Indonesia wants legal pact on sharing H5N1 samples

first_imgMar 14, 2007 (CIDRAP News) –Indonesia vowed today not to share H5N1 avian influenza virus samples with the World Health Organization (WHO) until it has a “legally binding” guarantee that the samples won’t be used to develop vaccines that the country can’t afford, according to news services.Indonesian Health Minister Siti Failah Supari told reporters in Jakarta today,”We will not share our virus sample, without a change in the rules,” the Associated press (AP) reported. The statement signaled the continuation of a standoff that has lasted several weeks.Indonesia has not supplied any H5N1 samples to the WHO since the end of 2006, the WHO has said. Steps toward resolution of the problem have been reported twice in the past month, but no final agreement has been reached.Researchers need current H5N1 samples to trace changes in the virus, map its spread, and develop vaccines in preparation for the threat of a human flu pandemic.Supari complained that WHO regulations give countries no control over how their viral samples are used, according to a Bloomberg News report. “Vaccine makers will try to produce and sell them [vaccines] to us at high price,” she said. “Poorer countries shouldn’t become a commercial target.”The WHO announced early in February that Indonesia had stopped sharing H5N1 isolates. After a Feb 16 meeting, officials said they had agreed in principle that Indonesia would resume sharing samples while the WHO would work to ensure that developing countries have access to vaccines based on their samples.In a Feb 28 letter, WHO Director-General Margaret Chan promised Indonesia that its viral specimens would be used “for public health risk assessment purposes only,” the AP reported. She also promised that, pending a formal agreement, the WHO would obtain Indonesia’s permission before sending any samples to a vaccine producer.But Supari said the letter was not enough, according to the AP. “That’s just an agreement in principle,” she said. “We need one that is legally binding.”Supari said Asia-Pacific health ministers will meet in Jakarta Mar 27 and 28 to propose changes in the WHO’s virus-sharing system, the story said.According to a Reuters report today, Supari said the proposed changes also would need to be discussed at a WHO advisory board meeting in May. She suggested that would be the earliest that the country would resume providing samples.The WHO’s Southeast Asia director, Samlee Plianbangchang, voiced confidence that the meeting later this month in Jakarta would do much to resolve the problem, the AP reported.See also:Feb 16 CIDRAP News story “Indonesia to resume sharing H5N1 samples with WHO”last_img read more

Man United scrape past Rochdale on penalties in League Cup

first_imgRelatedPosts Watford tempts Troost-Ekong with five-year deal Ighalo: My best moment as ‘Red Devil’ EPL: Crystal Palace stun sloppy Man U Manchester United’s current malaise was laid bare as they struggled past third-tier Rochdale 5-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in the League Cup third round at Old Trafford on Wednesday.Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side, showing nine changes from the one that lost at West Ham United in the Premier League on Sunday, laboured against their League One opponents before taking the lead through Mason Greenwood in the 68th minute.However, 16-year-old Luke Matheson equalised eight minutes later, to send the tie into a shootout.United prevailed, although, with keeper Sergio Romero making one save to spare their blushes as the hosts successfully converted all their spot-kicks and Daniel James slotted home the winner.Although United struggled, they at least avoided the complete humiliation suffered by West Ham United who were thrashed 4-0 at League One Oxford United.Top flight Bournemouth were also humbled by third-tier opposition, losing 2-0 at Burton Albion.Sheffield United joined the Premier League clubs to depart the competition as they lost 1-0 at home to Sunderland.There were no alarms for Premier League leaders Liverpool or Chelsea.Liverpool won 2-0 at MK Dons to set up a clash with Arsenal while Chelsea crushed Grimsby Town 7-1 to give manager Frank Lampard a first home win since taking over in the summer.Chelsea will face Manchester United in round four.Aston Villa won an all Premier League match against Brighton and Hove Albion, prevailing 3-1 to set up a fourth-round meeting with Wolverhampton Wanderers who also needed penalties to get past Championship side Reading.Reuters/NAN.Tags: League CupManchester Unitedlast_img read more