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World AIDS Day

Briefing notes

World AIDS Day

27 November 2003

Monday (December 1) is World AIDS Day. A commentary by High Commissioner Ruud Lubbers on the need to include refugees in HIV/AIDS programmes is available at the back of the room. The text can be used in its entirety or quoted in part. UNHCR, jointly with UNFPA, will hold a special ceremony to commemorate the day at 16:00 in the UNHCR Atrium. High Commissioner Ruud Lubbers will address the gathering. Other speakers include Safiye Cagar, Director of UNFPA's Office in Geneva, Bertrand Piccard, UNFPA Goodwill Ambassador and Kevin Ryan, Director of the Positive Lives Project. The event will feature a photographic exhibition and sale of items made by people living with HIV/AIDS and awareness raising items, and will be followed by a reception. Media are invited.

UNHCR strives to ensure that refugees live in dignity, free from discrimination, regardless of their HIV status, and to provide at least the core HIV/AIDS interventions during emergencies. In more stable refugee situations, UNHCR provides more comprehensive programmes linking prevention to care. UNHCR also calls on governments and international bodies to include refugees in national and international HIV/AIDS prevention and care programmes.