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MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, June 2) - The population of green sea turtles in the Northern Mariana Islands is being monitored as populations continue to decrease there and worldwide.

The United States has classified the green sea turtle as a threatened species.

This makes it illegal to harm them, or to destroy turtle habitats, or sell product made from them.

The Northern Marianas have seen a sharp decrease in the number of green sea turtle's nests with eggs.

The local division of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says there's about 2,000 green sea turtles in the region and public education about their scarcity is a key element in the campaign to protect them.

June 3, 2004

Radio Australia: www.abc.net.au/ra

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