On the first day of the official program of the V World Social Forum (WSF), a proposal signed by hundreds of organizations asks for the cancellation of the foreign debt of countries in the South, especially those that suffered the consequences of the tsunami.
Beverly Keene, an economist from the United States, human rights activist in Argentina, and member of the Southern Jubilee movement, which wants the debts of developing countries to be audited, says that investments in these countries are being increasingly diverted to the payment of interest on foreign debt.
“This appeal, which now has the backing of hundreds of organizations here in the Forum, has made the rounds extensively and has been obtaining ever greater support,” she affirms.
According to Keene, this moment is crucial, because on February 4-5, a meeting of the G-7 (the group of the world’s wealthiest countries) will be held. “We would like to send them this proposal,” she added.
The document urges countries “to stop paying burdensome and illegitimate debts,” to give priority to “emergency assistance, rehabilitation, social services, drinking water, and other human development programs.”
Translation: David Silberstein