AIDS is a global health issue that continues to grow throughout the world. While December 1 is World AIDS Day, this is just a reminder that it is every day for millions living with AIDS.
In 2000, heads of state made a promise to halt and begin to reverse the spread of AIDS by 2015.
New reports by UNAIDS and the World Health Organization (WHO) indicate that, as of 2006, the epidemic continues to spread in every region of the world. By now more than 65 million people have been infected with HIV and well over 25 million people have died of AIDS since 1981, 2.9 million in 2006 alone. At this rate, the WHO predicts that in the next 25 years another 117 million people will die, making AIDS the third leading cause of death worldwide.
The promise made in 2000 as part of the Millennium Development Goals has been followed by many other targets and commitments over the past six years.
With “accountability” the theme of this World AIDS Day on 1 December, campaigners across the globe are calling leaders to account not just for good intentions, but for action to make those promises a reality.
In his World AIDS Day message, Kofi Annan, secretary-general of the United Nations, perhaps said it best: “Accountability ? the theme of World AIDS Day on Friday ? requires every president and prime minister, every parliamentarian and politician, to decide and declare that “AIDS stops with me.”
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World AIDS Day Campaign