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Calmy-Rey calls on governments to combat hunger

Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey has called on governments around the world to do more to fight against hunger.

She told a demonstration in Bern on Saturday afternoon, attended by several hundred people, that adequate nourishment was a “universal human right”.

On World Hunger Day, Calmy-Rey noted that hunger caused the deaths of 24,000 people every day and stressed that it was above all the result of lack of governance.

Calmy-Rey called for a development policy worthy of the name and cooperation that effectively supported countries concerned.

The Swiss government has proposed to parliament to gradually increase the amount of gross national product devoted to state development aid from 0.47 per cent in 2009 to 0.5 per cent by 2015.

The increase will mean that Switzerland’s contribution will be slightly higher than the average of countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

A foreign ministry statement said that the elimination of poverty and hunger was one of the eight Millennium Development Goals to which Switzerland was “strongly committed”, particularly through the work of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), which last year contributed about SFr220 million ($220.23 million) to the fight against hunger.

Saturday’s event in front of the Swiss parliament was organised by the Swiss Alliance against Hunger.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR