The United States today asserted that there are no strings attached to the vaccines delivered to Sri Lanka.
The US said the vaccines have been given to Sri Lanka at no cost as part of America’s commitment to ending the global pandemic.
Sri Lanka received 1.5 million doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, which was a donation from the US via the COVAX facility of the World Health Organization.
Issuing a statement, the US Embassy in Colombo said these vaccines will save lives and increase COVID-19 vaccination coverage essential to ending the pandemic.
“These vaccines are given at no cost to the Government of Sri Lanka as part of America’s commitment to ending the global pandemic and our enduring partnership with the people of Sri Lanka. They will help Sri Lankans get back to work and to stay healthy, a gift we make in reflection of the long-standing friendship between the United States and Sri Lanka,” said Alaina Teplitz, the U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the Maldives.
Teplitz further said the Embassy’s partnership with the Sri Lankan Ministry of Health, UNICEF, and other global COVAX partners to deliver these vaccines is critical to controlling the pandemic, slowing the emergence of new variants, and helping to restart the global economy.
This vaccine delivery builds on the United States Government’s ongoing leadership on global vaccination efforts as the world’s largest donor to COVAX. The 1.5 million doses delivered to the Sri Lankan Government today are part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to providing equitable global access to safe and effective vaccines.
As noted by the White House, “Our vaccines do not come with strings attached. We are doing this with the singular objective of saving lives,” she added.
COVAX is a platform that provides safe, effective, and high-quality WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccines to countries around the world. As the global leader in public health assistance and the largest single donor supporting COVAX, the U.S. has already donated $2 billion to the program to combat the pandemic.
The United States has worked closely with Sri Lanka since the pandemic began to protect public health, providing over $8 million in emergency supplies and critical services, plus an in-kind donation of 200 ventilators, to support the Sri Lankan Government’s response to the pandemic. This assistance has reached millions of people in all 25 districts and nine provinces of Sri Lanka to control the spread of COVID-19, address the urgent health needs of the Sri Lankan people, mitigate the pandemic’s negative economic impacts, and ultimately save lives.
Alaina Teplitz said the U.S. is committed to leading the global response to this pandemic, not only because this will keep people safe, but because it is the right thing to do.
The US Ambassador to Sri Lanka further said that these doses are delivered in coordination with COVAX, in partnership with the Sri Lankan Government, adding “We are proud to partner with Sri Lanka to build back a better world.” (Colombo Gazette)