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 Press release - 1 December, World AIDS Day in Azerbaijan (AzRC)

 Press release date: 03.12.2003

1 December, World AIDS Day in Azerbaijan

Nowadays the HIV/AIDS epidemic became a real threat to the whole mankind and it continues its destroying spread among communities. The disease does not make the difference between people. Everybody: men, women, children, the riches and the poor, the old and the young could be the next victim of the terrible disease.
The figures speak for themselves: during the next ten years the number of people who died from HIV/AIDS will exceed the number of war victims for the last 50 years. Since the epidemic has started the 40 millions were infected and 28 million people died from this disease.

In order to attract public attention to the problem of HIV/AIDS in Azerbaijan and worldwide, the Azerbaijan Red Crescent joined to 181 National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies as well as other institutions that mark the 1 December World AIDS Day.

This year the Azerbaijan Red Crescent carried out the number of activities in Baku and some of its branches as well as all seven regions. It was decided to devote this week to HIV/AIDS related activities.
In one of the regions, Sumgayit, the staff and volunteers of Sumgayit Red Crescent regional center jointly with Ministry of Sport and Tourism conducted the marching under the slogan "The youth against the AIDS" along the central street of the city, distributing the brochures to the people.

The marching was also organized in Sabirabad region. The event included distribution of brochures by Red Crescent health promoters to the IDP families, marching on the central streets of Sabirabad town and ended with discotheque organized by young volunteers.

20 peer educated volunteers of Red Crescent Lankaran regional center organized quizzes in two orphanage houses on the danger of HIV/AIDS as well as the ways of its spreading. In Mingechaur peer educators organized two-days training covered 200 youth and ended with discotheque.

The video clip "Protect yourself!" was demonstrated during above-mentioned quizzes, training and discotheques.

In Baku solemn event took place on the 1st December in the State Theatre of Musical Comedy with participation of well-known pop-stars, who joined us and raised their voices against the spreading of AIDS in the communities.

The event begun with candlelight procession accompanied by music of Freddy Mercury, one of the AIDS victims. Then the young actors of Pantomime Theater presented the play "Love Story", which showed to the audience the relationships between man and woman, where the one of the dangerous consequences could be HIV/AIDS.

Opening the event the Vice-President of the Society Gafar Askerzadeh and Head of Federation Delegation in Azerbaijan Hlin Baldvisdottir welcomed the quests. During the speech they touched the HIV/AIDS menace to everybody's life and spoke about the HIV-infected people living in Azerbaijan and abroad. They also mentioned how is important to break the silence concerning the AIDS problem, fight with HIV/AIDS related stigma and discrimination as well as marginalization of the people living with HIV/AIDS.

Along with that the drawing competition "AIDS in a view of teenagers" was announced among young volunteers and schoolchildren. During the event the winners were presented the souvenirs and gifts.

Also the participants of the event received folders with brochures on HIV/AIDS and the activities of Azerbaijan Red Crescent Society as well as two kinds of poster under the slogans "You can't stop the time" and "You cannot get AIDS by"

The representatives of embassies, international humanitarian organizations, governmental organization took part in the event highlighted by TV channels "MiR", "Space" and Turkish TV channel "STV".

Contact person
Head of Information and International Relations department
Konul Mammadova
Address: 2nd S. Safarov str.
Phone: 93 63 46, 93-84-81, fax: 93-15-78

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