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Nelson Mandela, Kofi Annan and Thabo Mbeki - all three helped to find a dignified way out for the pharmaceutical giants. The finale on 19 April 2001 was described as an "amicable settlement." For some of those following the case closely, the end was a sort of anti-climax. It took the pharmaceutical industry three years to withdraw a case it had filed in the first place. There was no judgement. But had there been a judgement, which many expected to be in favour of the government, the world would have had an opportunity to examine what exactly the government had to say in defence of its TRIPS-compliant public health action and the arguments that industry advanced to protect its patents, an international right conferred by the WTO's Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights Agreement.