In the face of a recent ban by the International Court of Justice, ships in Japan continue whale hunting operations.
Last year, the International Court of Justice banned whale hunting in Japan, questioning the justification of such actions. It appears Japan didn’t take it too seriously, as four ships left port on April 10, 2015 to go whale hunting.
The ships seen leaving port have the potential to kill up to 51 whales. Officials argue the hunt is necessary for research concerning the effects whales have on the fishing industry.
The Chukchi in Russia and the Inuit in Canada are officially entitled to go whale hunting, holding it’s not for commercial ends. These cultures see whaling as a tradition which goes back hundreds of years, and they use the meat, oil and bones.
Although whale hunting was outlawed in 1986, whale hunters in Norway, Iceland, and Japan still hunt the endangered mammals. Since then, Australia has tried to stop Japan from engaging in whale hunting through diplomatic action. In 2013 they went to court over the issuer and in March 2014, the International Court of Justice in The Hague ruled Japan’s whaling program was not for scientific reasons ordering a temporary stay.
All images via DW