Global perspective Human stories

'This generation can make poverty history,' Annan says in message to Live 8

'This generation can make poverty history,' Annan says in message to Live 8

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today joined people across the world who are supporting the 'Live 8' concert events which advocate the adoption of anti-poverty measures by a summit of the Group of 8 (G8) industrialized countries later this month.

Mr. Annan, who will attend the concert at Hyde Park in London today, said his aim in doing so is “to show support for all the millions of people in the world who stand to benefit if the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are reached – especially the children who will be saved from malaria or AIDS, who will grow up healthy, go to school and have the chance to earn their living and enjoy life.”

In a message to the event, he voiced appreciation to the artists “who are devoting their time and talents to such a vital cause” and stressed that ordinary voters have influence over important decisions taken by governments. “This generation – with its voice, with its votes, with its hard work – really can make poverty history,” he said.

According to the organizers, Live 8 is part of a “day of action across the world which kick-starts The Long Walk to Justice that calls on the leaders of the world's richest countries to act when they meet in Gleneagles on 6-9 July.”

Events today in London, Edinburgh, Philadelphia, Berlin, Paris and Rome, as well as other locations around the world, aim to bring millions of people together to call for complete debt cancellation, more and better aid and trade justice for the world's poorest people, the organizers say.

Among the artists taking part in London are the African Children's Choir, Annie Lennox, Bob Geldof, Coldplay, Dido, Elton John, Joss Stone, Keane, the Killers, Madonna, Mariah Carey, Ms. Dynamite, Paul McCartney, Pink Floyd, Razorlight, REM, Robbie Williams, Scissor Sisters, Snoop Dogg, Snow Patrol, Stereophonics, Sting, Travis, U2, UB40 and Velvet Revolver.