^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ J. Michael Williamson Principal Investigator-WhaleNet <http://whale.wheelock.edu> Associate Professor-Science Wheelock College, 200 The Riverway, Boston, MA 02215 voice: 617.734.5200, ext. 256 fax: 617.734.8666, or 508.468.0073 "Wrinkles only go where smiles have been" Jimmy Buffett ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ---------- Forwarded message ---------- Date: Thu, 12 Jun 1997 11:28:00 GMT From: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: Marine Mammals Research and Conservation Discussion <MARMAM@UVVM.UVIC.CA> To: MARMAM@UVVM.UVIC.CA Subject: Japan, Norway hint at defeat o Japan, Norway hint at defeat over whale catches By Emelia Sithole HARARE, June 11 (Reuter) - Japan and Norway said on Wednesday they were unlikely to win majority support for at a world convention on endangered species in Harare for their contentious proposal to resume catching minke whales. They accused the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) of automatically adopting measures to protect whales taken by the International Whaling Commission (IWC), which they alleged had been hijacked by some leading environmental groups with undue political influence. All great whales, except for the West Greenland stock of minke whale, are listed on CITES' Appendix 1 which bans trade in endangered species. The CITES listing followed the IWC moratorium on commercial whaling which came into effect in 1986. "I don't think we can get this time the two-thirds majority support (from the 139-member CITES). Maybe we can get 10 percent of that," said Masayuki Komatsu, senior deputy director of Japan's Far Seas division and Oceanic Fisheries department. "It's impossible to win resumption of whaling for as long as CITES continues basing its decisions on that of the IWC," Komatsu told Reuters on the sidelines of the 10-day CITES meeting which started on Monday. "We have a dilemma in achieving our goals in the IWC because it's now a body occupied by environmental groups which deny any sustainable use of natural resources," he added. Peter Schei, head of the Norwegian delegation, backing a proposal by Japan to redefine its relationship with the IWC, said CITES needed to develop its own scientific committee to deal with whale trading and reduce its dependence on the IWC. "We shouldn't link ourselves to political actions of another organisation which are not scientifically based," Schei said. The Japanese proposal to delink CITES from the IWC is meeting stiff opposition from some leading environmental groups, notably the U.S.-based International Fund for Animal Welfare, Amsterdam- based Greenpeace and British-based TRAFFIC (Trade Records Analysis of Flora and Fauna in Commerce). The Japanese and Norwegian proposal to allow commercial whaling is one of the top issues at the CITES meeting at which a bid by three southern African states to allow ivory sales has taken centre stage.