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Seal hunt protests in 11 Canadian cities

March 16, 2009 at 8:18 AM   |   Comments

OTTAWA, March 16 (UPI) -- Protesters took to the streets in 11 Canadian cities last weekend to condemn Canada's ongoing seal hunt and claimed a shift in public opinion.

Much of the organizing of the events and an e-mail blitz was arranged by two U.S. groups, a correspondent for the Chronicle-Herald newspaper in Halifax, Nova Scotia, reported from Ottawa.

Sealers will soon begin shooting and clubbing harp seals on the ice floes off Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador but International Fund for Animal Welfare spokeswoman , Sheryl Fink told the newspaper they were working a dying tradition.

"There definitely does feel like there's change in the air," she said. "The market for seal products does appear to be disappearing."

Russia has traditionally been the biggest market for Canadian pelts but has just moved to end its own seal hunt. China is also a large purchaser but is paying less for all commodities, pelts included, the report said.

Sealer Denis Longuepee said the protesters might win elsewhere but not in Canada.

"We're never gonna give up and we won't. And they won't win," he said to the Chronicle-Herald. "They're gonna win maybe in 27 countries but they are not going to win about our seal industry. That's impossible. We're going to do it anyway."

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