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01.12.2003 General News

ADB supports fight against AIDS

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Accra, Dec. 1, GNA - The African Development Bank (ADB) joins the international community in marking the 2003 World AIDS Day under the slogan "Live and Let Live".

The Bank wishes to renew its commitment and dedication to efforts made and actions undertaken by international organizations, multilateral institutions and local assistance networks towards the fight against HIV/AIDS and communicable diseases.

In particular to the current WHO declaration of "3 by 5" that intends to provide treatment to three million living with HIV/AIDS by 2005.

A statement issued in Tunis and sent to GNA expressed concern on the fact that current prevention, care and treatment were far from being adequate to curve down the spread of the epidemic globally and in Africa in particular. It said: "Despite increased resources, improved partnership and high level commitment and leadership, 2003 marked the highest ever number of new infection (5 million) and the highest number of deaths (3 million)".

Among the development challenges of HIV/AIDS, the issue of orphans remained the most critical one with unprecedented multi-sectoral implications that could counteract all development efforts.

"The Bank in renewing its commitment to the fight against the epidemic calls upon its partners to join hands in addressing the various challenges of orphans", it said.

The Bank is among the few partners that had initiated sub-regional HIV/AIDS programmes within the context of regional integration to address the problem of "AIDS, conflict and food security".

It continues to provide its support in the fight against HIV/AIDS in its Regional Member Countries (RMCs) by increasing its operational, advocacy and partnership activities in the core areas of HIV/AIDS.

The statement said it would continue to co-ordinate its activities with bilateral institutions, the civil society and the private sector. The Bank's support to RMCs in the fight against HIV/AIDS started early 90s. Since the adoption of the Bank Group Strategy on HIV/AIDS in 2001 the Bank's portfolio on HIV/AIDS had increased.

HIV/AIDS is mainstreamed in new operational policies and sector projects and programmes of the Bank.

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