2nd Eastern Europe and Central Asia AIDS Conference ends
05 May 2008
UNAIDS Executive Director Dr Peter Piot
addressed the opening plenary of the
Second Eastern European and Central
Asian AIDS Conference. 3-5 May 2008
The Second Eastern Europe and Central Asia AIDS Conference concluded on May 5 after three-days of dialogue centred on better responding to the region’s HIV epidemic.
Hundreds of participants from across the region as well as representatives from the UN and other international organizations gathered in Moscow to share ideas and map-out action on the challenges facing it.
The region is home to one of the world’s fastest growing HIV epidemics; in 2007, some 1.6 million people in the region were living with HIV, a 150% increase since 2001
Representing UNAIDS, Executive Director Dr Peter Piot addressed the opening plenary together with Dr Gennadiy G. Onischenko, Head of the Russian Federation’s federal health division, Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director of The Global Fund, and Craig McClure, Executive Director of the International AIDS Society.
A hallmark of the conference was its bringing together of crucial voices in the region’s AIDS response, from scientists and politicians to civil society groups and representatives of people living with HIV.
In addition to a diverse programme of sessions focused on HIV prevention, treatment, care and support initiatives, space was dedicated to encourage informal and open dialogue on some of the issues central to understanding the region’s epidemic.
UNAIDS Executive Director Dr Piot met
with youth leaders, representatives from
local communities and other peers
committed to supporting Eastern Europe
and Central Asia in moving its AIDS
Two spaces for such interactions were ‘Besedka’, a community dialogue space for people living with HIV organized by The Global Fund, UNAIDS and the Eastern European and Central Asian Union of people living with HIV Organizations; and Youth Village, sponsored by UNAIDS, the UN Population Fund and the Youth Peer Education Network.
UNAIDS Executive Director Dr Piot met with youth leaders, representatives from local communities and other peers committed to supporting Eastern Europe and Central Asia in moving its AIDS response forward.
The May 3-5 conference was the second for the region, with the first held in 2006, and the largest AIDS-focused conference to date in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.