ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - Former Beatles frontman Paul McCartney is once again calling for an end to the commercial seal hunt off Canada's East Coast.
McCartney appeals for a stop to what he calls a "senseless slaughter'' in a statement released by Humane Society International.
Anti-sealing campaigns have helped inspire bans on seal product imports in the European Union, the United States, Mexico and other countries.
The hunt opened Sunday on the Front off northeastern Newfoundland and southern Labrador, as well as in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
It has dwindled in recent years with fewer than 55,000 harp seals landed last year compared to a federal quota of about 400,000.
The federal government has defended the commercial seal hunt as humane and well regulated.
McCartney made international headlines in 2006 when he staged a photo-op on the ice floes in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, calling for an end to the centuries-old hunt.
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