In Japan, fishermen killed a whale that accidentally fell into the nets. Activists condemn such actions, but they say it is legal.
According to the BBC, Japanese animal rights activist Ren Yabuki first noticed a whale caught in the nets near the town of Taiji, on December 24. Then he watched as the fishermen tried to free the animal for 10 minutes, but later stopped.
Yabuki began shooting a drone video of the whale trying to escape from the nets. Then the world media began to write about the animal and calls began to appear to release the animal. On January 11, Yabuki filmed the death of the animal.
The two boats stopped so that the whale was trapped between them. At first, the fishermen held the animal by the tail and lowered its head into the water so that the whale drowned. Then the animal was lifted onto the boat and covered with a tarpaulin.
A few days after the death of the Minke whale, a packed whale meat was noticed at a local supermarket for 398 yen per 100 grams ($3.8), but there is no evidence that this is the whale whose death was recorded by Yabuki.
This video may be shocking.
Are such actions legal?
For 30 years, it was forbidden to hunt whales off the coast of Japan, because after decades of catching whales, they were on the verge of extinction. In 2019, Japan resumed commercial whale fishing, but with certain restrictions.
So, in 2019, fishermen could catch 52 non-endangered Minke whales, 150 Bride whales and 25 Seiwal whales-a total of 227 individuals. In 2020 and 2021, fishermen can already catch a total of 383 whales.
In addition, Japan has introduced the so — called “by-catch” category-this means that an angler can catch a whale that he did not plan to catch, but he got to the wrong place at the wrong time. For example, like a whale, whose death was captured by an activist.
Representative of the International Organization for the Protection of Animals (Humane Society International) Mark Simmonds believes that “by-catch” encourages fishermen to create unfavorable conditions for animals and prevents people from releasing whales.
The Taiji Fisheries Association said they had no choice but to kill the animal. They say that then the waves began to appear and the fishermen were forced to drown the animal.
According to the BBC, the actions of fishermen abroad were mostly condemned, since for Japan, whaling is a long tradition and a reason for pride. Although due to the long-term ban on commercial fishing, only 4% of Japanese people in 2014 said that they regularly eat whale meat.
Animal rights activists Yabuki and Simmonds believe that due to a long tradition, Japan will not change its policy regarding catching cats, which means that the world will still see pictures with the death of animals.