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Halving poverty worldwide

Halving poverty worldwide

Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer referred to the outcome document agreed on by the representatives of the 191 UN member states as a point of departure for further negotiations, noting a need to continue to work diligently towards achieving the millennium development goals. Fischer called these goals a "social Magna Charta" of the present.

In a statement to world leaders gathered at the 60th UN General Assembly in New York, Fischer indicated that Germany will increase the volume of funding it provides for development assistance and that it is thinking of developing new financial instruments for this purpose.

Fight against hunger

Fischer termed it unacceptable that a billion people in the world are having to live on less than a dollar a day and that eleven million children die before their fifth birthday each year. He urged that the strengthening of women's rights, environmental protection, and sustainable development be made an integral part of international policy.

He said it is regrettable that an agreement could not be reached on key issues such as disarmament, the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and the definition of terrorism. He noted that Germany would have preferred an outcome document with much more clearly formulated mandates for action.

Protection of human rights

The German Foreign Minister welcomed the planned establishment of a Human Rights Council in replacement of the Commission on Human Rights. The latter is seen as ineffective and, worse yet, one of the seats on it is held by a dictatorship. Fischer observed that serious issues still need to be resolved with regard to the new body, but that everything possible needs to be done to turn it into an effective instrument for the protection of human rights.

Fischer renewed his request for support of the proposal for Security Council reform put forward by the Group of Four (G4) made up of Germany, Brazil, India, and Japan, saying that the G4 proposal "meets the needs of the United Nations, its member states and regions".

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