Ethiopian President Says Women are ‘Irreplaceable’ in HIV/AIDS Fight
Ethiopian President Girma Wolde-Giorgis on Monday at the opening of a four-day conference in Addis Ababa said that women have a "formidable" and "irreplaceable" role in fighting HIV/AIDS in the country, Xinhua News Agency reports. Speaking at the conference, titled "Sex, Stigma and HIV/AIDS: African Women Challenging Religion, Culture and Social Practices" and sponsored by the African Women Theologians' Conference, Girma said, "We are faced with the choices of either allowing things to go their way and face inevitable catastrophe or take bold measures to address the challenges and thus ensure our future." Musimbi Kanyoro, secretary general of the World Young Women's Christian Association, added that women "have the power" to start programs that could prevent the spread of HIV. Kanyoro also called on African governments and the Organization of African Unity to "heed the death cries of women and girls" in Africa, according to Xinhua News Agency. The conference will also include presentations of papers on HIV/AIDS-related topics, including prevention, control and the religious, social and cultural challenges faced in fighting HIV/AIDS. An estimated three million Ethiopians are HIV-positive, and most of them are of "prime working age" (Xinhua News Agency, 8/6).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.