Andy Bell aims to educate young people about HIV and AIDS…

ERASURE singer ANDY BELL has revealed that he is HIV-Positive.

The star announced yesterday (December 14) that he has known about his condition since June 1998 when he suffered a bout of pneumonia.

Bell’s admission is his first step in a larger plan of speaking out and educating young people about HIV and AIDS, according to his spokesperson.

“Being HIV-positive does not mean that you have AIDS,” Bell said in a statement. “My life expectancy should be the same as anyone else’s, so there is no need to panic. There is still so much hysteria and ignorance surrounding HIV and AIDS. Let’s just get on with life.”

According to MTV News, long-time partner Paul Hickey has also tested positive.

Erasure are set to release their new album ’Nightbird’ on January 24 and Bell says that after undergoing drug-combination therapy he is feeling better than ever.

The band will kick off a tour in support of the new album in the UK around February or March before heading out to the US in April/May for a string of dates in ten to 15 cities. Multiple shows are planned in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York, with as many as ten nights considered for the latter.

Bell’s spokesperson said that Erasure are considering adding on extra dates as benefit shows raising money for AIDS research and awareness.

In a statement announcing the album last month, Bell said: “The last couple of albums were a bit moody and down I’m so much happier with everything now. … You can hear it in the music.”