Monday, December 4, 2023

COVID: US, UK, EU, France, Germany and Pakistan offer essential supplies to help India

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India has set a new global record of the most number of coronavirus infections in a day.Photo: Meer Faisal/Maktoob

The United States will “immediately” make supplies of material to make vaccines, as well as therapeutics, tests, ventilators and protective equipment available to India, facing a Covid-19 surge, the White House has said.

“The United States has identified sources of specific raw material urgently required for Indian manufacture of the Covishield vaccine that will immediately be made available for India,” a White House statement said.

It listed other initiatives Washington is taking to help India battle its surge, but did not mention sending surplus AstraZeneca vaccine, as a backlash grows over the fate of the US stockpile of some 30 million doses which have not been approved for use.

UK sending ‘vital medical equipment’ to India 

Britain has said that it was sending life-saving medical equipment to India, including ventilators and oxygen concentrators, as the country reels from record numbers of daily Covid-19 infections and deaths.

“Vital medical equipment, including hundreds of oxygen concentrators and ventilators, is now on its way from the UK to India to support efforts to prevent the tragic loss of life from this terrible virus,” Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in a statement.

EU to ‘respond rapidly’ to assist virus-hit India

The EU is preparing rapid assistance for India as it copes with a growing Covid-19 crisis that has seen infections and deaths hit record highs, European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen has said.

“Alarmed by the epidemiological situation in India. We are ready to support,” von der Leyen said on Twitter. 

“The EU is pooling resources to respond rapidly to India’s request for assistance via the EU civil protection mechanism.”

Germany preparing ‘urgent support’ for virus-hit India

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said her government was preparing emergency aid for India as the country struggles to cope with an explosion in infections.

“To the people of India I want to express my sympathy on the terrible suffering that Covid-19 has again brought over your communities,” Merkel said in a message shared on Twitter by her spokesman Steffen Seibert.

“The fight against the pandemic is our common fight. Germany stands in solidarity with India and is urgently preparing a mission of support.

Pakistan offers essential supplies to help India

Pakistan is offering to send essential medical supplies to its neighbour that’s in the grip of a devastating coronavirus surge that has depleted oxygen stocks and other hospital needs.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs says that as a gesture of solidarity with the people of India, Pakistan has offered to provide relief support including ventilators, oxygen supply kits, digital X-ray machines, PPEs and related items.

It said authorities of both countries can work out modalities for a quick delivery of the items and can also explore possible ways of further cooperation to mitigate the challenges posed by the pandemic.

France to provide oxygen assistance to India

France plans to assist India with oxygen capacity in the coming days to help the country cope with a record surge in Covid-19 infections, the French presidency has said.

The assistance is to include badly needed oxygen respirators, a source with knowledge of the plans told AFP without providing further details.

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