Bill Clinton Backs Thailand and Brazil: Life over Drug Company Profits

9 de may de 2007

<body><div id="article"><tr><td height="28" valign="middle" width="184"></td><td valign="middle" width="185"></td></tr><h1>Bill Clinton Backs Thailand and Brazil: Life over Drug Company Profits</h1><p>May 9 (EIRNS)--Former U.S. President Bill Clinton yesterday firmly supported the recent breaking of pharmaceutical patents on AIDS drugs by Thailand and Brazil.</p><p>Standing next to Thailand's Public Health Minister Mongkol Na Songkhla, who was visiting New York, Clinton said that "No company will live or die because of high-price premiums for AIDS drugs in middle-income countries, but patients may."</p><p>Dr. Mongkol said he believed the support from the former U.S. president was credible enough to clear doubts over the country's motives in challenging the patents of drug firms, the Bangkok Post reported.</p><p>Clinton's Vice President Al Gore had taken the opposite stand when he was in office, threatening South Africa with deadly sanctions if they continued producing generic drugs at lower costs to keep their population alive.</p><p>Dr. Mongkol, who traveled to New York to sign an agreement with the Clinton Foundation to buy the generic versions of AIDS medicine from India in bulk, will use Clinton's endorsement in confronting the Bush Administration's Trade Office on May 21. The Trade Office has downgraded Thailand to the Priority Watch List, which can bring sanctions, in retaliation for breaking the drug patents, although the action is legal under international law when lives are at stake.</p></div></body>