Michelle Obama, Beyonce, Malala Yousafzai Part Of Global Citizen Festival All …

27 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘We’ve got to be a light for the world’: Joe Biden, Michelle Obama and Jim Yong Kim join Beyonce and stars on stage at huge Global Citizen concert to fight world poverty.

Some of the biggest names in music and politics from Beyonce to European prime ministers rallied Saturday in a concert aimed at mobilizing action to eradicate extreme poverty. Vice President Joe Biden has joined celebrities such as Beyonce, Ed Sheeran and Leonardo Di Caprio in New York tonight for a festival aimed at raising awareness of global inequality. Before thousands of people in New York’s Central Park and a far greater audience on television, the Global Citizen Festival sought to use entertainment to broaden support for new United Nations development goals.

The concert was designed to raise awareness of the UN’s global goals program which aims to eradicate global poverty, fight injustice, and combat climate change, among other things. Beyonce, playing just her second concert this year, was the top attraction for many fans who obtained tickets not by paying but by committing to activism ranging from writing letters to volunteering. Biden, who is still thought to be mulling a late-stage run for the Democratic presidential nomination, used his appearance to call for all people to be treated with dignity and respect. Other performers included rock veterans Pearl Jam and Coldplay, fresh English pop sensation Ed Sheeran, socially conscious rapper Common and — in an effort to raise the profile of the festival in India — leading Bollywood singer Sunidhi Chauhan.

On Friday, the UN endorsed a goal of ending extreme poverty by 2030 — in part by focusing on opportunities for girls, an investment with sweeping consequences for families’ futures. That is what you are all here for tonight. ‘I look out and I see lots of global citizens, optimistic determined, absolutely determined, rejecting the false premise that our challenges are mere fate, with no solutions, and that protecting universal rights is equally universal, because it is. ‘This is all about possibilities, and it is within our reach, we can change the world, we really can, you can. The prime ministers of Luxembourg, Malta, Norway and Sweden came to the festival to offer support, with US President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron appearing by video.

Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, one of the world’s top donors, said that the festival should serve as a catalyst for a “massive increase in educational funding.” Pearl Jam brought back to stage Beyonce for Bob Marley’s inspirational “Redemption Song,” which segued to a video of late anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela urging a fight against poverty. Beyonce put on a crowd-rousing show of dance pop with an emphasis on her feminist themes but performed an unlikely acoustic duet with Sheeran of “Drunk in Love,” which she usually sings with husband Jay Z. Pop starlet Ariana Grande joined Coldplay, while Common’s hard-charging hip-hop set merged into “Every Breath You Take” as a bearded Sting suddenly appeared. Taking the microphone in between pop stars, the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai dramatized the plight of girls who want to go to school.

Malala Yousafazai also took to the stage to champion the rights of young girls to education, saying that the only way to end world poverty was to empower women to secure economic prosperity for themselves and their families through school. Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio urged the world also to reach a deal on climate change, warning that rising temperatures and disasters risked making poverty all the more daunting. “But more than one billion people, most of them in Asia, currently live in low-lying coastal regions. I hope that world leaders all look to the future and invest in this fight. ‘It is not like there is not enough money, but where the money goes is on the military and things that are not useful.

Giving them that chance is a crucial target in ending global poverty.’ She then called on people to join her campaign by tweeting a picture of themselves along with the hashtag 62million, explaining what they learned from their experience in school. More children are going to school, more communities have clean water, and hundreds of millions of people have been lifted out of poverty. ‘When so many families still live in extreme poverty and chronic hunger, when so many mothers still die in childbirth, when so many children still die from preventable diseases – that is a moral outrage.

Also delivering speeches were Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Queen Rania of Jordan, Delaware Senator Chris Coons and Jim Yong Kim, head of the World Bank. They were joined by the likes of Coldplay, who debuted their new single Amazing Day, and rapper Commons, who brought Sting on stage during his performance. DiCaprio’s stance on the issue has been criticized as hypocritical in the past, as he often spends his summers sailing across the globe on a yacht rented from an oil billionaire. In keeping with the event’s aim of spreading awareness, tickets were free, but in order to get one attendees had to tweet about issues such as poverty or gender inequality, or write to members of congress.

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