United States to provide medical supplies, vaccine raw materials to India 'immediately'

Representational image | Commons

"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 Dollars 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 said. The President was spending his weekend at his home in DE but is believed to be following up the developments in India.

Additionally, the United States is deploying an expert team of public health advisors from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and USAID to work in close collaboration with the US Embassy, India's health ministries, and India's Epidemic Intelligence Service staff. The tweets by Biden and Harris are the first reactions by the top American leadership after the recent outbreak of deadly COVID19 pandemic in India. Number one, we have a special responsibility to the American people. "Indian Foreign Secretary Harsh Shringla along with US Deputy Secretary Wendy Sherman have also urged for removal of restrictions". Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan had tweeted a message of "solidarity with the people of India" on Saturday. "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 said.

The move follows discussion with the Indian government. "More very soon", Sullivan said.

Price's comments have been condemned by large number of Indian Americans. "Thank you Sullivan for your reach out and support".

On Thursday, White House spokesperson Jen Psaki was quoted as saying by the media, "The United State offers its deepest sympathy to the people of India who are clearly suffering during the global pandemic". The fight against the pandemic is our common fight.

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It was the first phone contact between Erdogan and Biden since the USA president assumed office in January. Friday's call between the two leaders was their first since Biden took office more than three months ago.

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and India's External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar discussed Covid-19 and health cooperation last week and it had opened the possibility of Washington allowing vaccine raw materials to be exported.

The export restrictions fall under the Defense Production Act, which former President Donald J. Trump invoked in the early days of the pandemic and President Biden has used since February to boost vaccine production in the United States. "This must be done with the utmost speed and urgency", he said.

During a press briefing, when asked when the Biden administration would decide on India's request to lift the ban, spokesperson Ned Price said that "the United States first and foremost is engaged in an ambitious and effective and, so far, successful effort to vaccinate the American people". "And we should facilitate the Indian diaspora in America to help assist hospitals in India".

As India struggles to tackle the COVID-19 crisis, its QUAD ally - the USA - has nothing more to offer than "deepest sympathy". "The White House should also convene Indian business leaders to make the case for why this is in these companies' long-term strategic interest". In a statement, Khanna said he is looking forward to joining the India Caucus leadership on a call with Indian Ambassador to US Taranjit Singh Sandhu to discuss what additional steps the US can take to help India during this "incredibly hard time".

"We are working closely with them in the COVID-19 response". He emphasised that the virus "spreading anywhere, is a threat to people everywhere", and for that reason it was "in the interests of the rest of the world to see Americans vaccinated".

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