Whaling on trial: The International Court of Justice rules against Japan



The International Court of Justice has officially ruled against Japan in a case that could decide the fate of whales in the Southern Ocean and elsewhere in the Pacifc Ocean.
 
The court found in its decision that:
 
Taken as a whole, the Court considers that JARPA II involves activities that can broadly be characterized as scientific research, but that “the evidence does not establish that the programme’s design and implementation are reasonable in relation to achieving its stated objectives”. The Court concludes that the special permits granted by Japan for the killing, taking and treating of whales in connection with JARPA II are not “for purposes of scientific research” pursuant to Article VIII, paragraph 1, of the Convention.
 
Japan has been ordered by the court to cease issuing 'special permits' in defiance of the International Whaling Commission's moratorium on commercial whaling.
 
Court transcript: http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/148/18136.pdf
 
Court announcement: http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/148/18162.pdf
 
THE HAGUE,
31 March 2014.
 
The International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, has today rendered its Judgment in the case concerning Whaling in the Antarctic (Australia v. Japan: New Zealand intervening).
 
In that Judgment, which is final, without appeal and binding on the Parties, the Court,
 
(1) finds, unanimously, that it has jurisdiction to entertain the Application filed by Australia on 31 May 2010;
 
(2) finds, by twelve votes to four, that the special permits granted by Japan in connection with JARPA II do not fall within the provisions of Article VIII, paragraph 1, of the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling;
 
(3) finds, by twelve votes to four, that Japan, by granting special permits to kill, take and treat fin, humpback and Antarctic minke whales in pursuance of JARPA II, has not acted in conformity with its obligations under paragraph 10(e) of the Schedule to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling;
 
(4) finds, by twelve votes to four, that Japan has not acted in conformity with its obligations under paragraph 10(d) of the Schedule to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling in relation to the killing, taking and treating of fin whales in pursuance of JARPA II;
 
(5) finds, by twelve votes to four, that Japan has not acted in conformity with its obligations under paragraph 7(b) of the Schedule to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling in relation to the killing, taking and treating of fin whales in the “Southern Ocean Sanctuary” in pursuance of JARPA II;
 
(6) finds, by thirteen votes to three, that Japan has complied with its obligations under paragraph 30 of the Schedule to the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling with regard to JARPA II;
 
(7) decides, by twelve votes to four, that Japan shall revoke any extant authorization, permit or licence granted in relation to JARPA II, and refrain from granting any further permits in pursuance of that programme.
 
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