First AIDS Patient Claimed by Starving World War I Soldier
According to the news of the Daily Mail newspaper, Professor of Sherbrooke University in Canada. Jacques Pepin hypothesized that the first AIDS patient caught the HIV virus during a monkey hunt in the Molundu region of southeastern Cameroon in 1916. The scientist estimates that the “zero” patient was a French, Belgian, or British soldier who fought against the Germans in Cameroon, a German colony at the time.
“The soldiers stayed in Molundu for 3 or 4 months before continuing on their way,” Pepin said. “Their main problem was not enemy bullets, but hunger.”
The Canadian professor stated that the soldiers whose food stocks are rapidly depleted had to hunt monkeys and other animals to find food, “My hypothesis is that one of the soldiers was infected during the hunt. “A chimpanzee was killed and the soldier was injured while slaughtering the animal, which caused him to catch the virus.”
Stating that the soldier returned to the city of Leopoldville (today’s Kinshasa) in the Belgian Congo (today’s Democratic Republic of Congo) after the war and spread the disease, Pepin said that the number of patients increased to approximately 500 in the early 1950s.
According to the scientist, the main reason for the spread of HIV infection is the reuse of needles due to the general shortage of medicine and medical supplies in hospitals. In 1960, when Congo gained its independence, there was immigration from rural areas to Leopoldville, creating an excellent environment for the spread of the virus. At that time, there were about 10 men per woman in the city, which led to the spread of prostitution and the virus began to spread rapidly sexually.
Noting that the HIV virus spread from Leopoldville to the entire Congo, and from there, thanks to a Haitian visiting the country, Pepin said, “In a few years, it was exported to the USA and spread among homosexuals and drug addicts, from there to Western Europe. ”He added.