> U.S.A.S. - http://www.umich.edu/~sole/usas
> Poor Nations Criticize Rich
> By JOHN RICE
> .c The Associated Press
> HAVANA (AP) - Leading a procession of poor nations in criticism of rich
> states, Cuban President Fidel Castro suggested a war crimes-type tribunal to
> judge capitalist states for the hunger and disease of the developing world.
> ``The images we see of mothers and children in whole regions of Africa under
> the lash of drought and other catastrophes remind us of the concentration
> camps of Nazi Germany,'' he said Wednesday.
> Referring to war crimes trials after World War II, the Cuban leader said:
> ``We lack a Nuremberg to judge the economic order imposed upon us, where
> every three years more men, women and children die of hunger and preventable
> diseases than died in the Second World War.''
> He called for abolishing the International Monetary Fund, which he said
> served the interests of the United States and other rich nations rather than
> those of poor nations forced to implement its free-market austerity policies
> in exchange for aid.
> Castro's speech was the fiercest in a series of attacks made Wednesday at the
> opening of a three-day summit of developing countries. Leaders from some of
> the nations involved in the summit accused rich countries of imposing
> heartless or misguided policies that have kept developing countries
> impoverished and technologically backward.
> Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad defended some free trade, but
> denounced efforts to force it wholesale upon developing countries.
> He said ``rogue currency traders'' plunged his country and East Asia into
> financial crisis by undermining their currencies.
> ``Millions were thrown out of work and made destitute,'' he added. ``The
> international economic institutions moved in ostensibly to help with loans
> but in reality to facilitate the takeover of the country's economy and even
> He suggested that rich countries should permit flee flows of labor as well as
> ``If money is capital for the rich, labor is the capital of the poor
> countries,'' he said. ``They should be allowed to migrate to the rich
> countries to compete for the jobs there just as the powerful corporations of
> the rich must be allowed to compete with their tiny counterparts in the poor
> Other speakers were more conciliatory in tone as they called for debt relief,
> increased aid and sharing of the technology that has helped knit the world
> more closely together.
> ``Never has the world witnessed such massive disparities in international
> social and economic activities,'' said Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo,
> whose country chairs the summit.
> He warned that failure to reform international aid policies that have
> maintained the wealth gap ``constitute a major threat to international peace
> and security.''
> The summit was a meeting of the so-called Group of 77. Since its 1964
> founding, the group has grown from 77 to 133 developing nations, representing
> around 80 percent of the world's population.
> U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan urged the poor countries to coordinate for
> an upcoming U.N. Millennium Summit in September, but urged cooperation with
> developed states and others.
> ``I believe governments need to work together to make change possible but
> governments alone will not make change happen. We have to engage the power of
> private investment,'' he said.
> In New York City, Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation
> League, said Castro ``lives in his own time warp, and so while I'm
> disappointed, I'm not surprised'' at the Holocaust comparisons.
> ``But I am surprised by the other world leaders that were there. I would have
> hoped that they would have found an opportunity to distance themselves from
> those types of remarks,'' he said. ``Poverty is serious, it's painful and
> maybe deadly, but it's not the Holocaust and it's not concentration camps.''
> AP-NY-04-13-00 1005EDT