The UN’s highest court has ordered Japan to stop whaling in the Antarctic.
Tokyo had long claimed that it was for scientific research and it simply sold the meat afterwards as a by product.
Australia successfully challenged this at the Hague saying it was commercial whaling in disguise.
Since 2005 Japan has killed around 3,600 minke whales but produced just two peer reviewed papers based on results from nine whales.
Japan said it was “deeply disappointed” by the ruling, but it would comply,
Geert Vons from conservation society Sea Shepherd said he was hopeful Japan would not find a way to begin whaling again.
“I don’t know if Japan will proceed with their whaling. they might find a new programme, a new scientific research programme in the future, but for the moment I feel very confident that that will not happen.”
It is hoped that the ruling could lead the way to a complete ban on whaling around the world.