SMALL PACIFIC STATES SEE GLOBAL WARMING AS THEIR MAJOR SECURITY ISSUE

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HAGÅTÑA, Guam (June 28, 1999-Radio Australia/PIDP/CPIS)---Guam’s delegate in the U.S. House of Representative, Congressman Robert Underwood, says small Pacific Islands states regard global warming as the number one threat to their security.

Underwood attended last week’s security conference in Hawai‘i, joined by defense, security and other officials from most of the countries and territories in the Pacific Islands region.

The conference was sponsored by the Waikiki-based Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies.

Underwood said in addition to drugs, crime, and political change, environmental threats are now regarded as security issues.

"If you are an atoll nation, the biggest threat to your existence has to be global warming," he said.

"What are the environmental challenges that you face if you face the possibility that your island nation may be wiped out by the ocean rising?

"That is a matter of state security," Underwood stressed.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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