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Wednesday 10 May 2006
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SEYCHELLES: First AIDS forum warns against complacency


[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]


JOHANNESBURG, 21 April (PLUSNEWS) - Health officials attending the first AIDS forum in Seychelles have warned that low HIV prevalence figures should not lead to complacency.

Colette Servina, head of the HIV/AIDS Control Programme, said children as young as 10 years were reportedly engaging in sexual activity, and although more than half a million condoms were distributed last year, people were still engaging in unsafe sexual behaviour.

According to UNAIDS, fewer than 400 HIV cases have been diagnosed in the 120-island archipelago since 1987.

Minister of Health and Social Services Vincent Meriton, noted that unless the islands mounted an effective response, "AIDS will kill us, first one by one, then ten by ten and eventually hundreds by hundreds, until we are all gone," the local Nation newspaper reported.

[ENDS]

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