Great News! Icelandic Whales Will Be Safe In 2020 As Iceland Stops Whaling For Second Year In A Row

International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) welcomes the announcement of two Icelandic whaling companies that have decided to no longer hunt whales this summer. This means that Iceland will see its second year in a row without whaling.

“It is now clear that what we are seeing is the end of Icelandic whaling, which is good news for whales, good news for Iceland and good news for marine conservation worldwide,” said Patrick Ramage, IFAW’s Marine Conservation Program Director in a statement.

“IFAW salutes and commends our longtime partners and friends in Iceland who have been working to end the cruel and wasteful killing of fin whales and minke whales in Icelandic waters and to finally end consumption of whale meat by international tourists,” continued Ramage.

In a media interview, Kristjan Loftsson, Hvalur’s Chief Executive – the only company involved in Iceland fin whaling – said he would not whale this year due to Japan’s competition and the current COVID-19 related restrictions.

Gunnar Bergmann Jonsson, Managing Director of the minke whaling company IP-Utgerd told AFP he was putting an end to his whaling activities for good.

Fin whales – the second largest animal on Earth – are only killed in Iceland for exportation to Japan, while minke whales are killed mainly to feed tourists in the country.

Over 1,500 fin and minke whales have been killed in Iceland since 2003 – the year the country resumed commercial whaling.

The ‘Meet Us Don’t Eat Us’ Campaign was launched by IFAW and IceWhale, the Icelandic Whale Watching Association in Reykjavik, Iceland, in the summer of 2011. So far over 500 volunteers from 30 countries have participated in the project which runs mainly through the summer months in Reykjavik.

To date, they have collected more than 135,000 signatures from visitors and Icelanders pledging to not eat whale meat, and calling for the cruel and unnecessary whale hunt to end. The organizations regularly deliver these signatures to the Minister of Fisheries to underline international and Icelandic opposition to commercial whaling.

Help support IFAW’s efforts to protect whales in Iceland, by signing their petition HERE!

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