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Dublin, 21 Feb 13
UN-Habitat joined hands with sister agencies to discuss cities at the ongoing 8th session of the World Alliance of Cities Against Poverty (WACAP) currently underway in Dublin.

UN-Habitat Deputy Executive Director Dr. Aisa Kacyra Kirabo represented the agency at the premier event that also brought together UN Women, UNICEF and UNDP. Dr.  Kirabo said that urbanization presented immense opportunities and challenges while also highlighting the issue of the youth which she said are likely to constitute as many as 60 percent of all urban dwellers by 2030.

"When I look to the future then I see such potential. Urbanization is a source of development if it is planned, well governed, and supported with adequate finance, policies, and legislation. And youth are the greatest asset that any country has. Together our future as human beings can be dramatically different and improved if we harness this combined potential," she said.

The concept of WACAP was first discussed at the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) in Istanbul in 1996, when cities began networking with renewed enthusiasm. That same year, the United Nations International Year for the Eradication of Poverty, UNDP initiated plans for WACAP and launched it on October 17, 1997. Since the first forum in Lyon, France, in 1998, WACAP has expanded its network to more than 900 cities across five continents, raising awareness on poverty issues, promoting city-to-city cooperation and exchanging best practices.

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