BORIS Johnson, Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel have declared peace after threats of a vaccine war as global leaders push for a “pandemic treaty” to address future health emergencies.
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Boris Johnson is among the world leaders calling for a pandemic treatyCredit: AFP
French President Emmanuel Macron has backed calls for a pandemic treatyCredit: Reuters
German Chancellor Angela Merkel signed the articleCredit: AFP
The call has come in an opinion column, published in the Daily Telegraph today, saying: “We believe that nations should work together towards a new international treaty for pandemic preparedness and response.
“Such a renewed collective commitment would be a milestone in stepping up pandemic preparedness at the highest political level.”
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of the World Health Organisation, European Council President Charles Michel and 23 other world leaders have signed the op-ed.
The column says the treaty should be aimed at “greatly enhancing international cooperation” – especially in terms of alert systems, data sharing and research.
The leaders wrote: “Together, we must be better prepared to predict, prevent, detect, assess and effectively respond to pandemics in a highly coordinated fashion.
“At a time when Covid-19 has exploited our weaknesses and divisions, we must seize this opportunity and come together as a global community for peaceful cooperation that extends beyond this crisis.”
Countries around the globe are still grappling with the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected 128,188,680 people and killed 2,802,949 worldwide so far.
The demand for a “pandemic treaty” comes after Europe backed down from threats of a vaccine war with Britain following emergency talks between Boris Johnson and EU leaders last week.
No 10 and Brussels issued a rare joint statement vowing to work together and strike a deal on jabs supplies.
Which world leaders signed the letter?
These are the world leaders who signed the call for a ‘pandemic treaty’:
- J. V. Bainimarama, prime minister of Fiji
- António Luís Santos da Costa, prime minister of Portugal
- Klaus Iohannis, president of Romania
- Boris Johnson, prime minister of the United Kingdom
- Paul Kagame, president of Rwanda
- Uhuru Kenyatta, president of Kenya
- Emmanuel Macron, president of France
- Angela Merkel, chancellor of Germany
- Charles Michel, president of the European Council
- Kyriakos Mitsotakis, prime minister of Greece
- Moon Jae-in, president of the Republic of Korea
- Sebastián Piñera, president of Chile
- Carlos Alvarado Quesada, president of Costa Rica
- Edi Rama, prime minister of Albania
- Cyril Ramaphosa, president of South Africa
- Keith Rowley, prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago
- Mark Rutte, prime minister of the Netherlands
- Kais Saied, president of Tunisia
- Macky Sall, president of Senegal
- Pedro Sánchez, prime minister of Spain
- Erna Solberg, prime minister of Norway
- Aleksandar Vučić, president of Serbia
- Joko Widodo, president of Indonesia
- Volodymyr Zelensky, president of Ukraine
- Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the World Health Organisation
The EU chief hit out at AstraZeneca after it delayed its jab deliveries and threatened to stop exports if contracts were not honoured.
She said: “Companies have to honour their contract to the European Union before they export to other regions in the world.
“And this is of course the case with AstraZeneca.”
But Emmanuel Macron admitted the EU did not go “fast enough or strong enough” in the slow Covid jab drive.
“We didn’t shoot for the stars. That should be a lesson for all of us,” he told Greek television channel ERT.
“We were wrong to lack ambition, to lack the madness, I would say, to say: It’s possible, let’s do it.”
Meanwhile, more than 30 million people have received the first dose of a coronavirus vaccine in the UK.
The latest data show that in Britain coronavirus cases plunged 13 per cent in a week with 4,654 new infections in the past 24 hours.
Another 23 fatalities were confirmed on Monday – the day lockdown restrictions started to ease in England.
The latest figures mean 126,615 people have died in the UK since the start of the pandemic, while a total of 4,337,696 have caught the bug in Britain.
But despite easing some restrictions, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged people to “proceed with caution” as he warned there will be more infections and deaths in the months to come.
People sit on Bournemouth beach following the easing of England’s lockdownCredit: PA
Members of the public relax in the warm weather on Primrose Hill in North LondonCredit: LNP
The Prime Minister urged Brits to ‘proceed with caution’Credit: PA
“That wave is still rising across the Channel,” he warned.
Meanwhile, we revealed that Brits will be kept waiting for weeks to find out when they can travel abroad.
Next week’s review of international travel will likely conclude that it’s too soon to say when the borders can be reopened.
Yesterday night, the PM unveiled a new jab factory to wean Britain off foreign made vaccine supplies in light of the EU’s export ban threats.
Mr Johnson revealed the mega facility will be set up in the Red Wall.
The plant run by drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline in Barnard Castle, County Durham, will be tasked with finishing and bottling 60 million doses starting in May.