Nelson Mandela Turns 87; South Africa Launches National HIV/AIDS Awareness Campaign To Celebrate, Honor His Work
Former South African President Nelson Mandela on Monday celebrated his 87th birthday, and the country launched a nationwide campaign to promote HIV/AIDS awareness and honor Mandela's contributions to the fight against the disease, BBC News reports (BBC News, 7/18). Organizers on Monday lit a torch in Mandela's former apartheid-era prison cell on Robben Island and planned to carry it throughout South Africa to raise awareness of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. This year's birthday celebrations are focusing on Mandela's public support for the fight against HIV/AIDS (Reuters, 7/18). Mandela's "46664" HIV/AIDS awareness campaign -- named for his prison number during his nearly 20-year incarceration -- has staged several rock concerts, including one last month in Tromsoe, Norway, to benefit the campaign. The first 46664 concert was held in Cape Town, South Africa, in December 2003, and a second concert was held in March at the Fancourt Hotel, Country Club and Golf Estate in George, South Africa (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 5/2). More than five million HIV-positive people live in South Africa (Reuters, 7/18).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.