If you returned home one day to find that your neighbour had bought a car ? a Mercedes ? for themselves, but wanted you to pay for it, you would be understandably upset. If your neighbour had moreover re-mortgaged your house and beat up your family using baseball bats bought with the money, you would be rightly distressed with them and the bank which had provided the mortgage.
The west is not, out of altruism, going to reverse the system of trade that impoverishes Africa. It is Africa that must fight politically to force the change. Why hasn't it been done before now? The answer is that African governments have, in the past, been short-sighted and self-centred to a degree that borders on stupidity.
Issues surrounding water are central to achieving the UN millennium goals. Jeevan Vasagar visited Ethiopia, one of the poorest countries in Africa, to see how a scarcity of clean water affects the people of Addis Ababa
Debt campaigners welcomed Gordon Brown's announcement today of a "modern Marshall Plan" for Africa, but expressed concerns that the initiative was deficient and fraught with problems for poor countries.