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Japan's whaling fleet returned home in April from the Antarctic after conducting their annual whale hunt.

It was a difficult season, involving months of high-seas clashes with anti-whaling activists.

Japan's media has expressed frustration at the anti-whaling protesters, accusing them of acts of terrorism and claiming that eating whale is a deeply rooted cultural tradition among some Japanese.

Japan's annual whale hunt is allowed by the International Whaling Commission (IWC)as a scientific research programme, but opponents call it a cover for commercial whaling, which has been banned since 1986.

But international pressure against Japan's whaling is rising as the IWC tries to find a compromise before its meeting this month in Morocco.

On this edition of 101 East, we look at Japan's controversial whaling programme as the nation vows to continue the hunt.

This episode of 101 East airs from Thursday, June 10, at the following times GMT: Thursday: 1230; Friday: 0300; Saturday: 0530, 1730; Sunday: 0330, 1130; Tuesday: 1430; Thursday: 0630. 

Source: Al Jazeera