Top of the Morning: UN Predicts a “Massive” Reduction in HIV/AIDS in South Africa; Mogadishu IDP Camp Hit by Blast

Top stories from DAWNS Digest.

UN Predicts a “Massive” Reduction in HIV/AIDS in South Africa

What a difference some political will makes. “South Africa, home to the highest number of HIV cases in the world, should see a massive reduction by the end of the decade after a sea-change in government policy, a UNAIDS official said Thursday. ‘It now has more people with HIV infections than any country in the world, with 5.6 million. That is because a lack of political commitment before,’ said Sheila Tlou, UNAIDS regional director for East and Southern Africa. ‘However there is a turnaround in the new government under President (Jacob) Zuma which is committed,’ in its fight against HIV and AIDS, she said. ‘By 2020 there will be massive reductions in South Africa.’ Zuma, who has dramatically expanded South Africa’s AIDS treatment programme since taking office in 2009, last month unveiled a plan to halve the number of HIV infections over the next five years. The five-year plan is the first drafted since the 2008 ouster of president Thabo Mbeki and his health minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, known as Dr Beetroot for advocating vegetables rather medication to treat AIDS. (AFP

Suicide Blast at Mogadishu IDP Camp Kills 6

Of all the potential targets, militants decided to attack a *refugee camp* outside of Mogadishu. “Six people have been killed by a suicide bomb attack in a refugee camp in the Somali capital Mogadishu. The victims included a security guard and a local aid worker, witnesses said. Meanwhile, two major medical centres run by medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) near the site of the blast have closed. The charity said it had taken the decision after two MSF workers, a Belgian administrator and Indonesian doctor, were killed last month. The bomb exploded just 20 minutes after a team of international journalists had left the Mogadishu camp.” (BBC