Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Victory in Iqaluit - From One.org

Last weekend, seven of the world's most powerful countries announced their commitment to complete debt cancellation for Haiti. And ONE was there to help make it happen.

Read about our petition delivery at the G7 meeting in Iqaluit, Canada, on the ONE Blog:
http://www.one.org/r?r=307&id=1450-4530865-C9gXy8x&t=1

On Friday, the Treasury Department announced U.S. government support for complete Haitian debt cancellation. But even as we celebrated the power of your grassroots efforts, we kept the campaign going globally to secure similar commitments from other countries.

That breakthrough happened at the G7 finance ministers' meeting in Iqaluit, Canada. The meeting’s host, Canadian Finance Minister James Flaherty, announced that all the G7 countries – Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the U.S. – have agreed to support complete cancellation of Haiti’s $1 billion international debt.

Your signature was one of 400,000 delivered to the G7 finance ministers' meeting by ONE member Michèle Bertol, a Haitian-Canadian living in the small arctic town of Iqaluit. More than 200,000 ONE members signed the petition, and a further 200,000 signatures came from Avaaz and similar petitions at Oxfam International and Jubilee USA. These and other organizations have helped make this a proud moment for the entire anti-poverty community.

Visit the ONE Blog to learn more about Michèle’s story and the delivery in Iqaluit, and share your thoughts on this victory:
http://www.one.org/r?r=307&id=1450-4530865-C9gXy8x&t=3

Though the InterAmerican Development Bank, IMF, and World Bank have not yet canceled Haiti's debt, the G7 countries hold considerable influence over them. We hope to see the G7 follow through by using their votes when these institutions meet over the next couple of months.

Still, this is a great victory and I’m particularly proud that it came in response to such dire circumstances. Once again, you’ve shown that when we come together as ONE, we can take on great challenges and create real change.

Thank you,

Sheila Nix
U.S. Executive Director, ONE

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