Activists organized a protest in Tokyo on Saturday, asking for Japan’s annual dolphin hunt to be stopped. “The Cove”, an Academy Award-winning documentary, made the topic of dolphins’ slaughter famous worldwide.
Around 50 environmentalists gathered at the rally organized by Action for Marine Mammal, an independent group supporting cetaceans in Japan. They carried banners that read: “Stop the slaughter.”
“Japanese people are responsible for stopping our country’s barbarian dolphin hunt,” said Toshiaki Morioka, head of the group, according to the international press.
The dolphin hunt drew global attention after “The Cove”, a hard-hitting film about the annual dolphin hunt, won the Academy Award for best documentary in 2010.
Fishermen corral hundreds of dolphins into a secluded bay, select a few dozen for sale to aquariums and slaughter the rest for meat. The whole process lasts for several months.
The environmentalists were accompanied, side by side, by a group of Japanese nationalists that shouted through loudhailers: “Get out of Japan! Hypocrites!”
The nationalists accused the environmentalists of threatening Japanese culture and traditions, and labeled the demonstrators as “environmental terrorists” while trying to break up the rally. The police separated the objectors from the march to avoid a possible conflict.