Turmoil at 10th ICAAP in Busan: police and protesters skirmish

1 september, 2011

On Saturday, August 27,   the protests at the Busan Exhibition and Convention Center (BEXCO)   briefly turned violent, with several protesters detained by the police. A   day earlier, at the ICAAP opening ceremony, protesters interrupted the   South Korean Health Minister’s speech before leaving the venue. Many  in  the LGBT community have also raised concerns over what they describe  as  significant levels of stigma and discrimination from various  corners of  government and society at large, and have called on the  government to  take steps to address what remains a very real issue that  robs far too  many individuals of their dignity and well-being.

The Asia Pacific Coalition on Male Sexual Health, whose aim is to  reduce the impact of HIV on men who have sex with men and transgender  persons in the region, urges that dialogue be strengthened to discuss  issues of universal access as well as stigma and discrimination, not  only in South Korea but across Asia and the Pacific. These are hugely  important matters that need to be examined carefully by governments and  civil society alike, ideally in partnership and collaboration.  Significant steps in this regard have already occurred in many  countries, although challenges remain. It is in this spirit that many  stakeholders have come together at ICAAP 10, to help identify gaps,  offer ways to address these, share experiences and lessons learned, and  reiterate that ultimately we must empower the vulnerable and  marginalized sectors of our societies, if we are to make true headway in  reducing the impact of HIV and AIDS, and moving to UNAIDS’ global  vision of "zero new HIV infections, zero stigma and discrimination, and  zero AIDS-related deaths."

See also:

Alliance condemns police action at ICAAP  

Protest at ICAAP 2011 (video on YouTube)

Foto: Wikimedia Commons/Michiel1972

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