.- Archbishop Celestino Migliore, Permanent Observer of the Holy See at the United Nations, said today that both mere economic interests as well as ecological extremism must be avoided to solve the spike in food prices that is affecting poor nations.
Speaking before at the 16th session of the Commission on Sustainable Development on Friday, the Apostolic Nuncio stressed "our important responsibility as governmental leaders to point the way forward to addressing the many issues of sustainable development and to find the means for building a better future."
"The world is currently facing a challenge of meeting this very goal in the form of a global food crisis. This crisis reveals the delicate and interlinking nature of agriculture, rural development, land reform, drought and desertification, and presents a daunting yet important and urgent task to policy makers and civil society," he added.
Archbishop Migliore said that the current food crisis "should not be measured merely by the rise in costs throughout the international food markets", but also by "the physical, mental and spiritual cost of those who are unable to provide for themselves and their families."
Addressing the food crisis, he said, requires "avoiding reducing the dialogue to self-interested and ideologically driven economic and environmental extremes."
"While the current food crisis presents an immediate threat to development, society must continue to address persisting and imminent challenges such as climate change, harmful agricultural subsidies, fair trade, environmental degradation and land reform," he concluded.