Louise Arbour urges rights-based approach to achieving anti-poverty targets

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour has called on nations to ensure that strategies to achieve anti-poverty goals be grounded in internationally recognized human rights.

She cited sobering statistics on child mortality, saying it remains “deeply troubling” in parts of Africa, while the number of people dying of HIV and AIDS worldwide increased to 2.9 million in 2006. In addition, sub-Saharan Africa is presently not on track to achieve any of the global anti-poverty targets, known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), she noted.

“The disturbing midpoint snapshot must serve as a call to action on behalf of us all…Despite progress in some areas and in some parts of the world, it appears that governments are not honouring the commitments they have made.”