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US working closely with India to identify ways to help address COVID-19 disaster: American officials

The US is working closely with India to identify ways to help address the present COVID-19 disaster within the nation, American officials have stated, because the Biden administration got here beneath intense strain from numerous quarters to ship COVID-19 vaccines alongside with life-saving medical provides to it.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki stated on Friday that the US provides its deepest sympathy to the individuals of India who’re struggling throughout this world pandemic.

“We are working closely with Indian officials at both political and experts’ level to identify ways to help address the crisis,” Psaki stated at her each day information convention.

She stated the US has made vaccine cooperation a giant precedence, together with with its Quad companions.

“India is one of our Quad partners, of course, in discussing vaccine creation and distribution for the future. We’ve also provided for a billion dollars to COVAX,” she stated in response to a query.

The Quad is the grouping of India, the US, Japan and Australia.

“From the earliest stages of the pandemic, we’ve provided India with emergency relief supplies, medical consumables, pandemic training for Indian state and local health officials, and ventilators, which has been part of our effort over the course of time, including USD 1.4 billion in health assistance to India to help them prepare for pandemics in the future and deal with the current one we’re facing,” Psaki stated.

Psaki stated there are ongoing discussions over the matter.

“I don’t have anything more to preview, but we are in touch with them at a range of levels about how we can help them get through this period of time,” Psaki stated.

At a separate White House information convention, Dr Anthony Fauci, chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden, stated that India goes by way of a really horrible state of affairs proper now.

“They’ve had yesterday the largest number of cases that has ever been reported by any country. They have a situation there where there are variants that have arisen. We have not yet fully characterised the variants and the relationship between the ability of the vaccines to protect but we’re assuming clearly, that they need vaccines,” he stated.

India on Friday added a report over 3.32 lakh new coronavirus circumstances in a single day taking the nation’s tally to 1,62,63,695, whereas lively circumstances crossed the 24-lakh mark. The dying toll rose to 1,86,920 with a report 2,263 new fatalities.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is working with its counterpart company in India to present technical assist and help, Fauci stated.

“But it is a dire situation that we’re trying to help in any way we can; we just have to see how things go. And obviously, they need to get their people vaccinated because that’s the only way we’re going to turn that around,” Fauci stated.

White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Jeff Zients stated that the US has a longstanding dedication to India’s public well being and is working closely with them within the COVID-19 response.

“This is a global pandemic and India demonstrates the risk of what can happen if we don’t get the pandemic under control everywhere. It’s why we made the biggest investment in COVAX and we are committed to sharing vaccine supply as our confidence around our supply increases, we will explore those options,” Zients stated.

State Department Deputy Spokesperson Jalina Porter advised reporters that the US continues to work closely with India to facilitate the motion of important provides and in addition address the bottlenecks of the provision chains.

“The COVID-19 situation in India is a global concern,” she stated.

“We also continue to collaborate with our partners in India to battle this at the highest level. We know Secretary (of State, Tony) Blinken spoke to his counterpart on Tuesday and we remain deeply engaged with India at all levels as we work to combat this crisis of the pandemic together,” Porter stated.

The remarks by American officials got here because the Biden administration got here beneath intense strain from numerous quarters, together with the highly effective US Chambers of Commerce, lawmakers and eminent Indian-Americans, to ship COVID-19 vaccines alongside with a number of life-saving medical provides to India.

“As the Covid pandemic inflicts a heavy toll on countries around the globe, the US Chamber strongly encourages the administration to release the millions of AstraZeneca vaccine doses in storage – as well as other life-saving support – for shipment to India, Brazil, and other nations hard-hit by the pandemic,” stated Myron Brilliante, govt vice chairman and head of worldwide affairs on the US Chamber of Commerce.

He stated these vaccine doses won’t be wanted within the US, the place it’s estimated that vaccine producers will probably be in a position to produce sufficient doses by early June to inoculate each American.

The US Chambers issued the assertion after Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar sought world help within the combat in opposition to COVID-19.

Congresswoman Rashida Talib tweeted that the COVID-19 disaster in India is a harsh reminder that the pandemic will not be over till the entire world is protected.

President Biden “must support a patent waiver to ramp up global production now,” she stated.

Shekar Narasimhan, a serious Democratic fundraiser for Biden’s presidential marketing campaign, urged the President to communicate to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and “see if we can lend 10 million doses of AZ (AstraZeneca) vaccines like tomorrow.”

“We have to do something in the face of a humanitarian disaster,” he stated.

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