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London Protest against Taiji Annual Dolphin Hunt & Captivity - Spring Equinox

When the Equinox lands this Thursday the 20th of March, you have the opportunity to make a real difference to the lives of innocent animals by protesting the capture and slaughter of dolphins that is an atrocious annual tradition in Japan’s Taiji Cove.

The little cove’s dirty great secret was uncovered in 2003, when marine conservation society Sea Shepherd released images of the now infamous ‘bloody cove’ – revealing the epicentre of the annual murder of[masked] dolphins, porpoises and small whales which occurs in Japan every year between September and March. Since 2010 Sea Shepherd has maintained an ongoing presence of volunteers standing watch on the Cove site, known as The Cove Guardians.

Australian Cove Guardian Emillie describes the scene she witnessed at Taiji Cove…

“A pod of 250 bottlenose dolphins spent days netted in the cove while their family unit was torturously torn apart. Dolphins deemed worthy for a life of captivity were stolen away. The remainder waited - disoriented, frightened and hungry until the eventual slaughter. On an almost daily basis I continued to witness intelligent, wild and free dolphin pods systematically driven into the cove only to depart as a commodity, either as a petrified prisoner or lifeless meat for human consumption. Every day, six months of the year, this is the reality of Taiji. And it is a visibly decaying town, symbolic of its archaic practices.”

The Japanese government maintain that Taiji is part of a cultural tradition, and yet the evidence is clear that this is a commercially driven endeavour, with the animals ending up in captivity, on the food market, or simply left injured in the oceans to die. Unlike whales, dolphins do not have an international organisation to offer them protection, so it really is down to us - the people of the international community to care enough to take action for these animals which scientists are increasingly discovering to be highly intelligent, emotional and social beings.

Momentum is building rapidly for the opposition of dolphin and whale slaughter and capture in the form of global protests, a viral storm of Internet activity and media coverage including high profile documentaries. In 2009 the Academy Award winning documentary The Cove was released, featuring Richard O’Barry, a former dolphin capturer and trainer for the TV Series Flipper, who later dedicated his life to preventing the very same practice. The impact of this film now looks set to be matched by the recent release of the documentary Blackfish, which chillingly reveals the immorality and tragic consequences of keeping orca whales in captivity.

Continued pressure is crucial. This Equinox Protest will act as a follow up to the extremely successful protest event of February 20th, during which over 1000 people arrived outside the Japanese embassy to show their derision at the Japanese government’s continued support of the annual slaughter.

The world is waking up to the horrific reality of Taiji cove, but nothing will change unless we turn our awareness into action. Please join us at the protest on March 20th, to show Japan and the world that we no longer accept this and bring about a change desperately overdue.

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  • David

    That's great Dani, it doesn't matter how long as it all's good that people who are working are willing to go in their lunch breaks. Last time it went on till about 7 so maybe some will consider going after work. Well done to the organisers, I know it's not that easy to do and I'm prepared to help organise more of these which we should have regularly until this awful slaughter stops. As far as I know we don't need permission for a static demo, only for a march but it's a good idea to mention it to the police etc. for the reasons mentioned below. I look forward to seeing some of you later!!

    March 20, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hi guys! I'm only going to be able to make it for about half an hour or so - during my lunch break. But I'll be there... Gosh my eyes are just filled with tears now...

    1 · March 19, 2014

  • Robert

    The spring equinox is at the following time:

    March Equinox: March 20, 2014, 16:57 UTC

    It will be great to have a minutes silence at this moment for the dolphins of Taiji.

    Never forgotten.

    March 18, 2014

  • Robert

    We have an acknowledgement from the Met Police that we are having a peaceful protest at the embassy.

    Therefore, I suggest that a couple of people can leaflet on the north footway, either side of the embassy. Anything else could be problematic or dangerous. Especially when we are right on a busy London road, with fast moving HGVs and buses etc.

    To be safe, I strongly suggest we stay on the south footway, on the other side of the road to the embassy. Unless leafleting either side of the embassy as mentioned.

    Because there are less of us this time, the police may not be there to assist us, like they kindly did at the previous big demo. When they parked their car down the road, diverting the dangerous traffic.

    As organisers of this demo, we have a duty to ensure that this protest is a safe one and no-one gets hurt in any way. And also, there is no criminal damage. We need to keep a good reputation to ensure we can always come back and protest again for the dolphins.

    March 18, 2014

  • Maddy R.

    Yes having one that goes on throughout the evening sounds like a brilliant idea as then most people would be bale to make it whether it was at the beginning or the end. The Taiji is something I feel so strongly against - I won't go into it as I will write for hours but that it why I am desperate to be a part of a protest against. I would actually love to go out there and do something about it but can't find a way to do it ! I will keep an eye out for the next one and hopefully. I can be a part of it ! Good luck on Thursday guys, you are so brave for going out there and saying what you believe it. It is so important to inform the public of what is going on as it is hidden so well.

    1 · March 16, 2014

  • David

    Yes Alice I agree......we should have some at weekends too. The Embassy may be closed then officially, though I suspect some staff must be there at weekends, but our message is mainly aimed at the passing public, pedestrians and motorists who gave us tremendous support at the last one, with most vehicles responding to requests to "toot" if they were against the dolphin-slaughter. For those working in London who may not want to go back at a weekend, I'd suggest having one on a weekday from maybe 3 or 4 pm to 8 or 9pm so people can come by for a time on their way home from work. That way part of the time the Embassy would be open thus meeting the wishes of some who prefer the demo to be noticed by staff there. Our mission is also to get the protest into the media, so informing the public about this outrageous massacre, which is not easy and there was not much coverage of the one last month. Shame, as it was a brilliant demo, one of the best I've ever been on.

    2 · March 7, 2014

  • Maddy R.

    I would love nothing more to come along but I am at work and as I work in a school we can't take any time off during term time. Are these dolphin protests never on a weekend ? I miss out on alot of things I am passionate about due to them being on weekdays. I know my friends would come along too if it were on a Saturday or Sunday.

    1 · March 6, 2014

  • Robert

    Leaflets will be provided, you are most welcome to bring your own home made placards and banners. Also bring whistles, horns, megaphones, candles, inflatable dolphins, toy dolphins or anything else that you may think is useful :D

    1 · March 5, 2014

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