Friday, September 25, 2009

Holy See on the Right to Development

Geneva, Switzerland, September 22 (CNA) .- The present economic crisis may jeopardize development goals... and could undermine human rights, Archbishop Silvano M. Tomasi the Holy See's permanent representative to the United Nations Office in Geneva told the Human Rights Council on Tuesday.

Archbishop Tomasi, added that the Human Rights Council's current debate on the right to development is an opportunity both to strengthen international commitment on the right to development and to transform political will into "concrete action."

The Holy See's delegation he said is interested in the U.N. task force which is creating a list of "right-to-development" criteria around the three components of "human-centered development," an enabling environment, social justice and equity.

In development, the archbishop explained, the human person is not only a receiver of aid but also the real actor in his or her development and relationships among peoples. He cited Pope Benedict XVI's recent encyclical Caritas In Veritate, which taught that man is "the source, the focus and the aim of all economic and social life." Further, he said the Holy See's delegation believes the cultural component of the right to development must include the "ethical and spiritual dimensions" of the human person. The archbishop also encouraged the endorsement of an "enabling environment" for the right to development and said states should remove obstacles to that development, such as human rights violations.

Subsidiarity according to the Archbishop "allows the participation of the beneficiaries of aid in the process of development through the responsible use of their freedom and talents,".