AIDS charity Life Ball raises 1.5 mln euros

VIENNA, July 22, 2010 (AFP) - Vienna's glitzy AIDS charity Life Ball last weekend raised 1.5 million euros (1.9 million dollars) for international and national HIV and AIDS projects, organisers said Thursday.

This year's event on the square in front of the Austrian capital's neo-Gothic Town Hall and attended by former US president Bill Clinton and Hollywood actress Whoopi Goldberg was marred by heavy thunder storms and cloudbursts.

"If the weather had been better, the amount of money raised would probably have been even higher," commented organiser Gery Keszler.

Nevertheless, tens of thousands of gays, lesbians, drag queens and their friends, all dressed in outrageous costumes, paid between 75-150 euros for a ticket to the 18th annual fashion-show-cum-party event, aimed as a brilliant and dazzling pendant to Vienna's stiff and haughty Opera Ball much earlier in the year.

Picture shows new HIV protection gel for women on July 21, 2010 during the 18th International AIDS Conference in Vienna.AFP PHOTO

Also in Vienna, the 18th World AIDS conference, which runs until Friday, is being attended by some 25,000 experts, health professionals and policy makers to discuss progress in fighting AIDS and look at ways to provide further prevention and treatment against the HIV virus which causes it.

Other news