The Welsh Liberal Democrats Assembly Member for South Wales West, Peter Black has condemned the inhumane slaughter of dolphins in Japan.
Mr. Black expressed his concerns about the practice in an Assembly motion tabled yesterday, known as an Statement of Opinion.
The cruel way in which dolphins are hunted and slaughtered in Taiji, a town on Japan's Pacific coast, has attracted international criticism.
Mr. Black's motion aims to raise awareness of the issue and presses the Welsh Government to raise the issue with the Japanese authorities.
Commenting, Mr. Black said:
"Right now, Japanese fishermen are rounding up live dolphins to kill for meat, using some really barbaric methods, or sell into a lifetime of captivity. Drive hunts cause huge distress and panic to dolphins and this continuing practice is simply unacceptable.
"Many dolphins can take up to half an hour to die under these brutal methods, which the Japanese Government has tried to defend as part of Taiji's cultural heritage. By setting annual quotas of 20,000 dolphin, whale and porpoise kills, the Japanese Government are continuing to support cruel practices. It's vital that the international community sends a clear message of condemnation, and I hope the Welsh Government will play a key part in that."
Notes to Editors
- The full text of Mr. Black's Statement of Opinion is as follows:
This Assembly: Notes concerns by Welsh environmentalists at the recent slaughter of over 40 wild dolphins in Taiji, Japan; the capture of a further 52 dolphins for sale to aquariums and other customers including a rare albino dolphin calf, separated from its mother and kept in captivity in Taiji Whale Museum; Expresses alarm that the Japanese Government has issued quotas for the killing of over 20,000 dolphins, whales and porpoises in its coastal waters every year, despite the International Whaling Commission's moratorium on commercial whaling; and Calls on the Welsh Government to condemn these practices to the Japanese Government.
More information on the campaign to save these dolphins can be found at http://www.seashepherd.org/cove-guardians