Activists rally in Tokyo against Japan's dolphin hunt

September 1, 2013
Protestors rally against the start of Japan's annual dolphin hunt in Tokyo on August 31, 2013. The rally organiser, Action for Marine Mammals, said it was one of a number of demonstrations taking place around the world this weekend ahead of the season's hunt in the Japanese fishing village of Taiji.

Environmentalists staged a rally in Tokyo Saturday to protest the start of Japan's annual dolphin hunt, which was made infamous by an Academy Award-winning documentary.

The rally organiser, Action for Marine Mammals, said it was one a number of demonstrations taking place around the world this weekend ahead of the season's hunt in the Japanese fishing village of Taiji.

About 50 activists gathered in central Tokyo carrying banners that read: "Stop the slaughter."

"Japanese people are responsible for stopping our country's barbarian dolphin hunt," said Toshiaki Morioka, head of the group, adding that some of his members planned to travel Taiji later.

The village drew global attention after "The Cove", a hard-hitting film about the annual dolphin hunt, won the Academy Award for best documentary in 2010.

Fishermen corral hundreds of dolphins into a secluded bay, select a few dozen for sale to aquariums and slaughter the rest for meat. The dolphin hunt takes place over a period of months.

Marching side by side with the environmentalists, a dozen of Japanese nationalists shouted through loudhailers: "Get out of Japan! Hypocrites!"

The nationalists accused the of undermining Japanese culture and traditions, labelling the demonstrators as "environmental terrorists".

Some tried to break up the march, but police separated them from the procession to avoid a possible skirmish.

Japanese rightwing activists have recently increased their presence, stirring nationalistic sentiment amid territorial disputes with China and South Korea.

Explore further: Mercury high in Japanese town that hunts dolphins

Related Stories

Mercury high in Japanese town that hunts dolphins

May 9, 2010

(AP) -- Residents of the dolphin-hunting village depicted in the Oscar-winning documentary "The Cove" have dangerously high mercury levels, likely because of their fondness for dolphin and whale meat, Japan's government ...

Japan dolphin hunt town meets with activists

November 2, 2010

(AP) -- An unprecedented meeting between conservationists and leaders of the dolphin-hunting village depicted in the Oscar-winning film "The Cove" ended in bitter disagreement Tuesday.

'Cove' director gives free DVD to Japan residents

February 28, 2011

(AP) -- Copies of the 2010 Oscar-winning film that depicts the slaughter of dolphins in the Japanese fishing village of Taiji have been delivered free to its residents, compliments of the director.

Japan 'Cove' town plans dolphin park

May 1, 2012

The dolphin-hunting Japanese town of Taiji, made infamous by the Oscar-winning documentary "The Cove", plans to open a marine mammal park where visitors can swim with the creatures, a media report said.

Activists say Japanese whalers 'rammed' ships

February 20, 2013

Environmental campaigners from the militant Sea Shepherd group said on Wednesday a Japanese whaling ship had "rammed" its vessels in a skirmish in the Southern Ocean.

Recommended for you

Scientists discover key clues in turtle evolution

September 2, 2015

A research team led by NYIT scientist Gaberiel Bever has determined that a 260-million year-old fossil species found in South Africa's Karoo Basin provides a long awaited glimpse into the murky origins of turtles.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.