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Eastern European and Central Asian AIDS Conference  

Moscow, 15-17 May 2006

 

Summary Statement
from the Conference Organizing Committee with input from the conference delegates

 

On 15-17 May 2006 the first regional Eastern European and Central Asian AIDS Conference took place in Moscow. More than 1500 delegates from all CIS countries as well as from Eastern Europe, Central Asia and many other countries took part in the conference. 

Political and civil society leaders, researchers and health professionals, people living with HIV and representatives of civil society from the region had an opportunity to interact and discuss the most urgent issues related to the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

In advance of the High Level Review Meeting of the UN General Assembly in New York and the G8 Summit in Saint Petersburg, we reaffirm the Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS adopted by the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS on 27 June 2001 and commit to a massive scaling up of HIV prevention, treatment and care with the aim of coming as close as possible to the goal of universal access by 2010 for all those who need it.

We reaffirm the commitment to reach the targets contained in the Programme of Urgent Response of Member States of the Commonwealth of Independent States to the HIV/AIDS Epidemics adopted by the Heads of Governments on 30 May 2002, and in the Dublin Declaration on Partnership to Fight HIV/AIDS in Europe and Central Asia adopted by representatives of Governments in Europe and Central Asia on 24 February 2004. We welcome the positive trends and opportunities for an effective response to the HIV epidemic in the region through increased funding, political commitment, enhancement of multisectoral interaction and country level cooperation. We are, however, greatly alarmed by the continuing escalation of the HIV and AIDS situation in Eastern Europe and Central Asia affecting the region.

We are concerned about the increasing number of new HIV cases among women and the number of children at risk of HIV infection through vertical transmission. We consider, as the most important target as of today is to ensure a maximum attainable scientifically founded national standard of prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS, particularly groups of population mostly vulnerable to HIV-infection.

Recognizing that injecting drug use is the major driver of the HIV epidemic in the region, we call on countries to promptly review legislation related to comprehensive harm reduction approaches, based on existing evidence,  particularly that gained through  programs implemented in the region.

Recognizing the increasing role of sexual transmission of HIV in the progression of the epidemic, we call for the scaling up of comprehensive prevention efforts focused on preventing the sexual transmission of HIV.

We call on the governments of Eastern Europe and Central Asia to strengthen cooperation among ministries and government departments, and representatives of civil society, religious institutions, media, labour unions and the private sector, taking measures to ensure the full involvement of all parties concerned, especially people living with HIV/AIDS and communities most vulnerable to HIV/AIDS, in the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the HIV/AIDS response.

 We urge that all possible measures to provide evidence-based, effective, equitable and affordable, uninterrupted, universal and non-discriminatory access to HIV and AIDS prevention, treatment and care, including adequate social services.

We recommend that another conference be organized in two years time to review progress that will have been made in the region.