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Gerry Adams welcomes Trócaire report on poverty eradication

18 May, 2005

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams has welcomed this mornings publication by Trócaire of its research into the impact of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). And the Sinn Féin leader has urged the Irish and British governments to lead by example and move quickly to honour the commitments they made five years ago at the Millennium summit on issues around debt, aid and trade.

The Trócaire report, 'More than a Numbers Game? - Ensuring that the Millennium Development Goals address Structural Injustice', confirms that what is urgently needed is for all of the 189 governments, but especially the developed nations, who signed up to the Millennium Declaration five years ago to keep to the commitments they made then.

At that time world leaders agreed achievable goals for development and poverty eradication to be achieved by 2015. These also included halting the spread of HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases, increasing the availability of safe drinking water and improved education provision for children.

However, Trócire's report, as well as others by the United Nations, show that most countries are falling behind these targets.

Urgent action is needed to reverse this trend. This means in particular the cancellation of the enormous burden of debt suffered by developing nations.

It also means ensuring the provision of more aid, better targeted and sustained. In addition the world trading system has to be reformed. It places poorer nations at a distinct disadvantage to the larger nations, as well as to the huge multi-national corporations. Globalisation prioritises profit over human need and sacrifices the poor and vulnerable on the altar of the marketplace.

If money used to pay off foreign debt were diverted back into health and education, and the other goals set by the Millennium Summit were implemented, the lives of seven million children could be saved each year. That is the lives of 1000 children every hour, of every day, of every week could be saved.

Trócaire's report is an important contribution to the necessary debate around efforts to end these injustices." ENDS

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