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Call for population control.

Call for population control

"We believe that the time has come now to recognize the worldwide necessity to stop population growth within the near future and for each country to adopt the necessary policies and programs to do so'--provided that those programs are "voluntary' and "maintain individual human rights and beliefs.' These ideas serve as the cornerstone of a call for population stabilization that has been signed by parliamentary heads of state representing more than half of the world's population. The statement was handed to the United Nations Secretary General, Javier Perez de Cueller, on Oct. 24 during the UN's 40th anniversary celebration in New York City.

Among its 40 signatories are the leaders of the People's Republic of China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, the Philippines, Thailand, Egypt, South Korea, Morocco and Kenya. The statement urges national leaders to take an active, personal role in promoting effective population control strategies in order to limit the environmental degradation, income inequalities and potential for conflict that overpopulation so often breeds.

The United States was among the majority of developed nations that did not sign the statement. Comments Peggy Pizzo, deputy director of the Washington, D.C.-based Population Crisis Committee, "I only wish that our administration had the same wisdom and understanding of the real problems posed by overpopulation that these world leaders have who are living with it every day.' Not only has the Reagan administration downplayed the value of contraceptives as an aid to family planning in developing countries, Pizzo says, but it has also "denied funds to the two largest voluntary family-planning associations in the world, including the UN's agency' (SN: 7/27/85, p. 55). Moreover, in contrast to what is being advocated by most resource economists, the concept guiding formal U.S. policies since 1984, she says, is that rapid population growth is not necessarily a bad thing.
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Title Annotation:from United Nations
Publication:Science News
Date:Nov 2, 1985
Words:312
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