(02-16-2004) Brown calls for support to double aid - Reuters * - U2 Feedback

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Old 02-16-2004, 09:13 AM   #1
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(02-16-2004) Brown calls for support to double aid - Reuters *

Brown calls for support to double aid.

LONDON (Reuters) - Chancellor Gordon Brown has called again for the international community to back his plan to double aid to the world's poorest countries.

Brown made his appeal on Monday at a conference on globalisation designed to remind world leaders of their ambitious commitments at the turn of the century to dramatically reduce poverty by 2015.

Brown has been pressing other rich countries over the last year to back his proposal for an International Finance Facility (IFF), which would raise annual aid to poor countries to $100 billion (53 billion pounds) from the current $50 billion.

The plan requires donor countries to commit to payments right through until 2015. The IFF would then use these commitments as collateral for bonds issued in international capital markets to provide cash now to fund extra grants for health, education and debt relief.

A number of high-profile figures like the pope have backed the plan enthusiastically, but so far the IFF has not won the full endorsement of the Group of Seven rich nations.

"I ask all governments ...to immediately look seriously at our proposal for an International Finance Facility," Brown said.

He said support for the plan was growing. Brown and French Finance Minister Francis Mer are to hold a conference on the plan in April in Paris with representatives from 60 countries.

Irish rock superstar Bono, who was invited as a keynote speaker, threw his weight behind Brown's initiative, saying the world needed to "dramatise" development issues in the way London's Live Aid concert for Ethiopian famine victims did nearly twenty years ago.

Speaking via video link, the lead singer of U2 said: "We need you and (Prime Minister) Tony (Blair) to be the Lennon/McCartney of geopolitics. But what we need here is not love, all we need is here is passion."

Brown chimed in: "I believe we can work it out."


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Old 02-17-2004, 12:52 PM   #2
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There are simply not enough words that can be said to sufficiently express the Respect and Gratitude that I have (as so many of us have) for Bono's uncompromising stance he continues to take on behalf of the millions of people around the world that he knows can not speak for themselves at a conference like this.

I'm encouraged to know that, while U2 continues to work on what we all know will be a GREAT CD when it's released, Bono refuses to give up the struggle for Justice (especially in Africa) which is so close to his heart!

Keep up the Good Works, Bono, and know that many of us out here are also working for Justice and Africa's future alongside you.

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Old 02-18-2004, 09:09 AM   #3
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Jamila, you're so right!

And, even if someone says Bono's leaving Africa, I'm sure of the contrary!
He always said he can't -- there's so much to do and so many people in need!
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Old 02-18-2004, 12:57 PM   #4
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I agree with you, valentina 100%!

I do not believe the "report" that said that Bono wanted to leave the struggle for Africa. His whole life since returning from Ethiopia in 1985 was to seek Justice for Africa and her People. Why would he give it all up now when DATA has been SO successful in its advocacy for Africa?

I would hate to think that there are people in Bono's life who wish to see him give up one of the most important areas of his life simply because it interferes or inconveniences their life/lives a bit.

I personally think that it would slowly destroy Bono's Spirit if anyone (U2's fans or others) would demand this from him.

Keep up the GOOD WORKS, Bono. There are thousands of us out here who support you!

It's a Beautiful Day! Don't let it get away!
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