US seeks Atlantic bluefin tuna ban in challenge to Japan
The United States called Wednesday for a ban on the international trade in Atlantic bluefin tuna to save the species from extinction, challenging Japan ahead of a major global meeting.
With demand for sushi and sashimi driving the world's tuna stocks to dangerously low levels, the United States said it would ask a meeting in Qatar to declare the commercial trade in tuna a threat to the survival of the species.
"The United States continues to have serious concerns about the long-term viability" of eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean bluefin tuna, said Tom Strickland, the assistant secretary of the interior for fish and wildlife.
"The US government is committed to working with our many international partners to continue to rebuild Atlantic bluefin tuna (stocks) and ensure sustained conservation and management of the species into the future," he said in a statement.