Don't blow Africa's chance, Bono warns EU

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Artykuł pochodzi z pisma "Guardian"

Don't blow Africa's chance, Bono warns EU


Bono took the African aid campaign to Brussels today, warning European leaders due to decide next week on a plan to double EU aid to the continent over the next 10 years: "Don't blow it."
The U2 singer said his message also applied to the world leaders who will meet next month at the G8 summit in Scotland.
After meeting the European commission president, José Manuel Barroso, Bono argued that perhaps one of the reasons people had rejected the European constitution was because they did not feel connected to the vision of Europe promoted by politicians.
The singer, who spoke at a news conference alongside Mr Barroso after the two had met privately for half an hour, said helping Africa was a way for European people to feel such a connection.
Bono said: "I think perhaps that one of the reasons there is not support for the European constitution, the European dream, is because a lot of people don't share it.
"I am in a band and we travel around Europe and around the world, and what we pick up from our audiences is a lack of vision from Europe. People don't 'feel' Europe."
Bono said the problem of Africa represented a chance for politicians and Europeans to "redescribe" themselves and their capabilities.
He said his message to politicians was: "Don't blow it. Put down your national flags. Look up from the numbers and see the future."
Mr Barroso said he hoped a doubling of development aid to Africa and other countries would be confirmed at next Thursday's EU summit in Brussels. "We have some problems in Europe [but] those problems are nothing compared with those people who are dying every day," he said.
Ministers from the EU nations have already endorsed the aid plan, which aims to take the EU's €46bn (£30bn) annual development aid to over €90 bn by 2015. However, Germany, Italy and Portugal have expressed reservations, citing an economic slowdown as the reason.
Mr Blair will hold talks with business leaders tonight to promote his plans on tackling climate change and African poverty. The prime minister will meet bosses from Shell, British Airways and Ford to set out his agenda for Britain's presidency of the G8.
The EU summit is an important part of the run-up to next month's G8 summit in Gleneagles, where the prime minister, Tony Blair, is hoping to use Britain's presidency of the EU to help win international commitments for debt relief and more aid for Africa.
In Washington, Mr Blair won an agreement in principle on Tuesday from the US president, George Bush, that 18 African countries would be eligible for a 100% write-off of debts owed to the World Bank and the African Development Bank. The chancellor, Gordon Brown, was last night finalising the details of the deal.
Today in Brussels, Bono had encouraging words for the EU, which is currently facing its worst political crisis in decades after France and the Netherlands voted against the new constitutional treaty.
"All this fighting in the European family feels very normal to me," he said, to laughter, at a press conference attended by dozens of EU commission secretaries. "At our kitchen table it was just one long row, and yet that is the thing I miss the most. It was always the families up the road who ate with knives and forks and never spoke to one another."
Europe, Bono said, was like his family: "strong in diversity and narkiness".
He said it was nothing less than "stupid" that thousands of Africans were dying each day for lack of food and poverty; there would always be natural disasters that could not be fixed, but hunger and poverty were things Europe and the world could do something about.
He admitted, however, that there was a big gulf between politicians signing cheques and people being able to cash them. "I am in the cheque business," he said.
Asked what motivated a man who could live the rock-star dream without worrying about poverty, he replied: "megalomania".
He added: "A sense of what is possible. People are dying for the most stupid of reasons. I have been in hospitals in Malawi where people are queuing up to die three in a bed - things you think you would never see in your life."
He said the push for African debt relief and tackling hunger, poverty and HIV/Aids was "a winnable war", not "wide-eyed, misty-eyed Irish nonsense".
Meanwhile, the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor, urged Catholics in England and Wales to attend the Make Poverty History rally in Edinburgh on July 2.
The rally is due to take place four days before Sir Bob Geldof's Live 8 concert and rally in the city.
Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor said: "I would like as many Catholics as possible in England and Wales to join us at the Make Poverty History rally on July 2. Such opportunities to tip the world's scale in favour of the poor come only once or twice in a generation."
The cardinal's Scottish counterpart, Cardinal Keith O'Brien, urged Scottish Catholics to attend the event, at which both men will speak.
Some concerns have been raised about Sir Bob's call for 1 million people to go to the July 6 rally. However, the Catholic aid agency Cafod described the July 2 event as "a peaceful, family-friendly event where the voice of Catholics will be heard by world leaders".


capability- możliwość, zdolność, potencjał
commitment- zobowiązanie, obowiązek; popełnienie (czegoś)
counterpart- odpowiednik
diversity- różnorodność, zróżnicowanie
eligible for- kwalifikujący się, nadający się
endorse- popierać, aprobować
narkiness- powodowanie zamieszek, psucie nastroju
rally- wiec
slowdown- spowolnienie
tackle- brać się za coś, uporać się
tip- przewracać, wywalać
write-off- odpisanie

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