Indonesia claims wide support for virus-sharing stance

first_imgMay 27, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – Indonesia’s health minister asserted yesterday that 112 other nations at a meeting in Geneva last week expressed support for her country’s position on avian influenza virus sharing, according to an Indonesian newspaper.At a press conference in Jakarta yesterday, Siti Fadilah Supari said support for Indonesia’s sample-sharing proposals came on May 21 at a Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) health ministers meeting, which was held alongside the World Health Organization’s (WHO) annual meeting in Geneva, the Jakarta Post reported today. The NAM, founded in 1955, is an organization of countries that consider themselves not aligned with or against any superpower. Supari said representatives of 112 countries at the NAM health ministers meeting supported Indonesia’s demands.”We received moral and political support from health ministers from England, Russia, Iran, and Australia,” Supari said, according to the Post report. The NAM Web site does not list England or Australia among its 118 member countries.In early 2007, Indonesia announced it had stopped sharing H5N1 influenza virus samples with the WHO out of concern that developing countries that share such samples will not have access to vaccines that drug companies in rich countries may produce from the samples. The country has shared only a few samples since then. It has pushed for new virus-sharing policies that it considers more transparent and fair to it and other developing nations.Supari continues talks with USDuring the WHO’s annual World Health Assembly, Supari urged world health officials to replace the WHO’s virus-sharing system, saying it favors developed nations, the Post reported. Also during the meeting, she met with US Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt to discuss possible solutions to the virus-sharing impasse, in a continuation of talks that had begun in April.Leavitt mentioned the latest talks at a May 19 press conference in Geneva. “Actually, not a great deal changed as a result of our meeting today,” he told reporters, according to a transcript published on the US State Department Web site.He emphasized that the United States wants to help forge needed improvements in the sample-sharing system. “What we aren’t willing, of course, to do is engage in any system that would involve compensation for virus samples,” he said. “This is a 60-year-old tradition. That’s one of the greatest public health successes in history.”A progress report on multilateral efforts to settle the sample-sharing issue, including ideas raised at the World Health Assembly, is expected in July, Leavitt said. A WHO working group dedicated to solving the problem, which has met several times, will meet again in November. “And we’re hopeful that by November of this year we’ll have a protocol under which that [virus sharing] can be done,” Leavitt said.In a recent book, Supari accused the United States of planning to make a biological weapon out of the H5N1 virus and charged that the United States and the WHO have conspired to profit from H5N1 vaccines.Genetic data to be shared Indonesia recently announced it would begin sharing H5N1 viral sequences with a new public database, the Global Initiative on Sharing Avian Influenza Data (GISAID), which was formed by a group of 70 scientists and health officials to promote greater sharing of H5N1 sequences.GISAID has said the public can freely access the database, which includes both human and animal H5N1 sequences, after they register and agree to share and credit the use of others’ data, analyze findings jointly, publish results collaboratively, and refrain from pressing intellectual property rights issues that relate to diagnostic, drug, and vaccine developments.Experts have praised the new development, but some have said that having actual H5N1 isolates is more useful because they are needed to make seed strains for vaccines and are critical for determining antigenicity, transmissibility, and pathogenicity.See also:Apr 17 CIDRAP News story “HHS secretary blogs on impasse with Indonesia”May 19 CIDRAP News story “Experts welcome Indonesia’s vow to share H5N1 data”last_img read more

I don’t mind getting hurt, just don’t want to get out: Virat Kohli

first_imgNEW DELHI: The 2014 tour of England is one that saw current India skipper Virat Kohli struggle against the swinging Dukes ball in English conditions. With scores of 1, 8, 25, 0, 39, 28, 0,7, 6 and 20 in the five Tests of that tour, he averaged just 13.50 in his ten innings. However, Kohli doesn’t see the tour as a disappointment.”In the 2014 England tour, it was basically about not adjusting to the conditions and doing things that I wanted to do and being rigid about it. Being rigid about anything doesn’t get you anywhere. It was a long and painful realisation but I realised it,” said Kohli while speaking with Mayank Agarwal on the series ‘Open Nets with Mayank’ hosted by bcci.tv. “2014 tour is always going to be a milestone in my career. I really had to sit down and change things about how I approach the game before that tour, the way I played the game and start being more fearless. “I realised that in Test cricket when it gets tough, to maintain your composure is the most difficult thing for a cricketer and that was something which I really needed to correct. “If that tour hadn’t happened, I would have continued the same way I was and wouldn’t have improved. That tour made me think how I approach my international career and do I just want to be a pushover everytime I play Test cricket. That’s a decision I had to make,” he added. Kohli revealed that after that England tour where India were defeated 1-3 in the five-Test series, Ravi Shastri offered him a piece of advice which worked wonders for him. “Ravi bhai called me and Shikhar to his room after the Test series in 2014. His understanding was very sharp. He told me to stand outside the crease and explained the mindset behind it. He also asked me if I was afraid of the short ball. I said, ‘I wasn’t afraid of the short-pitched balls. I am not afraid to get hurt, I just don’t want to get out’,” he said. “I started practising that in Australia in the same year and the results were unbelievable.” The 31-year-old also had a chat with legendary batsman Sachin Tendulkar after the England tour and had few sessions as well with him in Mumbai. “After the England tour, I looked at my footage. I spoke to Sachin Tendulkar in Mumbai and had a few sessions with him. I told him that I am working on my hip position and he made me realise the importance of a big stride, the forward press against fast bowlers as well.” On his next tour of England in 2018, Kohli emerged as the leading run-scorer with 593 runs, including two hundreds and three half-centuries. “I never really paid attention to the perception of the people about me after 2014. Obviously, it troubled me a little because all my credibility as a player went away in a month or so. But then I stopped focussing on what people had to say about me,” Kohli said. “I went into my zone and kept working on my game. The great thing about 2018 was I went as a captain and a player. I wanted to lead from the front and contribute to the team by scoring runs. “That’s why I was nervous before the first Test in 2018. I wanted to start well. It was not like that I performed bad in 2014 and now here’s my chance of redemption in 2018,” he added. Despite a brilliant batting performance from Kohli, India went on to lose that series 1-4. However, the Indian captain believes the tour boosted the confidence of the team, which later on helped them win their maiden Test series in Australia. “We weren’t too heartbroken about the England series in 2018 to be honest because we really competed well. It was a tight and a confidence boosting series for us.” Talking about his X-factor as a captain, Kohli said: “I would not compromise on wanting a result in any situation. A draw comes to me, only and only if the situation has gone too bad or in the last hour when you don’t have an option. I will not think of a draw from the first minute in the morning.” IANS Also watch: Minister Reviews Flood Readiness for Guwahatilast_img read more