MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Jan. 23) - A campaign is underway in the Northern Marianas to compel the United States Defense Department to clean up a former military site almost 60 years after it was first used by U.S. forces.

The site, in wetlands in the village of Tanapag, has never been assessed or cleaned up by the U.S. military.

Member of parliament Gloria Cabrera says a fuel tank is leaking and has already contaminated the ground water in the area.

Cabrera says she will lobby local and U.S. agencies to begin a clean-up operation.

The Tanapag Action Group says the village was used by America as a military fuel farm and a number of fuel tanks remain in place, leaking fuel and possibly other chemicals.

There are 16 former defence sites in the Northern Marianas awaiting clean-up due to chemical contamination or structural hazards

January 23, 2003

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

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