Coronavirus live news: Pfizer vaccine found 94% effective in major study; EU to debate vaccine passports | World news

EU leaders will tomorrow debate the issue of certificates of vaccination for EU citizens who have been vaccinated against Covid. Reuter...


EU leaders will tomorrow debate the issue of certificates of vaccination for EU citizens who have been vaccinated against Covid.

Reuters reports that with the rollout of vaccines now gathering pace, some governments, like those of Greece and Spain, are pushing for a quick adoption of an EU-wide certificate for those already inoculated so that people can travel again.

However, other countries, such as France and Germany, appear more reluctant, as officials there say it could create de facto vaccination obligation and would be discriminatory to those who cannot or would not take a jab.

France, where anti-vaccine sentiment is particularly strong and where the government has pledged not to make them compulsory, considers the idea of vaccine passports as “premature”, a French official said today.

Officials said the EU was working with the International Air Transport Association, which is keen to revive air travel, and with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and the World Health Organization.

But travel with certificates also raised legal questions, officials said, because those last in line for vaccinations could argue their freedom of movement was unjustly restricted by the often months-long queues.

EU officials also point out there is no guidance yet from the WHO and EU agencies whether people who have received two shots of the Covid-19 vaccine can still carry the coronavirus and infect others, even if no longer vulnerable themselves.

It was also not clear if people could be infectious having already fought off the coronavirus themselves, for how long they remained immune and if they too should get certificates.

There is also suspicion that such schemes could provide a way in to greater monitoring of people’s movements and health statuses, a paper published in the Lancet says. However, it added, they could facilitate safer movement and the privacy concerns are neither unique nor insurmountable.

Earlier in February, Greece and Israel signed a deal to ease travel restrictions to Greece for Israelis with proof of vaccination.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Coronavirus live news: Pfizer vaccine found 94% effective in major study; EU to debate vaccine passports | World news
Coronavirus live news: Pfizer vaccine found 94% effective in major study; EU to debate vaccine passports | World news
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