EU Preparing ‘rapid’ Assistance to COVID-struggling India
The EU is preparing rapid assistance to help India as it tackles a booming COVID-19 resurgence, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said Sunday.
“Alarmed by the epidemiological situation in India. We are ready to support. “The EU is pooling resources to respond rapidly to India’s request for assistance.” she wrote on Twitter.
European Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarcic said the bloc’s Emergency Response Coordination Center is working with EU governments to provide oxygen and medicine.
India's health services are struggling to cope with the outbreak. On Sunday, the country posted its highest single-day increase for the fourth day in a row, announcing 350,000 new cases.
Chancellor Angela Merkel on Sunday said Germany was "urgently preparing a mission of support" to help India cope with the rise in infections. "The fight against the pandemic is our common fight," she said in comments posted on Twitter by her spokesperson. "Germany stands in solidarity with India.”
Meanwhile, Italy became the latest country to introduced tougher travel restrictions on India to prevent the arrival of its COVID-19 variant.
Italy’s Health Minister Roberto Speranza announced Sunday that it would be banning foreign passengers coming from the Asian nation.
“We cannot let our guard down,” Speranza said. Rome does not want to take chances as it begins to ease national coronavirus restrictions from Monday.
Germany’s Health Minister Jens Spahn said Saturday that only German citizens would be able to travel from India. On Friday, the U.K. put India on its red list — effectively prohibiting travel — while the U.S., Canada and Israel have also imposed tighter restrictions.
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