Queen to headline AIDS benefit organized by Nelson Mandela

BY admin

December 23 2004 12:00 AM ET

Nelson Mandela has announced plans for a second concert to raise money to fight HIV/AIDS, bringing rock group Queen and other artists back to South Africa in March for a televised show. Mandela, 86, has made fighting Africa's AIDS pandemic one of his major campaigns since stepping down as South Africa's first black president in 1997. South Africa, with an estimated 5 million HIV-positive people, has the world's highest caseload in the world.

Next year's show, dubbed "46664 South Africa" after Mandela's onetime prison number, is scheduled for March 19 at the Fancourt golf resort near the southern town of George, organizers said. It follows a concert held in Cape Town in November 2003 that was broadcast worldwide. Queen and singer-songwriter Paul Rodgers, who helped found the groups Free and Bad Company, have signed up to play, and other international stars are also expected, organizers said. "The focus of this year's concert, in line with the theme of World AIDS Day this year, will be to promote recognition that women are now bearing the brunt of the HIV/AIDS pandemic," the group said on Wednesday.

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