French team to assess needs of Libyan hospital in AIDS case

7th August 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Aug 6, 2007 (AFP) - French experts will soon travel to Libya to evaluate the needs of the hospital where six foreign medics were accused of infecting children with the virus that causes AIDS, the French foreign ministry said Monday.

PARIS, Aug 6, 2007 (AFP) - French experts will soon travel to Libya to evaluate the needs of the hospital where six foreign medics were accused of infecting children with the virus that causes AIDS, the French foreign ministry said Monday.

France had promised more than a year ago to help Libya bring the hospital where the children fell sick up to international standards once the medics were freed.

The son of Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi, Saif ul-Islam Kadhafi, told US magazine Newsweek that at least 300 million euros (414 million dollars) was pledged under a French agreement to renovate the hospital.

French foreign ministry spokesman Hugues Moret said he could not confirm the amount.

"We are still in a technical evaluation phase," he said.

The five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor were imprisoned in Libya after being convicted of infecting hundreds of children with the AIDS virus.

The medics, who always maintained their innocence, were released on July 24 and pardoned by Bulgaria's president upon arrival in Sofia.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who helped negotiate their release, has denied accusations he traded them for a nuclear cooperation deal with France and military contracts with European defence firm EADS, which were announced days after the medics' return to Europe.

AFP

Subject: French news

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