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Global AIDS Alliance Welcomes Election of Barack Obama

WASHINGTON, Nov. 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Global AIDS Alliance today welcomed the election of Senator Barack Obama as President of the United States.

"We look forward to working with President-elect Obama as he confronts that challenge of HIV/AIDS, which every day kills over 5,000 people and infects another 7,500 every day," said Carol Bergman, Acting Director of the Global AIDS Alliance.

"As Colin Powell, Robert Rubin and others have recently stated, the economic crisis must not be used as excuse to shirk our responsibility to keep our promises on AIDS and poverty. After all, the funding required is just a tiny fraction of the budget, and the lives we can save are priceless."

During the campaign, Obama, as well as Vice President-elect Joe Biden, made historic commitments on HIV/AIDS, going far beyond Senator John McCain.

Obama signed a pledge on global AIDS and foreign aid reform, circulated by the Global AIDS Alliance Fund, and issued his own detailed plan on these issues as well as HIV/AIDS in the US. Senator Biden, and Senator Chris Dodd, also signed the pledge, which is online at: pledges_action/

The pledge includes a commitment to secure the funding to provide community-based support, health and nutrition to the millions of children orphaned and made vulnerable by AIDS.

It also includes a commitment to provide the $48 billion needed to implement the Lantos-Hyde US Global AIDS Leadership Act of 2008, a bipartisan bill signed into law by President Bush earlier this year. Seventeen candidates for the US House of Representatives and Senate signed a parallel pledge, also circulated by the Global AIDS Alliance Fund.

Obama also made some additional specific commitments on science-based HIV prevention, for injecting drug users and for young people, in a questionnaire he completed in response to AIDSVote. The response he submitted is online at:

"No other President-elect has ever come to the office having made such clear and substantive promises on the issue of global disease," said Bergman. "His election has raised the hopes of millions in the US and around the world."

Today, Nelson Mandela sent a letter to President-elect Obama, stating, "We trust that you will also make it the mission of your Presidency to combat the scourge of poverty and disease everywhere."

SOURCE Global AIDS Alliance
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