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Access to water and sanitation is a right, a basic need for survival, a requirement for reducing poverty, and, a driver of growth. Much of the suffering from a lack of access to water and sanitation is borne by the poor, those who live in degraded environments, and overwhelmingly by women and girls. Provision of these basic necessities makes possible the achievement of many other Millennium Development Goals such as those on completing primary schooling, girls’ education, under-five mortality, maternal mortality and improvement in slum dwellers’ lives. The G8, through President Jacques Chirac, are therefore correct to prioritise water and water financing on their agenda.

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