Blog | How JAZA Can Reverse Their Embarrassing Suspension

How JAZA Can Reverse Their Embarrassing Suspension

April 23, 2015 by Laura Bridgeman

The Japanese Association of Zoos and Aquarium (JAZA) has been behaving very badly, and they are finally seeing some repercussions. After years of failed negotiations with the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA), an impasse was declared and JAZA officially suspended because, well - they just can't stop killing dolphins.

While many are applauding WAZA's decision, the reality is that nothing has changed for the dolphins - yet. "WAZA has taken action; now JAZA and Japan must take action for the dolphins," International Marine Mammal Project's Mark J. Palmer, told VICE News.

"All 100 marine captivity parks in Japan have just been declared cruel and out of compliance with international zoo and aquarium standards, because of their involvement in the Taiji dolphin slaughter," says David Phillips, Executive Director of the International Marine Mammal Project. "This is shameful for Japan and the Japanese government should step in and stop the dolphin killing."

Unless the government takes action, the Taiji hunters will be given their quotas for next year's hunting season, beginning the killing on September 1st, 2015. Japanese aquariums are still able to legally purchase traumatized and abused cetaceans from these hunts. And the hunters are still making big money from live and dead dolphins alike.

There are many actions the government could take in order to stifle the economic gains provided by the hunts, such as making the transportation of dolphins from the Taiji Whale Museum illegal.  Of course, Earth Island would prefer the government shut the hunts down entirely.

Whether any such action will be taken remains to be seen. Judging by the government's refusal to stop whaling despite a ruling by the International Court of Justice, or the media blackout of the Taiji hunts to date - it is unlikely that steps towards shutting down the hunts will be taken without maintained and increased pressure from WAZA, the international community and, most importantly, by Japanese citizens themselves.

Sign the petition below to tell the government that the time is now for them to take a stand, once and for all.




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