MOSCOW, March 26. /TASS/. The Kremlin completely opposes statements made by French President Emmanuel Macron who claimed that Moscow and Beijing abuse coronavirus vaccines as an influence tool.
According to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Putin and Macron "have a whole range of topics that they categorically disagree with each other on which does not stand in the way of their dialogue."
"These remarks by Mr. Macron slot into the sphere of our categoric differences. We completely disagree with [the opinion] that Russia and China are engaged in some [vaccine] war and abuse the coronavirus pandemic and vaccines as a certain leverage," Peskov stressed.
He underlined, "Russia is a responsible member of the international community which is best showcased in such tough days and years as the pandemic that the humanity is now going through."
Peskov recalled that Russia was the first country to complete a vaccine development, started producing it and is now ramping up production capabilities "to complete inoculation of its population and simultaneously respond to the constantly increasing international demand for its vaccine in the foreseeable future."
"Russia has never had, does not have and will never have any intentions to politicize the vaccine issue and abuse vaccine as an influence tool," Peskov concluded.
On Thursday evening, the French leader claimed at a press conference that Russia and China "seek to exert influence" over the world with the vaccines they produce and noted that "a world war of a new type" is now underway to argue for a European "vaccine strategy and diplomacy" to manufacture enough doses and reach herd immunity on the continent.