SECRETARY-GENERAL SAYS NEGLECT OF DEVELOPMENT CAN LEAD TO BREACHES OF PEACE, THREATEN GLOBAL SECURITY
SECRETARY-GENERAL SAYS NEGLECT OF DEVELOPMENT CAN LEAD TO BREACHES OF PEACE, THREATEN GLOBAL SECURITY19951017 Message to Mark International Day for Eradication of Poverty
This is the text of a message from Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali to mark the observance today, 17 October, as International Day for the Eradication of Poverty:
This International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, organized jointly by the United Nations and the ATD Fourth World Movement, testifies to the growing recognition that poverty is a global concern, requiring global attention. The struggle against poverty throughout the world must be a central priority for governments and peoples everywhere. That priority possesses more than a moral or ethical dimension. It is a social, political and economic imperative for all humankind.
The World Summit for Social Development gave political momentum and direction at the highest level to a series of actions and commitments which enjoin the international community to address poverty or underdevelopment and breaches of peace and international security can no longer be denied. Each day brings fresh evidence and grim reminder of how neglect of critical root issues can lead to strife, violence and war, and how such conflict creates enormous obstacles to poverty eradication and development.
The United Nations is transforming these recognitions into concrete action. Joint meetings of its Committee for Programme and Coordination and the Administrative Committee on Coordination are addressing the issue of poverty eradication. They are devising a coordinated approach for the entire United Nations system towards this objective. The Executive Board of the United Nations Development Programme decided in June that all activities of the Programme will be geared towards and measured against the eradication of poverty. The United Nations Secretariat, the Specialized Agencies, the Regional Commissions -- all are defining and, where necessary, redefining the thrust of their activities towards that ultimate goal.
Non-governmental organizations, such as the ATD Fourth World Movement, have a vital role to play in this central task of our time. Such organizations reach out to people living in poverty, to the disadvantaged and
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marginalized, giving them a voice and ensuring their participation in economic, social and political life within their societies. The United Nations stands ready to cooperate with non-governmental organizations, helping to ensure a common effort at all levels -- local, State, regional and international.
The General Assembly has declared 1996 the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty. The World Summit for Social Development has called on the General Assembly to declare the decade to follow the Year as the first United Nations decade for the eradication of poverty. On this day, I call for solidarity among all the world's nations and peoples. Only by strengthening the bonds of human solidarity can we free ourselves of the inhuman scourge of poverty and assure ourselves of a brighter future.
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