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George Bush pledges 200 million dollars for AIDS relief

American president George .W. Bush has pledged 200 million dollars to fight AIDS. The money will be directed toward a United Nations fund designed to pay for treatment and prevention of HIV/AIDS, as well as malaria and tuberculosis. Those three diseases together killed some 5.5 million people last year, the bulk of them in Africa,according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
The sheer number of those infected and dying is almost beyond comprehension," President Bush said at a Rose Garden appearance. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, as well as several US officials including Secretary of State Colin Powell joined the President on the occasion.
However AIDS activists have brushed aside the payment as woefully inadequate and asked for more.
Details on the fund's operation are yet to crystallize. The UN General Assembly is due to hold a special session to discuss the global AIDS scenario and the corrective measures the world body plans to launch on June 25 in New York. President Bush said that he and Secretary-General Kofi Annan had agreed on several principles for the fund's operation, including a focus on both prevention and treatment of infectious diseases, and a respect for intellectual property rights for drug companies performing research.
Though there is no agreement on the quantum of help arriving, the silver lining is that help is trickling in for the AIDS ravaged continent of Africa.
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