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Burma: HIV/AIDS-Heroin Nexus

Individual Documents

Title: Drugs and HIV/AIDS Country Programme [Myanmar] (2009-2010)
Date of publication: December 2008
Description/subject: Explanatory notes... Introduction... 1. Overview: 1.1. Background; 1.2. Institutionalized Population; 1.3. Human Trafficking; 1.4. UNODC Strategy; 1.5. United Nations Division of Labour; 1.6. UNODC Drugs and HIV/AIDS Policy; 1.7. HIV/AIDS Situation in Myanmar; 1.8. IDU and DU Situation in the Country; 1.9. Legal Environment; 1.10. Myanmar National Drugs and HIV/AIDS Strategy; 1.11. UNODC Country Office Myanmar Strategy... 2. Drugs and HIV/AIDS Country Programme: 2.1. Scope of the Programme; 2.2. Mission Statement; 2.3. Guiding Principles; 2.4. How We Work; 2.5. What Has to Be Achieved?; 2.6. Objectives and Strategies of the Country Programme; 2.6.1. Coverage; 2.6.2. Strategic Information; 2.6.3. Mainstreaming; 2.7. The Work Plan for 2009-2010; 2.8. Coordination and Partnership; 2.9. Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation; 2.9.1. Planning and Reporting; 2.9.2. Monitoring and Evaluation; 2.9.2.1. Monitoring; 2.9.2.2. Evaluation... Bibliography... Tables: Table 1. Programme Portfolio
Language: English
Source/publisher: Drug Demand Reduction, Drugs and HIV/AIDS Unit , United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime Country Office Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (1.42MB)
Date of entry/update: 28 June 2009


Title: HIV/AIDS and drug use in Burma/Myanmar
Date of publication: May 2006
Description/subject: "...The simultaneous spread of HIV/AIDS and the growing number of injecting drug users is fuelling the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Current pro-grammes reach only a small proportion of IDUs with harm reduction interventions. There are no existing programmes available for IDUs who are sexually active to protect themselves and their sexual partners from HIV. The second major risk group are sex workers. Current programmes reach only a very small number of them, and the number of AIDS deaths among them is estimated to be high. In order to effectively address the spiralling numbers of HIV/AIDS infected drug users, is it extremely important for all stakeholders involved to acknowledge the HIV/AIDS epi-demic and the need for harm reduction poli-cies. It is key for all sides to de-politicise HIV/AIDS. The international community needs to make a firm international commitment to stem and reverse the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Burma. It should ensure sufficient and long-term financial support for HIV/AIDS and harm reduction programmes. The SPDC needs to provide adequate space for humanitarian aid to take place. The new guidelines that have been proposed by the government should be amended to ensure direct and unhindered access for interna-tional aid agencies to local communities. The space for initial harm reduction initiatives is encouraging, but needs to be scaled up in order to be effective. Perhaps the most serious shortcoming how-ever is the fact that local community-based organisations in Burma have not been able to participate in the debate about interna-tional humanitarian aid to Burma. In parti-cular, in the discussions about the funding for programmes on HIV/AIDS, People Living With HIV/AIDS (PLWHA), and drug users or the organisations that represent them, have not been consulted or been able to partici-pate in the formulation of polices and deci-sion-making processes that have such tre-mendous impact on their health, livelihoods and lives. The international community should also support and strengthen efforts by drug us-ers and PLWHA to organise themselves. This will enable them to voice their opinion and represent their interests better at the local as well as international level. It will also contribute to civil society building and de-mocratisation in the country."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Transnational Institute/Burma Centre Netherlands
Format/size: pdf (354 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.tni.org/sites/www.tni.org/files/download/brief17.pdf
Date of entry/update: 11 August 2010


Title: Kicking the Habit
Date of publication: October 2005
Description/subject: Drug use and harm reduction policies in Burma... "The struggle to combat the twin threats of HIV/AIDS and drug use in Burma is an uphill battle. With an estimated 500,000 drug users, half of whom are categorized as injecting drug users, or IDUs, Burma has a serious drug problem. To compound matters, the HIV/AIDS epidemic has been spiraling simultaneously, and infection rates among drug users in Burma, especially in Shan and Kachin states, now rank among the highest in the world. Burma, Thailand and Cambodia have been hit hardest by the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Asia. Burma, however, is the only one of the three where the infection rate is still rising. This is mainly due to the high-risk behavior of IDUs, who commonly share needles and syringes and rarely sterilize them. Such high-risk behavior is especially widespread in the teashops, known locally as shooting galleries, where heroin is sold. Two of the major obstacles to combating the rise of HIV/AIDS and drug use are a general lack of resources and, maybe less predictably, the legal constraints of narcotics laws..."
Author/creator: Tom Kramer (TNI)
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 13, No. 10
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 30 April 2006


Title: Yunnan’s Sin City - Sex and Drugs Take Their Toll in Border “Playground”
Date of publication: January 2005
Description/subject: "...Moe Wai, a pretty 20-year-old Burmese, traveled to Ruili, a Chinese border town, from her home in Rangoon’s South Okkalapa township in 1997. She rapidly found work as a prostitute, touting for trade on Ruili’s infamous Jiegang Road. Two years after taking up the sex trade she discovered she was HIV-positive. AIDS then took its toll, and last October she died. It’s estimated that around 100 young women from Burma work as prostitutes on Jiegang Road, offering their services to a clientele of traders, truck drivers and drug traffickers from Mandalay, Lashio, Myitkyina and other Burmese cities, as well as from China. A further 100 Burmese sex workers operate in the nearby town of Jiegong, which directly borders Muse in Burma..."
Author/creator: Kyaw Zwa Moe
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 13, No. 1
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 August 2005


Title: Sowing disorder: Support for the Burmese junta backfires on China
Date of publication: November 2002
Description/subject: "In the early 1990s China’s sale of arms to Burma played a crucial role in keeping the Burmese military in power. But this support for the generals in Rangoon is now backfiring, as many of the negative consequences spill over the border into China, writes Andrew Bosson. While China has generally taken a passive stance towards international efforts to pressure Burma to improve its rights record, it would be in Beijing’s best interests to push Rangoon towards economic and political reform, he argues. The relationship between Burma and China has been harmful to both countries, especially following the Chinese arms deals which preserved the junta in power and locked Burmese political and economic life into a stasis from which it has yet to emerge. The generals seem to have very little idea of how a modern economy functions and are essentially running the country as they would an army. Military expenditures continue to take up about 60 percent of the national budget. Thus it comes as no surprise that the economy is in an advanced state of failure. China also has been damaged economically: Burma’s lack of access to economic development assistance and its collapsed economy leave a gaping hole in the regional development projects the impoverished provinces of southwest China so badly need. China also suffers from the massive spread of HIV/AIDS, drug addiction and crime that have accompanied the massive quantities of heroin being trafficked from Burma into Yunnan Province. The growth of the drug economy in Burma may be traced directly to the lack of the necessary economic and political remedies, which is an indirect result of China’s intervention..."
Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
Language: English
Source/publisher: China Rights Forum Journal 2002-03
Format/size: pdf (140K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.hrichina.org/en/content/4784
Date of entry/update: May 2003


Title: Life: Between Hell and the Stone of Heaven
Date of publication: 11 November 2001
Description/subject: "More than a million miners desperately excavate the bedrock of a remote valley hidden in the shadows of the Himalayas. They are in search of just one thing - jadeite, the most valuable gemstone in the world. But with wages paid in pure heroin and HIV rampant, the miners are paying an even higher price. Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark travel to the death camps of Burma...Hpakant is Burma's black heart, drawing hundreds of thousands of people in with false hopes and pumping them out again, infected and broken. Thousands never leave the mines, but those who make it back to their communities take with them their addiction and a disease provincial doctors are not equipped to diagnose or treat. The UN and WHO have now declared the pits a disaster zone, but the military regime still refuses to let any international aid in..." jade
Author/creator: Adrian Levy & Cathy Scott-Clark
Language: English
Source/publisher: The Observer (London)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: AIDS Denial
Date of publication: July 1999
Description/subject: "The SPDC has finally acknowledged the AIDS epidemic in Burma. But even now, the junta spends more of the country’s dwindling resources on attacking democrats than it does on tackling the disease, Aung Zaw writes..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 7. No. 6
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Heroin and HIV/AIDS Epidemic in Burma
Date of publication: December 1998
Description/subject: Review of "Out of Control 2"..."...A new report, titled “Out Of Control 2”, issued by the Southeast Asian Information Network [SAIN] shows the involvement of Burmese regime officials in narcotics trafficking and the correlation of increased drug trade and rising HIV/AIDS rates in Burma and beyond its borders..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 6, No. 6
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma's AIDS Epidemic
Date of publication: February 1998
Description/subject: Dancing alone o­n the floor of a popular Rangoon nightclub in front of a huge video screen playing music videos, the young Burmese woman repeatedly glances at the very few western men in the disco. She approaches them and makes it clear her charms come at a price. Does she use condoms?
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 6. No. 1
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Out of Control 2: The HIV/AIDS Epidemic in Burma
Date of publication: 1998
Description/subject: A new report, titled “Out Of Control 2”, issued by the Southeast Asian Information Network [SAIN] shows the involvement of Burmese regime officials in narcotics trafficking and the correlation of increased drug trade and rising HIV/AIDS rates in Burma and beyond its borders. The report states that the last several years have produced a mounting body of evidence indicating high-level involvement of some junta members in the illicit narcotics industry. Routes and methods of transportation and export of Burmese narcotics are described in this report.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Southeast Asia Information Network (SAIN)
Alternate URLs: http://www2.irrawaddy.org/print_article.php?art_id=1521
Date of entry/update: 26 October 2010


Title: The Hidden Epidemic: A situation assessment of drug use in Southeast Asia in the context of HIV vulnerability (Myanmar section)
Date of publication: 1997
Description/subject: "From available information, Myanmar has the worst national epidemic of HIV among IDUs in the Asian region. With very large numbers of IDUs and a very high proportion of these already infected with HIV, Myanmar has a IDU/HIV problem of major significance for itself and its neighbours. Much more ongoing surveillance and many more harm reduction programs are required. With only a handful of agencies currently targeting HIV among IDUs, emphasis should be on the development of harm reduction programs that are feasible in the current political climate. This is an issue of concern for both Myanmar, where the problem is largely unacknowledged, and for neighbouring countries, who receive the largest proportion of the illicit drugs (especially heroin and amphetamines) coming into their countries from across its borders. These countries also face a continuing influx of HIV infection and have citizens who are often infected with HIV as a result of imprisonment in Myanmar. Myanmar is truly a 'core' country for this epidemic for the whole of Asia and therefore of the highest priority for action, in terms of both ongoing assessment and the urgent development of responses... Current Situation - Drug Taking Practices - Prevalence - Government Responses to Drug Control (including penalties) - Government response to drug use and HIV - National AIDS Policy - Non-government responses - Myanmar: - Activities - Contact for situation report - Myanmar: - References. "Prior to colonisation by the British in 1852, opium use was not widespread in Burma. Soon after the annexation of lower Burma, British administrators began importing large quantities of opium from India and established a government controlled opium monopoly. In 1878, the Opium Act made it illegal for any Burmese to smoke opium, which could be sold only to 'registered addicts', most of whom were Chinese. Prior to the prohibition, many Burmese had been introduced to opium smoking and developed an addiction. The trading of opium was declared illegal by 1906 but such legislation had minimal impact..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asian Harm Reduction Network
Alternate URLs: http://www.ahrn.net/regional/myanmar.html
http://www.ahrn.net/regional/index.html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003