Japan announces International Whaling Commission withdrawal

Japan said it would withdraw from the International Whaling Commission and start catching whales in its coastal waters after it failed to win approval from the IWC for commercial whaling. The decision, announced by the government’s top spokesman on Wednesday, is a rare break with a multinational organization by Tokyo. Talking to reporters , the spokesperson said that Japan would officially inform the IWC of its decision by the end of the year, which will mean the withdrawal comes into effect by 30 June. The country’s fleet will resume commercial operations in July 2019. Japan will join Iceland and Norway in openly defying the ban on commercial whale hunting. The International Whaling Commission plays a crucial role in international cooperation on whale conservation.

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