Japan leaves IWC to start commercial whaling
NHK -- Jun 30
Japan withdrew from the International Whaling Commission, or IWC, on Sunday. The country will resume commercial whaling the next day.

Japan joined the IWC in 1951, supporting its pursuit of sustainable whaling by protecting the number of whales.

After Japan suspended commercial whaling in 1988 in line with an IWC moratorium, it has been unable to find common ground with anti-whaling countries.

Japan announced its intention to withdraw last December, saying it was no longer possible to resume commercial whaling under IWC rules.

Several whaling ships are ready to leave the western port city of Shimonoseki, Yamaguchi Prefecture, on Monday to start whaling in the Pacific.

And in the northern city of Kushiro, Hokkaido Prefecture, five vessels plan to leave for whaling in nearby waters.

Japan says it will conduct commercial whaling only in its territorial waters and exclusive economic zones, hunting minke and other species that have large enough numbers, within quotas set by the IWC-adopted method.

Environmental activists are criticizing the resumption in light of resource conservation and animal protection.

The Japanese government plans to gain support from the international community by stressing that hunting will be done within the limit to preserve the whale population.

これまで調査の名目で行われていた日本のクジラ漁が来月1日から商業捕鯨に切り替わります。期待の声も上がる一方で、かつて捕鯨船に乗っていた人の見方は慎重です。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
Sep 16
A Japanese government survey shows the number of people aged 65 or older, and their proportion to the overall population, have both marked record highs. (NHK)
Sep 16
Life for many people in Chiba Prefecture, east of Tokyo, has been worsening since a typhoon caused massive power outages there a week ago. (NHK)
Sep 15
A survey shows that Japan's public spending on education as a percentage of GDP was the lowest among OECD countries. (NHK)
Sep 15
Two octopuses predicted Friday that Japan will not advance to the knockout stage of the Rugby World Cup, which opens next week. (Japan Times)
Sep 15
Police in Japan have arrested a 40-year-old man suspected of firing an air gun in an apparent road rage incident earlier this month. (NHK)
Sep 15
Almost 70 percent of married women in Japan believe that same-sex marriage should be legalized in the country, a government survey of around 6,000 married women showed Friday. (Kyodo)
Sep 13
Yahoo Japan's acquisition of online fashion retailer Zozo presents an opportunity for the venerable internet services company to bring fresh blood into its e-commerce audience as the business looks to step outside the shadow of Amazon.com and Rakuten. (Nikkei)
Sep 13
A luxury hotel in central Tokyo much loved by visitors for its classic Japanese ambience reopened Thursday after four years of renovations. (Japan Today)
Sep 12
Nearly seven years in office, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is betting that his handpicked ministers and ruling party lawmakers will give him a firmer -- and possibly longer -- grip on power. (Japan Today)
Sep 12
Japan remains the second most-represented country behind the United States in a list of the world's top 1,400 universities, but trails other countries in hosting elite institutions with only two listed in the top 200, a global survey showed Wednesday. (Kyodo)