Erdo?an slams rich countries for indifference to LDC summit

TODAY’S ZAMAN
?STANBUL


Recep Tayyip Erdo?an hosted a lunch for heads of states and governments participating in the LDC-IV summit in ?stanbul. UN chief Ban Ki-moon (C) was also present.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdo?an on Monday criticized rich countries for remaining indifferent to the Fourth United Nations Least Developed Countries (LDC-IV) summit in ?stanbul.
The prime minister said the summit is the UN’s most important summit after the General Assembly meeting, noting that this summit, held in every ten years, aims to establish a future vision to fight against poverty and starvation. “But we observe with deep sorrow that developed and wealthy countries don’t pay sufficient attention to this significant summit. We have problems today that do not recognize boundaries, countries, people or geography. Environmental problems, climate change, poverty, terrorism and problems related to immigration do not just threaten certain countries or regions but the entire globe,” Erdo?an said.
Erdo?an’s remarks came at a lunch when he was hosting heads of states and governments and high-level managers participating in the summit. Erdo?an said the countries are not interested in fixing these problems do great injustice to the future of both their nations and the world. He said poverty and the problems of the poor do not only concern those individuals but “all of us, all of humanity.”

“In a world where tens of millions of people spend less than $1.25 daily, I put it plainly, no one is innocent,” the prime minister said.

Erdo?an said that, while Turkey is waging a decisive war against terrorism, the country is left alone in its struggle, complaining that there are still countries that do not lend support to Turkey’s struggle against terrorism.

“We know that there are countries reluctant in the struggle against the [outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party] terrorist organization, there are even countries that support the terrorist organization,” Erdo?an stressed.

More than 10,000 guests, including ministers, parliamentarians, private sector representatives, scientists and members of non-governmental organizations from 192 UN-member countries are attending the event.

The conference brings together nearly 50 heads of state and governments, 10 vice-presidents, 94 ministers and the chairmen of 47 international organizations.Erdo?an said it is already obvious that it is necessary to solve all global issues on the grounds of democracy and freedom with international solidarity. .

Ban says underdeveloped countries under debt burden

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday said in his speech at the opening ceremony of the 4th United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC-IV) that many underdeveloped countries are under a significant debt burden. There are 48 least developed countries in the world, and more than 900 million people are living on an income of below $2 per day, Ban said during the opening session of the conference.

He noted that people living in LDCs face many economic, environmental and security problems.

Eight of 15 UN peace operations were carried out in those countries, and 60 percent of the global immigrant population over the last decade comprised LDC nationals, Ban said.

The secretary-general said LDCs only had a 1 percent share in world exports, and that less than 2 percent of global investments were made in those countries. However, investment in LDCs would help these countries overcome their economic problems and ensure stability, Ban said.

Official Development Assistance has increased threefold in the last decade, he said, but added that it is still below the UN’s goals.

Around 70 percent of people in LDCs were employed in agriculture, and small farms should be equipped with infrastructure and appropriate technology, he said.

Ban noted that the LDCs were on the brink of a serious crisis regarding nutrition and food safety due to increasing food prices. The secretary-general said he hopes the Doha development goals regarding trade are reached, and expressed his desire for the LDCs to constitute the next wave of development in the world.

The LDC-IV is taking place in ?stanbul on May 9-13.


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