U.N. orders Japan to halt whaling in the Antarctic

By Michelle Kapusta,

Japan can no longer continue its annual whale hunt in the Antarctic after the International Court of Justice ruled that it was unscientific.

According to The Japan Times, on Monday, the court ordered that the country end its annual Antarctic whale hunt, ruling that the program was commercial activity disguised as science.

“Japan shall revoke any extant authorization, permit or license granted in relation to JARPA II, and refrain from granting any further permits in pursuance of that program," the court said, referring to the research program.

Japanese whalers maintained that the hunts were purely scientific, but admitted that some of the slaughtered meat ended up on dinner plates.

CNN noted that each year, environmental groups such as the Sea Shepherd, made popular on the TV show Whale Wars, pursue the Japanese hunters in an attempt to disrupt their whaling. The confrontations have led to collisions of the ships in the Southern Ocean and some activists to be detained.

The ICJ’s ruling is binding on Japan and cannot be appealed following a case bought by Australia in 2010.

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