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Coronavirus: Germany warns against ‘vaccine nationalism’

Nations must work in a spirit of cooperation rather than selfishness in the fight against coronavirus, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier stressed. His appeal came at the start of the World Health Summit in Berlin.

Germany’s president on Sunday urged nations to work together and avoid selfishness in working to tackle coronavirus — in particular when it comes to the development of an effective vaccine.

Steinmeier’s message against “vaccine nationalism” came in a video appeal at the opening of the three-day World Health Summit in Berlin.

“No-one is safe from COVID-19; no-one is safe until we are all safe from it. Even those who conquer the virus within their own borders remain prisoners within these borders until it is conquered everywhere.”

“If we don’t want to live in a world after the pandemic in which the principle ‘Everyone against each other and everyone for themselves’ gains even more ground then we need the enlightened reason of our societies and our governments,” said the president.

Steinmeier said the rapid spread of the virus had resulted in an enormous worldwide mobilization of resources and a growing spirit of ingenuity. However, he said the trend of nations reserving large quantities of vaccines for their populations could prove unhelpful.

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