earth news

A Dutch judge on Tuesday temporarily blocked the transfer of eight dolphins, two walruses and two sea lions to a Chinese amusement park after animal rights activists launched an urgent court case.

Conservation groups Sea Shepherd and the local House of Animals group dragged a Dutch dolphinarium before the Amsterdam Regional Court to stop the export to the Hainan Ocean Paradise, a theme park currently under construction in southern China.

“If you decide to export these animals to China, you are not looking after their welfare” the activists said on the House of Animals website, adding they will be used to entertain people “for commercial purposes”.

This was also because of the “stress of relocation, taking them out of a familiar environment and because the animals will now be some place worse than they have been before,” the activists said.

The animal rights groups also opened a case against the Dutch government which authorised the transfer, saying it had a “duty to ensure” the welfare of the animals.

On Tuesday a judge granted an interim order to freeze the export until the case against the government — which had issued export permits — had been decided.

The judge “gave weight to the irreversibility of a possible transfer to China,” the Amsterdam Regional court said.

“The dolphinarium is therefore not allowed to use the export licenses until a decision has been made,” the court said.

“We are extremely happy with this judgement and have full confidence that the judges will also rule that these export permits should have never been issued,” House of Animals spokeswoman Karen Soeters said.

The animals will be “used for commercial purposes to entertain people and that has nothing to do with conservation,” she said in a statement.

The dolphinarium is expected to appeal the judgement.

A full hearing will be now held on November 23 in which judges were set to rule on the validity of the government’s export permits.

The Dolphinarium in the central Dutch town of Harderwijk is one of Europe’s largest marine parks and has drawn millions of visitors since its opening in 1965.

Set up to educate the public about marine animals, it however has drawn criticism in recent years from animal rights activists who said the creatures were kept in confined spaces and made to perform for visitors.

TECH NEWS RELATED

China calls on Canada to ignore Huawei risks 'invented' by US

A senior Chinese diplomat called on Ottawa Tuesday to ignore national security risks that had been “invented” by the United States concerning telecoms giant Huawei, as Canada weighs the company’s possible exclusion from its 5G mobile networks rollout. The idea that the company is a threat to national security ...

View more: China calls on Canada to ignore Huawei risks 'invented' by US

Motorcycle bomb kills four in Iraq: official

At least four civilians were killed and four more wounded on Tuesday in a motorcycle bombing near a hospital in southern Iraq’s Basra city, security forces said. Referring to “the explosion of a motorcycle”, they said in a statement that “four citizens were killed and four others injured while ...

View more: Motorcycle bomb kills four in Iraq: official

Helicopter crashes with India military chief on board

A helicopter carrying India’s defence chief General Bipin Rawat crashed in the southern state of Tamil Nadu on Wednesday, the air force said. The 63-year-old chief of defence staff was travelling in a Russian-made Mi-17V5 chopper that “met with an accident today near Coonoor, Tamil Nadu”, the Indian Air ...

View more: Helicopter crashes with India military chief on board

Iran nuclear proposals 'not a reasonable basis' for accord: France

Proposals submitted by Iran at talks in Vienna last week aimed at reviving the 2015 nuclear deal fall well short of what is needed, France said on Tuesday, adding time was running out with Iran’s atomic drive making worrying progress. “The proposals presented by Iran last week do not ...

View more: Iran nuclear proposals 'not a reasonable basis' for accord: France

Biden warns Putin of 'strong' Western response to any Ukraine attack

US President Joe Biden warned President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday of “strong” Western economic blowback against any Russian attack on Ukraine, while the Kremlin leader demanded guarantees that the NATO alliance keep clear of Russia. The two leaders met by video link in a two-hour summit seen as a ...

View more: Biden warns Putin of 'strong' Western response to any Ukraine attack

Putin asked Biden for 'guarantees' NATO won't expand eastwards: Kremlin

The Kremlin Tuesday described Vladimir Putin’s talks with US leader Joe Biden as “frank” and said the Russian president requested Washington provide guarantees NATO will not continue its eastward expansion. The two leaders spoke in a tense, two-hour virtual summit earlier Tuesday, with Biden warning Putin of a “strong” ...

View more: Putin asked Biden for 'guarantees' NATO won't expand eastwards: Kremlin

Space Force mission blasts off from Florida after multiple delays

A mission overseen by the U.S. Space Force to send equipment into space aboard an Atlas V rocket lifted off from Florida early Tuesday after a delay of several days. United Launch Alliance sent the Space Test Program-3 (STP-3) mission into space from Launch Complex 41 at the Cape ...

View more: Space Force mission blasts off from Florida after multiple delays

Leveraging AI to accelerate development of scientific models

In August 2018, DARPA released its first AI Exploration (AIE) opportunity called Automating Scientific Knowledge Extraction (ASKE). Unlike DARPA’s typical four-year programs, AIEs are designed to be fast-tracked (~18 months in duration) research efforts that help determine the feasibility of an AI concept. The goal of the ASKE project ...

View more: Leveraging AI to accelerate development of scientific models

Vietnam gives longest ever jail term for trading rhino horn: NGO

Sri Lanka chemical ship wreck to be salvaged: operators

Kremlin slams US Olympics boycott, France seeking EU response

China to repatriate Taiwan murder suspect in rare deal

Russian rocket blasts off carrying Japanese billionaire to the ISS

NASA's latest astronaut trainees are already dreaming of the Moon

Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa lifts off for space station on Russian Soyuz

Gas bubbles in rock pores - a nursery for life on Early Earth

Successful and diverse harvest in darkness and eternal ice

Experiments riding 24th SpaceX Cargo Mission to USS included bioprinting, crystallization, laundry studies

AFRL celebrates launch of small-sat ascent to GEO

US Army tests multi-orbit solutions leveraging MEO capabilities amid SES's upcoming O3b mPOWER launch

OTHER TECH NEWS

;