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Illegal dolphin meat shipment seized in Italy

A shipment of dolphin meat has been seized by Italian authorities at the port of Civitavecchia. Italy’s Environment Minister, Andrea Orlando has called for an immediate investigation to trace the origins of the meat, which included vacuum-packed dried fillets.

The import and sale of dolphin meat is illegal in the European Union and the Minister described the trade as ‘sleazy’.

The seizure came on the same day that the Italian ambassador in Tokyo urged the Japanese government to consider ending the dolphin drive hunts in Taiji, where local fishermen herd dolphins into a cove to capture some for captivity shows around the world whilst brutally slaughtering the rest.

Italian police launched an investigation at the end of 2013 following claims that dolphin meat was being served to customers in restaurants in and around the capital Rome.