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Mexico: UN expert welcomes constitutional recognition of the right to food

GENEVA (13 October 2011) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Olivier De Schutter, today welcomed the promulgation in Mexico of a key constitutional reform which recognizes the right to food in the country, and urged the authorities to implement the required legislation to make it a reality for all Mexicans.

“This is a great step forward for Mexico,” said the UN independent expert, who carried out an official visit* to the country in June of this year. “With this reform, Mexico joins a select group of countries around the world that have enshrined the right to food in their constitutions.”

“Now is the time to implement this reform for the benefit of all Mexicans by approving corresponding legislation,” Mr. De Schutter stressed encouraging the Government to “design a national strategy for the realization of the right to food, by re-orienting public policies on rural development, agriculture, health and trade in line with the right to food, which should not merely be understood as the right to be fed, but rather the right to feed oneself.”

“The reform to articles 4 and 27 of the Mexican Constitution is particularly important in the context of volatility in food prices and the need for States to guarantee the availability of accessible and adequate food for their citizens,” the Special Rapporteur added.

Mr. De Schutter reiterated his openness to dialogue and technical collaboration with the Mexican State to effectively implement this constitutional reform and fully guarantee the right to food for its inhabitants.

The UN expert will present a final report on his mission to the UN Human Rights Council in March 2012, with his conclusions and recommendations.

Olivier De Schutter was appointed the Special Rapporteur on the right to food in May 2008 by the United Nations Human Rights Council. He is independent from any government or organization. For more information on the mandate and work of the Special Rapporteur, visit: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/issues/food/index.htm or http://www.srfood.org.

(*) Check the Special Rapporteur’s preliminary observations: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=11173&LangID=E

UN Human Rigths Country Page – Mexico: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/LACRegion/Pages/MXIndex.aspx

For further information and media requests, please contact:
- Olivier De Schutter: email: srfood@ohchr.org, olivier.deschutter@uclouvain.be 
- (Geneva) Ulrik Halsteen: Tel: +41 22 917 93 23 / email: uhalsteen@ohchr.org 
- (México) Rosa Gutiérrez: Tel: +5255 5061 6374 / email: rgutierrez@ohchr.org 

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts:
Xabier Celaya: + 41 22 917 9383 / xcelaya@ohchr.org 

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