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In the Faroe Islands, an emotion after the killing of 1,400 dolphins

In the Faroe Islands, an emotion after the killing of 1,400 dolphins

The local government of the Faroe Islands, Tuesday, defended the killing of more than 1,400 dolphins in a single day during a traditional fishing operation, despite the feelings raised by the massacre of unusual size, even for the northern archipelago.

• Read also: Dolphin fishing resumes in the Faroe Islands

“There is no doubt that whaling in the Faroe Islands is an exciting sight for those unfamiliar with hunting and killing mammals. A spokesperson for the Torshavn government told AFP that these hunts are well organized and fully regulated.”

Tradition of ancestors in the Faroe Islands, a Danish autonomous region lost in the North Sea, the “milling” or “grindadrap” consists, by encircling them, in turns by boat, a school of small whales in the bay. Then they fall into the hands of the fishermen who remained on the shore and kill them with knives.

Usually these are pilot dolphins, also called pilot whales, but on Sunday, 1,423 white-faced dolphins, also authorized to hunt, were caught this way in the fjord near Skala, in the middle of the archipelago.

France Press agency

“We don’t have a tradition of hunting these mammals, and there are usually a few of them on the hunt, but we don’t kill that many mammals,” said local public television correspondent, KVF, Hallor of Rana.

According to him, such an important fishing has never occurred in the archipelago.

Pictures showing more than a thousand bloodied whales ashore have sparked widespread criticism.

“It seems very extreme and it took a long time to kill them all while it is usually fast,” added Mr. Av Rana, noting that 53% of the archipelago’s population is against hunting. Of this kind, but that the Faroe Islands had no intention of giving up that grind.

Environmental NGO Sea Sheperd has described it as a “barbaric practice” and is a sustainable fishing system, according to Faroese authorities.

The product of these fisheries is not marketed, but used for their meat.

According to local estimates, there are about 100,000 pioneer whales in the waters around the archipelago, which has a population of about 50,000.

In 2020, about 600 cetaceans were killed.