According to information provided by Turkey's Underwater Research Foundation-Mediterranean Seal Research Group (SAD-AFAG), there are only around 500 Mediterranean seals left in the world, and about 100 of these are living in the waters off Turkey. Currently, the Mediterranean seal's risk of extinction is considered by experts to be first degree, which has sparked the formation of an international group aimed at protecting this special animal.
The accord was signed by the Spanish Fundacion para la Conservacion de la Biodiversidad y su Habitat (CBD-Habitat), the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), Greece's Hellenic Society for the Study and Protection of the Monk Seal (MOm), Switzerland's The Monachus Guardian, The Portuguese Parque Natural da Madeira and SAD-AFAG from Turkey.
The International Mediterranean Seal Protection Alliance Accord was prepared as a result of talks and meetings between these groups and was signed on the Portuguese island of Madeira. The aim of the accord is to keep the Mediterranean seal (Monachus monachus) from becoming extinct and to improve the ecological conditions necessary for the species to survive and thrive.
All of the organizations that signed the accord are involved in the current efforts to protect and improve the life conditions of the critically endangered Mediterranean seal and are non-profit environmental organizations.