Servicemen warned about risk of HIV infection

Tuesday, November 23, 2010 Label:
A group of Indonesian soldiers assigned to duty in areas at the border with Papua New Guinea (PNG) were on Saturday warned to remain alert to the risk of HIV/AIDS infection.

"Members of the National Defense Forces (TNI) in areas near the PNG border must always be alert to the risk of being infected with HIV/AIDS, a lethal kind of disease," said Major General Leo Siegers, chief of the Bukit Barisan Regional Military Command here Saturday when sending off 650 men of the 132nd Bima Sakti Battalion who had been assigned to duty at the border with PNG in Papua.

"Every TNI soldier must always be alert to this disease. The way to do it is keeping your religious fidelity and always thinking twice before doing something private," Leo said, adding that their stations would be located far from medical facilities although security conditions there were good.

This was why. the general said, the 650 members of the 132nd Bima Sakti Battalion had not only been given combat training but also knowledge of religious matters, before being sent to Papua.

Earlier, it was reported from Papua that as per May 2010 no fewer than 144 army members had contracted HIV/AIDS. Four of them had died while the rest was still receiving medication at Marthen Indey Hospital in Jayapura
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