Bad news for cetaceans: Despite a firmly worded International Court of Justice ruling from March that called for an end to Japan’s commercial whale-meat industry, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe says he has no intention to stop the killing of whales. A conditional loophole mandating that a robust scientific research program be carried out in tandem with the commercial industry had allowed the practice to thrive for the last decade, but then it was revealed that just two peer-reviewed papers had been published in the past nine years, while several thousand whales were butchered and sold.
“It is regrettable that this part of Japanese culture is not understood,” Prime Minister Abe told a parliamentary commission, referencing centuries-old religious and cultural ceremonies predicated on eating whales. Japan’s “whale week” campaign, which is all about drawing attention to foods like blubber and whale steaks, began today.
Japan PM vows efforts to resume commercial whale hunt [Yahoo]
Related: International Court Rules Against Japan’s Booming Whale-Meat Industry