United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Saturday called for a continuous and collaborative community-led approach to fight against AIDS.
Guterres, in a statement issued ahead of the World AIDS Day, said that communities around the world are "at the heart of this response--helping people to claim their rights, promoting access to stigma-free health and social services," ensuring that services reach the most vulnerable and marginalised, and pressing to change laws that discriminate.
World AIDS Day will be observed on December 1 and the theme of this year highlights on communities making the difference.
"More than ever we need to harness the role of community-led organisations that advocate for their peers, deliver HIV services, defend human rights and provide support," the Secretary- General said.
The statement said that a record 38 million people are living with HIV, and resources for the response to the epidemic declined by $1 billion last year.
"Where communities are engaged, we see change happen. We see investment lead to results. And we see equality, respect and dignity," Guterres said.
"With communities, we can end AIDS," he stressed.
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