Xinhua News Agency (11.30.11) - Tuesday, December 06, 2011
UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibe is praising China's
success in tackling HIV/AIDS and suggesting that other
countries could benefit from its experiences.
UNAIDS data show China has seen a 60 percent drop in AIDS-
related deaths during the past eight years. Meanwhile, new HIV
cases in China declined from 70,000 annually in 2005 to around
48,000 in 2011, the health ministry reports.
"We have seen progress in terms of new infections," said
Sidibe. "The number of people going into treatment is
increasing, and the mortality rate is going down very quickly
"However, China's success will not only be measured by what it
has done for the Chinese people," Sidibe said. The political
leadership and commitment to AIDS control shown by the
government is a lesson for the developing world, particularly
Africa, he said. A partnership between China and Africa could
make a "big, big difference," in terms of introducing new
technology and perspectives, he noted.
The global economic downturn makes working together and
sharing responsibilities all the more important, Sidibe said.
"It is a critical moment now. It is not a time to stop
investment but to redouble our efforts, to make sure that we
will continue to make progress in the fight against HIV," he
Sidibe was in China on Nov. 30, meeting with the president of
Xinhua. UNAIDS and the news agency have launched a global
media campaign to raise HIV/AIDS awareness. "The partnership
[with Xinhua] is not only about writing news about HIV. It is
about helping people to change their attitude and make
decisions to help protect themselves," Sidibe said.