UN: 'Young women, adolescent girls crucial to ending the AIDS epidemic'

New York, US (PANA) - At the Women Deliver youth conference, taking place in
Copenhagen, Denmark, the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) Goodwill
Ambassador, Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway on Monday said young
women and adolescent girls have a crucial role to play in ending the AIDS
epidemic by 2030.

Princess Mette-Marit also stressed the need for young women and adolescent
girls to take leadership roles in the AIDS response so that programmes and
services could be developed to meet their specific needs and to ensure that
their sexual and reproductive health and rights were respected.

A UN statement on the conference issued in New York, quoted her as saying:
"I truly believe engaging the youth is key. Key to managing and resolving the
challenges we face in relation to HIV.

"But moreover, the voice of youth is key to understanding and resolving most
of the challenges we are facing in the world today.Your tenacity, your
knowledge and your world view is needed, and deserve to be heard loudly
in the corridors of power."

Princess Mette-Marit has been involved in the AIDS response since 2003 and
is a powerful advocate for youth engagement and the empowerment of women.

She recently visited Tanzania to assess progress made in eliminating
mother-to-child transmission of HIV and to see how young people were
engaging in the AIDS response.

The statement said that young women and girls remain disproportionately
affected by HIV. In 2014 there were around 220,000 new HIV infections
worldwide among adolescents aged 10 to 19, with adolescent girls
accounting for 62 percent of new infections among this age group.

In sub-Saharan Africa, adolescent girls aged 10 to 19 made up 72 per cent
of total new infections among this age group.

The UN said the Women Deliver youth conference is a crucial opportunity
for young activists in the HIV response to make their voices heard in the
lead-up to the UN General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS,
which will take place 8-10 June in New York.
-0-   PANA  AA/AR  16May2016

16 may 2016 18:31:24




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