24 countries will attempt to save International Whaling Commission assembly

Agreements are still pending on several key issues such as scientific hunting and the creation of a whale sanctuary in the South Atlantic Ocean.

27 de Junio de 2008 | 14:46 | El Mercurio Online

SANTIAGO.- The International Whaling Commission has formed an ad hoc committee of 24 countries in an attempt to keep the 60th annual assembly, being held in Santiago, from folding. This after an intense scuffle ensued among delegates concerning key issues such as scientific whaling and the creation of a sanctuary in the South Atlantic Ocean.

“A group of 24 countries has been established and will meet to try to move the matter forward.  A list has been created indicating key topics to be addressed”, the alternate for the Brazilian delegation, José Truda Palazzo, stated.

The group is scheduled to meet today, after the closing session of the event, and (among others) includes five Latin American conservationist countries:  Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica and Mexico.  The committee also includes Japan, Norway and Iceland, which are the main countries in favor of whaling.

The committee has been asked to analyze the future of the international organization, offer an emergency exit to the crisis, and encourage advances on important topics that are currently dividing the forum.  The group will hold its first formal session in September of this year, probably in the U.S. state of Florida.

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