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Millions stand up for poor

23,542,614 people stood up as part of 11,646 organised events around the world against poverty this year.

india Updated: Oct 19, 2006 15:26 IST

Schoolchildren in Gaza, cricket fans in India and African church-goers have helped set a Guinness world record for "the largest number of people to stand up against poverty," UN officials said.

The record was set when 23,542,614 people stood up as part of 11,646 organised events around the world during a 24-hour period this week, according to the official Guinness verification text, released at a UN news conference. The “stand up” campaign was organised to promote the achievement by 2015, of a series of anti-poverty goals set at the Millennium Summit in 2000.

It was timed to coincide with Tuesday's UN International Day for Poverty Eradication. "Extreme poverty is a stain on human dignity," French UN Ambassador Jean-Marc de la Sabliere said.

"We must make sure this problem remains on the top of the UN agenda." Guinness also verified that the campaign constituted the "largest single coordinated movement of people" in Guinness history, senior UN official Shashi Tharoor said.