Japan says it will abide by court ruling on whaling

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  • 6

    Lunchbox

    So does that mean Paul Watson will have to find a real job now?

  • 0

    It"S ME

    Ruling don't affect them nor the Japanese northern hunt.

  • 4

    Aaron Cross

    Great stuff! Message for the Japanese government: Dishonesty is not the best policy..

  • 6

    hidingout

    Japan says it will abide by court ruling on whaling.

    Of course they will. Japan is a country that respects international laws, unlike some I could mention.

  • 4

    JoeBigs

    Japan says it will abide by court ruling on whaling

    Now, that is how a civilized nation acts when the ICJ makes a ruling.

    There are a few nations in this region that would never act the same way.

  • -1

    Thomas Anderson

    Now, that is how a civilized nation acts when the ICJ makes a ruling.

    A civilized nation won't exploit a loophole and make excuses to hunt whales in the first place.

  • 2

    JoeBigs

    Thomas AndersonApr. 01, 2014 - 08:07AM JST Then perhaps you should be saying that to all the right wingers in Japan that are still whining about this decision, and how they say Japan should continue whaling, no matter what the foreigners say? But of course you won't.

    Come on, you think that what folks on the right or left say will command what the Government does?

    It doesn't matter what lip service Far Right wingers or Far Left wingers say, all that matters is what the government does.

    In this case the government says....

    Japans Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Tuesday the government will keep its word and obey the court as a state that places a great importance on the international legal order.

    You may hold pure hate for Japan and it's Government, but you can't argue with the facts. The fact in this case is that Japan (the Government) has agreed to abide by the ruling.

    Now, if you have some proof that the Abe Government will go back on it's word then by all means, please post it. I am pretty sure that if you had such proof you wouldn't by here.

    Opinions and facts are sometimes polar opposites.

  • 1

    gokai_wo_maneku

    It depends on what you mean by "abide".

  • 8

    Disillusioned

    some whale species are robust enough to support a whaling industry.

    Yeah, but there is no market to sell the meat you silly old wombat!

    Those comments about Paul Watson finding a real job are naive. SS does a lot more than just harass the Japanese whalers. You should have a look t their website to see just how many environmental injustices SS is involved with.

  • 9

    Jeremy Rigby

    A win for the whales. Thankyou Kevin Rudd for taking this to the courts.

  • 10

    Shrkb8

    A lot of egg on Japan's face now. The judges ripped apart Japan's claim that their whale hunting was for the purpose of scientific study.

    Shame on Japan. Applause to the World Court. Applause to Australia and New Zealand. And hat's off to Sea Shepherd for protecting the whales from this illegal hunt.

  • 9

    FightingViking

    @JoeBigs

    You may hold pure hate for Japan and it's Government, but you can't argue with the facts. The fact in this case is that Japan (the Government) has agreed to abide by the ruling.

    I, personally, certainly do not "hate Japan" but I DO hate hypocrites... I also hate liars and there seem to be plenty of both in the government in just about EVERY country but somehow, they seem to prevail over here.

  • 8

    Patricia Yarrow

    YES! Congrats to all who held firm for this, including pro-whales posters here combating dullard trolls, and of course Australia, New Zealand, and the brave folks at SS. A great day for all and more whales can live free. Next: Taiji dolphin imprisonment and slaughter. Even more shameful. But today, YES!

  • 0

    sighclops

    What about the norther waters?

  • -4

    Tokiyo

    Shrkb8- and gloating about it achieves what?

  • 6

    marcelito

    "So does that mean Paul Watson will have to find a real job now?"

    Sure , how about all the Japan Fisheries Agency,s officials and the taxpayer money propped whaling " researchers" and " scientists " involved in this, will they?

  • 2

    Aaron Cross

    sighclopsApr. 01, 2014 - 09:22AM JST

    > What about the norther waters?

    The Northern Whaling grounds are not in internationally recognised WHALE SANCTUARY. When in the northern waters, the Japanese government is not ILLEGALLY POACHING.

  • 0

    oldman_13

    True class Japan!

  • 12

    Scrote

    A good result. Where are all those pro-whalers who insisted that Japan was in the right? The silence is deafening.

    Billions of Yen have been wasted every year on this so-called "research" and only two peer-reviewed papers have been published since 2005. Over the same period I have published 70 peer-reviewed papers using a tiny fraction of the funding wasted on the whalers. Had I only written two papers in nine years I would have been fired: will the people responsible for the "research" whaling now be fired? Of course not.

    I expect Japanese whalers will be back in the Antarctic next year under a "revised" "research" program, justified by weasel words. These people have no shame, no honour and no intention of abiding by the court ruling, whatever they may say today.

  • 1

    Heda_Madness

    It's very interesting to read the NZ Foreign Minister's comments on the decision:

    "It's not all over. The Japanese Government will consider the decision and consider whether they want to try and devise some new programme that does meet the term that the court has spelled out.

    "In that sense, any triumphalism, any attempt to denigrate Japan's position is likely to encourage them down that path."

    "It has been a practice that has continued partly because of Japanese pride.

    "And I think we should just give them some space to get past that... and having international NGOs and governments ramming this judgement in their face is not going to help this process."

    Sensible response. One that's somewhat different to on here.

  • 8

    gogogo

    Great news!

  • 3

    JeffLee

    How about Norway and Iceland?

    They don't hunt in the Antarctic.

  • -11

    MGigante

    While I'm not happy about the result of the ruling, I'm glad to see Japan following the courts ruling. It does show how a responsible member of the international community should act.

    That said, I hope they begin their revamped Antarctic program soon.

  • -10

    fxgai

    Unfortunately this ruling doesn't seem to change anything.

    As the article says the court has declared that the JARPA II study is to end, but the possibility of Japan designing an improved study is open. Of course Japan will end JARPA II as the proper nation it is, even though it may not agree with the court's decision.

    But you have to imagine that Japan will design an improved study addressing the issues these legal folks have raised, and get back to it.

    Given that there are, according to the IWC's scientific experts, around 500K minke whales in the Southern Ocean alone, I can't see any reason for whaling to be banned there, and Japan is entitled to pursue further research that would aid it's aim of having sustainable commercial whaling resumed.

  • -10

    rickyvee

    i am neither pro- or anti-whaling. all i care about is that i won't have to hear about or see paul watson, the "eco-warrior" on this site for a long time. thank you icj!

  • -8

    CH3CHO

    Here is the link to the ruling. http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/148/18136.pdf

    Some of the hilights.

    127 Based on the information before it, the Court thus finds that the JARPA II activities involving the lethal sampling of whales can broadly be characterized as "scientific research". There is no need therefore, in the context of this case, to examine generally the concept of "scientific research". Accordingly, the Court's examination of the evidence with respect to JARPA II will focus on whether the killing, taking and treating of whales in pursuance of JARPA II is for purposes of scientific research and thus may be authorized by special permits granted under Article VIII, paragraph 1, of the Convention.

    They say scientific research is different from "for the purpose of scientific resaerch."

    133 The Court notes that the Parties agree that non-lethal methods are not a feasible means to examine internal organs and stomach contents.

    179 Another factor casts doubt on whether the design of JARPA II is reasonable in relation to achieving the programme's stated objectives. The overall sample sizes selected for fin and humpback whales 50 whales of each species per year are not large enough to allow for the measurement of all the trends that the programme seeks to measure.

    ICJ says Japan should have killed a lot more whales to qualify for whaling for scientific research.

  • 8

    Raymond Chuang

    In short, that last whaling trip by the Japanese fleet a few months ago may be its final voyage. Expect the last of Japan's whaling ships to be retired and scrapped over the next few years.

  • 7

    boweevil

    Its nice know that the tired lie of whaling for scientific purposes has finally been dealt with, and whether you agree or disagree with whaling, it is a victory against the self serving deceit of a small number of individuals who do not represent the majority in Japan. JARPA III may be on the cards, but this ruling has set a precedent for honesty and transparency that has long been absent from the Japanese whaling industry.

  • -7

    Thomas Anderson

    Ironically those who agree with the court's ruling would be labelled as anti Japanese by the Japanese rightists such as Abe supporters.

  • 2

    theeastisred

    Great news. Of course we all knew it was a joke. Japanese taxpayers can truly celebrate!

  • 1

    hokkaidoguy

    ICJ says Japan should have killed a lot more whales to qualify for whaling for scientific research.

    In a nutshell, that's it. Not quite the win that the press is touting, but it is what it is.

    I'm very interested to see what the IWC is going to have to say about this decision, as it will put a lot of pressure on them to re-define and clarify the special permit category in general.

  • 2

    Michael Craig

    Plus, the Japanese don't eat much whale meat nowadays!

  • -1

    SamuraiBlue

    Next round, Japan teams up with Norway and Iceland and claims suits against any and all member nations within IWC that are stonewalling the vote to revoke the moratorium that should have taken place 20 years ago.

  • -2

    CH3CHO

    More hi-lights from the ruling. http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/148/18136.pdf

    195 First, Figure 5-4 shows that the final sample size of 850 minke whales (plus or minus 10 per cent) falls within a range derived from the individual sample sizes for various research items, but there is a lack of transparency regarding the decisions made in selecting those individual sample sizes. The Court notes that a lack of transparency in the JARPA II Research Plan and in Japan's subsequent efforts to defend the JARPA II sample size do not necessarily demonstrate that the decisions made with regard to particular research items lack scientific justification. In the context of Article VIII, however, the evidence regarding the selection of a minimum sample size should allow one to understand why that sample size is reasonable in relation to achieving the programme's objectives, when compared with other possible sample sizes that would require killing far fewer whales.

    There are fomula for setting sample sizes for certain target significance levels, but no practitioner go by the fomula only, for larger sample always yields better results.

    208 Japan asserts that the discrepancy between sample size and actual take, at least with regard to minke whales, likely means that "it will take several additional years of research to achieve the required sample sizes before the research objectives can be met".

    209 Japan's statement that the programme can achieve scientifically useful results with a longer research period or a lower level of accuracy thus raises further doubts about whether the target sample size of 850 whales is reasonable in relation to achieving the stated objectives of JARPA II.

    It seems that ICJ does not recognize the value of time. The project is delayed due to smaller catch than planned. But the delay does not make the project unscientific.

  • -1

    Disillusioned

    FXguy - Given that there are, according to the IWC's scientific experts, around 500K minke whales in the Southern Ocean alone, I can't see any reason for whaling to be banned there, and Japan is entitled to pursue further research that would aid it's aim of having sustainable commercial whaling resumed.

    Are you Japanese? Yeah, there very well may be ample stocks of certain species of whale, but it can never be viable because there is no market to sell the meat! There are already 5,000 tons of meat stored in freezers around Japan cos nobody buys it! Can you understand why it will never be viable as a commercial business? They've been pouring millions of dollars of public funds into this farce for over a decade.

  • 0

    CH3CHO

    DisillusionedApr. 01, 2014 - 11:28AM JST

    You love that double bound argument. You blame Japan for lack of large market for whale meat. But if there were a large market for whale meat, you would blame Japan for "commercial" whaling.

  • 2

    Yogizuna

    Thank you to those who stuck up for the whales and gave their time and money for the cause. As for "Japanese pride", well I am also proud that those of us who fought to end the so-called "scientific research" have prevailed in this battle for justice.

  • -1

    CH3CHO

    YogizunaApr. 01, 2014 - 11:38AM JST

    I think no one is talking about "Japanese pride" here.

  • -7

    Thomas Anderson

    You love that double bound argument. You blame Japan for lack of large market for whale meat. But if there were a large market for whale meat, you would blame Japan for "commercial" whaling.

    There's no if argument here, there's no market for whale meat, period. You could say that the Japanese people have voted with their wallets.

  • 0

    HB714

    Hahahaha!! Justice was served.. As far as JARPA III is concerned not to worried about it.. As the SS will be right there to run Interference and defend the whales against the true Eco-terrorist of the worlds oceans.. Not to mention the worlds resolve will be even greater the next time round and the Japanese image will take an even bigger blow.. One last time for all the whiners on the thread Haha!!

  • 2

    cleo

    The Northern Whaling grounds are not in internationally recognised WHALE SANCTUARY. When in the northern waters, the Japanese government is not ILLEGALLY POACHING.

    But what they're doing in the North Atlantic is exactly the same as what they were doing in the Antarctic - commercial whaling with 'Research' painted on the side of the harpoon ships. If the whaling programme in the Antarctic was wrong (and it was, pity it took years, bags of money and the deaths of thousands of whales before the bleedin' obvious was publicly admitted) then the identical (though smaller-scale) programme in the North Atlantic is equally wrong.

    The overall sample sizes selected for fin and humpback whales 50 whales of each species per year are not large enough to allow for the measurement of all the trends that the programme seeks to measure.

    ICJ says Japan should have killed a lot more whales to qualify for whaling for scientific research.

    No, what the ICJ has said that the 'sample sizes' were chosen to fit the market, not to fit any scientific research criteria. I note too your interesting use of the word qualify. Seems you understand and accept the now officially-recognised truth that the 'scientific research' was/is nothing more than a front for killing whales for the table.

  • 8

    cleo

    If Japan is going to abide by the court ruling, maybe someone should go and inform the fossils at the icr; their website is still insisting that what they're doing is 'research' and has a whining headline stating Harassment of whale research vessels is illegal and press release after press release stating the now officially debunked line that 'Japan’s research whaling in the Antarctic (JARPAII) is a perfectly legal activity'. Oops.

    Maybe they're too busy having apoplectic fits and pulling their barcodes out to have time to fix their website.

  • 5

    HM7769

    Fantastic news.

    Japan acts like a spoiled child in the sand pit when it comes to the ocean. It thinks it can rape the ocean until there's nothing left.

    Give it up Japan. Gain some respect for yourself.

  • -4

    CH3CHO

    cleoApr. 01, 2014 - 12:43PM JST

    Cleo, ICJ ruled that JARPA2 is scientific research, but that JARPA2 is not for purpose of scientific research. I would say that it is nothing but twisted logic.

  • -3

    gokai_wo_maneku

    I'm not sure why anyone would be surprised about this. Nobody in Japan actually believes this is a "research" project. It is an employment program for whalers paid for by taxes. We are not really that stupid. You pay them to whale or you pay them welfare because they become unemployed. Which would you prefer? Which is more socially constructive. And remember, it was not Japan who depleted the whale population. Remember why Perry came to open up Japan? Because US whalers needed a place to resupply. That is all. Also, Captain Ahab in Moby Dick died in the Sea of Japan. Don't forget the West contribution to depletion of whales. You have no room to criticize Japan.

  • 1

    Aaron Cross

    gokaiwomanekuApr. 01, 2014 - 01:27PM JST

    I'm not sure why anyone would be surprised about this. Nobody in Japan actually believes this is a "research" project. It is an employment program for whalers paid for by taxes. We are not really that stupid. You pay them to whale or you pay them welfare because they become unemployed. Which would you prefer? Which is more socially constructive. And remember, it was not Japan who depleted the whale population. Remember why Perry came to open up Japan? Because US whalers needed a place to resupply. That is all. Also, Captain Ahab in Moby Dick died in the Sea of Japan. Don't forget the West contribution to depletion of whales. You have no room to criticize Japan.

    Which would you prefer? Which is more socially constructive? _The one that doesn't kill these beautiful creatures.

    Don't forget the West contribution to depletion of whales _That is history

    You have no room to criticize Japan. _There is immense room to criticise Japan.

    Your politicians should face jail over this.

  • -5

    CH3CHO

    Aaron CrossApr. 01, 2014 - 01:38PM JST

    Don't forget the West contribution to depletion of whales _That is history

    It is history. So, Japan should demand compensation for the depletion of whale stock in the Northern Pacific and for the lost opportunity of whaling from the party responsible.

  • -2

    Aaron Cross

    But they are not "your whales" and to assume so shows your arrogance. They exist for their own reasons.

    And since the Japanese government has be proven to be poaching in a whale sanctuary, there should be time in jail for the offenders. Thats right, the government of Japan should be charged and sentenced for this awful behavior.

    Today, Japan has been utterly defeated. Rightly so.

  • -3

    Kimokekahuna Hawaii

    What are whale restaurants going to do? Sell more Dolphin meat?

  • 1

    Tokiyo

    "Today, Japan has been utterly defeated. Rightly so." Its not a friggin war, lay off the dramatics.

  • 8

    cleo

    You pay them to whale or you pay them welfare because they become unemployed.

    The moratorium on commercial whaling came into effect in 1986. The unemployed whalers have had nearly 3 decades to train for other work.

  • -3

    SamuraiBlue

    cleo

    They anticipated that it would be lifted within 5~10 years since it is as yourself wrote a "moratorium" and not something to be permanent.

  • -7

    CH3CHO

    cleo

    SamuraiBlue is right. The biggest hypocrisy is quoted in the ruling. http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/148/18136.pdf

    231 The moratorium on commercial whaling, paragraph 10 (e), provides:

    Notwithstanding the other provisions of paragraph 10, catch limits for the killing for commercial purposes of whales from all stocks for the 1986 coastal and the 1985/86 pelagic seasons and thereafter shall be zero. This provision will be kept under review, based upon the best scientific advice, and by 1990 at the latest the Commission will undertake a comprehensive assessment of the effects of this decision on whale stocks and consider modification of this provision and the establishment of other catch limits.

    The moratorium was meant to be ended "by 1990 at the latest." All the members of IWC have obligation to work honestly to collect data to assess the whale stock for the resumption of commercial whaling. When JARPA2 ends, which country is going to do the research?

  • 3

    cleo

    They anticipated that it would be lifted within 5~10 years

    And if your job went west for 5 ~ 10 years, would you expect to be on welfare till it came back again? Would you enter an industry that hadn't been viable for decades then insist that the government protect your non-existent job?

  • 1

    DISCHARGE

    Yes...How about Norway and Iceland? How soon do we get to see the Sea Sherpered making the chase

  • 3

    igloobuyer

    DISCHARGEAPR. 01, 2014 - 03:17PM JST Yes...How about Norway and Iceland? How soon do we get to see the Sea Sherpered making the chase

    Pretty much right away it would seem -

    http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/sea-shepherd-to-refocus-attention-on-norway-other-nations-if-japan-abides-by-court-ruling

    Just as long as Japan really abides by international law...

    http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/australia-nz-fear-japan-may-try-to-sidestep-whaling-ban

  • 2

    Aaron Cross

    DISCHARGEApr. 01, 2014 - 03:17PM JST

    "Yes...How about Norway and Iceland? How soon do we get to see the Sea Sherpered making the chase"

    As previously mentioned, it was well known Sea Shepherd strategy to target the Whaling in the Whale Sanctuary because...well whaling in a whale sanctuary is kinda asking for trouble, right?

    I would've gladly seen my taxes send a NZ warship down there too, but politically we need Japans money so you have to keep buying our meat and dairy lol. Eat it up chumps. Or don't. Trade commitments hurt both ways sometimes don't they.

    PS I'd love nothing more than to see you boycott NZ meat and dairy that would make my day.

  • 2

    igloobuyer

    CH3CHO The moratorium was meant to be ended "by 1990 at the latest." All the members of IWC have obligation to work honestly to collect data to assess the whale stock for the resumption of commercial whaling. When JARPA2 ends, which country is going to do the research?

    Rest assured all ll industrialised nations in the Pacific area (Au, NZ. US) do regular non-lethal (read: modern) research on whale populations.

  • -2

    CH3CHO

    igloobuyerApr. 01, 2014 - 04:19PM JST

    Rest assured all ll industrialised nations in the Pacific area (Au, NZ. US) do regular non-lethal (read: modern) research on whale populations.

    How long do the wolrd have to wait before AU, NZ and US turns in their 20 year over due report based on non-lethal research? I really hope they play in good faith.

  • 3

    igloobuyer

    CH3CHO

    How long do the wolrd have to wait before AU, NZ and US turns in their 20 year over due report based on non-lethal research? I really hope they play in good faith.

    The speed advantage is with non-lethal methods of population measurements. Lethal research is an out-of-date method. Japan needs to modernise and join the 21 century in ocean science.

  • 5

    marcelito

    CH3CHO - no matter how much you try to put positive spin on this, Japan lost and that's it. How about just admitting it, and moving on to the 21 st century where the rest of the world is waiting? The scientific whaling issue is over and that's that.

  • -7

    CH3CHO

    igloobuyerApr. 01, 2014 - 06:34PM JST

    marcelitoApr. 01, 2014 - 07:31PM JST

    You cannot just ignore the promise made in 1984 that the moratorium was to be lifted by 1990 at the latest after concluding assessment of whale stock and that the COMMERCIAL whaling was to resume.

    The ICJ ruling was about reserch whaling. igloobuyer, let me know when the population measurements are finished. It is the time when commercial whaling was to resume due to 10(e) of the IWC regulation.

  • 4

    Yogizuna

    @CH3CHO: The fact is, pride had a LOT to do with Japan's refusal to end whaling in the sanctuary. You can pretend it was and is not so, but sadly it was and still is. This kind of pride is not a positive force and usually leads to trouble for all involved.

  • 3

    Fandango Spoonmonkey

    Sorry schoolkids. I guess whale meat is off the menu.

  • 0

    ka_chan

    However, Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Tuesday the government will keep its word and obey the court “as a state that places a great importance on the international legal order.”

    “There is no change to our commitment to continue scientific research whaling under the international rules,” he said. “We will carefully examine what is allowed and what is not allowed under the ruling.”

    But he criticized the International Whaling Commission, the main international body that regulates whaling, which ordered a moratorium on all commercial whaling in 1986.

    Based on these three statements: Japan, "ok you caught us we follow the judgement but we are looking for another "loophole" until Australia brings another case to the courts. Besides, its the IWCs fault anyway, not Japans.

  • 1

    billyhelpher_33

    They are playing like this hurts them. I am sure they got bigger fish to fry.

  • 1

    Aaron Cross

    Because the Whaling was not scientific and was in the whale sanctuary, then it was technically poaching. That makes it illegal and in normal cases when someone breaks the law, they face court and legal punishment.

    So will the Japanese government and Institute for Cetacean Research now face legal action?

    If not, why not?

  • -1

    Charles Duncan

    How would Japan rectified its previous lies and misconducts in relation to the whaling? Such acts were illegal ab initial, way before the verdict was handed over by the ICJ!

    If Japan is serious about enforcing the ICJ judgment, will Japan hold any government officials and fisher-criminals liable in domestic court?

  • -4

    arrestpaul

    Why? Japan has not committed any illegal acts.

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