Iran Identifies 4,200 AIDS Cases, Estimates Total at 20,000
November 7, 2002
Iran has identified more than 4,200 AIDS cases, of which 4,048 are men, but estimates the total number of people affected by the disease to be five times higher, Ali Mansuri, a health ministry disease control officer, told the official Islamic Republic News Agency. "At the moment, prisons full of drug addicts are the main centers for the spread of AIDS," he said. According to official figures, two-thirds of Iran's prison population are dealers or consumers of drugs, or detained for drug-related crimes. "Other risks include prostitutes, due to their hidden activities and since there is no official center to properly supervise them." "The disappearance of the middle class and creation of two social classes - poor and rich - has harmed the social balance and caused the growth of different diseases, including AIDS," Mansuri said. Of Iran's estimated 2 million narcotics addicts, around 130,000 are intravenous users of heroin and morphine.
Agence France Presse
This article was provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. Visit the CDC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.