tv DW News LINKTV April 28, 2021 3:00pm-3:31pm PDT
♪ brent: this is dw news, live from berlin. tonight another tragic pandemic in india, 200,000. across the country, the crisis of oxygen, medical supplies, and hospital staff. also coming up, hard-hit mexico races to develop its own coronavirus vaine. could a nasal spray inoculation help write the back of the
pandemic in mexico and beyond? also on the show, grading the u.s. president for policy. find out what some of germany's leaders had to say about joe biden's first 100 days in office. plus, german chancellor angela merkel presses china on human rights and expresses concern over beijing's treatment of muslim minorities and pro-democracy activists. brent: i'm brent goff. to our viewers on pbs in the united states and to all of you around the world, welcome. the coronavirus pandemic is showing no mercy for india. today the covid-19 death toll in india surpassed the 200,000 mark. the country continues to report record high numbers of new infections. medical aid from abroad has begun arriving, but hospitals are still struggling shortages of staff and supplies, including
oxygen. india's health care system is so overwhelmed that many patients are now being turned away. >> a covid-19 ward at a hospital in delhi. this hospital, like so many, full to overflowing. medical staff stretched to the limit, some falling ill with the disease themselves. here is another reality, a woman receives oxygen outside a sikh te to cope with severely ill patients by themselves. she describes her mother she isr d now she is notble to breathe. her oxygen saturation was 60 and now it is 40. >> people doing what they can to
save their loved ones. some get the oxygen they need. but there isn't enough to go around. they are saying go home and if someone is dying there, let them. they have nothing to do with our pain. they have none in their house who is ill. the state of delhi is reporting e death every four minutes. the hospitals cannot cope with the growing number of patien so the cremation tout -- pires are burning day and night. delhi is one hot of the covid-19 emergency -- one hotspot. india is one of the biggest producers of vaccines but it doesn't have enough to vaccinate the next 600 million people who will become eligible for the jab. >> they are telling us
injections are not available as vaccines have not arrived. i registered three days ago. i came all the way across the city and now they tell me. they've given me a help line number and told me to try again tomorrow. >> amid the frustration and suffering, a 105-year-old man and his 95-year-old wife were supplied the covid-19 vaccination. the family says they want their story to give hope to others for many fighting the disease. hope and prayers are all they have to help them. brent: i'm joined by jason, assistant professor in the department of medical microbiology and infectious diseases at the university of manitoba in winnipeg, canada. it's good to have you on the program. the viral variance in india at the moment, do we know what role they are playing in the spread of the vir? jason: it's a great question.
we are learning basically at each moment, the variant that first emerged in the u.k. we know is circulating in india and the are concerns with that variant. it is increasing in proportionality but we're somewhere at its infancy in understanding what it means. is it just something else related to the current situation that is driving these infectious cases up? brent: the models tell us that we have another two weeks in india of spreading of the virus as well as the death toll climbing. after that, things are expected to improve somewhat. what role then does vaccination play here? is it too late to try to bring this under control with the vaccine? jason: i think you have to look att from the perspective of
the situation now versus wre it will be a few weeks or months from now. it will require probably heavier restrictions, but vaccination has been able to help ge situations under control in tandem with those other measures. certainly it's going to play a continued role. we just have to get vaccines there, frankly, which will be the biggest question. brent: there is concern around the world that these viral variance in india could spread. we know that some companies have stopped all lights from india. do you consider that a wise move at this time? jason: it certain is a loaded question. we certainly don't want t limit people from being able to travel and do those things that are essential, if we don't actually know that it's going to limit spread. at the same time, there could be
enhanced spread and we certainly see here in canada. certainly there are reasons to be cautious to keep conditions as controlled asossible as regards to spread within their own countries. brent: we are in this pandemic well into over a year, and there is criticism coming out of india that the government simply was caught off guard, they should have been much more adamant and trying to protect the people, which they weren't. as a medical professional, how do you see it? what we are seeing in india, could it have been prevented? jason: i think certainly the impact could have been lessened. here in canada, we faced the same situation in different policies as we faced a remarkably strong third wave. we have to be proactive.
being reactive is simply not enough. after we get through this wave and the future, how do we better prepare societies for these inevitabilities? brent: dr., we appreciate your time and your insights tonight. thank you. mexico has the world's third-highest covid-19 death toll hind the united states and brazil. over 215,000 people are known to have died. testing is limited and experts believe the real death toll is actually much higher. the government is seeking to speed up vaccinations. only around 5% of the back -- of the population is totally inoculated and mexico is appealing for shots from abroad. earlier this month, the mexican president received the astrazeneca shot. but mexico is developing its own vaccine. if approved, it would be the
second latin american vaccine. the cuban shot is now in latter stages of testing. >> mexico, dependent on imported vaccines in short supply globally. to help reduce the country's future dependency, mexico is developing its own vaccine. its name is spanish for homeland. the company spearheading the drive is already eyeing for government trials. the mexican government hopes the vaccine can be approved or emergency use by the end of the year. authoritiesay it has several advantages. >> this is a vaccine that can be administered as a nasal spray. and we'veeen laying the groundwork forass production that will help keep costs low. this intern turn will make t vaccine more accessible to people in countes such as
rs, which are not as wealthy. that is thanks in large part to drawing on u.s. technology already used in other vaccines, which the vaccine developer says has proven safe and effective. the mexican government has contributed to the funding. >> i think it's good. i don't know when it will come out. the problem here has been the lack of support for research, so it will take a long time. mexico is a country that should be a leader in the americas. and it should help supply other countries inentral america. mexico's president has condemned vaccine hoarding by rich countries in the past. he says his nation will share its vaccine with others. brent: i'm joined by maria, who
we just saw in that report. she is the director of mexico's national council of science and technology, which is working on the development of the new vaccine. it's good to have you on the program. we understand if it's approved, the approval could come by the end of this year. will that be too little, too late for the people of mexico? maria: no, because one of the goals is to recover the self-sufficiency mexico used to have two face all the diseases that have been prevented from vaccines. we still don't know how the first vaccination will be enforced and how mexico will help all the countries. it's never too late to become independent in certain aspects of health.
to recover sufficiency in the vaccines and for other illnesses that are treated with such vaccination preventions. brent: we know the vaccine you're working on designed to be administered as a nasal spray. what are the advantages of that? maria: the formulations e nasal and also intramuscular. both types of formulations will be tested and a combination of these. of course even having one of the administrations being nasal make it cheaper and more practical to be administered at a very high
rate. that's why we are very interested in having at least one of the administrations being nasal. brent: i know a lot of people around the world would rather have a nasal spray than an ingestion -- injection with the needle. is it to early to talk about what level of efficacy we are going to have from this vaccine? maria: yes, it is too early. we are just starting the first phase one clinical trial for safety in the first data on ficacy and immune response in humans. but the clinical data are very, very promising. brent: that's good to hear. what are the plans for making the vaccine accessible to other low income countries? maria: if the three clinical trial phases are successful, both in mexico and in other
countries, then we will be able to have local and latin american production. we already have both a pilot plan in mexico and oplan bng said up already to scale up the production of this vaccine encase everything goes well, which we hope to. and maybe also to transfer the technology to other countries in another innovation platform, which we have agreed, the technology has been developed both by mexican and american scientists and spanish scientists in collaboration, it has been done for many years, the collaboration between mexican public and private researchers and americans.
so mexico has -- brent: you are doing very important work and we certainly wish you much success. we hope this vaccine works out exactly as you intend it to do. the director of mexico's national council on science and technology. we appreciate your time and your insights tonight. thank you. let's take a look at some of the other stories making headlines around the world. the european union's foreign policy chief says e.u. relations with russia or at a low point and that moscow is "differently -- deliberately deepening the confrontation." it comes after a spike in westn criticism of moscow, in particular of the troop buildup on the border with ukraine. rudy giuliani's manhattan office
has been rated in a major investigation into his business dealings. the personal lawyer of former president donald trump, giuliani has been under federal scrutiny for several years over his ties to ukraine. northern ireland's leader has been ousted by her democratic unionist party. she will step down as party leader next month and as northern ireland's first minister at the end of june. she had been heavily criticized for handling of the fallout from britain leaving the european union. german chancellor angela merkel has urged china to resume a dialogue over human rights issues as soon as possible. she made the comment as she held her final government consultations with china as german chancellor. she expressed concern about beijing's crackdown on the pro-democracy movement in hong kong. her government has also raised alarm about china's treatment of its muslim uighur minority. she stressed there were areas where berlin and beijing could work together.
it's not just the popular german -- the chinese market has been a boon to the german market on the whole throughout the pandemic. but germany wants china to open its markets even farther. that's a key issue for the intergovernmentalalks that are being held virtually this time due to the coronavirus restrictions. the chancellor called for more transparency regarng vaccine production and the reciprocal vaccine approval process. and, says merkel, the contentious topic of human rights should be on the agenda. we've always managed to broach this topic in the past, and i would like to see us get a human rights dialogue going again as soon as possible. but tensions remain. the ee you has accused china of persecuting muslim minority uighurs in what are being called
reeducation camps. the chinese government says they are simply vocational schools. especially in these intergovernmental talks, we have to make clear which values we represent. there can be no compromises there. we have to make it clear to beijing that upholding human rights is nonnegotiable. >> the chinese premier admits to differences, but sayses sides respect the other's core interest and refrain from meddling in internal issues. it's a statement that seems to highlight the two countries problematic relations. brent: in his first foreign policy speech as u.s. president, joe biden declared back in february that "america is back." the message, the days of donald trump's america first isolationism are over. it has the u.s. president delivered on that promise? we ask some of germany's leading politicians to grade the first 100 days of the biden presidency. >> on then
political style. it is factual. it doesn't shy away from difficult topics and does not revert to activism. in view of that, i give him a good grade. >> the situation in the u.s. is not easy, because the country is so deeply divided. the new administration is trying to bridge some of these gaps by investing in infrastructure and taking on the huge challenge of becoming carbon neutral. changes possible, even when starting from such a low base. >> our worst fears have been confirmed. biden is leading america towards catastrophe. both domestically and in terms of foreign policy. our biggest worry is a confrontation with russia. this clearly worries us. the same goes for germany,
especially calls to stop th nord stream 2 pipeline. the pipeline is clearly in germany's interest in the u.s. has no business interfering in it. >> joe biden kept his word. in a way, america's back. we see with great satisfaction that many decisions have been ken that will make a dierence. the united states is back in the paris climate accords. >> what joe biden is a surprise. creating more jobs, investing in infrastructure, prioritizing sustainable development. it shows he really wants to regain people's trust in politics. >> president biden is ready to
listen, despite all the opposing interests lined up against him. in that, he is completely unlike his predecessor. it's a huge advantage to be able to talk to someone who is open and receptive. instead of someone who always gave the impression that he kept a loaded gun in his drawer. brent: that's some of the views from here in berlin. let's get some views now from across the big pond. let's go to washington, d.c. we know that president biden's first 100 days in office have been full of foreign policy decisions, and some tough decisions at that. >> absolutely. one of his boldest decisions west the withdrawal of u.s. troops out of afghanistan, something donald trump already
had promised and something which was discussed among conservatives and also among members of the intelligence community because they fear, they are worried that, like moving out soldiers and troops could lead to another power vacuum in the region, and another outstanding move being made in my opinion is the way he treats russia, the way he called putin a killer, something president trump would have never the -- never done. brent: that's a very important point, a big difference there. let's focus on to mr. policy and vice president kamala harris. the vice president is always there with the president. how do you read this? >> that's true, she is very often there and with her
husband. some criticize that she did not get more air time, that she's not allowed to speak more often, but that's pretty common, the first one hundred days really belong to the president, especially when you have a vice president with so many firsts. she is the first woman, the first vice president who is not white. but i'm sure this will change, we will see more of her, especially as she now will handle the immigration crisis at the mexican border, a topic which is very important and a topic which will play a major role in the next elections. brent: we know president biden has said he plans to run for a second term. do you think he will? >> he said that some days ago that he at this point will run again, but if he would say i'm
not running again he would be a lame duck, and no president wants that to be. we have seen younger presidents aging really fast in this job. he is 78 years old now. i think time will show if he has the energy really to keep doing what he is doing right now. brent: the latest from washington, just hours before that first presidential address to a joint session of the u.s. congress. thank you. british prime minister boris johnson has denied any wrongdoing after an independent watchdog launched an official investigation as to how he paid for the lavish renovation of his downing street apartment. the electoral commission said there are reasonable grounds to suspect that an offense has occurred. it's the latest in a series of allegations against johnson and his party in recent days. >> it might well have been the most unpleasant day in boris johnson's political career so
far, and the reason is located in downing street itself, his apartment. he had it refurbished in this style for about 60,000 euros, and it is alleged that money came in the form of an undisclosed donation to his party. it was another chance to attack the prime minister during question time on wednesday. >> it's incredibly serious. can the prime minister tell the house, does he believe that any rules or laws have been broken? >> johnson denies the allegations and claims he paid for the renovations himself. >> i've paid for diamond street refurbishment personally, mr. speaker. >> but johnson's explanation was not enough for the opposition leader. >> ministers who knowingly mislead parliament will be expected to offer their resignation. >> this isn't the only issue damaging johnson.
on monday, the daily mail headline claimed johnson had said in october he would rather see the bodies piling up in the streets than order another lockdown. all these allegations are believed to have originated from johnson's former advisor, dominic cummings, who he fired in november. brent: organizers of the tokyo olympics will make a final decision in june whether or not domestic spectators can attend. many parts the country or under a state of emergency following a surge in coronavirus infections. organizers are also beefing up their safety measures which will now include a daily covid-19 test for athletes, instead of the previous every four days. michael collins, the american astronaut who took part in one of the most famous space missions of all time, has died at the age of 90. he flew the apollo 11 command module in 1969 while his two
crewmates, neil armstrong and buzz aldrin, became the first people t land on the moon. he is often called the forgotten astronaut because of that. he died after a battle with cancer. you are watching dw news. india's covid-19 death toll has now passed 200,000. you're watching dw news. after a short break, i'll be back to take you through "the day." tonight, the first foreign policy of president biden. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]