The governor-general of Papua New Guinea now says HIV/Aids is causing more devastation in his country than the Second World War.
Official statistics suggest about 1.3 per cent of the population, or 67,000 people, are affected by HIV/Aids, the worst epidemic in the Pacific region.
The Post-Courier newspaper quotes the governor-general, Sir Paulias Matane, as saying the situation is a calamity.
Sir Paulias was speaking at a meeting to establish a nationwide network of faith-based groups to combat HIV/Aids.
He says churches should promote peer education among their members and provide care, counselling and support for people living with HIV/AIDS, as well as widows and orphans.