Date: Thu, 10 May 2007
From: Anthony Marr
Subject: Letter to Norwegian Embassy @ DC
To: The Ambassador of Norway
and Mr. Petter Meier
Dear Ambassador and Mr. Meier,
I would like first to commend your government for conscientiously
warning your young women and children to not consume whale meat,
considering it's being overloaded with toxins including mercury, PCBs
and dioxins. I certainly cannot say this for the Japanese government
which not only allows whale meat in supermarkets to be labeled as
"Health Food", but feeds it directly to young children in their school
lunch program, in spite of their full knowledge of the toxicity and its
I take this opportunity to ask your government, as a Canadian
citizen, to join other European nations including Austria, Belgium,
Croatia, Cyprus, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourgh, the Netherlands,
Slovenia and Turkey to ban the importation of all Canadian seal
products, on grounds of cruelty and ecological destructiveness.
I also would like to take this opportunity to point out the absence
of a very important point in your letter below, without which no
consideration is complete. The following words and phrases come to mind,
all relevant to this point in question: agony, baby, compassion,
cruelty, empathy, evolved, family, generosity, inhumaneness,
intelligence, kindness, language, love, massacre, respect, skinned
alive, society and why.
Regarding just the one word "cruelty", there is simply no way to kill
a whale that can be considered humane, even if killing whales for any
reason is justified, which it is not - not in this day and age any more,
when we no longer crucify people, or burn them at the stake, or have
them drawn and quartered. Just because whaling was going on in the 17th
Century does not mean that it should still go on in the 21st Century.
I have just one more question. Does Norway not believe in law and
order? I'm sure that if somebody breaks a law it Norway, he'd be duly
charged, convicted and punished. So why does Norway as an entity behave
on the world stage in open defiance of international law and
international agreements? Norway doesn't even bother to go through a
loophole the way Japan does ("scientific research"). What kind of
example is the Norwegain government setting for its own citizens?
Norway may have been basking in the lack of pressure from the
international anti-whaling movement, but should consider itself lucky up
to this point because the main force of the movement has been directed
against Japan, and rightly so. But if Norway stands too close to Japan,
it may stand to receive some shrapnel.
I have never written a letter to Norway. I'm writing one now. And
others will too. I think the time has come for Norway to reconsider its
whaling policy, and be known as a compassionate nation.
Anthony Marr, Founder
Heal Our Planet Earth (HOPE)
ROYAL NORWEGIAN EMBASSY WASHINGTON, D.C.
May 10, 2007
From: Petter Meier
Dear Sir / Madam,
With reference to your concern regarding Norwegian whaling, please consider the following background for the Government’s whaling policy:
1. Norway is not hunting endangered whale species. The only whale
species that Norwegian whalers are allowed to hunt is the minke whale.
According to estimates by the Scientific Committees of the IWC (the
International Whaling Commission) and NAMMCO (the North Atlantic Marine
Mammal Commission), the two minke whale stocks hunted by Norwegian
whalers total more than 180.000 animals. This is a sound basis for
2. Norway’s limited catch is sustainable. Norway’s resource
management is based on the principle of sustainable use of natural
resources. The harvesting of marine resources, including whales, is
based on scientific criteria. The size of the annual catch is based on
the system recommended by the Scientific Committee of the IWC. The quota
for 2006 is set to 1052 whales. This is a very precautionary approach to
the management of the stocks and it is a very small fraction of the
whale stocks on which we harvest.
The management regime for marine mammals is based on modern
principles for the management of species, habitats and ecosystems. It is
an important part of Norway’s efforts to management of its marine
resources in accordance with the implementation plan established by the
World Summit on Sustainable Development. This plan calls for the
implementation of the ecosystem approach by 2010.
There are about 75 different whale species. Some stocks need
protection, while others are abundant.
3. Norway continues working hard to protect endangered species.
Norway has worked hard in international fora, including the IWC and
CITES, to promote the protection of all endangered species and the
fundamental principles of sustainable management of natural resources
based on scientific criteria. The Norwegian Government insists that the
IWC and CITES will revert to sound, scientifically based policies for
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works with the IWC and CITES with the aim of assuring protection of
endangered species, including endangered whale species, as well as
sustainable harvesting of abundant stocks.
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