Tuesday, 1 April 2014

How Japanese media see the International Court of Justice ruling on Antarctic whaling



THE HAGUE--The International Court of Justice on March 31 ordered a temporary halt to Japan's Antarctic whaling program, ruling that it is not for scientific purposes as the Japanese government had claimed.
Australia had sued Japan at the U.N.'s highest court for resolving disputes between nations in hopes of ending whaling in the icy Southern Ocean.
Reading a 12-4 decision by the court's 16-judge panel, Presiding Judge Peter Tomka said Japan's program fails to justify the large number of minke whales it says it needs to catch under its current Antarctic program--850 annually--and it doesn't catch that many anyway. It also didn't come close to catching the 50 fin and 50 humpback whales it aimed to take.
All that drew into doubt Japan's assertion that its whaling is for scientific purposes, he said.
"The court concludes that the special permits granted by Japan for the killing, taking, and treating of whales ... are not 'for purposes of scientific research'," Tomka said.
The court ordered Japan to halt any issuing of whaling permits at least until the program has been thoroughly revamped.
Japanese Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Noriyuki Shikata told reporters that the country "regrets and is deeply disappointed" by the decision.
But "as a state that respects the rule of law ... and as a responsible member of the global community, Japan will abide by the ruling of the court," he said.
Former Australian environment minister Peter Garrett, who helped launch the suit four years ago, said he felt vindicated by the decision.
"I'm absolutely over the moon, for all those people who wanted to see the charade of scientific whaling cease once and for all," Garrett told Australian Broadcasting Corp. radio. "I think (this) means without any shadow of a doubt that we won't see the taking of whales in the Southern Ocean in the name of science."
Although the decision is a major victory for Australia and environmental groups that oppose whaling on ethical grounds, it will not mean the end of whaling.
Japan has a second, smaller scientific program in the northern Pacific--which now may also be subject to challenge…
The ruling did say explicitly that killing whales for scientific purposes would be legal under international law in the context of a better-designed study.
Japan's program was supposed to determine whether commercial whaling of some species can resume without bringing them in danger of extinction.
The ruling noted among other factors that Japan had not considered a smaller program or non-lethal methods to study whale populations, and said Japan had cited only two peer-reviewed scientific papers relating to its program from 2005 to the present--a period during which it has harpooned 3,600 minke whales, a handful of fin whales, and no humpback whales at all.
The Japan Times 31 March 2014:

THE HAGUE – The U.N.’s top court on Monday ordered Japan to end its annual Antarctic whale hunt, saying in a landmark ruling that the program was a commercial activity disguised as science.
“Japan shall revoke any existant authorization, permit or license granted in relation to JARPA II (research program) and refrain from granting any further permits in pursuance to the program,” International Court of Justice Presiding Judge Peter Tomka said…

Japan Today 31 March 2014:

THE HAGUE, Netherlands —
The International Court of Justice on Monday ordered a temporary halt to Japan’s Antarctic whaling program, ruling that it is not for scientific purposes as the Japanese government had claimed.
Australia had sued Japan at the U.N.‘s highest court for resolving disputes between nations in hopes of ending whaling in the icy Southern Ocean.
Reading a 12-4 decision by the court’s 16-judge panel, Presiding Judge Peter Tomka said Japan’s program fails to justify the large number of minke whales it says it needs to catch under its current Antarctic program - 850 annually - and it doesn’t catch that many anyway. It also didn’t come close to catching the 50 fin and 50 humpback whales it aimed to take….

Nikkei Asian Review 31 March 2014:

THE HAGUE (Kyodo) -- Japan on Monday lost a court case lodged by Australia seeking to end Japanese whaling in the Antarctic Ocean, as the U.N. court ruled Japan's whale hunting is not conducted for scientific purposes and forbidding the whaling to continue.
The judgment by the International Court of Justice in The Hague is binding and final without appeal, forcing Japan to change a whaling program it claimed to be for "scientific research."
Japan has made it clear that it will comply with the judgment.
Japan has insisted that its whaling program is consistent with Article 8 of the 1946 International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling, which permits research whaling, and that selling whale meat is also permitted by the article as it requires any whales taken to be processed as far as practicable.
But a 16-judge panel at the court decided that Japan's whaling is not consistent with the international agreement, supporting Australia's position that Japan's whaling in the Antarctic Ocean should stop.
After a moratorium on commercial whaling by the International Whaling Commission came into force in 1986, Japan continued whale hunting under quotas set by the Japanese government, saying collecting scientific data was necessary for sustainable use of whale resources.
Japan wanted to resume commercial whaling suspended by the moratorium, and by conducting "scientific whaling" it has sought to provide evidence to end the moratorium….

Mainichi 1 April 2014:

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) -- The International Court of Justice on Monday ordered a temporary halt to Japan's Antarctic whaling program, ruling that it is not for scientific purposes as the Japanese had claimed.
Australia had sued Japan at the U.N.'s highest court for resolving disputes between nations in hopes of ending whaling in the icy Southern Ocean.
Reading a 12-4 decision by the court's 16-judge panel, Presiding Judge Peter Tomka of Slovakia said Japan's program failed to justify the large number of minke whales it takes under its current Antarctic program, while failing to meet much smaller targets for fin and humpback whales.
"The evidence does not establish that the program's design and implementation are reasonable in relation to achieving its stated objectives," he said.
He noted among other factors that Japan had not considered a smaller program or non-lethal methods to study whale populations, and that it cited only two peer-reviewed scientific papers relating to its program from 2005 to the present - a period in which it has harpooned 3,600 minke whales, a handful of fin whales, and no humpback whales.
The court ordered Japan to halt any issuing of whaling permits until the program has been revamped….

1 comment:

John Fraser said...

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Look and read the main stream media (MSM) and you could be forgiven for thinking that the Greens and Greenpeace had nothing to do with the Hague decision.

Then again according to the moron currently running the country the Greens are finished, the country is broke and climate change is not happening.