Not in our name, say UN bodies

The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/Aids (UNAids) have written to the Dr Rath Health Foundation demanding that it remove from its website all reference to their names within three weeks, or “appropriate action” will be taken.

The Rath Foundation has repeatedly cited these organisations to endorse its contention that anti-retroviral drugs are toxic and that only vitamins and nutrition therapy can treat HIV/Aids.

The legal letter from WHO and UNAids, dated May 2, is in the Mail & Guardian’s possession. It condemns the Rath Foundation for the “unauthorised and misleading use of their names” on its website. It warns that if written confirmation of and compliance with the demand is not received, the organisations will consider “other appropriate measures”.

Two earlier UN statements condemned the foundation for using its name in a number of advertisements in the local and international press.

The letter says the world organisations are concerned about Rath’s misrepresentations, “which are considered to deceive people living with HIV/Aids and to pose a threat to their individual well-being as well as public health”.

It says the names of the WHO and UNAids are protected and may not be used without prior written authorisation, adding that the two organisations have never supported the use of vitamin and other natural therapies in preference to anti-retroviral therapy.

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