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365,000 deaths from AIDS in South Africa could have been avoided if sufferers had had access to anti-retroviral treatment. That’s according to a study from Harvard University that says former South African President Thabo Mbeki and his government’s contentious AIDS policy are responsible for the deaths. Mr Mbeki’s successor, Kgalema Motlanthe, acted on the first day of his presidency two months ago to remove Mr Mbeki’s health minister, who argued that US drug companies were exploiting HIV sufferers with high priced ineffective medicines, and that HIV did not cause AIDS. The new South African health secretary, Barbara Hogan, has said that she feels ashamed that South Africa has to own up to what the Harvard study says.

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