UN: Mayors, UNAIDS, partners strategise against HIV/AIDS

New York, US (PANA) - Mayors from different parts of the world, in collaboration with the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), the Fast-Track cities partners, UN-Habitat and the International Association of Providers of AIDS Care (IAPAC), on Monday in New York convened a one-day event on ending the AIDS epidemic in cities by 2030.

PANA in New York reports that the event, made possible by the MAC AIDS Fund, was held ahead of the UN General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS, taking place at the UN headquarters from 8 to 10 June.

New York Mayor, Bill de Blasio, who spoke at the event, said: "Today offers a unique opportunity to partner and explore how we can work together to educate, treat and prevent the spread of HIV, and here in New York City we echo those efforts through our work, including increased funding for HIV/AIDS prevention services and health care."

"We are deeply proud of this work, but we must do more, I commend Paris' Mayor Anne Hidalgo and the other mayors of great cities involved for their partnership in the global response to HIV," he said.

He also noted that the cities event highlighted the essential leadership role that cities play in responding to HIV.

Paris Mayor, Anne Hidalgo, who was unable to attend the event because of the emergency situation in Paris following heavy flooding, in a message, said: "We all share the same certainty: we no longer have the right to stand by and watch as HIV worsens when solutions exist."

"And because the solutions exist, we no longer have any excuse for inaction and political will is at the forefront of responding to AIDS and I stand firmly to say: Paris is committed to ending the AIDS epidemic," she said.

On his part, UNAIDS Executive Director, Michel Sidibe said: "More than half of the world's population currently lives in cities, and city leadership on HIV is essential if the world is to achieve the Fast-Track Targets and end the AIDS epidemic by 2030."

He noted that cities are at the front of the response to HIV and other health and equity challenges and are uniquely positioned to take transformative action."

"City leaders are already driving innovation and social transformation through ambitious responses to global challenges such as climate change and sustainable development," Mr. Sidibe said.

Around 30 mayors from around the globe attended the event to discuss how they are getting on the Fast-Track to end AIDS in cities.

They also shared how smart cities are implementing urban innovations to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

The gathering provided an opportunity to take a closer look at the opportunities and challenges cities face in ending AIDS through a series of panels and conversations with mayors, UN officials, health experts, HIV/AIDS advocates, as well as media representatives.
-0- PANA AA/VAO 6June2016

06 Junho 2016 15:49:28

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