We see no signs ACT UP Paris or ACT UP groups in the United States will stage any direct actions related to tenofovir during the fourth quarter. We do believe ACT UP Paris will continue to fight against the medical deductible proposal and try to meet with the French president. It will also continue monitoring the Thailand compulsory licensing situation.
ACT UP Paris also will be focusing on the topic of women with HIV/AIDS (the group calls women “the forgotten population”) on Nov. 30, ahead of the 20th annual World AIDS Day on Dec. 1. ACT UP will participate in a Planned Parenthood educational seminar Nov. 30 on women and HIV/AIDS issues. There does not appear to be an anti-corporate theme associated with the Nov. 30 seminar.
Politics will likely be a focus of ACT UP’s participation in World AIDS Day (historically, ACT UP has preferred to engage in activities the day before World AIDS Day, hence its participation in Planned Parenthood’s women and HIV/AIDS discussion). World AIDS Day activities typically are low-key affairs, such as church services and vigils for those who have died. This year’s theme for World AIDS Day is “leadership.” There does not appear to be an anti-corporate overtone to the scheduled global events, although it is possible the compulsory licensing issue, Abbott and Thailand -- a significant media story earlier in the year -- could become a focal point of certain World AIDS Day activities.
It also is possible that ACT UP groups will stage a protest or demonstration on World AIDS Day (although such an action has not been publicly announced). If such an action occurs, it likely will have political overtones (demanding more government funding of AIDS programs in the United States and France, for example, or, in France specifically, criticizing the Sarkozy government). Some actions could be directed toward the compulsory licensing argument, although these would likely focus first on the U.S. and EU political reactions to the issue and, second, Abbott’s activism. It is unlikely that the Gates Foundation would be targeted.