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U.N. programs to tackle AIDS, poverty

'Voices' skein takes aim at social issues

CANNES — The United Nations is using Mip TV as a launch pad for programming initiatives to help fight AIDS and poverty.

Among them is “Voices,” a series of TV spots for the Millennium Campaign urging people to get their governments to commit to eradicate poverty by 2015.

“Voices of Darfur” is a 60-minute video of a concert to raise funds for the victims of the conflict in Sudan, while “Eco 4 the World” is a multimedia series on the environment.

An animated spot will celebrate the U.N.’s 60th anniversary. Produced by Harmony Gold, it features characters from Japanese toon series “Robotech.”

“Workshop for Peace,” a doc on the creation of the U.N.’s headquarters, is seeking co-production partners.

At a luncheon following the Global Media AIDS Intiative (GMAI), former U.S. President Bill Clinton addressed the assembled toppers via video link from New York to discuss HIV/AIDS.

He said the challenge was to create awareness in wealthy countries to raise funds to encourage testing and HIV/AIDS education in poor countries, especially Africa.

“It’s unbelievable that 6 million people are infected and only 600,000 are receiving medication,” Clinton said.

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, also speaking by live link, appointed MTV Networks’ Bill Roedy to chair the GMAI Leadership Committee, comprised of media executives from each of the world’s regions to be named in the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, producers pitched their ideas for AIDS-related original programming and commercial formats to a jury sponsored by MTV. The U.N. will provide funds for approved proposals.