1/ EU-AZ contract row: a disturbing episode.

UK Brexiteers appear to be using health & lives of other human beings to manufacture a situation which they can mischaracterise to discredit the EU, distract from HMG's Covid failures, and crush the nascent #RejoinEU movement.
2/ When the story broke, @nadhimzahawi already knew to frame it as "vaccine nationalism", the media unquestioningly parroted AZ's lines, @Peston eg producing a thread of pure, unattributed-source propaganda.

Eager Brexit supporters have taken to social media claiming ...
3/ the episode vindicates their view of the EU, which they use as a basis to regurgitate their most extreme hate-speech caricatures.

Let's pause to remember the coincidence with 100,000 UK deaths.

Let's pause to remember fishing, financial services, returned parcels, ...
4/ import duties, couriers refusing to serve UK, meat farming, wine merchants, cheese exporters, family businesses going bust, NI and absent hauliers, hints from Biden about #RejoinEU and ...

Let's pause to remember massive financial incentives to Nissan, delayed decisions ...
5/ on pulse fishing and tampon tax falsely characterised as Brexit benefits, along with freeports, all do-able within EU.

And by the way, @michaelgove is still working on his reply to my letter on the decline in our democracy here
6/ And of course, let's remember the "Boris we love you" bots a few days ago.

Now, let's turn to the EU-AZ contract, here ec.europa.eu/commission/pre…
7/ Article 1.9 defines "best reasonable efforts" to mean "in the development and manufacture of a vaccine". It has no bearing on delivery. This is borne out by art 5, which distinguishes manufacture and supply.
8/ 5.4 states that best efforts shall be used to manufacture the doses within EU and UK, & explanations have to be given if it's made elsewhere. Finally, 13.1(e) states that AZ is not under any contract or other obligation (eg to UK) that would impede complete fulfillment of ...
9/ obligations under the EU contract.

Now, we don't know whether the relationship between AZ's behaviour and the interests of the UK govt is planned or opportunistic.

But it's very clear that AZ has wrongly characterised its contract, and the ability of the EU to keep ...
10/ its citizens safe is compromised.

And it's very clear this is a helpful distraction for the UK govt.

And it's very clear it's being used to dent the #RejoinEU movement.

Yet again, I am ashamed of my govt, @vonderleyen @SKyriakidesEU .

But we should all be concerned ...
11/ at the consequences of this.

First for Continental people.

Second for us and our reputation.

And finally for the prospect that Putin's compromise of UK democracy and its use against the EU may not have ended on 1 January 2021.

Do @ anyone you think should consider this.

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