From the Worldwide Faith News archives

[PCUSANEWS] Peacemaking panel calls for AIDS relief

Date 17 Jun 2002 20:54:25 -0400

Note #7252 from PCUSA NEWS to PRESBYNEWS:

Peacemaking panel calls for AIDS relief
June 17, 2002

Peacemaking panel calls for AIDS relief

by Nancy Rodman

COLUMBUS, OH - The peacemaking and global issues committee of the 214th General Assembly has recommended that the Assembly adopt a plan to help ease the HIV/AIDS crisis in Africa; endorse guiding principles for decisions on religious freedom; urge the United States to sign the Ottawa Convention banning anti-personnel land mines; and authorize the publication of the 2001-2002 Human Rights Update.

The panel will recommend approval of the "Plan of Christian Compassion to Ameliorate the HIV/AIDS Crisis in Africa," which would call for increases in PC(USA) and U.S. government funding for AIDS education, prevention, and care in Africa. The plan would create a spending goal of 0.7 percent of the denomination's international development money, and encourage the federal government to contribute 0.7 percent of the gross national product.

The committee also voted to recommend that the Assembly adopt guidelines for ethical decisions on issues of religious freedom around the world. That document would affirm religious freedom as a fundamental human right and outline steps to be taken by the PC(USA), congregations and governments to safeguard universal religious freedom.

The committee also will ask the Assembly to direct the denomination's stated clerk to petition the President again to sign the Ottawa Convention, which bans the production and deployment of anti-personnel mines. The agreement has been signed by 142 nations, including most member nations of NATO.

The committee supported the publication of the 2001-2002 Human Rights Update with a study action guide to be offered via the PC(USA) Web site. The Assembly routinely publishes the annual report on human-rights developments around the world.
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