Iceland Whaling Season Begins Amidst Controversy (VIDEO)

06/30/2010 01:17 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

In this video from Reuters, Iceland's 100 day whaling season has begun amidst international condemnation and the outcry of environmental conservationists. The controversial practice is considered a birthright by the only two nations that openly pursue it, Iceland and Norway, but is regarded by critics as one of the primary contributions to declining whale numbers, which have only recently begun to recover due to the international whaling moratorium instituted 24 years ago. Japan also practices whaling, but only for what it deems to be "scientific research", often an exploited loophole.

The commencement of Iceland's whaling season comes immediately after nations failed to reach an agreement set forth by the International Whaling Commission to continue the moratorium but permit limited amounts of whales to be hunted by the three countries that continue to do so despite the ban.

WATCH gruesome footage as Iceland begins the whaling season:

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