From tusks to tails, nations eye trade in endangered species

GENEVA — Representatives of more than 180 nations are meeting to agree on protections for vulnerable species, taking up issues such as the trade in ivory and the demand for shark fin soup that is decimating shark populations.

The World Wildlife Conference on trade in endangered fauna and flora, known as CITES, which takes place every three years, aims to make sure that global trade in specimens of wild animals and plants doesn't jeopardize their survival.

The conference opens Saturday and runs through Aug. 28, with key decisions expected to be finalized in the last two days.

The Geneva gathering follows three months after the first comprehensive U.N. report on biodiversity warned that extinction is looming for over 1 million species of plants and animals.

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