Victory For Seals When Taiwan Bans Trade In Marine Mammal Products
It’s hard to believe that 11 years have gone by since I created by first blog site in order to write about animal welfare issues. The catalyst for my advocacy was the result of watching a horrific video depicting an innocent baby harp seal being clubbed to death by a heartless human being. Since then, I’ve spent the first four months of every new year surfing the internet for the latest news on the Canadian Seal Hunt in an attempt to keep as many people as possible informed about the poor baby seals’ plight.
The Canadian Seal Hunt typically begins in November; however, the majority of deaths occurs in March and lasts through the first half of April. Last year alone, over 70,000 seal pups were killed despite the growing global outcry against the Canadian government’s hunts. Knowing that the seals would soon face a nightmare of blood and death, I started searching my news feeds for any information about this year’s slaughter.
What a surprise I got today as I opened up an email from the Humane Society International announcing that Taiwan has joined the United States, European Union, Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Mexico in banning the trade of marine mammal products including seal skins. The only exception allowed in the new legislation involves products of “traditional indigenous hunts”. According to Wu Hung, executive director of EAST (Taiwanese animal protection group):
“Citizens of Taiwan care deeply about animal welfare, and we do not want to trade in products of cruelty that the rest of the world has rejected. I am very proud of the leadership Taiwan has shown in banning trade in marine mammal products. I hope that many other nations will follow suit, and that the Canadian government will finally do as the majority of Canadians and people around the world want and end the seal hunt for good.”
Of course Taiwan’s ban will not prevent this year’s hunt from happening. But it does provide another major blow to Canada’s shrinking seal products market. And this news definitely provides hope that someday there will be no more markets in existence because of the growing global support to stop the seal hunts which will eventually force the Canadian government to stop the slaughter for good.
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Photo: The Examiner