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Church opposition to condom use is a shame, Princess Stephanie says

Church opposition to condom use is a shame, Princess Stephanie says

The Roman Catholic Church's opposition to the use of condoms in the fight against AIDS is regrettable, said Princess Stephanie of Monaco on her appointment as goodwill ambassador for the U.N. AIDS agency on Friday.
The princess said that during her two-year term as UNAIDS Special Representative she wants to make people realize more needs to be done about the deadly epidemic, particularly on the prevention side.
A glamorous lifestyle and numerous love affairs despite her Catholic heritage have given Stephanie _ the youngest of the three children of Prince Rainier III and late Hollywood star Grace Kelly _ a reputation as a royal rebel.
Speaking to reporters at the headquarters of the U.N. agency in Geneva, she said there was no alternative to condoms for the prevention of HIV/AIDS. She called the church's opposition to the use of condoms "a shame," adding that the church "is also against abortions and the use of condoms would avoid abortions, too."
She said she was committed to the fight against AIDS "as a mother and as a women of this century."
"But I think, maybe a lot of people hide behind the religious issue not to use condoms," she added.
The princess, whose program as goodwill ambassador will focus on developing countries and Eastern Europe, said it was important to "break down stigma and discrimination" against those infected with the AIDS virus. "Often they have no place to go, no more family; everybody turns their back on them."
UNAIDS Executive Director Peter Piot said he was delighted to appoint Princess Stephanie as new special representative.
"I am confident that she will make a difference in the AIDS response," Piot said, adding that "with over 4 million new infections in 2005, intensifying HIV prevention needs to be at the forefront of the response."
In 2004 Princess Stephanie founded Fight AIDS Monaco to campaign against the disease and this year sang in a new single aimed at raising money for the foundation.
She told reporters she would be willing to create more pop songs in the fight against AIDS. "Yes, maybe I will have to sing again," she said.
Princess Stephanie, who pledged to pursue her new role "with all my heart," suggested she might have found her mission in life.
"That's what I think I was made to do," she said.


Updated : 2021-05-10 02:02 GMT+08:00