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United against malaria - roll back malaria partnership welcomes Youssou N'Dour & world musicians to the European stage

Malaria is in the spotlight of the music world for the second time this year. Following his spectacular AFRICA LIVE: The Roll Back Malaria Concert, in Dakar last March, the Senegalese superstar Youssou N'Dour is leading a cast of international artists to Geneva to commemorate the United Nations' 60th birthday with a concert dedicated to fighting malaria.

The "United Against Malaria" concert will feature Youssou N'Dour and friends, Corneille, Tiken Jah Fakoly, Peter Gabriel, Axelle Red, Rokia Traoré as well as other guest artists from all five continents committed to fighting malaria.

"Music touches people’s hearts and minds", said Youssou N’Dour, Roll Back Malaria Partnership Special Envoy and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, during rehearsal for Saturday’s concert. "We must continue to use our music to tell the world about malaria: that it can be prevented, it can be treated, and it can be beaten if everyone joins the fight.”

The World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank, founding partners of the Roll Back Malaria partnership, welcome the concert in the heart of Geneva, the UN's European capital. "This concert is an excellent catalyst for the fight against malaria,” said Roll Back Malaria Executive Secretary Prof. Awa Marie Coll-Seck. “Strong commitment from partners as diverse as music stars and private banks, combined with greater world awareness of malaria, will lead to increased action and success in combating the disease. Referring to the private sector's contribution, Coll-Seck added that "this expertise is also vital, especially to supply chain management, the delivery of nets and medicine and the procurement challenges that the Roll Back Malaria Partnership faces today."

This event is a message of empowerment to the artistic community, but also to those partners involved in tackling malaria. "We must continue to work together and coordinate if we want to make a real difference. Raising money is one thing, coordinating our numerous expertise and initiatives is another", said Coll-Seck.

People in Africa suffer severely from the impact of malaria. The disease kills over a million people each year, mainly African children, and is a perpetual barrier to socioeconomic development across the continent. The private sector, a highly active constituency in the RBM Partnership, is an indispensable source of funding in the business of fighting malaria. Business has also the knowledge and skills required to help deliver national malaria control plans.

The Roll Back Malaria partners stand ready to ensure that any new funds raised as a result of this event will go to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria - the largest financier of malaria control today - and other malaria-related projects administered by the Private Bank Pictet's Fondation pour Genève - the principal sponsor of the concert.

The Roll Back Malaria Partnership

To provide coordinated international approach to fighting malaria, the Roll Back Malaria Partnership (RBM) (www.rollbackmalaria.org) was launched in 1998 by the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank. The Partnership now brings together governments of countries affected by malaria, their bilateral and multilateral development partners, the private sector, non-governmental and community-based organizations, foundations, and research and academic institutions around the common goal of halving the global burden of malaria by 2010.

Upcoming event

13-19 November 2005 - An unprecedented gathering will convene in Yaoundé, Cameroon for the Fourth MIM Pan-African Malaria Conference (http://www.mim.su.se) and the Roll Back Malaria Partnership's Forum V (http://www.rollbackmalaria.org/forumV). The joint events will highlight new findings emerging from the work of leading Western and African malaria experts.

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For more information contact:

Ms Pru Smith
Roll Back Malaria Partnership Secretariat
Telephone: +41 22 791 4586
E-mail: smithp@who.int

Mrs Stéfanie Durivage
Roll Back Malaria Partnership Secretariat
Telephone: +41 22 791 16 56
E-mail: durivages@who.int