|Germany||BISHOPS SEEKING DEBT REDUCTION VISIT BONN|
As the proposal to halve third world debt was being relaunched yesterday by German Chancellor Helmut Schroeder, 16 Catholic bishops of both debtor and creditor nations were visiting to German capital to present their case to him.
"Without a drastic reduction of the debt, the poor countries will be unable to integrate into the global economy," Schroeder said after meeting with the bishops. The Chancellor said he would personally promote the sale of IMF gold reserves.
A meeting in Lusaka, the capital of Zambia, on the other hand, ended with an appeal to the G-7 summit to cancel the foreign debt altogether. A declaration formulated by the Jesuit Centre of Theological Research, Protestant churches and lay groups, presents "a forceful appeal for cancellation of the debt."
The Centre's Director, Fr Peter Henriot, said that Zambia's foreign debt amounts to "$A1050 per capita and a total of $A10.5 million." According to Father Henriot, the declaration calls for the cancellation of the debt, the disengagement of poor countries from programs of economic reform imposed by international organizations, and an end to dependence on outside agents.
Zenit 11:33am 16/6/99