Clinton Tells Rwandans That HIV/AIDS is the ‘Most Important Issue’ in the World
Former President Bill Clinton, speaking at a health clinic in Kigali, Rwanda, yesterday said that fighting the HIV/AIDS pandemic is "the most important issue that is facing the whole world," AP/Yahoo! News reports. He added that helping African nations fight HIV/AIDS and using knowledge gained from the African epidemic to help other regions affected by HIV/AIDS is in the best interest of the international community. Clinton, who is traveling in Africa with actors Kevin Spacey and Chris Tucker to promote efforts to fight HIV/AIDS and economic development on the continent, also committed the William J. Clinton Foundation to help provide care to HIV-positive individuals, train health workers and develop health services in Rwanda. "We will do our best to help in the education, treatment and prevention (of AIDS in Rwanda)," Clinton said to a group of patients and government officials, adding, "You deserve that." Rwanda is one of the nations hardest hit by HIV/AIDS, due in part to the rape and "deliberat[e]" HIV infection of Tutsis and Hutus by Hutu "extremists." Approximately 11% of the adult population is HIV-positive. Clinton, who was the first U.S. president to visit Africa while in office, also planned to travel to Mozambique late yesterday and to South Africa later in the week. Clinton, who also visited Ghana and Nigeria on this trip, is expected to return to the United States on Sunday (Ngowi, AP/Yahoo! News, 9/25).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.