Archive for Faroe Islands
www.independent.co.uk 13th December 2010
Quoted from source:
‘Britain and the EU are on the verge of a trade war with Iceland and the Faroe Islands after talks to agree a quota for fishing mackerel collapsed. Iceland and the Faroes have set their own vastly increased quotas and walked out of negotiations with the EU which were intended to find a mutually acceptable figure. In what some observers are already calling “Cod Wars II”, EU nations are expected to take retaliatory action to put pressure on Iceland and the Faroes to reduce the quantity of mackerel they catch. The EU has already threatened trade sanctions which could result in a ban on Faroese and Icelandic imports of cod, herring, whiting, haddock and mackerel. Iceland set a 130,000-ton quota this year while the Faroes gave themselves an 85,000-ton quota. The figures are many times bigger than five years ago. Richard Benyon, the UK’s Minister for Natural Environment and Fisheries, said: “The lack of an agreement … on mackerel is a major threat to the stock’s future sustainability and we are considering what actions we can now take to make them see sense.” The row escalated on the eve of the EU Fish Council in Brussels, which starts today, where EU fisheries ministers will set catch quotas for a host of other species for the next year. Britain faces a further problem on the quotas because it has been claimed in a study by the the Pew Environmental Group that the three-quarters of UK fishermen who use boats which are less than 10 metres (33ft) long– many of them an environmentally friendly alternative to trawlers – are being illegally denied their fair share of the quota. This is because the quotas are distributed on behalf of the UK Government by Fishing Producer Organisations (FPOs) whose members sail mainly in bigger boats.’
Sources: http://www.suntimes.com 2nd September 2010
The acclaimed director of ‘The Cove’, a documentary on dolphin hunting in Taiji in Japan, has had to call off his protest to the annual slaughter due to threats from a Japanese ultra-nationalist group. The hunt, which begins every year on September 1st, consists of a small number of fishermen herding pods of dolphins into a cove then stabbing them to death. The whole event was caught on camera by Ric O’Barry, the 70 year old ex-dolphin trainer who worked on the Flipper TV series in the 1960s. The resulting documentary, ‘The Cove’, received international acclaim and won an Academy Award for best documentary.However, due to the threats received to his person, Mr. O’Barry is instead holding a reception in his Tokyo hotel for a hundred followers followed by a trip to the US Embassy to deliver a petition with 1.7 millions signatures demanding the halt of the slaughter.
The Japanese government declare that the killing of whales and dolphins is no different than the killing of cows and pigs (although each dolphin carcass can fetch as much as $150,000). A similar event occurs in the Faroe Islands between Scotland and Iceland where the local population (most of which are not trained fishermen) annually slaughter pilot whales in the name of tradition. The same argument is used by the people of Taiji and the ultra-nationalists who threatened Mr. O’Barry. But is barbarism really a tradition to be proud of?
Every year the people of the Danish owned Faroe Islands, between Scotland and Iceland, hold a festival where numerous Pilot Whales are killed for their meat and blubber. The islands, whose attempt to break away from Denmark was quashed in 2000, have attracted international attention due to the unconventional way in which the whales are culled. However, the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, known predominantly for their escapades against the Japanese whaling fleet in the Antarctic, has joined forces with the Bridget Bardot Foundation to “expose the slaughter and defend the pilot whales from the vicious and lethal assaults by the Faroese”. In fact, conservationists have turned their back on the ritual in recent years due to the integral part it plays in Faroese culture and because the Faroese themselves do not participate in commercial whaling. The Faroe Islands website insist that “the Faroese whale drive has over the years successfully adapted to modern standards of resource management and animal welfare. For the Faroe Islands – an island nation overwhelmingly dependent on what the sea can provide - the conservation and management of all living marine resources, including marine mammals is of vital importance.” The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society claim that the massacre is a violation of the Berne Convention of which Denmark is a signatory.
The undercover ship of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is currently being escorted by the Danish navy.