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Iceland's government is suspending this year's whale hunt until the end of August due to animal welfare concerns, likely bringing the controversial practice to a historic end.

Opposition to whaling has been on the rise in Iceland with a majority now in favour of dropping the practice, a recent poll showed.

The country's last remaining whaling company, Hvalur, had previously said this would be its final season as the hunt has become less profitable.

Iceland's whaling season runs from mid-June to mid-September, and it is doubtful Hvalur would head out to sea that late in the season.

Animal protection charity Humane Society International (HSI) Europe has hailed the decision to cancel this year's hunts as a "major milestone in compassionate whale conservation".

Iceland, Norway and Japan are the only countries that allow whaling, along with the Faroe Islands, an independent territory of Denmark.

Source: Yahoo News