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Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has credited the Pan Caribbean Partnership on AIDS (PANCAP) with preventing tens of thousands of new HIV infections and saving thousands of lives, but warned against complacency in the fight.Speaking at PANCAP?s 10th Annual General Meeting in St Maarten on Sunday evening, Annan also called for punitive laws against sexual minorities, such as gay men, to be reversed.Thirty years since the start of the AIDS epidemic, he said too many people still get infected and too many die of AIDS-related illness.According to the former UN Secretary General,Wholesale MLB Jerseys Pro Shop, discrimination, including the flouting of the most basic widespread human rights,Discount NFL Jerseys, is still widespread for those living with HIV/AIDS.And while we have seen real progress across the board, five more people still contract the virus for every two who start treatment.For there to be success, he said the fight against HIV/AIDS must be viewed within the wider battle to uphold human rights.?What we know about HIV/AIDS is that some groups are more vulnerable to the epidemic because of their condition, or the legal and social environment in which they live,? said Annan.He pointed out that women and girls are particularly at risk with too many suffering sexual abuse or feeling unable to insist on protected sex. AIDS is the number-one cause of death globally for all women of childbearing age.He said women must be at the very centre of the AIDS response and must also be empowered to speak up and protect themselves and their children.?We can only achieve this if we tackle gender inequality and the discriminatory laws and cultural traditions which enforce it,Air Max 90 Sverige,? he said.?We know as well that sexual minorities, drug users, and people infected by HIV/AIDS, suffer from daily discrimination and prejudices, discouraging them from seeking help and treatment.In this region, as with many other places, there remains widespread homophobia and violence against gay men,? Annan stated.?This is not just a breach of their human rights but, by making it more likely, they will engage in high-risk behaviour? it impedes the fight against HIV/AIDS,? he stressed.Annan called for punitive laws and policies that stigmatize particular individuals and block effective HIV/AIDS strategies to be rolled-back.In addition, he emphasized that far more must be done to ensure that programmes are tailored to the specific needs of each vulnerable group.?We need everyone to speak out against discrimination and to ensure – through legislation, education and by example – that equality before the law and freedom from discrimination is respected, protected and fulfilled,? Annan stated.Since 2001, the Caribbean region has received approximately US$1.2 billion of grants and concessionary funding to fight HIV/AIDS.PANCAP?s vision led to it being, in 2003,Hockey Jerseys From China, the first recipient of a regional grant awarded by the Global Fund.Despite the tremendous efforts of PANCAP, the Caribbean has not been spared. With the exception of Sub-Saharan Africa,Bvb Trikot G??nstig, the region faces the greatest HIV/AIDS challenge.An estimated 240,000 people live today with HIV in the Caribbean and 20,000 more are newly infected each year. Looking back over the last ten years,Nike Air Max Outlet Belgie, though, Annan said real progress can be seen.In the Caribbean, thanks to the work of PANCAP and the expansion of antiretroviral treatment, the annual number of deaths related to HIV has fallen 40% since 2000.PANCAP has set a goal of further reducing new infections and mortality by a quarter by 2015.In addition, he said PANCAP has identified the need for a more inclusive