Jubilee USA Network
SEPTEMBER 20, 2004
11:17 PM
CONTACT: Jubilee USA Network 
Neil Watkins, 202-783-0129
Tuesday, 12 Noon, Jubilee USA to Hold Picket At US Treasury Dept: “We’re Counting Down to Freedom from Debt!”

WASHINGTON - September 20 - As the IMF/World Bank Annual meeting nears (October 2-3 in Washington) and a critical meeting of G-7 Finance Ministers is set to take place on October 1, Jubilee USA members will hold a picket at the US Treasury department TUESDAY, September 21, at 12 noon.

Jubilee USA is encouraged by Treasury's support for 100% debt cancellation for poor nations and will use the event to encourage the administration to continue pushing their proposal within the G7 while calling for more countries to be included.

Encouraged by Reports US Treasury Supports Full Debt Cancellation for Poor Nations, Jubilee USA to Urge Treasury to Announce Plan by October 1st

WHAT: Picket and rally at US Treasury Department with members of Jubilee USA Network, religious organizations, and solidarity groups. Participants will mark September 21st as the 10-day mark before a meeting of G-7 Finance Ministers on October 1st (followed by the IMF/World Bank Annual meetings from October 2-3) when an announcement on debt is anticipated. Picket will include signs, banners, props, and speakers. Letters to the Treasury Department from Congress, Medical Professionals, and Religious Leaders will be released at the event.

WHO: Speakers include:

Salih Booker, Director, Africa Action

Marie Clarke Brill, National Coordinator, Jubilee USA Network

Holly Burkhalter, Policy Director, Physicians for Human Rights

Bishop Medardo Ernesto Gómez Soto, Lutheran Bishop of El Salvador

Njoki Njoroge Njehu, Director, 50 Years Is Enough Network

Gerry Flood, US Catholic Conference of Bishops (Invited)

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) (Invited)

WHEN: Tuesday, September 21, 2004, 12 Noon - 1 pm

WHERE: Adjacent to the US Treasury Building, 15th and New York Avenues, NW

Students, people of faith, and community organizers from the Washington, DC area will hold a picket and rally at the US Treasury Department on September 21, 2004. September 21st marks ten days before a critical meeting of the G-7 Finance Ministers and the Annual Meetings of the IMF/World Bank at which a proposal for full debt cancellation for poor nations will be considered.

Jubilee USA Network is very encouraged by reports in the Washington Post and elsewhere that US Treasury apparently supports full multilateral debt cancellation for 30 countries. Participants in the event will urge Treasury to continue to push its proposal forward, while calling on Treasury to extend cancellation to all impoverished countries, and without harmful conditions.

The event is part of Jubilee USA Network’s “Countdown to Freedom from Debt campaign” to pressure the US government to support 100% debt cancellation for impoverished nations. In the past six months, Jubilee and its more than 70 Network member organizations have sent more than 600 faxes to US Treasury, delivered 11, 000 cards to the World Bank and IMF, delivered a letter from more 250 prominent religious leaders to the G7, worked to introduce bi-partisan legislation into the US Congress (the JUBILEE Act), and organized call-in days that have tied up the lines at the White House - all calling on the Bush administration to support 100% debt cancellation. In the coming weeks, Jubilee USA will continue to raise the pressure on the Bush administration and the G7 to support full debt cancellation. Jubilee USA will also organize an action on October 1 at the G7 Finance Ministers meeting in Washington.