WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement regarding India’s second coronavirus wave and the need for increased U.S. leadership in the global fight against COVID-19:
“I am worried and horrified by the continued advancement of COVID-19 around the world. With India’s current wave representing the world’s worst outbreak, there continues to be a moral imperative to U.S. leadership in the global arena right now.
“As we join the thousands of families mourning the loss of loved ones to this deadly surge in India, let us continue to stand in full support and solidarity with the brave healthcare providers, workers, and citizens here and the world over working on the frontlines against the coronavirus. I am deeply proud of the Indian-American community and other Americans, including many in my home state of New Jersey, who have stepped up private efforts to provide much needed supplies and funding to India. Their work to help those in need represents the best of our country, and I commit to do whatever I can to support them.
“The United States has a leading role to play in supporting equitable vaccine access for all countries, and it’s time we stepped up. The Biden administration made the right decision to expeditiously send raw vaccine materials, oxygen supplies, test kits, and other necessary resources to India, and to fund the expansion of their vaccine manufacturing capacity. As we continue to make major progress in our fight against COVID-19 in the U.S., I urge the Administration to keep ramping up the provision of supplies and resources to countries hard hit by the pandemic. Conditions in India clearly warrant a response; India and the Indian people supported the United States during the early days of the pandemic here, and we must do the same as they face this unprecedented wave.”