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  XVII International AIDS Conference
Mexico City
3-8 August 2008
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Africa the worst hit by AIDS, by far
  Sun Aug 3, 2008 9:00am EDT
Aug 03 (Reuters) - An international AIDS conference opened in Mexico on Sunday. Figures released in advance said the number of people killed by AIDS around the world edged down for a second straight year in 2007.
Global deaths from AIDS reached an estimated 2 million in 2007, down from 2.1 million deaths in 2006, according to UNAIDS.
Some 33 million people were living with immunodeficiency virus infections in 2007, most of them in Africa, according to the United Nations report on the AIDS epidemic.
Here are some key details about AIDS in the region:
-- Sub-Saharan Africa remains the region most heavily affected by HIV, accounting for two thirds of all people living with HIV and 75 percent of AIDS deaths in 2007.
-- An estimated 1.9 million people were newly infected with HIV in sub-Saharan Africa in 2007, bringing to 22 million the number of Africans living with HIV.
-- The nine countries in southern Africa continue to bear a disproportionate share of the global AIDS burden, with 35 percent of HIV infections and 38 percent of AIDS deaths in 2007 in the region.
-- South Africa, with some 5.7 million people infected with HIV, represents the world's largest AIDS epidemic.
-- An estimated 500,000 people are infected each year and around 1,000 die every day from AIDS-related illnesses.
-- Reflecting similar trends from other countries in the region, young women in South Africa face greater risks of becoming infected than men: among 15 to 24-year-olds, they account for around 90 percent of new HIV infections.
-- In Mozambique, the epidemic continues to grow; in some provinces in the central and southern zones of the country, adult HIV prevalence has reached or exceeded 20 percent, while infections continue to increase among young people ages 15-21.
-- Most of the smaller HIV epidemics in West Africa are stable or are declining, as is the case for Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Mali, and Nigeria.
-- HIV in the smaller epidemics in East Africa has either stabilized or is receding. After dropping dramatically in the 1990s, Uganda's adult HIV prevalence appears to have stabilized at 5.4 percent.