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Also In Global Health News: Sexual Violence In DRC; Anti-Gay Legislation; Counterfeit Drugs In Kenya

U.S. To Give $7M To Help Women Who Have Suffered Sexual Violence In DRC

The U.S. will finance a $7 million program to aid women in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo who have been the targets of sexual violence, the U.S. embassy said on Tuesday, Agence France-Presse reports. The money will provide “support for clinics, hospitals and community centres for women and children,” according to an embassy statement. “The project, baptised Espoir (Hope), was jointly launched by the Congolese government and the U.S. embassy and is financed by the development agency USAID” (12/22).

U.S. Lawmakers Call For Ugandan President To Oppose Anti-Gay Legislation

Five House Republicans – Reps. Frank Wolf (Va.), Chris Smith (N.J.), Joe Pitts (Penn.), Trent Franks (Ariz.) and Anh “Joseph” Cao (La.) – sent a letter to Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni on Tuesday urging him “to oppose a proposed law that would impose the death penalty for some gay Ugandans,” the Associated Press reports. “The lawmakers say they are all men of faith, and that the bill is antithetical to the Christian belief of ‘inherent dignity and worth’ of all people,” the news service writes (12/22).

HIV Patients Petition Kenyan Anti-Counterfeit Law

Inter Press Service reports on an upcoming legal challenge to Kenya’s new anti-counterfeit act. Three HIV-positive people argue that the law could prevent them from obtaining generic drugs, which “could cause a health crisis as generics constitute 90 percent of medicines used in Kenya,” IPS writes. “The three petitioners want the Constitutional Court to declare the law … unconstitutional on the grounds that it will deny them access to affordable life-saving generic medicines and therefore rob them off their right to life, says Peter Munyi, an intellectual property rights lawyer working with Health Action International (HAI) Africa” (Anyangu-Amu, 12/21).

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