Commissioner for Internal Market Affairs Thierry Breton, who oversees vaccination policy in the European Commission (EC), said that even after the approval of the European regulator, the Russian vaccine “Sputnik V” will come to the EU “too late”.
“I am convinced that the European Medicines Agency (EMA) will study Sputnik V and give it a correct assessment. But a possible approval would not mean that the vaccine can be produced in sufficient quantities. It usually takes many months before the corresponding products can be established and expanded. For our goal — to vaccinate as many Europeans as possible in the summer — Sputnik V will simply come too late, “ Breton said in an interview with Spiegel.
At the same time, according to him, the European Union will have enough vaccines to achieve collective immunity in the summer.
Breton has previously said that Europe will not need Sputnik V, as the EU has already approved four other drugs, which will be enough to achieve collective immunity. Before that, he called the Russian vaccine good but said that it is necessary to establish its products in the European Union, and in this Russia may need help.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has previously noted that Moscow does not impose its vaccine on anyone, but when there are statements that it is not needed in Europe, the question arises who’s interests they support-citizens or pharmaceutical companies.
The EMA will check reports that those vaccinated against the coronavirus with the J&J drug in the United States have experienced side effects.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) will check information about possible severe side effects of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine before the drug is actually used in the European Union. This was reported by the EMA on Friday, April 9.
As specified in the agency’s message, we are talking about the occurrence of thrombosis after vaccination. The vaccine of the American pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson was approved by the European Commission for use in the EU in March this year.
Reports of side effects from J&J in the US
Earlier, on April 8, it was reported that in the US state of North Carolina, the vaccination center against COVID-19 was temporarily closed after several people showed side effects after being vaccinated with the J&J vaccine. A day earlier, the same measures were followed in the state of Denver, where patients after vaccination with this drug complained of dizziness and nausea.
J&J Vaccine Benefits
Unlike most other vaccines, the J&J vaccine only needs to be given once, so more people can get access to the vaccine. In addition, the J&J vaccine does not require ultra-low temperatures to be stored and transported. Like the AstraZeneca and Sputnik V vaccines, J&J is a vector vaccine.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) registered the J&J vaccine in February 2021. The results of phase 3 clinical trials indicate that this drug reduces the risk of moderate to severe coronavirus by 66% after four weeks of vaccination.
This was announced by the head of the Hungarian Foreign Ministry after a meeting in Budapest with the Slovak Deputy Prime Minister. Earlier, the Slovak regulator said that their vaccine doses do not match the samples that were considered by the European regulator and The Lancet magazine. RDIF refutes this information.
Slovakia’s Deputy Prime Minister Igor Matovic asked Hungary to conduct an expert examination of the Sputnik V vaccine, as Bratislava does not have the necessary laboratories. Budapest agreed to help. Earlier, there were publications in the media, according to which the batch of Russian vaccine delivered to Slovakia differs from the one described in The Lancet magazine. The Russian Direct Investment Fund called this information fake and demanded that Bratislava return the drug.
Hungary became the first country in the European Union, which, without waiting for the decision of the European regulator, allowed the use of “Sputnik V”. The Russian vaccine has been inoculated there since February. Slovakia, also a member of the European Union, decided to follow the example of Hungary, but this led to a political crisis and the resignation of Igor Matovic as prime minister-although he remained in the government.
A new scandal broke out when the Slovak media reported that the Slovak State Institute for Drug Control was unable to conduct a full audit of Sputnik due to the fact that it was not provided with the necessary amount of data. In addition, the vaccine delivered to the country is different from the one that is known from publications in scientific publications. In the media, there was unofficial information about two forms of the drug — liquid and dry, with different storage conditions.
The RDIF responded to all this. The Foundation has asked the Slovak government to return the coronavirus vaccine so that it can be used in other countries.
The head of the European Council Charles Michel regrets that the incident with the placement of chairs at the talks in Ankara overshadowed the most important visit for the European Union to Turkey.
On Tuesday, Michel and the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, were on a visit to Turkey, where they held talks with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan.
The footage of this meeting published on the network shows that the organizers provided only two chairs for the negotiators against the background of the flags of the European Union and Turkey.
Chairs were taken by Erdogan and Michel, Von der Leyen had to sit on a sofa to one side, opposite Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.
“Despite striving to do everything right, Turkish authorities’ strict interpretation of protocol rules has led to an unfortunate situation,” Michel wrote on Facebook.
He believes that a “protocol oversight” was made in relation to the head of the European Commission, which could look like a belittling of importance. However, according to him, it was decided not to aggravate the situation, but to continue political debates with the Turkish side.
A number of European Union bodies, including the European Commission, were subjected to a massive cyberattack last week. This is reported by Bloomberg.
According to the EC representative, the EU institutions faced “an incident in the field of IT security in their IT infrastructure.” Currently, experts are investigating the circumstances of the incident, so there is no final assessment of the nature of the attack yet.
“We work closely with the computer emergency response team for all EU institutions, bodies, and agencies, as well as with the supplier of the affected IT product. So far, no serious information leaks have been found, “ the EC said.
According to an agency source familiar with the situation, the incident turned out to be more serious than normal attacks, so senior EC officials were informed about the incident. This information was confirmed by another representative of the European Union.
According to the agency, at least two serious cyberattacks on Western organizations have been revealed recently.
Earlier, experts named the main cyber threats of 2021. So, attackers can break into home systems, since many companies are still on the remote site.