Saturday, April 30, 2005

Brad Pitt Meets Orphans of AIDS Pandemic

Photo Courtesy: AP

Actor Brad Pitt spent three days in Ethiopia meeting with orphans of the AIDS pandemic that is devastating Africa, a spokesman said Tuesday.

The star of "Troy" and "Fight Club" also visited projects offering AIDS treatment as part of a campaign to get more lifesaving drugs for victims of the HIV virus that causes AIDS.

Pitt's trip was organized by DATA, a Washington-based lobby group co-founded by rock star Bono, which campaigns to improve trade and debt terms for poor countries and raising awareness about AIDS in poor countries.

Pitt was in Ethiopia from Saturday to late Monday.

"We have met some incredible people, incredibly poor people who are fighting back against AIDS and extreme poverty with help from Americans," said DATA Executive Director Jamie Drummond.

It is 41-year-old Pitt's second visit to Ethiopia,
where 1.5 million people are infected, making it the fifth highest population in the world living with the HIV virus.

The country has 540,000 children who have been orphaned because of AIDS.

"We have seen lifesaving anti-AIDS drugs in action, drugs that are only here because of the action of concerned people from all walks of life in the USA, from churchgoers to punk rock fans," Drummond said.

"Now we must turn the trickle into a flood of effective aid to help Ethiopians and poor people across Africa help themselves," he said.

ABC News

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