Secretary-General Kofi Annan will be in Philadelphia on 4 July, United States Independence Day, to receive the city's 2001 Liberty Medal, along with a $100,000 cash award that he has pledged to the Global AIDS and Health Fund, a UN spokesman confirmed today.
The Philadelphia Liberty Medal honours an individual or organization demonstrating leadership and vision in the pursuit of liberty of conscience or freedom from oppression, ignorance or deprivation.
The Mayor of Philadelphia, John Street, will present the Medal to Mr. Annan at Liberty Hall where the US Declaration of Independence and Constitution were adopted. Noting that the presentation of the award to the Secretary-General came at a most significant time in the history of the world and of the United Nations, Mayor Street described Mr. Annan as "truly an individual who embodies the values of the Philadelphia Liberty Medal."
The Global AIDS and Health Fund was first proposed by Mr. Annan on 26 April at the African Summit on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Other Related Infectious, held in Abuja, Nigeria. On Wednesday, the General Assembly special session on HIV/AIDS backed the establishment of the Fund "to finance an urgent and expanded response to the epidemic based on an integrated approach to prevention, care, support and treatment."