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Archbishop Desmond Tutu speaks out in favour of the poor in South Africa and about the up-coming Commonwealth summit in Sri Lanka



Nobel peace laureate, Archbishop Desmond Tutu has said that the progress being made by South Africa would be halted if steps are not taken to narrow the gap between the rich and the poor in the country. The retired Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town said this in New Delhi, India on Tuesday as he delivered the inaugural Janagraha L.C. Jain Memorial Lecture at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library.
The lecture was to acknowledge the contribution of people who worked to promote human rights like the late L.C. Jain, a follower of Ghandi and freedom fighter. He was India's first high commissioner to South Africa after the end of apartheid in 1994.
Archbishop Tutu said “The poor want to be treated with dignity and cooperate with those who want to improve their condition.” He thanked India for its support to the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa.
Meanwhile, speaking about the upcoming meeting of the Commonwealth in Sri Lanka in an interview with Reuters on Thursday, Archbishop Tutu said a boycott of a meeting of Commonwealth leaders could help pressure authorities in Colombo to address alleged war crimes against minority Tamils. The Sri Lankan government, which defeated separatist Tamil Tiger rebels in 2009, is under increasing pressure from the international community to try those responsible for rights abuses during the nearly three-decade-long conflict.
Tutu, who is 82, won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 for speaking out against white minority rule in South Africa and supported the economic boycott of country during the apartheid era. He is chairman of The Elders, a group of prominent former world leaders which was started by former South Africa President Nelson Mandela to advocate on humanitarian issues. Groups such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have called on the 53 Commonwealth heads of government, which include Britain and its former colonies, not to attend, or to send a low-level delegation, to Sri Lanka.
(Source: UCAN and Reuters)
Photo: The former Anglican archbishop Desmond Tutu poses for a photograph after an interview with Reuters in New Delhi November 7, 2013.




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