Lack of amenities in slums, violation of rights: UN

March 23rd, 2010 - 1:35 am ICT by IANS  

United Nations, March 23 (IANS) Lack of basic amenities in slums across the world is “a violation of human rights”, UN Secretary-general Ban Ki-moon has said and asked global leaders to help the urban poor improve condition to stem environmental degradation
“Conditions in slums are a violation of human rights,” the secretary-general said in a message to the fifth session of the World Urban Forum, which begun in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro Monday.

Helping the urban poor reclaim their rights strengthened societies and stemmed environmental degradation, Ban said.

“The children who have no clean water, the women who fear for their safety, the young people who have no chance to receive a decent education have a right to better, and we have a responsibility to do better (to help them),” Xinhua quoted Ban as saying.

The UN chief said that an estimated 22 million people in developing countries had managed to move out of slums each year during the past decade, but that achievement was “not enough to have the impact required to reduce urban poverty”.

According to the United Nations Human Settlements Program (UN- HABITAT), the number of people living in slums rose from 777 million in 2000 to almost 830 million in 2010.

“All people have the right to safe drinking water, sanitation, shelter and basic services. All people have the right to live with a sense of security. All people should have the opportunity to work for a better future,” Ban said.

“Your plan to launch the World Urban Campaign will advance our work to reach these life-saving goals,” he added.

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