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Food report challenges global governance

11. October 2010

    Food and nutrition policies need a profound turnaround according to the 2010 Right to Food and Nutrition Watch being launched in Geneva today by the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance (EAA), World Organization against Torture (OMCT) and the World YWCA.

    With almost one billion people still suffering chronic hunger, the report emphasizes the urgent need for policymakers at the national and international level to take the human right to food and nutrition into account in policies and practices.

    The 2010 report focuses on land grabbing and nutrition through contributions from Olivier de Schutter, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food; Angeline Munzara, EAA Food Campaign Coordinator; Huguette Akplogan-Dossa, Regional Coordinator for RAPDA (African Network on the Right to Food); Flavio Valente, FIAN International General Secretary, and others.

    Reports are included on the state of the implementation of the right to food and nutrition in nine countries: Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Colombia, Guatemala, Indonesia, Kenya, Mozambique, Spain and Zambia. The Right to Food and Nutrition Watch shows how land grabbing aggravates hunger in Africa, Asia and Latin America by leading to eviction of peasant communities from their main source of livelihood.

    The report highlights that there is hope in far-reaching governance reforms of the Committee on Food Security (CFS) as the one global platform for coordination on food security policy and action.

    "The new CFS needs to show its effectiveness by taking strong action against land grabbing and speculation in food commodity markets and by mainstreaming nutrition into global strategies against hunger," emphasized Peter Prove, EAA Executive Director. "Food security also must be protected by involving all those who use land when decisions are made on land access and utilization."

    "The Right to Food and Nutrition Watch makes a strong call to hold governments and international actors to account under international human rights law by monitoring the effects of national and international policies and investments", stated Eric Sottas, OMCT Secretary General.  "When politicians or companies are found to be responsible for generating hunger, their actions need to be investigated and adequate measures must be taken." 

    Notes for journalists:
    The Right to Food and Nutrition Watch is published annually by Brot für die Welt (Bread for the World), FIAN International and Interchurch Organization for Development Cooperation (ICCO). Available in English, Spanish, French at: www.rtfn-watch.org OR http://www.e-alliance.ch/en/s/food/2010-churches-week-of-action-on-food/resources-for-churches-week-of-action/.

    The launch takes place in the context of the Churches Week of Action on Food (10-17 October) and the upcoming World Food Day, 16 October, International Day for Eradication of Poverty, 17 October and the FAO Committee on Food Security (CFS) meeting, 11-16 October.

    More details on the Geneva launch are available at: http://www.e-alliance.ch/fileadmin/user_upload/docs/Press_Releases/2010/Flyer_LaunchFoodNutritionWatch.pdf

    The Watch is also being launched in Abidjan, Amsterdam, Andhra Pradesh, Bamenda, Bangui, Barcelona, Berlin, Brussels, Copenhagen, Cotonou, Dakar, Delhi, Geneva, Grenoble, Helsinki, Málaga, Mexico City, New Orleans, New York, Ouagadougou, Penang, Rome, Sokodé, Utrecht, Venice and Vienna.

    The Watch is a joint effort of a consortium of human rights organizations, social movements and development agencies. The Consortium for the Watch 2010 includes: African Network on the Right to Food, Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, DanChurchAid, Habitat International Coalition, Observatory Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, People's Health Movement, Inter-American Platform for Human Rights, Democracy and Development, Rights and Democracy, World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action, and World Organization against Torture.

    For more information contact:

    Martin Wolpold-Bosien, FIAN, wolpold-bosien@fian.org, +49-177-339 1263
    Sara Speicher, Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, sspeicher@e-alliance.ch, +44 7821 860 723.
    Tom McCarthy, World Organization against Torture, tmc@omct.org, +41 22 809 5245.

The Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance is a broad international network of churches and Christian organizations cooperating in advocacy on food and HIV and AIDS. The Alliance is based in Geneva, Switzerland. For more information, see http://www.e-alliance.ch/

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