June 25, 2019
Latest News
European Union

Russia to release whales following Cousteau mediation

Moscow, Apr. 8 (efe-epa).- Nearly 100 animals that have been held in dreadful conditions in a "whale jail" in eastern Russia will be released into the wild, authorities told reporters on Monday.

The decision came after mediation talks with French marine expert Jean-Michel Cousteau and international scientists.

"All the animals will be released into the wild," Oleg Kozhemyako, the governor of Primorsky region, told local reporters.

"Scientists from Cousteau's team and Russian scientists will decide when and which animals to release," he continued.

The operation will begin in phases between May and June, Kozhemyako said.

He added that the act of transferring the mammals to their natural habitat will come at a great financial cost but that the operation will go ahead regardless.

The so-called whale jail is located near the Pacific coast city of Nakhodka, in the Sea of Japan.

The bay where the cetaceans have been held since last year will be adapted to improve conditions and make it as close to their natural habitat as possible, authorities said.

A rehabilitation center will also be created in the Sea of Japan to treat the mammals.

Cousteau, son of celebrity explorer and oceanographer Jacques Cousteau, said that an international fund would cover all the costs of the rehabilitation center.

"The Whale Sanctuary team and I are assessing the health of each individual and will prepare a plan four rehab and release back to the ocean," he tweeted on Sunday.

Cousteau said he was confident that the agreement that had been penned between his team and scientists from the local oceanographic institute will resolve the issue.

"The world's eyes are looking at us," he added. "They are waiting to see how we are going resolve this situation."

He added that the agreement was a result of days of negotiations with local authorities.

Members of Cousteau's team said that there had been attempts to train the whales, although they had only managed to get the mammals to eat out of trainers' hands in order to then sell them to aquariums.

Conservationists have been campaigning for months over the precarious conditions some 87 beluga whales, 11 orcas and five young walruses were held in.

The mammals were caught in the wild to sell on to Chinese aquariums for millions of dollars.

Scientists said that the animals were suffering from hypothermia and various diseases due to cramped conditions and poor sanitation.

Greenpeace released images of orcas and belugas with rashes, boils and ulcers which experts said were due to bacterial, fungal and viral infections.

The experts that have assessed the health of the cetaceans said that due to the stress they endured during their capture and the conditions they have been kept in their immunological systems had been severely debilitated in recent months.

The health of some of the whales was so bad, some are currently at risk of dying.

Lobbying of pressure groups grabbed the attention of celebrities such as actor Leonardo Di Caprio and resulted in an international petition to close the whale jail.

Following almost a year of inaction and the death of several whales, President Vladimir Putin ordered the government to find a solution to the crisis in February.

"What began as a global outcry has begun to evolve into a work of international cooperation as people of many nationalities gathered in Moscow to begin a long-term effort to return 97 illegally-captured orcas and beluga whales to the ocean," the Whale Sanctuary NGO said in a statement. EFE-epa


News history
Repairs to Harry and Meghan's new home cost UK taxpayers $2.8 million

Madrid, Jun 25 (efe-epa).- The official home that Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom has given to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex was refurbished using...

3 Chinese banks deny being probed by US in relation to North Korea sanctions

Beijing, Jun 25 (efe-epa).- Three Chinese banks have denied that they were involved in any investigation related to possible violations of North Korea...

Revote in Istanbul rebukes Erdogan

By David Gauthier-Villars

Mercedes dominant in practice ahead of French F1 GP, finishing 1-2 twice

Paul Ricard Circuit (France), Jun 21 (efe-epa).- Mercedes put on a dominant performance in both free practice sessions at the Circuit Paul Ricard race track...

Apple explores shift away from China

By Yoko Kubota and Tripp Mickle

Real Madrid reinforces its defense with new signing Mendy

Madrid, Jun 19 (efe-epa).- Real Madrid reinforced its defensive lineup with the inclusion of France left-back Ferland Mendy who was presented to fans at the...

What to know about Libra cryptocurrency

New York (USA), Jun 19 (efe-epa).-Facebook just disclosed the first details of its long-anticipated cryptocurrency, called Libra, according to a Dow Jones...

Real Madrid unveils new forward Rodrygo: I hope to make Madrid fans happy

Madrid, Jun 18 (efe-epa).- Real Madrid unveiled the latest component of its new squad for the upcoming season, Brazilian forward Rodrygo, at its Santiago...

Former UEFA president Platini held over awarding 2022 FIFA World Cup to Qatar

Paris, Jun 18 (EFE).- Former UEFA president Michel Platini has been arrested on suspicion of corruption linked to a decision to award the 2022 World Cup to...

US says Israel not invited to Bahrain Conference

Washington, Jun 18 (efe-epa).- The White House said it won't invite the Israeli government to the unveiling of the economic part of its Israeli-Palestinian...

North Korea lobs insults at US but shields Trump

Seoul, Jun 17 (efe-epa).- A year after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's historic first meeting with President Donald Trump, his government is once again...

China biotech companies poach US talent

Hong Kong (China) Jun 17 (efe-epa).- China-based biotechnology startups looking to go global are poaching talent from the biggest American pharmaceutical...

Toyota in pole at Le Mans with Kobayashi driving, Alonso, 2nd, dreams of win

Le Mans (France), Jun 14 (efe-epa).- The driver Kamui Kobayashi secured pole position in his Toyota TS050 ahead of 24 hours of Le Mans, leaving second-place...

HSBC boosts role as Saudi banker

By Rory Jones in Dubai and Margot Patrick in London

Nintendo shifts some production from China

By Takashi Mochizuki

Pepsi executive picked to lead UK's Reckitt

By Saabira Chaudhuri

Boris Johnson says UK must leave EU on Oct. 31 as he launches leadership bid

London, Jun 12 (efe-epa).- Boris Johnson said Wednesday the United Kingdom must leave the European Union on Oct. 31 as he launched his bid to replace Prime...

European Union blocks merger between steelmaking giants Tata, Thyssenkrupp

Brussels, Jun 11 (efe-epa).- The European Commission has decided to block a planned merger between two steelmaking giants that would have formed a landmark...

What's next in payments

By Stella Yifan Xie

The financial-risk secrets that may be hidden in our faces

Shanghai (China), Jun 11 (efe-epa).- What does your face reveal about how big of a financial risk you are, asked Dow Jones in a report made available to EFE...

UK economy shrank in April as Brexit hit car production

London, Jun 10 (efe-epa).- The United Kingdom's economy shrank in April as car makers took the precaution of shuttering their factories in the weeks...

Theresa May officially steps down as UK PM

London, June 7 (efe-epa).- The United Kingdom's Prime Minister Theresa May has on Friday signed a letter of resignation as leader of the Conservative Party.

Credit markets: Treasurys jump on stock fall, rate talk

New York (USA), Jun 4 (efe-epa).- United States government bond prices climbed again, benefiting from a decline in technology stocks and a Federal Reserve...

EU calls for deeper association with Central Asia, says Tusk

Nur-Sultan, May 31 (efe-epa).- The European Union is aiming to strengthen its partnership with Central Asian countries, European Council President Donald...

I agree Welcome to news4europe.eu. We use cookies to improve your online experience. Find out more.