Islamic bank seeks pledges for African aid

The Islamic Development Bank in Saudi Arabia announced its plans on Monday to raise $10 billion over 10 years for the Poverty Alleviation Fund for Africa and other developing countries. The project aims to meet the United Nations Development Goals (MDGs) which includes cutting extreme poverty by half, ensuring universal primary education and stemming the AIDS pandemic by 2015. According to Amadou Boubacar Cisse of Niger, the bank?s vice president of operations, the Fund is in addition to some $3 billion currently spent on projects for basic social services in needy countries. Cisse noted that Saudi Arabia has already pledged $1 billion and Kuwait $300 million to start the fund?s operations in mid 2007. (Source: Islamic bank to raise $10 bln for needy Africans/Reuters)

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