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Commercial Whaling

Volume 410: debated on Monday 18 August 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions she has had with representatives of the Icelandic Government to try to prevent them from resuming commercial whaling. [130567]

When Iceland rejoined the IWC in October 2002, its application for renewed membership contained a declaration in which Iceland undertook (under certain conditions) not to resume commercial whaling until 2006 at the earliest.When the Icelandic Ambassador to London called on me on 3 September, I stressed that the Government (and the UK public) was highly critical of Iceland's unjustified and unnecessary plan to kill 38 minke whales this year, (and possibly larger numbers of minke, sei and fin whales next year).On 10 September the British Ambassador to Reykjavik delivered a demarche on behalf of the Governments of the UK and 22 other countries, urging the Icelandic Government to rescind its decision to start so-called "scientific" whaling.