18th Int'l AIDS Conference opens in Vienna

08:26, July 19, 2010      

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An estimated 20,000 participants from more than 185 countries are expected to attend the opening session of the 18th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2010) held in Vienna on Sunday.

The 18th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2010) is the platform for those working in the field of HIV, as well as policy makers, persons living with HIV and other individuals committed to ending the pandemic to exchange their views on the current situation of global HIV prevention and treatment, new research in this field and recent scientific developments.

With "Rights Here, Right Now"as its slogan, AIDS 2010 also emphasizes the protection of the human right to those living with or most vulnerable to HIV, including the right to health care, access to all scientifically sound HIV prevention and interventions.

In the opening session, Secretary General of the United Nations (UN) Ban Ki-moon made the opening speech through video, in which he firstly welcomed the improvement made in the global HIV program, and then stressed that many obstacles still remain.

He criticized some governments that are cutting back on their response to AIDS, calling for "additional resources for other areas that have been neglected for far too long."

Julio Montaner, AIDS 2010 chair, president of the International AIDS Society (IAS), as well as President of Austrian AIDS Society Brigitte Schmied also addressed the opening ceremony.

They both called on the international community to jointly fight with HIV and AIDS, stressing that full protection of human rights represents a fundamental first step to achieve the goal.

AIDS was recognized as a terrible disease by U.S. doctor Michael Gottlieb in 1981 in a medical journal. According to the latest figures of the UN, 33.4 million people have been found living with HIV by the end of 2008, of which 2.7 million people have been infected with HIV in 2008.

In addition, during the past 30 years, more than 2,500 people died from AIDS. At present, sub-Saharan Africa remains the most serious region of AIDS.

Source: Xinhua


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