STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT: HR: 3519 "Global AIDS and Tuberculosis Relief Act of 2000"
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release                                             August
19, 2000

                        STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

     Today I am pleased to sign into law H.R.3519, the "Global AIDS and
Tuberculosis Relief Act of2000," which represents the latest U.S.effort in
the long-term global fight against HIV/AIDS and its related threat of

     In July1999, Vice President Gore and I launched the Administration's
interagency "Leadership and Investment in Fighting an Epidemic" (LIFE)
initiative to expand our funding forglobal HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and
treatment in the worstaffected developing countries.  With bipartisan
support, the Congress appropriated the additional $100million that we
requested for FY2000 to enhance these efforts.  For FY2001, mybudget
includes an additional $100million for the LIFE initiative.

     While the LIFE initiative greatly strengthens the foundation of a
comprehensive response to the pandemic, the UnitedStates clearly
understands that there is much more to be done.  The Joint UnitedNations
Program on HIV/AIDS has estimated that it will take $1.5billion annually to
establish an effective HIV prevention program in sub-Saharan Africa and an
additional $1.5billion annually to deliver basic care and treatment
topeople with AIDS in the region.

     H.R.3519 takes some of the additional steps to broaden theglobal
effort to combat this worldwide epidemic.  It providesenhanced bilateral
authorities and authorizes funding for the Agency for International
Development's HIV/AIDS programs; authorizes new funding for the Global
Alliance for Vaccines andImmunizations and the International AIDS Vaccine
Initiative; and authorizes the creation of a World Bank AIDS Trust Fund
that is intended to create a new, multilateral funding mechanism to support
AIDS prevention and care programs in the most grievously affected

     The UnitedStates, however, cannot and should not battleAIDS alone.
This crisis will require the active engagement of all segments of all
societies working together. Every bilateral donor, every multilateral
lending agency, the corporate community, the foundation community, the
religious community, and every host government of a developing nation
mustdo its part to provide the leadership and resources necessary to turn
this tide.  It can and must be done.

     There is currently no vaccine or cure for HIV/AIDS, and weare at the
beginning of a global pandemic, not the end.  What we see in Africa today
is just the tip of the iceberg.  There must be a sense of urgency to work
together with our partners in Africa and around the world, to learn from
both our failures and our successes, and to share this experience with
those countries that now stand on the brink of disaster.  Millions of
lives-- perhaps hundreds of millions-- hang in the balance.  That is
whythis legislation is so important.

     I wish to thank and congratulate our congressional partnerswho worked
hard to make this bipartisan legislation a reality:  Representatives Leach,
Lee, LaFalce, Gejdenson, Gilman, Jackson-Lee, Maloney of New York, and
Pelosi, and Senators Kerry, Frist, Biden, Boxer, Durbin, Feingold, Helms,
Leahy, Moynihan, and Smith of Oregon.


     While I strongly support this legislation, certain provisions seem to
direct the Administration on how to proceed innegotiations related to the
development of the World Bank AIDSTrust Fund.  Because these provisions
appear to require theAdministration to take certain positions in the
international arena, they raise constitutional concerns.  As such, I will
treat them as precatory.

     The UnitedStates has been engaged in the fight against AIDSsince the
1980s.  Increasingly, we have come to realize that
when it comes to AIDS, neither the crisis nor the opportunity to
address it have borders.  We have a great deal to learn from the
experiences of other countries, and the suffering of citizens in our global
village touches us all.  The pages of history reveal moments in time when
the global community came together and collectively found "the higher
angels of our nature."  In a worldliving with AIDS, we must reach for one
of those historic moments now-- it is the only way to avoid paying the
price later.

                                   WILLIAM J. CLINTON

August 19, 2000.

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