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Outcome of UN World Summit

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Wednesday, 21 September 2005

Outcome of UN World Summit

CIDSE press communiqué on outcome of UN World Summit, 16 September 2005
The World Summit fell far short of expectations but we cannot simply write it off.
'Judging from its outcome, it is merely a reiteration of old promises. But alongside the agreed bottom line, individual member states have lined up in a kind of beauty contest to set out their own initiatives and commitments to international co-operation,' observed Paul Chitnis, President of CIDSE. 'The 350,000 citizens who have participated in the CIDSE postcard campaign and the millions involved in the Global Call to Action against Poverty will hold their governments accountable to these commitments. They will challenge them to finally translate all their long made promises into action.

The first test will be the Annual Meetings of the International Financial Institutions next week when the modalities of the July G8 Summit's decision to cancel the debts of 18 highly indebted countries will be hammered out. While debt relief was strongly endorsed by the World Summit, many governments of rich countries are in fact attempting to undermine the decision on debt cancellation. 'Rich countries cannot afford to go back on this decision', Chitnis said. 'It will not only put their leadership in question but will come at a high cost for those to whom every dollar spent in paying off their countries' debts is a dollar less to spend on food, education and fighting diseases.'
Viewing the challenge at a larger level, he observed, 'Multilateralism was gravely compromised in the final preparatory phase of the Summit when some countries held the success of the summit hostage to their own interests. It is urgently necessary for world leaders to address this breakdown and prove their commitment to a global partnership for development and renewal.'
'The Millennium Development Goals, which were developed to tackle the most urgent crises including the lack of food security, inequitable distribution of resources and debt, demand global action. A strong United Nations is crucial in this endeavor,' he ended.