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Abstinence message against AIDS criticised
Wednesday 30 March 2005
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SOUTH AFRICA: Abstinence message against AIDS criticised

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

JOHANNESBURG, 2 December (PLUSNEWS) - Leading voices in the war on HIV/AIDS have blasted a US-backed approach of encouraging sexual abstinence among young people to protect them against HIV infection.

Mary Crewe, director of the Centre for the Study of AIDS at South Africa's University of Pretoria, said the "ABC" campaign - which advocates 'abstinence, being faithful, condom use' - was a "middle-class, middle-aged response", overlaid with a kind of morality that does not hold anymore.

She charged that the approach was unworkable in African countries, where HIV and sexual activity were rampant.

Agence France Presse quoted Crewe as saying: "In countries where there are very high levels of sexual activity around, with social dislocation, family breakdowns, sugar daddies; with young people bored and with nothing to do, to suddenly come in and say, 'you should stop having sex', is absolutely ludicrous."



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