo López Ospina

Mariana Almeida

Pieter Jan Brouwer

Assistant: Emilia Romero

SELVA Vida Sin Fronteras acknowledges Kevin Schafer’s important contribution towards protecting the highly endangered Amazon pink fresh water dolphin. Title photographs of our “The Amazon Pink Dolphin’s Voice” were taken by Mr. Schafer. 

 

 

~ by FSVSF Admin on 21 April, 2014.

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