AIDS Epidemic Poses Threat to Military Capabilities of African Nations, Report Says
The AIDS epidemic in sub-Saharan Africa is exacerbating local and regional conflicts in the region and could threaten military capabilities, according to a report issued Thursday by the International Institute for Strategic Studies, Agence France-Presse reports. Although many African conflicts have either been resolved or are "close to resolution," famine and poverty continue to threaten peace on the continent, according to the report. Noting that high HIV prevalence among soldiers can lead to flagging discipline, which in turn can lead to human rights abuses and a "loss of combat effectiveness," the report states that HIV/AIDS could lower the military capabilities of many countries (Agence France-Presse, 10/17). According to a UNAIDS report released in June, approximately 20% to 40% of soldiers in sub-Saharan African countries are HIV-positive, with officers having higher rates of infection (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/26).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.