Customs promises to prevent illegal whale exportation from Srednyaya Bay in Primorye
VLADIVOSTOK. Dec 26 (Interfax) - The Far Eastern customs is monitoring the situation in the Srednyaya Bay in Primorye where white and killer whales are being held in captivity and are pledging not to allow the illegal exportation of sea mammals feared by ecologists.
"The Far Eastern customs is monitoring the situation; our analytical department makes daily analysis of the registration of killer whales and other sea mammals, which means that every declaration of sea mammals' exportation is checked. We will respond to possible violations," acting agency head Alexei Kurayev told the press on Wednesday.
He added that declarations of the exportation of sea mammals were quite rare.
"I cannot recall any declarations of the kind being filed this year. As a rule, these are isolated cases that are thoroughly checked," Kurayev said.
He noted that the police opened criminal inquiries into the illegal exportation of white whales in 2016-2017.
Earlier this week, the Primorye Territorial Court repealed the Vladivostok Leninsky District Court's resolution on the captivity of white and killer whales in the Srednyaya Bay in Primorye.
Animal rights defenders said they feared that the sea mammals might be smuggled out of the country and sold to foreign oceanariums. The hunters might report "an escape of white and killer whales while smuggling them to China," the defenders said.
About 90 baby white and killer whales are being held in captivity in the Srednyaya Bay. Environmentalists say their captivity is illegal. A criminal case was opened on the counts of "poaching sea bio-resources."