Taiwan creates political obstacles to mainland vaccines: spokesperson
Xinhua | Updated: 2021-01-27 13:50
BEIJING — A Chinese mainland spokesperson Wednesday said Taiwan authorities created political obstacles to the use of mainland vaccines by the people on the island.
Zhu Fenglian, a spokesperson for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, said some people in Taiwan continued to fabricate various excuses and lies for refusing to accept vaccines from the mainland. In pursuit of selfish political gains, they are endangering the lives and health of local people.
Zhu made the remarks at a press conference when asked about the possibility of donating vaccines to Taiwan through the Red Cross.
“The head of Taiwan’s epidemic response agency has repeatedly said that mainland vaccines will not be used, so there are obstacles to this issue indeed, mainly political ones,” she said.
TAIWAN’S BAN ON CHINESE COVID-19 VACCINES WILL REMAIN, DESPITE REPORT
science or just pure politics?
The democratic island of Taiwan has reiterated a ban on imports of COVID-19 vaccines made in China, as repeated incursions by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) into its air defense zone in recent days stoked simmering regional tensions.
Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said in a recent statement to Reuters that the island’s 23 million population should be cautious about accepting offers of vaccination while living and working in China, and “cautiously evaluate the safety and necessity” of doing so.
Taiwan, which has never been governed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), nor formed part of the People’s Republic of China, has repeatedly warned its citizens of health risks associated with Chinese-made vaccines, and requires anyone vaccinated in China to undergo a stringent 14-day quarantine on arriving home.
The PLA has flown dozens of sorties into the southwestern part of Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) since the weekend, in a move that politicians and analysts alike have viewed as a test of U.S. resolve to support Taiwan at the start of the Biden administration.
Unlike previous incursions, recent operations have included bombers and fast-moving fighter jets usually used for offensive purposes, linking it to the reported presence of a U.S. aircraft carrier group in the vicinity,
Beijing followed up the incursions on Tuesday with an announcement of further military drills in the disputed South China Sea, after protesting the presence of the U.S. Navy’s Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group in the region since Jan. 23.
At the same time, pro-China media in Taiwan suggested that China was keen to start sending its COVID-19 vaccines to Taiwan, a sovereign state under the 1911 Republic of China founded by Sun Yat-sen, despite the import ban.
According to the pro-CCP China Times, the vaccines could be sent as “private donations,” while Taiwanese citizens could be pressed into service to promote the vaccines on the island.
Citing a “person involved in Taiwan affairs,” the paper said that Taiwan “must first remove political and legal obstacles,” for discussions to take place.
The MAC said its policy hadn’t changed, and that the decision about which vaccines to procure rested with the island’s epidemic control and command center.
“This is a medical issue for healthcare professionals to decide, and has nothing to do with politics,” it said in a statement.
“The epidemic command center has said there is incomplete data regarding Chinese-made vaccines … and has decided to tighten requirements during the emergency pandemic situation,” it said. “Chinese vaccines cannot be imported under current laws and regulations.”
“[We] will not be purchasing vaccines from mainland China for the time being,” it said.
Full list of adverse reactions from China’s Sinopharm vaccine revealed
Difficulty breathing, blurred vision among side effects listed for Sinopharm vaccine
By Keoni Everington, Taiwan News, Staff Writer2021/01/11 09:17
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Amid increasing concern about the efficacy and safety of China’s Wuhan coronavirus vaccines, the full list of the adverse side effects of the Sinopharm jab surfaced last week.
Shanghai-based vaccine expert Tao Lina (陶黎納) on Jan. 4 uploaded to Weibo a digital version of the manual for BBIBP-CorV, an inactivated vaccine produced by China National Biotec Group (CNBG), a subsidiary of China National Pharmaceutical Group Corporation (Sinopharm). In his post, he described the vaccine as the “most unsafe vaccine in the world” due to its 73 local and systemic adverse reactions.
However, the post was deleted on Jan. 5 by China’s censors “due to violation of regulations.” On Thursday (Jan. 7), Tao apologized and claimed that foreign media had mistaken his sarcastic joke about the vaccine instructions for real criticism and pledged to set an example by taking two doses himself.
Tan’s original Weibo post listing side effects. (Weibo screenshot)
The instructions for the vaccine rate the adverse reactions based on the standard set by the Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences, with the categories very common, common, uncommon, rare, and very rare. A total of 75 adverse side effects are listed, but because “headache” and “eye pain” are listed twice, the actual number is 73. The following is a translation of the instructions posted by Tan and published by hk01 on Jan. 6.
First, for local reactions at the vaccination site, under very common it lists headache. For common, it lists flush, swelling, scleroma, rash, and itching. Under uncommon, it lists erythema.
Systemic adverse reactions
Second, for systemic adverse reactions, it starts by listing headache under very common. For common, it lists fever, fatigue, muscle ache, joint pain, cough, difficulty breathing, nausea, diarrhea, and itchy skin,
Under uncommon, it lists dizziness, loss of appetite, vomiting, oropharyngeal pain, difficulty swallowing, runny nose, constipation, and hypersensitivity. For rare, it lists acute allergic reaction, lethargy, drowsiness, difficulty sleeping, sneezing, nasopharyngitis, nasal congestion, dry throat, influenza, hypoesthesia, limb pain, palpitations, stomach ache, rash, skin and mucous membrane abnormalities, acne, eye pain, ear discomfort, and lymphadenopathy.
Lastly, under very rare, it lists chills, dysgeusia (distortion of the sense of taste), loss of taste, feeling abnormal, tremors, difficulty paying attention, nose bleeds, asthma, throat irritation, tonsillitis, limb discomfort, neck pain, jaw pain, neck lumps, mouth ulcers, toothache, esophageal disease, gastritis, discoloration of stool, eye pain, blurred vision, eye irritation, vision loss, earache, nervousness, high blood pressure, low blood pressure, urinary incontinence, and delayed menstruation.