Jubilee 2000 hold march in Prague
Meanwhile, back on the other side of the river, Prague saw the first major demonstration against the policies of the IMF and the World Bank. It was organised by Jubilee 2000, one of the most active and probably most respected groups opposed to the two institutions. Jubilee 2000 wants the IMF and World Bank to cancel 100 percent of the national debt of 22 of the world's most poorest nations--something which the two groups say is impossible. Ita Dungan reports:
Jubilee 2000 protestors held a funeral march through the Czech capital. The march symbolised the 19,000 children who, they say, die every day because of debt repayments. Jubilee 2000 says Third World debt is the major cause of poverty in developing nations. Ann Pettifor is the group's UK chairwoman: The march culminated at Prague's enormous metronome at Letna park overlooking the Vltava River. One of the protestors, who had travelled from England to attend the demonstration, explained why she was there: However, G7 ministers, who form a so-called development commitee to discuss debt relief for the poorest nations, have already rejected Jubilee 2000's call to cancel the debt of the poorest nations outright. They say they have plans to speed up the debt relief which was promised at the Cologne summit in 1999. A move which has definitely not satisfied Jubilee 2000 and will probably add to grievances of those involved in the expected demonstations later in the week.