10 March 2006

United Kingdom Donates US $3.4 Million for UNODC Drug Abuse and HIV Projects in India

VIENNA, 10 March (UN Information Service) -- The United Kingdom is donating US $3.4 million in support of the work of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in preventing drug abuse and drug-related HIV infections in India.

India has the second largest absolute number of people living with HIV/AIDS in the world - some 5.1 million - which is approximately 10 per cent of the world total.

Under an agreement signed this week by the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID) and UNODC in New Delhi, India, the funding will support training and outreach programmes to reduce HIV infection rates, particularly among vulnerable groups such as injecting drug users and their - usually female - partners, as well as prisoners and street children.

The funding represents additional resources for existing UNODC programmes in India which tackle the inter-related problems of drug abuse and HIV infection. The programmes are designed to be easily replicable to ensure they have a long-term impact at the community level.

The assistance forms part of  DFID's package of support to the National AIDS Control Programme in India and is being implemented under UNODC's work with the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

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For information contact:

Richard Murphy,
Chief, Advocacy Section, UNODC
Telephone: + 43 1 260 60 5671
E-mail: richard.murphy@unodc.org