Japanese whaling ships prepare first commercial hunt in more than 30 years
Japanese whaling ships were preparing on Sunday to set to sea, with crews gathering on decks in a northern port as Japan undertakes its first commercial whaling hunt in more than 30 years on Monday.
Japan announced last year it was leaving the International Whaling Commission (IWC) and would resume commercial whaling on July 1, sparking global condemnation and fears for the world’s whales.
Japan has long maintained that eating whale is an important part of its culture and that most species are not endangered.
A global whaling moratorium was imposed in 1986, but Japan then began what it called scientific research whaling in the North Pacific and Antarctic.
Critics said the it was simply commercial whaling in disguise. "I used to eat whale when I was young, but it's been too expensive recently,” said Sachiko Sakai, 66, a taxi driver waiting for fares in Kushiro, a port town on the northernmost main island of Hokkaido.
"Maybe now that commercial whaling is going to restart, it’ll be cheaper and we can get our hands on it more easily.”
The hunt will be confined to Japan’s exclusive economic zone.
The five small whaling ships due to set off early Monday morning were moored at a wharf in a quiet corner of Kushiro port.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whose district includes the old whaling centre of Shimonoseki, has long campaigned to restart commercial whaling, but the industry’s future is far from clear.
Only about 300 people around Japan are directly connected to whaling, and the annual supply of whale – about 5,000 tonnes – amounts to roughly 40-50 grams per Japanese person a year.
译文来源：三泰虎 http://www.santaihu.com/47935.html 译者：Jessica.Wu
Anonymous3 hours ago
Just curious what happens when there aren't anymore whales?
I guess there dietary requirements will change
Ed15 hours ago
Japan never stopped commercial whaling. They did however claim it was for scientific research.
Adam3 hours ago
Whales do not need to be eaten. Boycott Japan.
Grey Lady6 hours ago
It would be karma if these whaling ships hit left over WWII underwater mines.
Cobra13 hours ago
"Japan has long maintained that eating whale is an important part of its culture." Well, human sacrifice was an "important part of it's culture" for other people in the world, but they quit doing it
Tension Wire12 hours ago
So unnecessary and wrong
MAGAMAN4 hours ago
Seriously - The Japanese have not ever stopped. They hunt under the guise of science and that there is the truth of the matter !
Harry3 hours ago
How would you like it if the whales had their own hunt and decided to only take a few hundred or few thousand humans every year because it is "sustainable"?
Clayton Y3 hours ago
Don't kill whales or dolphins, please.
Lee4 hours ago
They have never stopped poaching whales....
Hebrew3 hours ago
i know that some posters will cite to the japanese "culture" of eating whales. but just because you happen to have been doing something vile for a very long time doesn't make it justified.
LKNANML4 hours ago
I own a boat. Anyone have a torpedo or two and some time?
Scottinsd114 hours ago
Time for another season of Whale Wars
Trevor3 hours ago
It's their waters, theyll do whatever they want in them. I highly doubt that 5 boats in a very small section of the ocean will cause a catastrophic impact on the whales. quit crying about whales in Japan.
Anonymous15 hours ago
Wouldn't it be a shame if these five ships just happened to be hit by torpedos?
PF4 hours ago
Each Whale is worth a huge amount of money.
Sunny6 hours ago
Corporate Japan must put a stop to the killing of whales
Ray3 hours ago
This has to stop--period
daniel s3 hours ago
so you have decimated Tuna stocks, you have decimated massive fish populations now you want to decimate whale stocks.
Bononista4 hours ago
EVERYTHING THAT IS MADE FROM WHALE CAN BE AND IS AVAIBLE SYNTHETICALLY AND HAS BEEN FOR OVER 60 YEARS. Why are they doing this? WHY ARE THEY BEING ALLOWED TO DO THIS????/
Liberals are true Americans15 hours ago
Martin13 hours ago
Good for Japan! Japa. Has never been at the top of my travel list but it's moved to near the top now. Can't wait to try traditional whale and dolphin dishes.
Joe3 hours ago
"The hunt will be confined to Japan’s exclusive economic zone" .... and there's nothing that the bleeding hearts nor the IWC can do about it.
Matt Grous3 hours ago
Theres nothing wrong with what there doing
Tim5 hours ago
Matt Grous3 hours ago
I'd love to try some whale meat
THOR2BE3 hours ago
They know that Trump could care less, Obama being the world leader that he was would not let this happen.
George1 hour ago
In other news, the U.S. Navy prepares for first hunt of Japanese ships in 74 years.
Hannibal3 hours ago
Between the Chinese that eat anything that moves and the Japanese whaling nothing will be left for the future generation.
james3 hours ago
How they can be so advanced scientifically and yet so primitive.