Nearly half of all new cases of HIV in the North East were diagnosed late or very late in 2011.
Sean Murphy from the charity Body Positive North East said early detection rates are low because people are afraid to go for tests - but if the virus is caught early, they have nothing to fear.
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Police said 375 people attended a rally in Newcastle by the anti-Islam group Pegida, while 2000 people joined a counter-demonstration.
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