U.N. topper plans global AIDS confab

Annan to meet with media moguls

NEW YORK — U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has invited honchos from leading international media companies to powwow April 12 at Mip TV as part of the U.N.-backed Global Media AIDS Initiative.

Annan’s guest list for the Cannes event was not made public.

However, last year at a similar Gotham meeting on AIDS, the U.N.’s guests included then-Viacom prexy/chief operating officer Mel Karmazin, Time Warner’s Jeff Bewkes, Jack Valenti, BET’s Robert Johnson, Univision’s Ray Rodriguez and the BBC’s Mark Byford.

Execs at the N.Y. event last year pledged to raise awareness on a corporate level about the disease.

According to the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS — and the World Health Organization — as many as two-thirds of the 45 million HIV infections projected to occur worldwide over the next decade could be averted with prevention and public education efforts.

“Television is an unparalleled medium for reaching people around the world, especially young people, who have a vital part to play in halting the spread of the epidemic,” Annan aid Monday. “The commitment of media groups to joining the fight against HIV/AIDS is, therefore, of paramount importance.”

Also as part of Annan’s initiative in Cannes, TV producers are being invited to pitch AIDS-related programming to a panel of broadcasters who will commission two winners with development funding.

The U.N. is skedded to see its largest representation ever at Mip TV, with 10 agencies on the scene in Cannes.

Mip TV runs alongside the Milia interactive market, April 11-15.

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