Disinfo: Unwillingness to authorise Russian or Chinese vaccines is similar to the situation prior to the Munich Agreement

Summary

The Czech government is unwilling to authorise other vaccines apart from those provided by the EU to resolve their shortage. Not buying the Russian Sputnik V (or even the Chinese vaccine) is a sign of clearly ideological reasons and it seems very much like the situation in 1938. The Czech Republic did not trust Communist Russia and decided to rely on its Western allies – and the outcome was the humiliating Munich Agreement.

Disproof

This article is a part of a narrative claiming that European countries are “discriminating” the Russian Sputnik V vaccine. Such claims are false. On contrary, Russian and British scientists teamed up to trial a combination of the Oxford-AstraZeneca and Sputnik V vaccines to see if protection against Covid-19 can be improved.

The producer of Sputnik V has not yet applied for a marketing authorization in the EU (as of 9, February, 2021). The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is in contact with the Russian producer of the Sputnik V vaccine and provides scientific advice. EU is not against Sputnik V if it can satisfy the same requirements as other vaccines.

The criticism of the Russian vaccine was not based on ideological reasons but rather on the development process. It was announced in August 2020 that the first Russian vaccine Sputnik V was approved, and the Russian Federation authorised it for widespread use. Normally, a vaccine would be approved only after the completion of phase III of clinical trials, the interim results from which were only published in The Lancet on 02 February.

It is rather inappropriate to compare the current vaccine situation to the 1938 Munich Agreement which permitted the annexation of the Czechoslovak territory Sudetenland by Nazi Germany.