Adolescent climate activist Greta Tunberg has urged governments, vaccine developers and the world to “step up their game” to combat vaccine inequality after the richest countries seized most of the COVID-19 vaccine and the poorer ones lost. ,
His comments came Monday as the World Health Organization announced 5.2 million newly confirmed viral cases in the past week, the largest number of the week, according to the United Nations Health Organization.
The Swedish teenager who inspired the “Friday for the Future” climate change movement raised € 100,000 ($ 120,000) from his charitable foundation to the WHO to help get COVID-19 vaccines to countries where they need them, especially in poor countries.
“It is completely immoral for high-income countries to now vaccinate young, healthy people if it is to be at the forefront of low-income people in low-middle-income countries,” Tunberg told a regular WHO briefing.
Although Tunberg welcomed the development of COVID-19 vaccines in “record time”, he noted that so far 1 in 4 high-income countries have received them, and only 1 in 500 low-income countries.
“The international community, governments, vaccine developers need to step up their game, address vaccine inequality and tragedy,” he said. “In times of climate crisis, those who are most vulnerable need to be given priority. Global problems require global solutions.”
WHO Director-General Tedros Adanom Gebreusus said new COVID-19 cases had risen in the world for the eighth time in a row, with deaths rising for the fifth week in a row.
He said infections between the ages of 25 and 59 were “increasing at an alarming rate, possibly due to the spread of more contagious variants, including increased social mixing among adults.”
More than 3 million COVID-19 patients have died from the epidemic, and more than 141 million people have been infected, according to Hopkins University estimates, but experts say both numbers underestimate the actual victim of the epidemic.
Tunberg said people should “take steps for each other.”
“We young people can be the ones who suffer the least from the virus directly,” he said. “Of course, many young people are not able to establish that connection.”
“Not all, but some,” he added.
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