UPDATES WITH FURTHER REMARKS BY PRESIDENT; ADDS BACKGROUND; REVISES HEADLINE, DECK
By Ali Murat Alhas and Fahri Aksut
ANKARA (AA) - Turkish president on Thursday said coronavirus vaccination should be a common property of all humankind and produced at an adequate quantity for all.
In a video message issued for the 2020 international vaccination summit held in London, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the outbreak should not be allowed to lead to further divisions in the world.
“There is no doubt that the availability of the vaccine to humanity as a whole and its production in adequate quantities for all are critical as its development,” he said.
“COVID-19 has reminded us once again that we are actually one big family sharing a common fate and future,” Erdogan noted, adding Turkey dispatched various healthcare equipment worldwide for the sake of global solidarity.
He also said the pandemic should not be allowed to further deepen the injustices across the world.
"In this [outbreak] process, we have extended a helping hand to all our friends as well as meeting our own demands. We have provided medical supplies to 102 countries so far," Erdogan stressed.
As part of our national efforts to battle the pandemic, we have set up a dedicated platform to conduct vaccine and drug studies, he said, noting that eight of 17 projects directly focused on the development of vaccination.
The coronavirus, which first appeared in China last December, has spread to 188 countries and regions across the world, dealing a severe blow to air travel on a global scale.
The virus has killed over 386,500 people worldwide, with total infections exceeding 6.54 million, and more than 2.83 million people having recovered from the disease, according to figures compiled by the US' Johns Hopkins University.