HIV/AIDS is one of the most pressing issues for world leaders to tackle.
Since it was recognised as a virus in 1981, HIV and its related disease AIDS are estimated to have killed more than 35 million people worldwide. While some regions of the world are affected more than others, HIV/AIDS claims lives in all areas: in the UK, over 98,000 people have been diagnosed – a figure that has trebled in the last decade.
World AIDS Day, commemorated each year on 1 December, is one way in which the UN aims to raise awareness of this deadly disease and to encourage governments and people all over world to take action.
Photo: Two workers feed toddlers at Vienping Orphanage in Chiang Mai, where a large percentage of the children are HIV positive.January 2001. Chiang Mai, Thailand. UN Photo/Liba Taylor