Sec Of State Vows US Won’t Share COVID Vaccines For ‘Political Favors’

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks about US leadership in fighting the global coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic during an event at the State Department in Washington, DC on April 5, 2021. (Photo by ALE... US Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks about US leadership in fighting the global coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic during an event at the State Department in Washington, DC on April 5, 2021. (Photo by ALEXANDER DRAGO / POOL / AFP) (Photo by ALEXANDER DRAGO/POOL/AFP via Getty Images) MORE LESS

Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday addressed the growing criticism over the US’ lack of sharing COVID-19 vaccines with other countries, and vowed that the US won’t “trade shots in arms for political favors.”

During remarks at the State Department on Monday, Blinken spoke about the department’s plans to share COVID-19 vaccine supplies as the US hits record numbers of vaccinations.

“As we get more confident in our vaccine supply here at home, we are exploring options to share more with other countries going forward,” Blinken said. “We believe that we will be in a position to do much more on this front.”

Blinken acknowledged requests by many countries, some of which he said are being made with “growing desperation,” for the US to step up in sharing unused vaccines.

“We hear you, and I promise we’re moving as fast as possible,” Blinken said.

Blinken said that the US will be guided by “core values” in sharing its vaccine supply with other countries, adding that the country won’t “trade shots in arm for political favors.”

“This is about saving lives,” Blinken said. “We’ll treat our partner countries with respect.”

Blinken vowed that the US won’t “overpromise and underdeliver” when it comes to exporting COVID-19 vaccines.

“We’ll maintain high standards for the vaccines that we help to bring to others, only distributing those proven to be safe and effective,” Blinken said. “We’ll insist on an approach built on equity.”

Blinken, however, did not indicate the rate of vaccinations in the US that the Biden administration is eyeing before the country begins sharing COVID-19 vaccines worldwide.

Blinken’s remarks were issued amid Russia and China taking a different approach to vaccine diplomacy. China began its widespread exports of vaccines before making them widely available in the country. Russia and India have also shared COVID-19 vaccine supplies with other countries, but at a smaller rate compared to China. Last month, the Chinese Foreign Ministry announced that it is supplying free vaccines to 69 countries and commercially exporting them to 28 more.

Watch Blinken’s remarks below:

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Sincerely,
TPM Staff
Latest News
Comments
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporters:
Newswriters:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: