AIDS 2014: Tributes paid to delegates lost in MH17

Burnet Institute

21 July, 2014

Professor Françoise Barré-Sinoussi and Professor Sharon Lewin welcome delegates to AIDS 2014. Photo courtesy of International AIDS Society/James Braund.

AIDS 2014 Conference Chair, Professor Françoise Barré-Sinoussi dedicated the conference to the delegates who passed away on flight MH17.

Professor Barré-Sinoussi was joined on stage with past and future Presidents of the International AIDS Society and representatives from those organisations who lost colleagues for her emotional address and a one-minute global moment of remembrance.

“We will remember their legacy, and forever keep them in our hearts,” she said.

Co-head of Burnet’s Centre for Biomedical Research and AIDS 2014 Local Co-Chair, Professor Sharon Lewin also paid her respects, while welcoming delegates to Melbourne.

“I truly hope the next five days will inspire, stimulate and energise all of you. But watching, listening and talking is clearly not the end game,” Professor Lewin said.

“When each of you return to your home countries, I sincerely hope that what you learn and see in Melbourne rapidly translates to action – action that contributes to our collaborative and escalating efforts to see the end of HIV.”

Professor Lewin said 4.8 million people are living with HIV in the Asia and Pacific regions with increasing numbers of infections in Indonesia, Pakistan and the Philippines in 2013, an issue that will be covered during AIDS 2014

“HIV infection amongst men who have sex with men, sex workers and transgender people remain worryingly high. 16 per cent of people who inject drugs in Asia are living with HIV,” she said.

“Many countries in this region now have made clean needles available – but not to levels needed and coverage remains low in too many places.”

CLICK HERE for all the speeches at the AIDS 2014 Opening Plenary.


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