DHAKA, Pakistan, (Reuter): Eleven Asian nations, including some of the world’s poorest, accused developed countries of worsening the plight of peasants by misdirecting aid.

“Past development efforts and programmes have not largely succeeded in benefiting the rural people and contributed to urban rural imbalance, in some cases accentuating poverty, hunger and malnutrition,” they said in a joint statement.

The statement, called the Dhaka declaration, was issued following a today meeting of the Centre for Integrated Rural Development in Asia and the Pacific (CIRDAP) which ended yesterday.

“The struggle to survive of millions of rural kpoor living below the margins of human existence is of great consequence to the peace and stability of the world”, it said. “Maximum efforts should be made to mobilize and use productively domestic sources aimed at alleviating rural poverty through people’s participation”, it said. The meeting was attended by agriculture or local government ministers from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam.

Bangladesh President Hossaih Mohammad Ershad said the foundation stone of the new CIRDAP secretariat in Dhaka.

Article extracted from this publication >>  April 17, 1987