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Japan continued to hunt whales using the scientific research provision in the agreement, and Japanese whaling is currently conducted by the Institute of Cetacean Research.
This was allowed under IWC rules, although most IWC members oppose it.
When they kill whales, hunters invoke the Buddha and pray for the repose of whales' souls; they held funerals for whales, built cenotaphs for them, gave posthumous Buddhist names to them, and when a dead fetus is removed from a butchered cow, an effort is made to release it into the sea.
These practices are intended to encourage emotionally healthy or spiritual relationships with whales, and are connected with Japanese religious beliefs.
The UN's International Court of Justice, in addition to other Nations, scientists, and environmental organizations consider the Japanese research program to be unnecessary and lacking scientific merit, and describe it as a thinly disguised commercial whaling operation.On January 15, 2017, a helicopter in the Australian Whale Sanctuary photographed the Japanese whaling vessel Nisshin Maru with a freshly-killed minke whale on its deck.Antarctic minke whale have experienced an apparent decline in population, though the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) indicates that it lacks sufficient data to confer a "threatened" designation on the species of minke whale.K.) returned significant profits to its investors which led to increased Japanese competition.
Oka later became the first president of the Japan Whaling and Fishing Association, established in 1908.Although the primary use for whales was meat, the entire whale was used in a variety of products including lamp oil, soaps, fertilizer, folding fans (baleen), and more.