BBC - Indigenous whaling bids granted after 'racism' claim

By Richard Black
Environment correspondent, BBC News, Panama City, Panama

Whaling quotas for indigenous groups in Alaska, Russia and the Caribbean were renewed at the International Whaling Commission (IWC) annual meeting

"If [St Vincent and the Grenadines] are hunting for four humpback whales each year from a population of 10,000, who gives the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Chile or Costa Rica the right to tell St Vincent how to use the whales?"

"Small nations are being singled out," he said.

The debate saw heated exchanges involving an allegation from the St Kitts and Nevis delegate, Daven Joseph, that the mainly Latin American countries seeking to block the bid were "bordering on racism".

Aboriginal subsistence whaling (ASW) is allowed if indigenous peoples have a "nutritional and cultural need" and there is no danger to whale stocks.

A bid for similar quotas in Greenland has yet to be debated.

The vote came despite questions over whether the bid from St Vincent and the Grenadines qualified under IWC rules....


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