Maldives, threatened by global warming, has appealed to the US to back the Kyoto Protocol. "We have to strive to point out the problems that are associated with climate change and the responsibilities we feel lie with countries such as the US," said Ismail Shafeeu, the country's minister of environment. He said the US rejection of the Kyoto Protocol was disappointing. But he hoped that the US could be convinced of the need to curb emissions. According to him, even a small rise in the sea level would threaten the lives of the islands' 270,000 people. More than 80 per cent of islands are just one metre above the sea.
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