TWELVE PEOPLE IN TONGA HAVE BECOME INFECTED WITH HIV/AIDS, EIGHT DIE

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NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (February 15, 2000 – Radio Australia)---Health officials in Tonga have reported that 12 people in the Kingdom have become infected with the deadly HIV/AIDS virus.

The Health Ministry announced the HIV/AIDS findings after testing about 2,500 people.

According to the Ministry's 1999 Report on Sexually Transmitted Infections, of the 12 people with HIV, eight died after developing full-blown AIDS.

The surviving four are all females.

One of them, a foreigner, reportedly has been deported to her country of origin, which was not disclosed by the health authorities.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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