Live 8 Stars Head to G8 Economic Summit
Carrying on the message of Saturday's landmark Live 8 concert, the event's organizer, Sir Bob Geldof, met with American anti-poverty campaigners early Monday as they traveled to the G8 economic summit in Scotland to urge world leaders to scrap billions in African debt.
The free Saturday concert – in Philadelphia, Paris, Rome, Berlin, Tokyo, Moscow and elsewhere – entertained 1 million fans with Madonna, Coldplay, Elton John, Pink Floyd, The Who, Mariah Carey and more to raise awareness of the issue.
On Monday, Geldof, 54, stood on a row of departure-gate seats at London's Heathrow Airport and congratulated the more than 100 delegates for the "Long Walk to Justice." The group hopes to reach leaders of the world's most industrialized nations – including President Bush – when they gather later this week in Gleneagles, near Edinburgh.
Among the One Campaign activists who were flown over from the United States by Virgin Airlines owner Richard Branson was actor Djimon Hounsou, whose Benin homeland faces extreme poverty, and West Wing actress Melissa Fitzgerald.
Brad Pitt, George Clooney and Bono are also supporters of the One Campaign and recently appeared in a TV ad for the organization. Both Clooney and Bono are expected to make an appearance in Scotland later this week.
Continuing his push for African aid, Geldof said: "Saturday was a glorious cultural triumph with the concerts. There has been a doubling of aid already, but six weeks ago I wouldn't have thought that could happen. But there needs to be more."
Geldof praised more than 27 million Americans who he said had signed their online support for Live 8 but questioned President Bush's claim to have spent Saturday catching the concert on TV. "I doubt that he watched it, but that was what he had to say," said Geldof.
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