What can you say except it must be more important to the eu to try and score points over a post Brexit UK and its very successful vaccine rollout than keeping its citizens safe from covid...
'Italy admitted today that its suspension of AstraZeneca jabs was a 'political' move under pressure from other EU governments, amid fury at the 12 EU states who have called a halt to the shots over unproven fears of blood clots.
Nicola Magrini, the head of Italian medicines regulator AIFA, said politicians had come under pressure to call off the jabs after Germany and France made similar moves in what one Conservative MP described as a 'Brexit sulk'.
'We got to the point of a suspension because several European countries, including Germany and France, preferred to interrupt vaccinations... to put them on hold in order to carry out checks. The choice is a political one,' Magrini said in an interview with La Repubblica.
Fourteen European countries including 12 EU members have now suspended their use of the shots altogether - with Sweden joining the list today - while another five have black-listed specific batches and a handful of governments outside Europe have also pulled the emergency brake.
Health experts in Germany and France have accused their governments of playing politics with the AstraZeneca jab, which is already an unloved choice in Europe after top officials lashed out at the firm in a post-Brexit row over supplies and raised unfounded doubts about its effectiveness.
Scientists fear that Europe's moves could now fuel 'more extreme anti-vaccine sentiment' despite findings by the EU, UK, WHO and AstraZeneca that there is no evidence of a link to the sporadic blood clots.
Belgium's health ministry said it would continue using the jab because it was in a race against time to protect its population. Extraordinarily, one French minister told Politico that it decided to copy Berlin's move to avoid 'stress' - and at the same time Paris is threatening to sue AstraZeneca for failing to supply enough doses.
In an attempt to stem the tide of countries stopping the roll-out of the jab, the EMA insisted the rate of clots 'in vaccinated people seems not to be higher than that seen in the general population'.
Whitehall sources claimed the suspensions were a 'cynical attempt to discredit' AstraZeneca in the wake of the bloc's row with the Anglo-Swedish drugs firm amid a shambolic rollout.
'I genuinely don't know what they are playing at,' said one insider. 'There is no data to support what they are doing. They just don't seem to be able to get over their disputes with AstraZeneca.'
In Britain, Tory and Labour MPs highlighted the assurances given by regulators and experts as they appealed for Britons to ignore 'fake news' and accept invitations for jabs. Nearly half the UK population has now had their first dose of either the Oxford or Pfizer vaccine.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said it was 'crystal clear' the vaccine was safe, while Conservative backbencher Anthony Browne said European leaders were driven by 'politics not science'. 'The EU's Brexit sulk will cost EU lives,' he said.
Among the 17million people across Europe who have received the vaccine there have been 37 reports of blood clots, which experts say is well below the expected level.
Boris Johnson and Nicola Sturgeon leapt to the defence of the jab yesterday, saying it is 'safe and effective' and no such side effects have been witnessed in the UK, which has used more doses than anywhere else in the world.'[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
I think it is time AZ told eu leaders like mutti and josephine to make up their minds. Either they stop this trashing of the Oxford vaccine and start giving it to the people of europe or they cancel the eu contract (without AZ taking legal action over cancellation) and allow the export of the vaccine to those countries that want it.