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AIDS 2014 Opens With Remembrance Of Researchers, Advocates Lost In Plane Crash

Media sources report on the first two days of the 20th International AIDS Conference, or AIDS 2014, taking place this week in Melbourne, Australia.

Agence France-Presse: World AIDS forum opens with tribute for plane dead
“A six-day world forum on AIDS got under way on Sunday to tributes to six campaigners killed on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 and fresh vows to crush a disease that has claimed twice as many lives as World War I…” (Ingham, 7/20).

Deutsche Welle: HIV research and action in light of tragedy
“…The international community was shocked by the news of the Malaysian plane crash — but conference participants have been devastated. The conference will still go on, from July 20 to 25, with attendees holding to the program as much as possible. The conference motto is ‘Stepping up the pace’…” (Heise, 7/20).

The Guardian: AIDS conference hears why Ghana police chief carries bag of condoms
“…A new report, launched at the AIDS 2014 symposium in Melbourne on Monday, has revealed how police, sex workers, and drug users are working together to stop the spread of infectious diseases, particularly HIV…” (Davey, 7/21).

International AIDS Society: Tributes paid to lost colleagues aboard flight MH17 at the Opening Session of the 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Australia
“Tributes were paid tonight at the opening session of the 20th International AIDS Conference to the six delegates who lost their lives aboard flight MH17…” (7/20).

International AIDS Society: HIV Cure, HIV Co-Infection and HIV Laws Feature on Day 2 of AIDS 2014
“…Today’s conference activities (Monday 21 July) began with plenary presentations about the
latest advances for an HIV cure (Jintanat Ananworanich of Thailand), latest trends in HIV epidemiology (Salim Abdool Karim of South Africa), and how people with HIV are participating in the contemporary global response to HIV (Lydia Mungherera of Uganda)…” (7/21).

Thomson Reuters Foundation: AIDS conference opens with tribute to crash victims, attack on ‘monstrous’ laws
“Countries should not be allowed to get away with repressive laws that reinforce discrimination against groups of people at high risk of HIV, speakers told a global AIDS conference, which opened on Sunday, despite being marred by tragedy…” (Nguyen, 7/20).

U.N. News Centre: At conference, UNAIDS chief calls for end to ‘hypocrisy’ in fighting HIV/AIDS
“The head of the United Nations agency dealing with HIV and AIDS [Sunday] urged world leaders at an international conference in Australia to end the hypocrisy on sex and make treatment and reproductive health education universally available…” (7/20).

USA TODAY: AIDS pandemic may be reversed despite lack of cure
“With widespread numbers of HIV patients in treatment, researchers, and advocates are talking at this week’s International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Australia, about finally reversing the pandemic…” (Weintraub, 7/20).

VOA News: International AIDS Conference Sets Big Goals
“This year’s global AIDS conference has ambitious goals, notably to eradicate the dreaded virus by 2030. But a cloud hung over the proceedings, caused by the death of six researchers and AIDS experts who were among those killed on a Malaysia Airlines flight shot down over volatile eastern Ukraine…” (Powell, 7/20).