New York, NY (BBN)- A group of United Nations independent experts have urged States to intensify efforts towards realizing the anti-poverty targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) before the 2015 deadline to achieve them.
“Human rights standards provide a normative framework that grounds development work within a universal set of values, but also provide an important tool for ensuring that development is pursued in an equitable, just and sustainable manner,” they said in a statement on Tuesday.
The group is made up of the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Magdalena Sepúlveda; the Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation, Catarina de Albuquerque; the Special Rapporteur on the right to education, Kishore Singh; the Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Anand Grover; the Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier De Schutter; the Independent Expert on international solidarity, Virginia Dandan; and, the Independent Expert on foreign debt, Cephas Lumina.
Independent experts, or special rapporteurs, are appointed by the Geneva-based Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a country situation or a specific human rights theme. The positions are honorary and the experts are not United Nations staff, nor are they paid for their work.
The eight MDGs, agreed on by world leaders at a UN summit in 2000, set specific targets on poverty alleviation, education, gender equality, child and maternal health, environmental stability, HIV/AIDS reduction, and a “Global Partnership for Development.” 
BBN/SSR/SI-11July12-1:10 am (BST)