Yunus sets deadline for an end to poverty
Nobel peace laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus has said the international community should set a new deadline for 2030 to eradicate global poverty.
The pioneer of microcredit and social business made the call at the opening ceremony of the One Young World Summit 2013, at Soccer City in Johannesburg in South Africa on Wednesday.
Dubbed as the world's largest youth summit, the event kicked off in the presence of 8,000 young people, Yunus Centre said in a statement yesterday.
More than 1,300 youth young leaders from 190 countries, including a 10-member delegation from Bangladesh, took part in the four-day gathering.
At the opening ceremony, Prof Yunus, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and singer and anti-poverty activist Sir Bob Geldof delivered keynote speeches.
The Nobel laureate described the present generation of young people as the most powerful generation in history because of their grip on communication and information technology.
"When Kofi Annan and the UN declared the millennium development goals in 2000 - people laughed and said they were crazy, they didn't believe you can reduce poverty, but when Bangladesh announced it had achieved the number one goal to reduce poverty by half in 2013, you know it has been serious goal after all."
This was significant news because Bangladesh was labelled as a basket case at its birth, said the founder of Grameen Bank.
Business leaders and celebrities like Ahmed Kathrada, lifelong comrade of Nelson Mandela, Sir Richard Branson and German tennis super star Boris Becker also took part.
The summit ended yesterday after a whirlwind of panels, plenary sessions and workshops that addressed education; global business; human rights; leadership and government; sustainable development, and youth unemployment.
The One Young World Summit 2013 aims to tackle social issues such as education, youth unemployment and role of global business.
This year the summit was held for the first time in Africa, following previous years in London, Zurich and Pittsburgh. Dublin has been announced as host city of the summit for 2014.