“No Nation has the right to bide one´s time“




“Focused development cooperation is a part of Iceland's determined effort to regain trust and show in action that we have concerns for the poorest inhabitants of the world,” says Össur Skarphéðinsson Minister for Foreign Affairs. “In the middle of the crisis the Icelandic nation is understandably preoccupied with the catastrophe which in no time at all indebted thousands of families. At the same time, thousands of children are put to death in other parts of the world by silent catastrophes of poverty. The focus of the media is not on the chilly fact that each and every day, around 24 thousand children under the age of five die because of diseases and poverty all around the world. Every two weeks, poverty deprives nearly 350 thousand children their lives, or more than the whole of Iceland's population.

“No nation, not even a nation going through a temporary crisis, has the moral right to bide one´s time. It is everyone's obligation to try as hard as they can to reach out and help people who don't even enjoy their inherent right to begin the lives they were given when born. That is the reason why Iceland takes a part in international humanitarian work and development cooperation – even though we are going through a financial crisis”.

(a part of an article written by Össur Skarphéðinsson in Þróunarmál 2010 – in Icelandic)