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DEBT RELIEF IS REAL MILLENNIUM CELEBRATION
LONDON (CWNews.com) - The British Government's decision to cancel third world debt is "a real reason to celebrate the new millennium", the director of the Catholic overseas aid agency CAFOD said on Wednesday.
"When CAFOD carried out a MORI poll to launch our debt campaign in 1998, the British public voted overwhelmingly for the Government to mark the millennium by giving a new start to the poorest people in the world," said Julian Filochowski. "Domes, street parties, and Ferris wheels were rejected in favor of a meaningful gesture that would actually change the world for the better. Now, after years of hard campaigning, the British Government has given us the Jubilee declaration that we have been waiting for."
Chancellor Gordon Brown announced the scheme to write off hundreds of millions of pounds in debts owed to it by some of the world's poorest countries a week before Christmas. "It's obviously only a start to completing this process of debt relief and poverty reduction, but it is the important start that I think everyone is looking for," he told the BBC. "It is no longer a question of people talking about what they are going to do, it is now a question of action."
Before the announcement, Filochowski met with Brown and pressed the Government to use its own announcement to put pressure on the governments of Germany, France, and Japan to mark the millennium with a similar gesture.
January 5, 2000 |
volume 10, no. 3
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