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AIDS 2006 Opening: Photos and Quotes

The Red Spirit Singers and Dancers perform at the AIDS 2006 Conference opening ceremonies.

"The situation is dire. We must act now. And we can not remain indifferent to the devastating toll that the aids epidemic is taking. Those of us that live in affluent countries have the moral responsibility to do something and work together.
~ Michaelle Jean, Governor General of Canada

Last night, the Rogers Center hosted the opening ceremonies for the 16th International AIDS Conference The stadium was packed with conference delegates from all over the world. Community members, and concerned citizens of the world were treated to an evening full of empowering words and loads of diverse entertainment. Some of the highlights in the form of photos and quotes follow:

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(photography: Jerrold Litwinenko)

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Mark Wainberg , Chair of AIDS 2006 Local Host

"Mr. Harper, the role of Prime Minister includes the responsibility to show leadership on the world stage. Your absence sends a message that you do not regard HIV/AIDS as a critical priority, and clearly all of us here tonight disagree with you."
~ Mark Wainberg , Chair of AIDS 2006 Local Host

"When it comes to harm reduction, Canada should not follow the lead of countries that have little to teach us about public health."
~ Mark Wainberg , Chair of AIDS 2006 Local Host

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Michaelle Jean, Governor General of Canada

"Let me be frank. To give up would be irresponsible, simply unforgivable. the battle against AIDS is a battle for life. It is recognizing that every life is precious in every corner of this world."
~ Michaelle Jean, Governor General of Canada

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Delegates send a message to our Prime Minister

"...where is Steve? Where is Stephen Harper? Where is Stephen Harper? Where is our so-called Prime Minister? Where is the Prime Minister of this country..."
~ conference delegate, chanting for the duration of Minister of Health Tony Clement's speech.

"We know that preaching abstinence as the only solution is to be willfully blind to human nature, and we know this fight isn't over."
~ Dalton McGuinty, Premier of Ontario

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David Miller, Mayor of Toronto

"Don't leave the battle to national or sub-national governments. We have unique perspectives on communities, on community health, and on the empowerment of citizens to help themselves. Do it in your communities, and send it forth so that we can learn from and teach each other."
~ David Miller, Mayor of Toronto

"While HIV does not discriminate who they infect, people discriminate, politics discriminate.... we have to change our messages."
~ Frika Chia Iskandar, Indonesia

"We must spend our energy on fighting this epidemic, not fighting each other."
~ Peter Piot, Executive Director, UNAIDS

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Bill and Melinda Gates deliver the keynote address

"We need to put the power to prevent HIV in the hands of women. So we need tools that will allow women to protect themselves. This is true whether the woman is the faithful married mother of small children, or a sex working trying to scrap out a living in a slum. No matter where she lives, who she is, or what she does, a women should never need her partner's permission to save her own life."
~ Bill Gates

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Measha Brueggergosman

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Dance 4 Life Dancers

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DJ Tiesto

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Barry White

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Amanda Marshall

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The Blue Man Group

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Chantal Kreviazuk

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Massari

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Our Lady Peace

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Barenaked Ladies

More photos of the event


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