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Heated debate at Rome food summit

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Heated debate at Rome food summit

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Robert Mugabe’s controversial presence at a UN summit in Rome on the global food crisis is adding fuel to what is likely to be heated debate. Zimbabwe’s leader is banned from travel to the EU, but that does not apply to UN meetings. Also causing a stir is the presence of the Iranian president.

But organisers say the focus must be on finding solutions. UN chief Ban Ki Moon said: “The threats are obvious to us all, yet this crisis also presents us with an opportunity. It is a chance to revisit past policies. “While we must respond immediately to high food prices, it is important that our longer term focus is on improving world food security, and remains so for some years.”

The UN is calling for greater consensus on biofuels, claimed by some to be at the root of the crisis.