FIGHTBACK: Germany and France join India’s fight against Covid second wave
New Delhi : Germany and France have joined India’s fight against the second Covid wave, which continues to rampage across the country.Germany is showing the way in this joint exercise to defeat Covid-19. It is partnering with UNICEF to set up cooling chains for the Covid-19 vaccination programme. Berlin’s premier Robert Koch Institute is also studying the possibility of working together with India’s health ministry to establish Biosafety Level 4 (BSL-4) laboratories in India. BSL-4 laboratories study highly infectious agents and life-threatening diseases.In tune with its longstanding role in standing up during calamities, the Tata group and German industrial gases firm Linde have joined hands to airlift 24 oxygen transport tanks to India.As India battles the fresh wave of Covid-19, Germany today said that both, its embassy in New Delhi and the government back home, are following the Covid-19 pandemic in India with deep empathy and concern.”India is our strategic partner, and we share a strong conviction that the challenges of this global crisis can only be met through international cooperation,” the Germany embassy in India tweeted on Friday.External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar has taken personal charge in India’s outreach towards Europe to turn the tide against the coronavirus pandemic.During his meeting with the Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, on Friday afternoon, he applauded the support offered by EU on Covid challenges currently faced by India and expressed confidence that the EU will continue to help strengthen India’s capabilities at this critical juncture.Besides, he had a detailed discussion on the preparation for the forthcoming virtual India-EU Summit.Later in the day, French President Emmanuel Macron also offered support to India in its riposte against the Covid-19 pandemic.”I want to send a message of solidarity to the Indian people, facing a resurgence of Covid-19 cases. France is with you in this struggle, which spares no-one. We stand ready to provide our support,” Macron said in a message which was posted on Twitter by Emmanuel Lenain, the French Ambassador to India.The UNICEF is also playing a seminal role in making medical oxygen available to Covid patients, on account of its experience in treating 800,000 children every year suffering from pneumonia.Last year, UNICEF delivered 3,014 oxygen concentrators to India which were supplied to government hospitals in various districts for treatment of Covid patients. Oxygen Concentrators help patients with breathing difficulties receive oxygen therapy and are portable, cost-effective and easy to operate.Leading the global COVAX supply operation, the UN agency has not only been transporting vaccines from manufacturers to countries but also investing in cold chain infrastructure.
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