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7 September 2005

Barrett warns against any let-up in securing Global Fund cash

John Barrett, Liberal Democrat MP for Edinburgh West, today welcomed the announcement that over $3.7 billion had been secured to help fund the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis (TB) and Malaria but called on nations who have not yet contributed to find the rest of the $7 billion that the fund desperately needs.

At a replenishment conference in London, international donors last night agreed to pledge over $3.7 billion (£2 billion) for the two year period of 2006 – 2007. However the amount promised is only still half of the total required. A follow-up conference will be held in June 2006 to secure additional pledges.

John is currently in Kibera, the largest urban slum in Kenya as part of his fact-finding tour of TB clinics where he is witnessing first-hand the devastating impact of the disease and the ways in which Global Fund money is being spent. TB kills 2 million people every year and the number of cases in the UK is on the increase.

Speaking from Kenya, John Barrett said:

“This announcement is a welcome first step but there must be no let-up until the remaining cash has been secured. It is time for those nations who have not yet contributed to rise to the challenge and pledge the remaining $3.3 billion that is so desperately needed.

“TB and Malaria remain huge killers throughout the globe and it is crucial that the western world realises the urgency of the situation and agrees to play its part. This past week I have seen for myself the gravity of the problem on the ground and the scale of the task before us. There is real commitment amongst aid workers to tackle these diseases, this commitment must be matched by the international community.

“With the current high price of crude oil I would call on all rich states to put their hands in their pockets and help close the current funding gap. The USA in particular must up their sum and I am hopeful this will happen in the coming weeks.

“This is not a problem that will simply disappear. It requires real and sustained action by the international community and while today’s announcement is a good start, we must not rest until the whole $7 billion has been secured.”

 

Notes

International donors yesterday pledged a total of US$3.7 billion to The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria for the two-year period of 2006 and 2007. For more information on the Global Fund visit http://www.theglobalfund.org/en/.

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This website was established while I was a Member of Parliament. The site content is being kept online as a source of information, but all forms / email have been disabled.