220,000 Spanish children 'live in poverty'

11th May 2004, Comments 0 comments

11 May 2004, BARCELONA – As many as 220,000 children live in extreme poverty in Spain, according to a report published Tuesday.

11 May 2004

BARCELONA – As many as 220,000 children live in extreme poverty in Spain, according to a report published Tuesday.

Important differences also exist in the well-being of children depending on which part of the country they live, said María Jesús Eresta, vice-president of the Organisation of Infants.

Eresta took part in a survey called 'Who looks out for the children?' carried out by the World Children's Movement (MIM).

Eresta, who presented the report at the Forum 2004 festival in Barcelona, said: "Spain has an adequate level of well-being but the system of caring for them leaves much to be desired in some aspects."

She said the number of children under 18 who are found without anyone looking after them has doubled between 2000 and 2003.

She doubted whether an agreement signed between Morocco and Spain, in which Madrid pledged to offer care to abandoned Moroccan children, has been fulfilled.

The organisation condemned the difficulty they faced finding out information about children in Spain.

William Bell, from Save the Children in Britain, told the same meeting: "Governments have not completed their promises in terms of what they would do to save [children's] lives, improve their education and protect them from violence."

According to the MIM, 600 million children live in poverty across the world.

By 2015, 56 million children will die if more is not done to help them, the groups warn.

Meanwhile, another 75 million will carry on without access to proper education.

Bell said there was a lack of political will and economic methods.

He said in 1970, all industrialised countries pledged 0.7 percent of their budget to help development.

But only Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Luxemburg and Holland have completed this target.

If all the others had given their cash it would have brought USD 100 billion more of help.

Bell added the report was a warning sign for countries to increase their help.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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