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Four-fifths of all deaths from AIDS

BBC News Online, 2 May 2000

Government officials in Rwanda says more than four out of every five deaths in the country are now being caused by AIDS.

Opening a national conference on AIDS in the capital, Kigali, Rwanda's Minister of Health, Ezechias Rwabuhihi, said seventy per cent of patients in the main hospital in Kigali were suffering from illnesses related to HIV -- the virus which causes AIDS.

He said Rwanda was a poor country and was not able to cope.

Correspondents say the stark figures from Rwanda add weight to warnings from the United States over the weekend, which said AIDS had now become a threat to international security -- particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, but increasingly also in Asia and the former Soviet Union.