Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN)
 


Response to the "Statement of the Madrid High-Level Meeting on Food Security for All"
To The Government of Spain and the United Nations (UN) General Secretary Ban Ki-moon
12 February 2009


The More and Better campaign is pleased that we were invited to take part in the Madrid High-Level Meeting on Food Security for All, but we have some serious complains about the way the meeting was carried out and about the final statement which was posted on the website after the meeting.

The statement dated Madrid January 27th 2009 gives a totally wrong impression of the process and outcome of the meeting. Even though it declares that the statement reflects the Chair summary of the proceedings it is not acceptable that such a statement, that was not negotiated, is sent out as the main summary of the meeting. We therefore ask the Government of Spain and the UN General Secretary to take the actions needed to withdraw the statement as the official summary from the meeting, and to post this letter and other responses to the statement on the website and send them to all the participants and others who were sent the final statement.

There was no consensus in the high-level meeting on the establishment of the proposal for a new Global Partnership for Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition or for the establishment of a contact group. The opposition to establish these was raised by several governments and representatives from UN institutions, and was also very clearly stated by Henry Saragih from Via Campesina on behalf of civil society organizations present at the meeting. The More and Better campaign and many other organizations also voiced our disagreement to the proposal for a new "Global Partnership" directly to the meeting, in letters to the Government of Spain. Neither prime minister Zapatero or UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon mentioned any consensus at the conference in their closing speeches.

The More and Better campaign also wants to express our deep dismay at the lack of transparency and inclusiveness of the process of organizing this meeting and of the process for conducting the meeting. Many governments and most civil society organizations were not even able to speak at the conference. The total lack of any kind of transparent procedure for any statement or summary of the conference, is also totally unacceptable.

The More and Better campaign is dedicated in our efforts to contribute to the fight against hunger and poverty. We want to cooperate with other organizations, governments and institutions in urgently needed work. To make the fight against hunger and poverty successful, transparent, inclusive and democratic processes are needed to agree on common policies and actions. Unfortunately the good intentions of the Governments of Spain, the UN Secretary General and other people and institutions were not followed through in the organization of and the statement from the Madrid High Level Meeting.

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