The International Whaling Commission (IWC) held its fourth plenary meeting on Oct. 27 and adopted a resolution that aims to delay Japan’s whaling activities. The resolution was proposed by anti-whaling countries, Australia and New Zealand, and approved by a majority vote.
The new resolution starkly demonstrates international disapproval of scientific research whaling. Although it is not legally binding, its adoption may create further problems for Japan’s future research whaling.
Japan argued against the resolution, stating that it runs counter to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling, which allows whaling for the purpose of scientific research.
Up until now, countries have been allowed to make decisions on whether or not to engage in scientific research whaling based on an assessment by the IWC Scientific Committee. The new resolution will require whaling countries to undergo an assessment by the IWC in addition to the committee before conducting whaling activities.