Nelson Mandela to Address Delegates at XV International AIDS Conference
Former South African President Nelson Mandela will address approximately 15,000 delegates about his "46664" campaign at next week's XV International AIDS Conference in Bangkok, Thailand, the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the International AIDS Society on Wednesday announced, the SAPA/Mail & Guardian reports (SAPA/Mail & Guardian, 7/7). Mandela launched "46664" -- named after his prison number during his nearly 20-year incarceration at the South African prison Robben Island -- in October 2003 as a phone and Internet campaign to raise awareness and money to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 10/23/03). Mandela will address the delegates following a screening of 46664: The Message, a film about a concert staged in December 2003 in Cape Town, South Africa, to benefit the campaign (SAPA/Mail & Guardian, 7/7). The concert featured local and international celebrities and called upon governments to declare a global HIV/AIDS emergency, Xinhua News Agency reports (Xinhua News Agency, 7/7). According to the Mandela Foundation and IAS, Mandela will focus on what the assembled delegates can do to help "46664." The day before Mandela's address, his wife, Graca Machel, will chair a satellite link-up discussion about the social impact of HIV/AIDS in Southern Africa. The session, hosted by the Mandela Foundation, will profile both "46664" and the foundation (Agence France Presse, 7/7). Mandela officially retired from public life on June 1 to complete his autobiography, the SAPA/Mail & Guardian reports (SAPA/Mail & Guardian, 7/7).
A video webcast of Mandela's address and other coverage of the XV International AIDS Conference will be available online at www.kaisernetwork.org/aids2004.