The United Nations global HIV/AIDS agency has not responded to claims that it is a homophobic organisation.
Just over a month ago the boss of the NZ AIDS Foundation, which runs one of the world’s most successful HIV prevention programmes, described UNAIDS as homophobic and arrogant in its disregard for men who have sex with men.
UNAIDS is highly influential in the creation and funding of many HIV prevention and support programmes, particularly in developing nations where, although the major proportion of the epidemic is amongst straight people, there are significant numbers of men who have sex with men struggling against their own epidemics.
The agency released its 2013 global HIV/AIDS report, which showed that new HIV infections among adults and adolescents fell by 50 percent or more in 26 countries between 2001 and 2012. It believes that aggressive drug treatment to lower the levels of HIV in the bodies of HIV-infected individuals, rather than relying on promotion of safe sex, primarily through condom use, will halt the spread of the disease.
Shaun Robinson of the NZAF said a claim by UNAIDS that the global HIV epidemic could therefore be over by 2030 ignores the fact that the epidemic amongst gay men world-wide continues to rise. He accuses the organisation of ignoring the needs and realities of HIV infection amongst men who have sex with men.
GayNZ.com Daily News approached UNAIDS for comment and was advised to contact it’s Executive Director, Dr Luis Loures. Over half a dozen attempts to speak with Dr Loures at a cellphone number supplied by UNAIDS proved unsuccessful. Concurrent requests that it might be easier for Loures or UNAIDS staff to reply to our emailed questions have been ignored.
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