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FAO Committee On World Food Security Endorses Global Guidelines On 'Land Grabbing'

The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Committee on World Food Security (CFS) on Friday “endorsed a set of far-reaching global guidelines aimed at helping governments safeguard the rights of people to own or access land, forests and fisheries,” according to an FAO press release. “The new Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security outline principles and practices that governments can refer to when making laws and administering land, fisheries and forests rights,” the press release adds (5/11). “Giving poor and vulnerable people secure and equitable rights to access land and other natural resources is a key condition in the fight against hunger and poverty,” FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva said, the U.N. News Centre notes (5/11).

According to the Associated Press/Washington Post, “‘Land grabbing’ concerns have figured in several U.N. meetings in recent years aimed at reducing world hunger and ensuring the poor around the globe have enough access to land, forests or fisheries, at least to feed their families” (5/11). The Department of State’s IPP Digital notes that USAID on Friday welcomed the panel’s endorsement of the agreement. “Secure tenure rights create better environments for investments in agriculture, reduce land-related conflicts, promote improved natural resource management and address challenges related to climate change,” USAID said, according to the news service (5/14).