Native Hawaiian leaders call for expansion of national monument

Published: May. 5, 2016 at 9:32 PM HST|Updated: May. 6, 2016 at 1:31 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Native Hawaiian leaders are calling on President Obama to expand the protection of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.

Supporters want the President to preserve the culturally significant Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument to protect their close ocean hertiage to the sea..

"We believe this expansion is essential to protecting our waters in the face of an uncertain global future," said Keuewa Kikiloi, Chair of the Native Hawaiian Cultural Working Group.

If granted, the monument boundaries would expand from 50 nautical miles to 200 nautical miles, excluding the waters of Niihau and Kauai. Under the Native Hawaiian proposal, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs would become a co-trustee of the Monument..

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