Bob Geldof: China 'doesn't give a crap' about fighting HIV and Aids

Campaigner challenges emerging economies over 'global responsibility'

Health Reporter, Melbourne

China “doesn't give a crap” about the fight against HIV/Aids, the veteran poverty campaigner Sir Bob Geldof has said, in a stark challenge to the world's emerging economies to face up to their “global responsibility” to financially support efforts to eradicate the disease.

Speaking at the close of the International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Sir Bob said that world's confrontation of the Aids epidemic had been “one of the great human stories of our time”, but warned that the efforts to end the epidemic might fall “at the last hurdle” because of “indifference and incapable governance”.

Condemning China, Russia, Saudi Arabia and South Africa for their “disgraceful” levels of donation to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria he told delegates he was “dismayed...that you people have such difficulty, after such a great scientific global health success, that you still beg for cash.”

Read more: HIV/Aids: Top Russian scientist accuses research community of snub

He said that China had donated just $5m from a GDP of more than eight trillion dollars, and Saudi Arabia $20m from a GDP of $700bn. He also attacked Russia for its low levels of aid-spending and enforcement of anti-gay laws, referring to President Putin as “that brute in the Kremlin”.

“The rest of the world must face its responsibilities,” he said. “Germans gave $800m, the British $760m, the glorious and generous Americans as ever, foot the bill. The rest of the world must come to the party. I don't know how to get to the Chinese. They don't give a crap about us. Somehow they must be made to pony up.”

Dr Chris Beyrer, the newly elected president of the International Aids Society Dr Chris Beyrer, the newly elected president of the International Aids Society (Getty) American physician Dr Chris Beyrer, the newly elected president of the International Aids Society, and the first openly gay man to hold the post, also criticised countries around the world which are enforcing ant-gay laws.

“We should all be deeply concerned about the laws and policies being enacted in Russia, India, Nigeria, Uganda and now being actively debated in too many more countries,” he said in his first speech as president. “Not only because they restrict basic human rights and freedoms but because these laws threaten the entire HIV response.”

Read more: Anti-gay laws will help global spread of HIV, claims global AIDS expert
'Aids-free generation' is within our reach, Bill Clinton tells international summit Want to rid the world of HIV? Then you can start by decriminalising prostitution  

The Melbourne conference, which began under the shadow of the MH17 plane crash, in which six Aids researchers and activists died while travelling to Australia, has marked major progress in the fight against Aids, with 14 million of the 35 million people living with HIV now receiving lifesaving antiretroviral drug therapy, and the number of new infections per year falling.

Professor Françoise Barré-Sinoussi, outgoing president of the IAS told delegates: “In the face of adversity we are able to come together in solidarity and show the world that nothing can stop us.”

Voices
There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
tvThe Apprentice 2014 final
News
File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
peopleActor was tweeting in wake of NYPD police shooting
Arts and Entertainment
X Factor winner Ben Haenow has scored his first Christmas number one
music
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Telesales & Customer Service Executives - Outbound & Inbound

    £7 - £9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: Are you outgoing? Do you want to work in...

    Recruitment Genius: National Account Manager / Key Account Sales

    £30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity has arisen for a...

    Recruitment Genius: Operations Manager

    £30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity to join...

    Recruitment Genius: Recruitment Consultant

    £30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We have an excellent role for a...

    Day In a Page

    The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

    The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

    Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
    From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

    Panto dames: before and after

    From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
    Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

    Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

    Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
    Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

    Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

    Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
    The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

    The man who hunts giants

    A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
    The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

    The 12 ways of Christmas

    We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
    Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

    The male exhibits strange behaviour

    A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
    Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

    Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

    Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
    From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

    From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

    The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
    A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

    A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

    The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
    Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

    Marian Keyes

    The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

    Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

    Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
    Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

    Rodgers fights for his reputation

    Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
    Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

    Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

    'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
    Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

    Michael Calvin's Last Word

    Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick