Religious Groups Fighting HIV/AIDS Pandemic in Africa Call for G7 Funds

Swaziland / World Mission

“In many countries AIDS is at the top of the list of causes of death, and Africa is facing the struggle of the pandemic with an increasing number of infected people. For example, AIDS has been the leading cause of death in South Africa accounting for a huge 30% at national level, according to a survey provided by Medical Research Council. According to the report, the statistics are for year 2000, and the number of deaths due to AIDS could even have increased over past few years.

The situation has become a great concern of many international initiatives that aim to stop the spread of the disease. However, to carry out many of these initiatives funding is needed – and this has become another major worry in tackling the spread of the virus. Paul Zeitz from Global AIDS Alliance comments: ‘There’s an urgent crisis at the global level and it is a crisis of funding.’

Also, U.N. officials say the fight against the disease is endangered by a shortage of funds. The U.N. General Assembly meeting is to be held 2-3 June 2005 and the situation of the battle against the HIV/AIDS will be discussed.

Recourses in the last year reached US$6.1 billion, however, the money required for future works has been predicted by UNAIDS, an organisation leading the fight, at around US$12 billions. This amount will be needed for this year to provide necessary help. However, funds are not expected to rise, leaving the situation unresolved and a shortfall of around US$6 billions will occur.

Regions that will be influenced the most by this insufficient funding are the countries of sub-Saharan Africa, where the disease is spreading at a rapid pace. People involved in this fight are indignant by the indifference of the leaders of rich countries, who have the power to solve the shortage of the funds.”

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