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Words in the News
Monday 14 July 2003
AIDS conference
HIV patient A major conference on AIDS has opened in Paris with criticism of the developed world for not providing universal access to cheap anti-retroviral drugs. In his opening address, the former Brazilian president, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, criticised the current United States HIV policy. This report from Richard Black.
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Dr Cardoso urged the global community to learn from Brazil's example. Through education, basic health care and providing anti-retroviral drugs to all infected people, he said, Brazil has halved the death rate from AIDS. He was scathing about the US approach of emphasising sexual abstinence and fidelity rather than condom use. Such policies, he said, promote a sense of security among people in long-term relationships who don't then use condoms. Through their partners' infidelities, many go on to contract HIV.

Also speaking at the opening was Marie-Jose Mbuzenakamwe, an activist from Burundi, who lambasted the world's richer nations for not putting money into the global fund to fight AIDS, TB and malaria. She told the conference that at least ninety-thousand people in Burundi need anti-retrovirals - about one-thousand are receiving them. The G8 countries, she said, have no trouble making speeches about the seriousness of the epidemic though not one has respected its commitments.

Richard Black, BBC Correspondent, Paris
Listen Listen to the words
tried very hard to persuade
Brazil’s example
what Brazil has done
anti-retroviral drugs
drugs which are used to treat HIV – they slow the spread of the virus in a person’s body
reduced by 50%
scathing about
very critical of
focusing on
promote a sense of security
create a feeling that you are safe and protected against something
become infected with
reprimanded, told off
respected its commitments
done what it promised to do
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