(London Guardian) In the runup to next week’s international Aids conference in Melbourne, Australia, the UN has claimed that Aids-related deaths and new HIV infections have fallen by more than a third in a decade, raising hopes that the disease could be wiped out by 2030.

“If we are smart and scale up fast by 2020, we’ll be on track to end the epidemic by 2030, so that Aids is no longer a public health threat,” Michel Sidibe, head of UNAids, said on Wednesday. “We have a fragile window of opportunity, because what we do over the next five years will determine the next 15.”

The optimism, however, is tempered by two facts: not only are more than half of the 35 million people living with HIV unaware they are infected, but the number of people with drug-resistant HIV, though relatively low, is increasing.

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