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Japan has decided to continue its whaling programme in the Pacific Ocean, reports said Friday, despite losing a United Nations court case on its other "research" hunt in the Antarctic. If confirmed, the move will likely spark anger among environmentalists who hailed last month's ruling by the UN's International Court of Justice (ICJ) that Tokyo's hunt in the Southern Ocean was a commercial activity disguised as science. Japan has exploited a loophole in a 1986 moratorium that allowed it to conduct lethal research on the mammals, but has openly admitted that their meat makes its way onto dinner tables. Campaigners urged Tokyo to follow the spirit of the ruling, and not just its letter -- which specifically referred to Japan's hunt in the Antarctic, not its other research scheme in the northwest Pacific or its smaller coastal programme.
Jindo (South Korea) (AFP) - The captain was not at the helm of the South Korean ferry that capsized two days ago, investigators said Friday, as anger spread over stalled rescue efforts for hundreds of missing passengers trapped by the submerged vessel. More than 48 hours after the 6,825-tonne Sewol suddenly listed and then sank, a small of army of more than 500 exhausted divers -- battling powerful currents in almost zero visibility -- have yet to obtain any access to the ferry's interior.
KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) — An avalanche swept the slopes of Mount Everest on Friday along a route used to ascend the world's highest peak, killing at least six Nepalese guides and leaving nine more missing, officials said.