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World EU's chief executive warns against 'pandemic of the unvaccinated'

11:15  15 september  2021
11:15  15 september  2021 Source:   reuters.com

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The pace of vaccination against COVID-19 must be quickened across the globe to avert "a pandemic of the non-vaccinated", the European Union' s chief executive said on Wednesday in her annual policy speech. Ursula von der Leyen' s second 'state of the union' address since she took over as European Commission president…

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, whose advice guided much of the global response to the Covid pandemic , has seemingly washed its hands of one virus while warning the world isn’t prepared to deal with the next big pandemic . Childhood vaccinations had only dropped half as much as predicted, and some wealthy countries’ economies were already on the rebound, it noted. The mRNA vaccine companies were seeing the light and investing in Africa and other impoverished areas of the world, the report added, after presumably realizing how much economic opportunity awaited them there.

By Yves Herman and Gabriela Baczynska

Ursula von der Leyen wearing glasses: EU Commission President von der Leyen speaks at European Parliament in Strasbourg © Reuters/YVES HERMAN EU Commission President von der Leyen speaks at European Parliament in Strasbourg

STRASBOURG, France (Reuters) -The pace of vaccination against COVID-19 must be quickened to avert "a pandemic of the unvaccinated", the European Union's chief executive said on Wednesday, also urging countries around the globe to step up the fight against climate change.

a group of people sitting at a table: EU Commission President von der Leyen speaks at European Parliament in Strasbourg © Reuters/YVES HERMAN EU Commission President von der Leyen speaks at European Parliament in Strasbourg

Ursula von der Leyen's second 'state of the union' address since she took over as European Commission president comes after two years that have tested the resilience of the bloc with the coronavirus pandemic, a sharp economic downturn, strains over Brexit and the rule of law in eastern member states.

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You read that right: Unless all unvaccinated people also agree to get vaccinated, the already vaccinated are somehow still at risk of getting sick and dying, supposedly because of the unvaccinated . “Never before in history has there been a need to ‘protect the vaccinated,'” says Karl Denninger. As has always been the case until very recently, the purpose of vaccination is to provide personal protection against disease. People who take vaccines, we are told, obtain special “immunity” that the unvaccinated supposedly never get because their natural immune systems did not receive

As the highly contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus fuels outbreaks in the United States, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned on Friday that “this is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated .” Cases, hospitalizations and deaths remain far below last winter’ s Roughly 28,000 new cases are reported each day, up from just 11,000 a day less than a month ago. So far, data suggests that many of the vaccines — including the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson shots — provide good protection against Delta, especially against the worst outcomes

Ursula von der Leyen standing in front of a stage: EU Commission President von der Leyen speaks at European Parliament in Strasbourg © Reuters/YVES HERMAN EU Commission President von der Leyen speaks at European Parliament in Strasbourg

In a broad-brush speech setting out the bloc's priorities for the year ahead, von der Leyen also listed ambitious goals, including technological independence for the EU, but warned "the next year will be another test of character."

At the end of August, 70% of the adult population in the 27-nation EU had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This marked a milestone after a slow start, but also masked big differences among EU countries.

Announcing a new donation of another 200 million vaccine doses by the middle of next year for third countries - on top of a previous commitment for 250 million jabs - von der Leyen said she was also worried by variation of vaccination rates among the EU's member states.

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The president is also ordering vaccination for executive -branch employees as well as federal contractors, with no test alternative. Biden had previously given federal workers the option of getting tested instead of being vaccinated. American Federation of Government Employees National President Everett Kelley, who leads the largest The country is now averaging more than 150,000 new cases a day, with about 1,500 deaths reported daily, according to a New York Times tracker. Again calling the current challenge a “ pandemic of the unvaccinated ,” Biden cited hesitancy among some about

Under EU rules, Sputnik V must be authorised by the European Medicines Agency before it can be marketed in any state of the 27-nation bloc, EMA said. "This is where the authorisation process and vaccine confidence meet. If our citizens start questioning the safety of a vaccine, should it not variant "can really spread like wildfire" among those who are unvaccinated , the Health Secretary has warned as he urged caution ahead of tomorrow' s reopening. Speaking to Sky' s Sophy Ridge, Mr Hancock said people must be "cautious, careful and vigilant" as England moves to step three of the roadmap out of

"Let's do everything possible (so) that this does not turn into a pandemic of the unvaccinated," she told EU lawmakers in Strasbourg, France.


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'FURTHER AND FASTER' ON CLIMATE

The former German defence minister has put tackling climate change at the top of her agenda, with bold steps for the EU to achieve climate neutrality by 2050, along with a digital transformation of its economy.

Von der Leyen said the EU would double its international funding to protect nature and halt the decline of the world's biodiversity, adding: "My message today is that Europe is ready to do more."

"This is a generation with a conscience, they are pushing us to go further and faster to tackle the climate crisis," she said.

She said the EU would increase its financial support to help poorer countries fight climate change and adapt to its impacts, announcing plans for an additional 4 billion euros until 2027.

Oregon, once a virus success story, struggles with surge

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The Council of Europe is an intergovernmental European cooperation organization with 47 Member States, which, despite its name and the same flag, is separate from the EU . The resolution contains various recommendations for how to achieve a large vaccine intake, but also something unexpected – namely clear provisions for it. Point 7.3 of the resolution obliges all Member States to ensure that citizens are informed that Covid vaccinations are NOT (the only word written in capital letters throughout the resolution) mandatory and that no one is politically, socially or otherwise pressured to be vaccinated.

“This is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated ,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky said Friday at a White House press briefing. “We are seeing outbreaks of cases in parts of the country that have low vaccination coverage, because unvaccinated people are But those hospitalizations and deaths are occurring almost entirely among unvaccinated people. “The good news is if you are fully vaccinated you are protected against severe COVID, hospitalization and death, and are even protected against the known variants, including the delta variant, circulating in

With a global chip shortage causing a major delay in manufacturing activity and forced several automakers to cut down on production, von der Leyen said the bloc must create a state- of-the-art European chip ecosystem including production.

"Digital is the make-or-break issue," she said.

Nineteen EU member states would have their economy back at pre-pandemic level this year, with the others following next year, she said.

Von der Leyen, wore a mask emblazoned with the EU flag's circle of 12 gold stars, greeting lawmakers at the assembly ahead of her speech with fist bumps.

Critics say she has fallen short of promises to make the commission more "geopolitical" as the EU struggles to assert its influence in foreign affairs.

(Reporting by Jan Strupcewzki, Marine Strauss, Gabriela Baczynska, Phil Blenkinsop, Yves Herman, Foo Yun Chee, Writing by Ingrid Melander, Editing by John Chalmers)

Biden's new tougher tone on vaccine mandates triggers GOP backlash .
Taking his toughest tone yet against the unvaccinated, President Joe Biden has triggered backlash from GOP governors vowing legal battles. At least 19 Republican governors have lashed back at Biden's promise to use OSHA to pressure employers with more than 100 employees to mandate COVID-19 vaccines or have workers submit to weekly testing. The Republican governors called the mandate an overreach that will force Americans to choose between their job and the vaccine.

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