One would never imagine that children would be so vulnerable to the HIV menace, especially with the Prevention from Mother-To-Child transmission. 

But there you have it. In 2016 alone, 18 children got infected every hour, according to UN children agency, UNICEF.

UNICEF said that this was a sign that little progress has been made in protecting the world’s young from the deadly AIDS-causing virus.

At the current rate of infection, there will be 3.5 million new cases of HIV among adolescents by 2030, according to projections in the 2017 UNICEF Statistical Update on Children and AIDS.

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Around the world, nearly 37 million people – the equivalent of the population of Canada – were living with HIV last year, according to UNICEF.

Among these, 2.1 million adolescents had HIV, a 30% increase from 2005, while 55,000 adolescents aged 10 to 19 and 120,000 children younger than 14 died from AIDS-related causes.

Infected children, younger than 4 years old, faced the highest risk of AIDS-related deaths compared with other age groups.

“The AIDS epidemic is not over; it remains a threat to the lives of children and young people,” said Dr Chewe Luo, the Chief of HIV for UNICEF, in a statement accompanying the report.

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