AIDS ACTIVISTS PLAN DEMONSTRATIONS ACROSS CENTRAL AMERICA
Boletin Acceso Centroamérica, No. 15, 9 de Mayo, 2002
GREAT LATIN AMERICAN MOBILIZATION
MAY 27, 2002
For this coming May 27 we are organizing in all Latin American countries the beginning of a campaign to generate concrete actions that will make possible the access to ARV drugs for all those hiv+ people in need. This campaign will have its start, symbolically, in front of the Brazilian Embassies of each country. As a form of protest to this country for not making available ( selling or donating ) the ARV drugs on a humanitary basis for Latinamerican countries or organizations. The idea of the campaign was born, precisely, from the Brazilian activists that were full of indignation due to the deny of the Brazilian NAP coordinator in selling medicines, at a cost price, to Ibel Martinez, one activist from Honduras that needed them urgently. Ibel died on April 18 of AIDS effects. Agua Buena asked Dr. Paulo Teixeira, the Brazilian NAP Director, to sell the ARV drugs at a cost price. However, Dr. Teixeira refused to furnish them. This campaign intends to pressure the Brazilian government to sell medicines at accessible prices to governments and institutions that assist PLWA in Latin America. Nevertheless it is also a campaign to force our governments to take over their responsabilities regarding the assistance to PLWA, including the purchase of ARV drugs.
We ask all the networks, PLWA groups and moviments, National and regional organizations for your precious support in order to guarantee that this campaign may have concrete results. We invite all people, groups, networks ( GNP+, REDLA+, REDCA+, ICW, MLCM - Latin American and the Caribbean Moviment of women +) - and all the organizations from the civil society to put out your support to this campaign, organizing in each country a mobilization in front of each Brazilian Embassy of each country carrying letters requesting the Brazilian government to sell ARV drugs to Latinamerica.
If you don´t know people or groups in your country, get in touch with us and we will be sending you directions of people or groups that might be organizing the activities in your country. Adn in case you won´t be able to join the mobilization/manifestation, please send your letter of support to Dr. Paulo Teixeira ( email@example.com ) with copies to: <firstname.lastname@example.org><email@example.com><firstname.lastname@example.org><email@example.com <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> Message Translated to English by
- Jacqueline Rocha - Brasil <email@example.com
> Let´s get our "voices" together to help... I have forwarded parts of a message that came from one activist from Costa Rica.
> - Richard Stern <firstname.lastname@example.org
Please inform the people and organizations from your countries
and communicate your replies to the e-mail listed above.
> Yours in solidarity, Oswaldo Rada > PFN in Colombia of Redla+ GNP Board Member > Cali - Colombia
10 September, 2001
AIDS ACTIVISTS PLAN DEMONSTRATIONS ACROSS CENTRAL AMERICA
AIDS activists throughout Central America are planning a series of demonstrations next Wednesday September 12 in six countries to protest the Honduran government's refusal to provide anti-retroviral medication to an estimated 5000 People Living with AIDS who currently need them.
While activists in Honduras stage a protest in front of their country's Congress in Tegucigalpa, their counterparts will be demonstrating outside of Honduran embassies in Costa Rica, Panamá, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Guatemala.
"Its time to call attention to genocidal human rights violations against People with AIDS by the Honduran government," said Costa Rican activists Guillermo Murillo, adding, "the anti-retroviral medications have dropped 75% in cost during this year and it is only because prejudice and discrimation that the government Honduras is not providing medications." Murillo pointed out that India's generic AIDS producer, CIPLA has offered triple therapy cocktails for as low as $350 in Central America, but that governments need to take the initiative to establish ties with CIPLA, and other generic manufacturers.
"Every day in Honduras People with HIV/AIDS are dying needlessly" said Rosa Gonzales coordinator of the Honduran National Association of People Living with HIV/AIDS. "If we have to die, we'll die protesting our rights," she added. Gonzales has called for a massive showing of support on Wednesday in front of the nation's Congress and has demanded meetings with Congressional leaders.
Murillo indicated that AIDS activists in the other Central American countries are showing solidarity for their Honduran brothers and sisters, by organizing demonstrations in each country. "Only as a region united are we going to achieve our goal, which is universal access to ARV's in Central America," he stated. Only in Costa Rica do all People Living with AIDS receive anti-retroviral medications, the result of a 1997 Court decision.
"One of the major problems we have here in Central America is the continuing silence of the International Agencies who should provide support and leadership for local governments in obtaining needed medical treatment. UNAIDS, PAHO, and the World Health Organization give "lip service" to treatment access and do nothing concretely to resolve the problems here, said activist Richard Stern, who is also based in Costa Rica. "It looks more and more like they are completely 'owned' by the U.S. government or multi-national companies. Its incredible how little is being done, given that anti-retroviral medications have now been available in rich countries for almost seven years!"
For more information contact:
Richard Stern, Costa Rica 506-234-2411 email@example.com
Guillermo Murillo, Costa Rica, 506-433-8522 firstname.lastname@example.org
Rosa González, Honduras, 504-554-4988 email@example.com
Odir Miranda, El Salvador, 503-298-3950 firstname.lastname@example.org
Orlando Quintero, Panamá, 507-225-9119 email@example.com
Flor de Maria Alvarado, Nicaragua, 505-777-8623 firstname.lastname@example.org
Erickson Chicklayo, Guatemala, 502-250-1033 email@example.com
(Spanish version available)
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