Russia Never Politicises Issue of Vaccination against COVID-19

Russia has never politicized the issue of the COVID-19 vaccination, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday, Sputnik News reports.

“Russia had no aspirations to politicize vaccines and no aspirations to use the vaccine as an instrument of influence, and never will”, Peskov told reporters when asked about Macron’s statement.

The spokesman also said that the Kremlin disagrees with Macron’s claims that Russia and China are waging some kind of a vaccine war.

“These statements by Macron belong, probably, to the sphere of our absolute disagreements. We absolutely do not agree that Russia or China are waging some kind of war, and we absolutely do not agree that Russia or China are using the coronavirus pandemic and vaccine issues [to their advantage]”, Peskov added.

French President Emmanuel Macron has said that Europe was facing a global war of a new type, accusing Russia and China of attempts to destabilize the situation and use vaccines as a pressure instrument.

Sputnik V Authorization in EU

Meanwhile, the foreign ministry’s spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, said on Friday that EU discussions on absence of necessity for centralized purchasing of its Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19 will  hopefully not affect the procedure of vaccine authorization for the EU market.

“We have paid attention to public statements by some representatives of the European Commission, including Commissioner for Internal Market Thierry Breton, about the absence of need for the EU to bulk purchase Russia’s Sputnik V. This is a politicized approach. We hope that the European Commission’s approach to Sputnik V — or indeed to its own citizens and to the solution of the global problem — will not affect the speed of considering Russia’s request for vaccine registration by the European Medicines Agency”, Zakharova said at a briefing.

The authorization of Sputnik V within the bloc has been dogged with controversy as some officials and politicians spoke out against the use of the vaccine for various reasons. Russia, on its part, has assumed possible political bias against Sputnik V and reiterated that its efficacy has been proven in clinical trials.

In the meantime, Sputnik V has been approved in 57 countries, becoming the world’s second top vaccine in terms of approvals. According to the prestigious medical magazine Lancet, it efficacy stands at 91.6 percent.