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EU stresses urgent need for cheap COVID-19 vaccine

Jerome Hughes

Press TV, Brussels

Scientists across the globe are working day and night to try and develop an effective vaccine for the deadly COVID-19 disease. Once that's achieved, the European Commission insists everyone must have access to it.

US President Donald Trump questions whether the solution might be to inject people with disinfectants. "I'm not a doctor but I'm a person that has a good you know what." The European Commission was dismissive when asked to respond to Trump's idea.

Concern is being expressed in the EU surrounding the development of mobile phone coronavirus applications designed to trace people. It could be useful in preventing the spread but caution is needed, defenders of civil liberties warn.

During a debate, that was mainly online, EU lawmakers voiced worry that some governments in the 27-nation bloc are abusing 'State of Emergency' powers. Spain, Austria, Poland and Hungary were singled out.

As if, thanks to the pandemic, there wasn't enough economic uncertainty, trade talks between the EU and UK ground to a halt on Friday with zero progress. London told Brussels there will no extension, beyond the end of December, to the Brexit transition period.

In other developments, the European Commission is again warning citizens to be vigilant with respect to online scams. A huge number of people are apparently falling victim.

Criminal gangs are taking advantage of our anxieties by trying to sell fake coronavirus cures and protective equipment at very high prices. The key advice is to delete any unsolicited emails sent by those purporting to have such items.

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