The International Whaling Commission only sanctions the killing of whales for scientific purposes or as part of subsistence killing by aboriginal populations. Membership is voluntary, and its rules are not enforceable by law. Aboriginal whaling Subsistence hunting of whales is sanctioned in aboriginal populations in Alaska, Denmark (Greenland), St Vincent and the Grenadines and Russia. A total of 388 whales were killed last year under these rules, more than half of them by Greenlanders. Since 1985, there have been 6,790 subsistence kills. Scientific whaling Japan, Norway and Iceland have all been issued licences by the IWC to kill whales under controversial scientific programmes. Opponents claim that much of the meat from these whales ends up being eaten. Japan killed 1,243 of the 1,282 whales killed under these licences last year. Commercial whaling Banned under the IWC rules, commercial whaling has had only one participant since 1987 - Norway. It has killed 6,191 small whales since 1993, including 639 last year. Iceland has now joined Norway in planning unsanctioned commercial kills.