UNICEF wants youths to fully learn about HIV/AIDS

Addis Ababa- Ethiopia (PANA) -- UNICEF Friday emphasised that because the behaviours which young people lead are key to conquering HIV/AIDS, they have the right to know the facts about the disease so that they can take responsibility for their lives.
UNICEF said a major initiative "is needed to overcome social and cultural taboos that limit a frank exchange of information on HIV/AIDS" with every segment of society.
"Every adolescent has a right to know at least ten fundamental facts about HIV, including how the virus is transmitted and how to avoid infection, a press release quoted UNICEF executive director Carol Bellamy as saying.
She lamented that "despite the horrendous toll HIV/AIDS is taking in some countries, an incredible number of young people still don't know the very basic facts about the disease.
" Bellamy cited that research conducted in developing countries indicates that nearly half of all teenage girls in 15 countries don't know that a healthy looking person can have HIV/AIDS, nearly half of all new infections occur in people under the age of 18, and that already 11 million young people are living with HIV.
She said UNICEF would shortly collaborate with governments, NGOs, and other UN agencies to launch a major initiative to ensure that young people in all countries have access to the facts about HIV/AIDS and skills to protect themselves.

29 june 2001 14:42:00

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