African Condom Shortage Crisis Amidst AIDS Pandemic
Due to inadequate aid efforts by the United States and other donor countries, acute shortages of condoms have been contributing the rapid rise in HIV/AIDS cases in Africa. Thoraya Obaid, the Executive Director of United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), asserts that if all the condoms available in Africa were to be distributed, every man would get only three condoms a year, reports The Standard.
For example, Uganda is facing a severe condom shortage. According to BBC News, the main supplier of condoms in Uganda, the state owned brand Engabu, has been banned and the procedure for approving new condom imports has been lengthened. In addition, free and subsidized condoms that were being distributed by the Ministry of Health are running out, reports Xinhua General News Service.
The coordinator for Uganda's state on condoms fears that they "are going to face six months of limited supply" and that "some people might have unprotected sex." Between 80-100 million condoms are used in Uganda each year; however, the government is left with only five million condoms for the next six months, reports Xinhau General News Service. AIDS, the spread of which can be prevented by condom use, is the leading cause of death for those aged 15-49 years in Uganda, reports UNAIDS.
While advocating for abstinence-only HIV/AIDS prevention policies instead of a comprehensive HIV/AIDS prevention strategy, the Bush administration has withdrawn $34 million annually since July 2002 for the UNFPA, an international organization that has been providing contraceptives and reproductive health services to the poorest people in the developing world that are at the highest risk of contracting HIV/AIDS. In addition, the Bush Administrationís gag rule has been scaring organizations away from integrating reproductive health services with their HIV/AIDS programs for fear of losing funding, a strategy that many AIDS and womenís rights activists see as being a crucial component of the fight against AIDS.
11/25/2015 Afghan Women Launch 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence - Afghanistan marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and begun participating in the worldwide 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, which is being called in Afghanistan "Peace from Home to the World." During the launch day's event, which was attended by government officials, including First Lady Rula Ghani and women's rights activists, speakers expressed their commitment to ending violence against women.
First Lady, Rula Ghani gave a speech on ending violence against women and supporting women by stating that "war often leads society towards violence and this violence is in violation of human dignity. . . .