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Mixed reaction to Japan whaling ban

Tuesday, April 01, 2014 - 01:48

Apr. 1 - Australia celebrates while Japan expresses disappointment over International Court of Justice order to halt whaling. Paul Chapman reports.

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PLEASE NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS MATERIAL THAT WAS ORIGINALLY 4:3 Japan's government says it's disappointed with the International Court of Justice order to stop Antarctic whaling. But Japan's foreign minister said it would abide by the decision. (SOUNDBITE)(Japanese) JAPANESE FOREIGN MINISTER FUMIO KISHIDA SAYING: "However, Japan is a nation that respects the rule of law. Therefore we will comply with the ruling of this verdict." The U.N's highest court agreed with Australia that what Japan calls a scientific research programme didn't justify the number of whales killed. Australia's attorney-general was happy with the outcome. (SOUNDBITE)(English) AUSTRALIAN ATTORNEY-GENERAL GEORGE BRANDIS SAYING: "The Australian government welcomes the decision. We note that both Australia and Japan have stated on a number of occasions that both countries will accept and respect the decision of the court." Environmental campaign group Sea Shepherd, which has annually battled with the Japanese Antarctic whaling fleet, says it's a huge step forward. (SOUNDBITE)(English) AUSTRALIAN ATTORNEY-GENERAL GEORGE BRANDIS SAYING: "I think it's just fantastic but it shows that the world is moving towards having a legal mechanism for protecting the global commons. What's missing is the police force." The court ruling may not mean a permanent end to Japan's whaling operations. It could devise a more persuasive programme to justify a resumption on the grounds of scientific research. Alternatively it could continue simply by withdrawing from the 1986 moratorium or the 1946 International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling.

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Mixed reaction to Japan whaling ban

Tuesday, April 01, 2014 - 01:48