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Madagascar to secure land of protected areas

ANTANANARIVO, June 28 — Madagascar will secure the land of its protected areas under an agreement signed on Thursday between the Ministry of Development and Land Planning and the Ministry of Environment and Forest.

The agreement covers 93 protected areas in the Indian Ocean island nation, according to Rabemanantsoa Jean Claude, director general of the Ministry of Environment and Forest.

The official said his department also plans to have 13 more protected areas.

"The process of creating protected areas has several steps and requires considerable time and resources, both technical and financial but our partners ask to secure the land of our protected areas," Claude added.

In 1995, the Madagascan government signed the Convention on Biological Diversity, pledging that out of the country's 587,040 square km, at least 10 percent would be made protected areas.

Although Madagascar is typical of biodiversity, the latest data from the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) showed that 103 species of flora and fauna, including 62 species of plants and 41 species of animals were officially listed as endangered. (PNA/Xinhua)

CTB/RSM

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