Which way will the EU vote on whaling?
WDCS has been involved in an ongoing debate with the European Commission EU about the role of Denmark and its influence in defining the EU’s collective position at the IWC.
In the past, EU Member States who have been members of the IWC have always been free to establish their opwn position at the IWC as long as that position is at least equal to, and possibly stronger than EU law. No EU state can take a position that is weaker than existing EU law. For example, no EU Member State can vote for commercial whaling in any guise. However, Denmark has consistently used the excuse of having to support its overseas territories of Greenland and Denmark to avoid voting with the EU and indeed, even to vote for commercial whaling.
Recently the situation has become complicated because the EU Commission, despite the wishes of the Member States, has insisted that the EU all vote unanimously or not at all. The result; Denmark votes as it sees fit and the other Member States are forced to abstain on crucial votes.
WDCS has once again challenged the EU Commission to break out of this stalemate that is inhibiting the EU Members from pursuing their legal duties to uphold EU law. We shall see what happens in the coming days.