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Spain Counters Pope,
Sends Condoms to Africa

Spain Counters Pope,
Sends Condoms to Africa

Spain announced that it will send a million condoms to Africa to fight the rampant spread of HIV on the continent.

Spain announced that it will send a million condoms to Africa to fight the rampant spread of HIV on the continent.

The announcement comes a day after Pope Benedict XVI stated that condoms do not slow the spread of HIV but rather "increase the problem." On his way to Cameroon, the pope told reporters, "You can't resolve [AIDS] with the distribution of condoms."

The disbursement of the condoms are to fight HIV with a proven method, the Spanish health ministry said in a statement today. "Condoms have been demonstrated to be a necessary element in prevention policies and an efficient barrier against the virus."

The pope's statements on Tuesday mark the first time he had addressed the use of condoms since taking over as the head of the Catholic Church in 2005, according to The New York Times . The Vatican is strongly opposed to all forms of artificial contraception including condoms, making no exception for protection against STDs, and Spain's government, headed by Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, has been clashing with Vatican sentiments since 2004, when he entered office.

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