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Stop DolphinSlaughter in Taiji Taiji is regarded as the spiritual home of Japan‘s whaling industry. The first hunts took place in the early 1600s, according to the town’s whaling museum, but the industry went into decline after the introduction of a global ban on commercial whaling in 1986. The town, a six-hour train ride from Tokyo, is dotted with restaurants serving whale and dolphin sashimi and cetacean iconography appears on everything from the pavements and bridge balustrades to road tunnels and a wind turbine. Yet in other respects it does not have the feel of a town that takes pride in its traditions. Last week’s pilot whale cull was conducted in inlets shielded on three sides by steep cliffs and dense undergrowth to deter campaigners and journalists. Barriers have been hastily erected along coastal paths that run through publicly owned land. Local fishermen point out that the dolphins…

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