The number of people newly diagnosed with HIV in Europe reached its highest level in 2016 since records began, showing the region’s epidemic growing “at an alarming pace”, health officials said on Tuesday.  That year, 160,000 people contracted the virus that causes AIDS in the 53 countries that make up the World Health Organization’s European region, the agency said in a joint report with the

European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Around 80 percent of those were in eastern Europe, the report found. “This is the highest number of cases recorded in one year. If this trend persists, we will not be able to achieve the … target of ending the HIV epidemic by 2030,” the WHO’s European regional director, Zsuzsanna Jakab, said in a statement.  READ MORE