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June 22, 2021 2:06 pm
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Major American Jewish Organizations Urge Biden to Send More COVID Vaccines to India Before Third Wave

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

A health worker waits for the results of a rapid antigen test at a COVID-19 testing centre in Srinagar, India. Photo: Idrees Abbas / SOPA Images/Sipa USA

The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations transmitted an open letter to the White House on Tuesday calling on the Biden administration to immediately provide surplus vaccine doses to India.

The letter, sent to White House chief of staff Ron Klain and Coronavirus Response Coordinator Jeff Zients, was signed by 22 Jewish organizations, including the American Jewish Committee, B’nai B’rith International, Hadassah, and the Zionist Organization of America.

Citing the devastation India has recently experienced due to the “Delta variant” of COVID-19, the letter asserted, “As India emerges from this latest wave, there is a crucial window of time available. It is imperative that India be given the opportunity to vaccinate as much of its population as possible in order to avoid future and further catastrophe.”

The letter noted that the US has a stockpile of the Astra Zeneca vaccine that will likely not be distributed and could easily be transferred to India.

“We urge the administration to rapidly allocate an additional and greatly increased share of doses of COVID-19 vaccine to India,” the signatories said. “It is essential that the world’s largest democracy be provided the opportunity to stave off another disaster.”

“The Indian government came to the aid of the United States in its time of need during the first wave of Spring 2020 and has been a stalwart ally and friend,” the letter pointed out. “So too, the four million strong Indian expatriate community plays an integral role through United States society.”

“We believe that an enhanced US allocation of valuable COVID-19 vaccines to India would be an enormous boon to a democracy that has been ravaged by disease and is in danger of facing another wave,” it concluded.

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