Eurasia is located on a major trafficking route to Europe. Influenced by Russia, Eurasian governments continue to impose severe criminal sanctions on people who use drugs and dealers. This has led to repeated cases of violence and intimidation against people who use drugs, and a health crisis with an explosion of HIV infections among this vulnerable group.
In January 2017, the Russian Ministry of Finance rejected a $1.2bn request from the Ministry of Health required to implement the National AIDS Strategy, bringing into question whether Russia intends to manage its domestic HIV crisis.
An interview with Péter Sárosi, executive director of the Rights Reporter Foundation, discussing funding for harm reduction in Hungary in the context of the country’s international commitments to harm reduction targets.
The Regional Harm Reduction Conference will be dedicated to the results, lessons learnt, and perspectives of civil society and community-driven advocacy for sustainable and high-quality harm reduction programs in CEECA.
Michel Kazatchkine, UN secretary general special envoy on HIV/AIDS in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, argues that prohibition can prevent access to harm reduction treatment, including methadone, for people who inject drugs.
The EECA statement argues that the currently alarming epidemiologic situation and an envisioned decrease in funding, might affect the sustainability of the positive results worldwide in combating AIDS, and less effective implementation of the new global target: to end HIV by 2030.
This four day conference, organised by The Eurasian Harm Reduction Network (EHRN) will serve as a regional discussion platform in advance to the 25th International Harm Reduction Conference in Montreal in 2017, and to the 22th International AIDS Conference in 2018.