Vatican UN observer says agricultural reform will defeat poverty
The international struggle against poverty begins by improving life in rural communities -- and that calls for the cooperation of rich countries, Archbishop Renato Martino has told the United Nations.
Martino, the Vatican's permanent observer at the United Nations, was speaking on Tuesday before a special committee of the General Assembly that was addressing the question of sustainable development and international economic cooperation.
Beginning with the principle of the universal destination of material goods, a decisive concept of Christian social doctrine, Archbishop Martino concentrated his talk on the need to make a qualitative change in social policies affecting poor countries.
He said there must be a basic policy "that attacks rural poverty, since most of the world's poor still live in a rural area," the archbishop said.
"It is necessary to stress once again the importance of implementing agrarian reforms that are effective, equitable and productive," Martino affirmed.