January 3, 2011
The Financial Times reports on health officials worries over a growing "AIDS volcano" in Iran, where "experts say rapid urbanisation and economic problems such as high inflation and unemployment have raised the marriage age and boosted divorce rates. These factors have led to increasing rates of drug addiction and sex outside marriage." The article notes HIV transmission via injecting drug users (IDUs) remains the main mechanism through which the virus is spread, but "sexual transmission is rising at an alarming rate, experts say." The Financial Times notes that health authorities in Iran "plan to implement a comprehensive five-year plan next year prioritising education of vulnerable women -- including drug addicts, those married to drug users, and sex workers -- and young people," to help slow the spread of the virus (Khalaj, 12/27).