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Iran's population growth rate falls to 1.5 percent: UNFP

8/2/04 Damavand, Tehran prov, Aug 2, IRNA -- Iran's government has managed to decrease rate of population growth significantly to 1.5 percent at present, said Iran's Representative to UNFP Mohammad Abdol Ahad.

Iran has also managed to control fertility rate and decrease the death rate of mothers and that of infants to 37 in every 1,000, added Ahad on the sidelines of 'population training` conference.

He also underlined cooperation between UNFP and Shiraz University in training experts on development and population for enforcement of government policies in this regard.

Created in 1967, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFP) provides financial and technical assistance to developing countries at their request.

The major functions of UNFP, according to its mandate, are to build up the capacity to respond to needs in population and family planning, to promote awareness of population problems in developed and developing countries and possible strategies to deal with them.

Elsewhere, Ahad said that the HIV/AIDS virus has not been studied at widespread level, saying the families should be enough trained on sexual relations.

He further said that the UN-affiliated Fund will proceed with its cooperation with Iran in the next five years and will also make use of Iran's successful experiences in other developing Muslim countries.

The UNFP also considers women training as its major aim in the future for advancing the goals of the Fund, said Ahad.

He reiterated that the UN-affiliated Fund has allocated dlrs 11 million to Iran since the start of its activities in Iran till next year.

Besides, some dlrs 10 million has been allocated for continuation of mutual cooperation between Iran and UNFP for the next 5-year period.

The UNFP also intends to strengthen emergency projects in Iran during its future cooperation with the country since Iran is exposed to natural disasters, Ahad stressed.

The UN-affiliated Fund is doing its best to upgrade the level of knowledge of the public to take decisions wisely on various issues such as family health, public training on fertility health and maturity, he added.

Ahad noted that the UNFP is active in three fields of fertility health , sexual issues, population strategy and development.

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