Japan's Foreign Ministry spokesperson has written an article rebutting a New York Times editorial that slammed the country's plan to resume commercial whaling.
The Japanese government announced in December that it will withdraw from the International Whaling Commission and restart commercial whaling in July.
The New York Times published the editorial on December 31st under the title, "Japan: Stop Slaughtering Whales."
The opinion piece urged the country to reconsider its exit from the IWC, saying the commission is "the expression of a universal obligation to manage dwindling resources."
The Japanese letter was published in the paper's Friday edition, under the name of the Foreign Ministry's Press Secretary Takeshi Osuga.
The letter begins by stating that the Times' editorial did not mention critical facts. It says "Japan is committed to the conservation of whales," and prohibits the hunting of endangered species.
The letter says Japan's actions fully comply with international law, as its planned whaling will be limited to the country's exclusive economic zone where it has the sovereign right to use living resources.
Osuga goes on to say that whaling has been a part of Japanese culture for centuries just as it has been in Norway, Iceland and other countries. It claims "it is unfair to single out Japan."