UN: UN member states adopt new Political Declaration on Ending AIDS

New York, US (PANA) - The 193 UN member states on Wednesday in New York adopted
a new Political Declaration on Ending HIV/AIDS, agreeing to reach ambitious new targets
by 2020, pledging to leave no one behind and end the AIDS epidemic as a public health
threat by 2030.

PANA reports that the declaration was adopted at the UN General Assembly High-Level
Meeting on Ending AIDS, holding from 8-10 June at the UN headquarters in New York.

The declaration includes a set of specific, time-bound targets that must be reached by
2020 to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030 within the framework of the Sustainable
Development Goals (SDGs).

Heads of State and Government, ministers, people living with HIV, representatives of
civil society, international organizations, the private sector, scientists and researchers
have gathered at the meeting to build on the commitments made in the Political
Declaration and to set the world on course to end the epidemic by 2030.

UN General Assembly President Mogens Lykketoft stated: "The global
community is united in its resolve to end the AIDS epidemic within the framework
of the Sustainable Development Goals.

"This meeting is laying the groundwork for future progress in creating healthier
outcomes for everybody affected by HIV and building stronger societies prepared
for future challenges."

On his part, UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibe said: "The world has an
opportunity to end an epidemic that has defined public health for a generation.

"The decisions made here, including the commitment to zero new HIV infections,
zero AIDS-related deaths and zero discrimination, will provide the springboard
for the implementation of an innovative, evidence-informed and socially just
agenda that will end the AIDS epidemic by 2030."

He noted that remarkable progress has been made in the response to HIV since
the last UN General Assembly Meeting on HIV/AIDS in 2011.

"By December 2015, 17 million people were accessing anti-retroviral medicines
and new HIV infections among children and AIDS-related deaths have been
considerably reduced, and there has also been progress in reducing
tuberculosis deaths among people living with HIV.

"However, the number of new HIV infections among adults has remained almost
static since 2010 and too many people are being left behind in the response,
including young women and girls and specific groups of people, including sex
workers, prisoners, gay men and other men who have sex with men, transgender
people and people who inject drugs," he stated.

The meeting focused attention on the importance of a fast-track approach to
HIV over the next five years to set the world on course to end the AIDS
epidemic.

The UNAIDS fast-track approach to ending the AIDS epidemic has a set of
time-bound targets, including reducing the number of people newly infected
with HIV from 2.1 million (1.8 million–2.4 million) in 2015 to fewer than 500,000
in 2020.

Others are reducing the number of people dying from AIDS-related illnesses
from 1.1 million (940,000–1.3 million) in 2015 to fewer than 500,000 in 2020
and eliminating HIV-related discrimination.

The participants are also taking part in a series of discussions and events
throughout the 3-day meeting, to discuss how to transform the Political
Declaration into concerted action through scientific innovation, financial
sustainability, ending stigma and discrimination and creating socially
just, resilient and inclusive societies that leave no one behind.

A series of panel discussions and side events, including on leveraging
the end of AIDS for social transformation and sustainable development,
financing and sustaining the end of AIDS and stopping new HIV
infections, is also taking place at the UN headquarters to enhance the
implementation of the political declaration.

UNAIDS will also launch a report on the remarkable progress made in
stopping new HIV infections among children.

UNAIDS together with the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners,
announced that three countries, including Thailand, which at the peak
of the epidemic had more than 3,000 new infections among children per
year have eliminated new HIV infections among children.

Other events include a youth meeting on HIV/AIDS and an interfaith
service.

The meeting will also include an innovations marketplace that will
showcase new technologies and tools in the area of health and HIV.

PANA recalled that, on Monday, the Mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio,
hosted a mayors' event on Fast-Track cities that underscored the key
role that cities are playing in ending the AIDS epidemic.

The UN General Assembly Meeting on Ending AIDS is convened by
the President of the UN General Assembly and co-facilitated by
Switzerland and Zambia.
-0-  PANA  AA/AR  8June2016

08 june 2016 17:08:59




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