Putin touts Russian coronavirus vaccine at UN forum

Putin touts Russian coronavirus vaccine at UN forum

Russian President Vladimir Putin praised, on Tuesday, at the UN forum, the vaccine developed by his country against the coronavirus, saying he was ready for “partnership”, despite the skepticism of part of the international community.

“We are absolutely open and committed to partnership,” Putin said in a video recorded and released during the United Nations General Assembly.

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“We are ready to share our experience and to continue to interact with all States and international structures, including for the supply of other countries [in doses] of the Russian vaccine which has proven its reliability, safety and efficiency, ”he continued.

“Russia is convinced that it is now necessary to use all the capacities of the global pharmaceutical industry in order to provide citizens of all states with free access to immunization for the foreseeable future,” Putin stressed.

He also announced the upcoming holding of a “high-level online conference with the participation of governments interested in cooperation for the development of a vaccine against the coronavirus.”

Russia announced in early August that it had developed the “first” vaccine against COVID-19, developed by the Moscow research center Gamaleïa.

Dubbed “Sputnik V” – an allusion to the first artificial satellite in history designed by the Soviet Union – the vaccine was viewed with skepticism around the world, especially because the final phase had not been completed. tests at the time of its announcement.

Several senior Russian officials announced that they had been vaccinated with Sputnik V, such as Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu or the mayor of Moscow, Sergei Sobyanin. Mr Putin said one of his daughters had also been vaccinated.

More than 20 countries have ordered the purchase of a billion doses of the vaccine, according to the Russian Sovereign Fund, involved in its financing.

Many countries are currently working on a vaccine against the coronavirus, which has claimed nearly 965,000 lives worldwide. The World Health Organization (WHO), however, has said it does not expect widespread vaccination before mid-2021.

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