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CORONAVIRUS: A Shot in the Arm for Putin – The Geopolitics of Russia’s vaccine claim

CORONAVIRUS: A Shot in the Arm for Putin – The Geopolitics of Russia’s vaccine claim
GeoTech Cues by Claire Branley – Atlantic Council
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Image Credit: Jernej_Furman


ATLANTIC COUNCIL: President Vladimir Putin announced on August 11 that a coronavirus vaccine manufactured by the Gamaleya Research Institute of Moscow had been granted regulatory approval. Mikhail Murashko, the Russian Minister of Health, stated in a later press release that early clinical trials showed no serious side effects and that the vaccine could provide two years of immunity based on similar Gamaleya products.

Phase III trials will now begin enrolling two thousand frontline health workers and others at high-risk in Russia and elsewhere. Under normal circumstances, Phase III trials for efficacy and safety in humans would take up to four years and involve tens of thousands of carefully monitored vaccine recipients. Minister Murashko has stated that large-scale vaccinations would begin in October, far earlier than expected for an untried vaccine of this importance.

This is a significant move in what has become a geopolitical race for status and respect among the world’s powers, and it has been announced less than ninety days prior to the United States presidential election. If the goal is to confuse, upend, and disempower, Russia may have found an effective strategy. Read More/…

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The Atlantic Council promotes constructive leadership and engagement in international affairs based on the Atlantic Community’s central role in meeting global challenges. The Council provides an essential forum for navigating the dramatic economic and political changes defining the twenty-first century by informing and galvanizing its uniquely influential network of global leaders. The Atlantic Council—through the papers it publishes, the ideas it generates, the future leaders it develops, and the communities it builds—shapes policy choices and strategies to create a more free, secure, and prosperous world.

Related Experts: Eric Rasmussen, MD, MDM, FACP, Gregory F. Treverton, PhD


Image Credit: Jernej_Furman under CC 2.0


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