Korean Air stops carrying shark fins

SEOUL, June 20 (Yonhap) -- Korean Air Lines Co., South Korea's top air carrier, said Thursday that it has stopped carrying shark fin cargo, the latest airline to join global efforts to save endangered shark species.

The decision, which took effect on June 10, came three months after government delegates at the triennial World's Wildlife Conference in Thailand voted to protect five shark species by controlling their trade and harvest, though they did not impose a full ban.

In May, the New York State Assembly unanimously passed a bill banning the trade of shark fin used in shark fin soup, a popular Chinese delicacy.

Asiana Airlines Inc., South Korea's No. 2 flag carrier, also said it has decided to stop flying shark fin cargo, though it did not give a specific time frame.

The South Korean airlines' move comes after Air New Zealand and Cathay Pacific halted flying shark's fin cargo.

Every year, about 73 million sharks are stripped of their fins before being thrown back into the ocean to die slowly and painfully, according to environmental activists.

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