The International Aids Society (IAS) Mourns The Loss Of Friends And Colleagues Aboard Flight MH 17

By Positive Runway

(Melbourne) - The International AIDS Society (IAS) has today confirmed the devastating news that at least six delegates traveling to the 20th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2014) in Melbourne, Australia, including former IAS President Joep Lange, were on board the Malaysian Airlines flight MH 17 that crashed over Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.

'The extent of our loss is hard to comprehend or express,' said President of the IAS, Françoise Barré-Sinoussi. 'We grieve alongside all of those throughout the world who have lost friends and family in this senseless tragedy.'

The IAS has paid tribute to former IAS President Joep Lange who was travelling with his partner Jacqueline van Tongeren, of the Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development. Please visit:

'Our colleagues were traveling because of their dedication to bringing an end to AIDS,' said Owen Ryan, Executive Director of the International AIDS Society. 'We will honour their commitment and keep them in our hearts as we begin our program on Sunday.'

The names of those confirmed at this time by friends and colleagues on board flight MH 17 are:

Pim de Kuijer, STOP AIDS NOW!

Joep Lange, co-director of the HIV Netherlands Australia Research Collaboration (HIV-NAT)

Lucie van Mens, Director, AIDS Action Europe

Maria Adriana de Schutter, AIDS Action Europe

Glenn Thomas, World Health Organisation

Jacqueline van Tongeren, Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development

A press briefing will take place at 3pm at the Melbourne Convention Centre (Clarendon Street Entrance)

For further information please contact:

In Melbourne, Australia
Sian Bowen, Senior Manager, IAS Communications
Senior Manager, Communications, IAS & AIDS 2014
Email: [email protected]
Mob: +61 488 104 186

Michael Kessler, Australia
IAS Media Consultant
Email: [email protected]
Mobile: +61 447 047 150

Lynda Piper-Roche

Communications Intern
International AIDS Society

Avenue de France 23 | CH-1202 Geneva | Switzerland

phone: +41 22 7100 872 | fax: +41 22 7100 899 | skype: lynda.piper.roche

[email protected]| | IAS on Facebook | IAS on LinkedIn | Twitter: @iasociety

20th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2014)
20 - 25 July 2014, Melbourne, Australia |

8thIAS Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention (IAS 2015)

19 - 22 July 2015, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada |