In Russia, US diplomats have reportedly appealed to Moscow for doses of the Sputnik V vaccine after Washington could not promise them the upcoming delivery of the US-made vaccine, according to the Washington Post.
US diplomats based in Russia have reportedly appealed to authorities for doses of the Russian-made Sputnik V vaccine after failing to secure a shipment of American-made vaccines from Washington, the report said. Washington post February 18.
Anonymous officials cited in the article thus ensure that this “humiliating” experience is motivated by Washington’s inability to promise the delivery of doses of vaccine manufactured in the United States in the near future, as is however the case in at least 13 countries where American diplomats receive doses from their countries. “Washington puts domestic workers first, with no real plan for the rest of us,” a senior diplomat told the Washington post.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said on February 19 that it had invited accredited foreign diplomatic missions to participate in the vaccination campaign against Covid-19 using Sputnik V, according to the official RIA Novosti news agency. The US Embassy in Moscow, however, has yet to comment on the alleged demand for doses of Sputnik V.
The US State Department has received 73,000 of the 315,000 doses of vaccine manufactured in the United States, according to the Washington post. The first two installments were reportedly divided between officials based in the United States as well as personnel in Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Mexico, Turkmenistan and West Africa. The third allocation would be for US missions in East and Southern Africa. The State Department does not recommend that its 75,000 employees be inoculated with vaccines that have not yet received approval from the WHO or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), but their allows them to “make their own health decisions”, reports the Washington post.
Russia has run a massive communications campaign to promote Sputnik V, which critics call a geopolitical tool for the Kremlin. Still, around thirty countries currently authorize its use against Covid-19, while the famous medical journal The Lancet published a study establishing the effectiveness of Sputnik V at over 91%.
Sputnik V has become a source of controversy in Europe, where Russia is trying to obtain emergency use authorization. The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, recently questioned Moscow’s ability to provide the EU with Sputnik V given the pace of vaccination in Russia. Russia replied that it was banking in particular on more production abroad.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov admitted that demand for the Sputnik V vaccine abroad, in general, was “so great that it exceeds[ait] largely production capacities ”. “To this end, intense work is underway to launch the production of the Russian vaccine in a number of foreign countries in the coming days,” the spokesperson added.