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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have written an open letter urging G20 leaders to ensure vaccine supplies for all nations. Within their letter, Prince Harry, 37, and Meghan Markle, 40, claim that promises of vaccine donations from these countries are not reaching the globe’s most vulnerable.
The Sussexes joined forces with WHO director-general, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus to issue the correspondence on the eve of the G20 summit.
Within the piece, they refer to access to the COVID-19 vaccine as being a “fundamental human right”.
It comes ahead of the G20 summit this weekend which sees leaders from the world’s richest nations meeting in Rome.
It is anticipated that environmental issues will be prominent on the agenda for G20, but the recovery from the pandemic is also likely to feature in discussions between world leaders.
In their letter, the trio said: “When the leaders of the world’s wealthiest nations met at the G7 Summit in June, they collectively announced that one billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines would be sent to low- and low-and-middle-income countries to help vaccinate the world.
“Pharmaceutical companies have pledged almost the same.
“Yet, as several nations still don’t even have enough vaccines for their own health workers, the world is left asking, where are the doses?”
The couple also adds that every discarded dose of the vaccine “should outrage us all.”
They said: “Each dose represents a real person — a mother, father, daughter, or son — who could have been protected.
“Each of us come from very different places, backgrounds, and life experiences, but we share a common goal: to tackle global inequity.”
The open document concludes with the following: “There are many crises that you – the stewards of our planet – must grapple with this weekend: the climate emergency, the state of our global economy, a recommitment to multilateralism.
“Yet, in many ways, making headway on these priorities depends on whether we can beat this pandemic.
“Cooperation of historic proportion is the only solution. Lives literally depend on it.”
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It comes after Meghan issued a letter to US Congress leaders to advocate for paid leave for all parents.
She drew on her status as a mother-of-two within the campaign piece and issued a call to ensure that millions of American families can access guaranteed paid leave.
Her letter was written on Sussex headed paper and was signed off with Meghan’s Duchess title.
However, it emerged on Thursday that US President Joe Biden has not included paid family leave in his $1.75trillion (£1.27trillion) spending plan.
The letter the couple have penned alongside Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, which is published on the WHO website, is not the first instance that sees them campaigning for vaccine equity.
Last month, Harry and Meghan appeared on stage in New York for the Global Citizen Live event where the couple called on pharmaceutical companies to waive their intellectual property rights on Covid vaccines as the pandemic was becoming a “human rights crisis”.
Prior to this, the Sussexes wrote an open letter in May, calling on the chief executives of pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca and urging them to redouble their support for the UN-sponsored Covax programme.
The Covax scheme intends to establish fair access to COVID-19 vaccines for both poor and rich nations.
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