While the stigma of AIDS is alive and well in America, it’s a reason to throw down in China, which is exactly how AIDS activists are honoring World AIDS Day.
Rather than fall in line with President Hu Jintao’s AIDS mobilization effort, opponents of China’s arguably unsafe blood supply took to Beijing’s streets in a rare exercise in public outrage.
Chinese activists angry over AIDS infections caused by tainted blood infusions took over an official World AIDS Day event Tuesday in Beijing, demanding more government recognition and help.
Wearing white face masks scrawled with the words “Infected blood transfusions causes AIDS,” the 20 or so activists mounted the stage set up by China’s Red Cross and spoke through tears.
“Our fight for free treatment has continued for the past eight years with no luck,” one protester, Liu Xiurong, said afterward.
The HIV virus that causes AIDS gained a foothold in China largely due to unsanitary blood plasma-buying schemes and tainted transfusions in hospitals.
[...] The outburst at a Beijing railway station came as volunteers gave passengers free pamphlets on AIDS prevention and reducing social stigma as part of a China’s Red Cross campaign.
The event was aimed in particular at migrant workers who crisscross China in search of jobs.