News24, 01 January 2003, Aids activists end hunger strike

Johannesburg - A seven-day hunger strike by Aids activists outside the offices of pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline in Midrand ended on Wednesday.

The strike by members of the National Association of People living with Aids (Napwa) was part of their "Seven Days Black Christmas" protest, aimed at forcing pharmaceutical companies to provide anti-retroviral drugs free of charge.

Some of the activists experienced diarrhoea, stomach cramps, and opportunistic infections due to the lack of food, SABC radio news said.

On Wednesday, they were taken to various hospitals for medical attention. The hunger strike was aimed at highlighting the plight of those living with the disease.

Napwa's action was also aimed at forcing financial institutions to stop discriminating against those living with HIV/Aids, and they wanted the government to introduce uniformity in allocation of social grants.



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