Holy See Urges UN to Give Priority to Poor

Underlines Responsibility to Address Climate Change

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NEW YORK, OCT. 7, 2009 (Zenit.org).- The Holy See is calling on the international community to renew the priority of aiding the poor and vulnerable, especially those that are unable to respond to the economic crisis.

Archbishop Celestino Migliore, permanent observer of the Holy See at the United Nations, affirmed this in his Tuesday address to the U.N. general assembly in their 64th session regarding the report of the secretary-general on the work of the organization.

The prelate pointed out that the current worldwide financial crisis has “raised a number of questions about the causes and consequences of the economic downturn and created even more questions as to what the future will hold.”

One year later, he said, we begin this session with “a new sense of purpose to learn from the mistakes and renew our commitment to the need for cooperation.”

In the session, the archbishop reiterated his delegation’s insistence on “the need for greater global solidarity in order to tackle the moral implications which currently face the world and to give a renewed priority to the poor.”

He acknowledged the secretary general’s “recognition of the moral grounds which underlie the need to give priority to the most vulnerable in this endeavor.”

Archbishop Migliore urged the United Nations and developed countries to “come together to give assistance to the many countries unable to respond to the financial crisis and who continue to face security and development challenges.”

He continued: “In some countries which lag behind the rest of the world, the precarious and drifting economic situation was not created but rather was accentuated by the current financial crisis.

“Development aid will be effective only to the extent local governments and civil society confront the situation with an impetus of responsibility to address the chronic political, administrative and social malfunctioning.”

A test

The archbishop welcomed the secretary general’s call for greater commitment to peacemaking and peacekeeping.

He looked ahead to the upcoming Copenhagen Conference on climate change, as a “test” of “the ability of the international community to work together to attend to a problem which has both global causes and consequences.”

The prelate added that at the heart of this matter is “the moral and ethical need for individuals, companies and States to recognize their responsibility to use the world’s resources in a sustainable manner.”

He also recognized the increasing commitment of some states to nuclear disarmament.

However, the prelate added, further efforts are needed “if we are to make serious progress in controlling and unilaterally disarming these instruments of destruction.”

Archbishop Migliore ended by emphasizing the role of faith-based organizations in “providing insight into the local needs of the community, delivering care and fostering solidarity both locally and internationally for the needs of people around the world.”

He expressed his delegation’s commitment to work together with the rest of the U.N. members to “help create an organization guided by duty, morality and solidarity with those in need.”

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Full text: zenit.org/article-27092?l=english

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