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SWAN representative takes part in a High Level Meeting on AIDS in UN…

On 10 June 2008, a two-hours informal interactive civil society hearing, with the theme of Action For Universal Access 2010: Myths and Realities, was run in High-Level Meeting on AIDS (General Assembly, United Nations, New York). One of the civil society rapporteurs was Gulnara Kurmanova of Tais Plus, SWAN member from Kyrgyzstan. More

High level representatives of UN Member States and Observers took part in this hearing, during which the views of a diverse group of people from civil society were highlighted. This is a part of the official proceedings of the United Nations 2008 Comprehensive Review of the progress achieved in realizing the 2001 Declaration of Commitment in HIV/AIDS and the 2006 Political Declaration on HIV/AIDS.

The civil society speakers brought frontline experience to the session, addressed the challenges, issues underlying the spread of epidemic, and stressed the importance of accountability and communities’ meaningful involvement.

The outcomes of the hearing will be documented and will contribute to the summary document of the President of the General Assembly.

A four-minute speech on Sex Work and HIV was prepared in collaboration by Alejandra Gil of Asociacion en PRO Apoyo a Servidores (Mexico) and Gulnara Kurmanova of Tais Plus NGO (Kyrgyz Republic). It was presented in civil society hearing with a special request to include the contributions about sex work and HIV into Summary.

The speech was based on recent events in Cambodia. Key issues addressed in this speech were: Decriminalization of sex work; Sex workers human rights; and Stigma and Discrimination. Governments, UN Agencies and international community as whole was called to stop violence against sex workers, to recognize sex work as a legitimate one, and to include sex workers into all decision making processes which directly affected their lives.

Technical and financial support of this action was provided by ICASO.
The full text of the 4-minute speech on sex work is available here.