HIV Researchers and Activists Killed Onboard Malaysia Airlines Flight

Update 7/20/14: News reports are now listing the number of researchers killed as 6. While still an important loss of knowledge in the world of AIDS and HIV research, it is not as extreme as originally reported.

Original Post: According to TIME Magazine the Malaysia Airlines flight 17 that was apparently shot down over Ukraine yesterday had on board approximately 100 researchers and activists headed for the International AIDS Conference in Melbourne. Many of them were from the Neatherlands (where the flight originated), including a former president of the International AIDS Society, Joep Lange. The deaths of these researchers, journalists, and activists is a real loss for the field of HIV research.

More links:
BBC News
NY Daily News
LA Times
The Guardian
Associated Press

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Benny Vimes

Benny Vimes

Benny Vimes is a queer polyamorous transman, curious skeptic, and enthusiastic seeker of knowledge. He's an undergraduate student in his 30's and loves teaching people about alternative sexuality and gender issues.


  1. July 18, 2014 at 12:02 pm —

    This is really devastating, and my condolences go out to all those who lost family members in the crash, as well as to the loss of potentially life-saving research.

  2. July 20, 2014 at 3:36 pm —

    Could we get an update in the post here that the actual number of AIDS researchers on the flight was far lower than 100?

    • July 21, 2014 at 8:28 am —

      All of the articles I’ve read have put the number of AIDS researchers and activists at around 100. Do you have a source stating otherwise?

  3. July 21, 2014 at 3:03 pm —

    The BBC article now states “at least 6.”

    That says attendees are remembering “The six delegates, who died Thursday”

  4. July 21, 2014 at 3:04 pm —

    It is hard, because it is such a tragedy for the 300 dead people no matter who they were, but at the same time, I think it is important to be accurate.

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