Former leaders urge West to share unused Covid doses

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More than 160 former world leaders and global figures have called on Britain and other western powers to mount an immediate military airlift of surplus Covid vaccines to less developed countries.

They warned that unless action is taken at the G20 summit this weekend hundreds of thousands of lives might be lost as out-of-date vaccines are wasted.

The warning comes in a letter – organised by the former UK Prime Minister, Gordon Brown – that is addressed to the Italian hosts of the G20 summit.

And the signatories comprise a Who’s Who of recent leaders including 36 former presidents, 30 ex-prime ministers, and another 100 influential global figures.

They say while a handful of rich countries have vaccinated about 70% of their people against Covid, many poorer countries have managed only 2%.

And they argue there is now an urgent need to end this vaccine inequality. To do so, they say Britain, the United States, Canada, and the EU should immediately launch a military airlift to distribute 240 million surplus doses to countries most in need.

And then another 200 million next month and so on. To let hundreds of millions of doses expire and go to waste, they say, would be unethical when tens of thousands of people are still dying of Covid every day.

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