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The proposal was rejected with 38 votes in favor, 24 against, and 2 abstentions. Countries such as Japan, Iceland and Norway, among others, continue to block this type of conservation proposal. The Shrine has been supported by more than a million people, in less than a month, worldwide.
The countries meeting at the International Whaling Commission (IWC) in Slovenia have decided not to create a Whale Sanctuary in the South Atlantic. This is a missed opportunity to protect these large marine mammals from impacts such as hunting, pollution, climate change, and overfishing. The Sanctuary would have covered almost a quarter of the Atlantic Ocean, an area similar to that of Russia and India combined.
Despite the fact that most of the IWC countries present in Slovenia have voted in favor of the creation of the South Atlantic Sanctuary that would protect more than 20 million square kilometers in the Atlantic where hunting would be prohibited, the motion has been filed. since the requirement is that there be a two-thirds majority of yeses.
The countries that have voted no to the sanctuary are: Antigua and Barbuda, Benin, Cambodia, Ivory Coast, Eritrea, Ghana, Guinea, Iceland, Japan, Kenya, Kiribati, Korea, Laos, Mauritania, Mongolia, Morocco, Nauru, Norway, Russia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Republic of Suriname, Tanzania and Tuvalu. The countries that have abstained have been Grenada and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
This decision comes after more than a million people around the world signed a petition supporting the creation of this sanctuary. “Despite the fact that most countries and the public believe that a whale sanctuary is the best way forward for the protection of whales, once again the IWC has frustrated this initiative,” said Celia Ojeda, Head of Greenpeace oceans. "With all the problems that whale and dolphin populations are currently facing, it is evident that they need a protected area where they are able not only to survive, but to feed and reproduce," added Ojeda.
It is clear that the transformation requested by Greenpeace of the International Whaling Commission into an entity that watches over the conservation of whales has not been completed and is urgently needed.
The meeting of the IWC, in Slovenia, will last until the end of this week. Another proposal to be debated will be the moratorium on commercial hunting that was approved 30 years ago. Greenpeace played a crucial role in getting a ban on commercial hunting and continues to oppose the killing of whales for profit.