Statment for World AIDS Day, 1 December 2010 by Michel Sidibé, Executive Director of UNAIDS and Under Secretary-General of the United Nations
On this World AIDS Day we can be proud.
Globally we have reduced the number of new HIV infections and deaths by nearly 20%. This means less people are becoming infected with HIV and less people are dying from AIDS. 56 countries have either stabilized or significantly reduced the rate of new HIV infections.
For the first time, we have broken the trajectory of the AIDS epidemic and reached the first part of the Millennium Development Goal for HIV. We have achieved this amazing milestone because families, communities, governments—and UNAIDS have united the world in an unprecedented movement. We are prevailing…with political commitment, leadership from all sectors including leaders of faith…with science, with evidence, with human rights, and passion.
On this World AIDS Day we can remember.
Our successes have not come without sacrifice. Today we mourn friends and family—some 30 million people who have lost their lives to AIDS. An estimated 10 million people are waiting for treatment. We must remember that punitive laws and stigma still hurt too many people around the world.
On this World AIDS Day we can commit.
Our hard-won gains are fragile—so our commitment to the AIDS response must remain strong. AIDS is a proven investment and must be a shared responsibility today and tomorrow.
On this World AIDS Day we can be hopeful.
With your commitment and that of UNAIDS and the UN family, we are changing the course of the AIDS epidemic. I have called for the virtual elimination of mother-to-child transmission by 2015.
Nothing gives me more hope than knowing that an AIDS free generation is possible in our lifetime. So on this World AIDS Day, take action today—together we can reach Zero new infections. Zero discrimination. Zero AIDS-related deaths!
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