BioNTech/Pfizer file for EU approval of Covid-19 vaccine

This illustration picture taken on November 23, 2020 shows a bottle reading “Vaccine Covid-19” and a syringe next to the Pfizer and Biontech logo. (File/AFP)
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Updated 01 December 2020

BioNTech/Pfizer file for EU approval of Covid-19 vaccine

  • If approved, the jab could potentially be rolled out “in Europe before the end of 2020”

FRANKFURT, Germany: Germany’s BioNTech and its US partner Pfizer on Tuesday said they had applied for EU regulatory approval for their Covid-19 vaccine, raising hopes that the first jabs could be administered in December.
The two companies said in a statement that they had submitted an application to the European Medicines Agency on Monday “for Conditional Marketing Authorization (CMA)” for their vaccine, after tests showed it was 95 percent effective against the novel coronavirus.
If approved, the jab could potentially be rolled out “in Europe before the end of 2020,” the statement said.


Turkey and Greece resume talks on maritime disputes after five years

Updated 38 min 21 sec ago

Turkey and Greece resume talks on maritime disputes after five years

ANKARA: Turkey and Greece resumed talks aimed at addressing long-standing maritime disputes on Monday, diplomatic sources said, after months of tension in the eastern Mediterranean.
The neighboring countries, which are both members of the NATO military alliance, made little progress in 60 rounds of talks from 2002 to 2016.
Plans for resuming discussions foundered last year over Turkey’s deployment of a survey vessel in contested Mediterranean waters and disagreements over which topics to cover.
Ankara and Athens agreed this month to resume talks in Istanbul, in a test of Turkey’s hopes of improving its relations with the European Union, which has supported EU-member Greece and threatened sanctions on Turkey.
Both sides have voiced guarded optimism before the talks, though Ankara and Athens were still trading barbs in the days leading up to Monday’s meetings in Istanbul.
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said last week Greece would approach the talks with optimism but “zero naivety.” Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said he hoped the resumption of talks would herald a new era.
Despite the agreement to resume talks, Athens said on Saturday it would discuss only the demarcation of exclusive economic zones and the continental shelf in the eastern Mediterranean, and not issues of “national sovereignty.”
Ankara has said it wants the talks to cover the same topics as in the first 60 rounds, including the demilitarization of islands in the Aegean and disagreements over air space.
It was not immediately clear what the agenda of the talks was on Monday.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu held a series of talks in Brussels last week to discuss possible future steps to maintain what he called the “positive atmosphere” between Ankara and the EU since the bloc postponed imposing sanctions on Turkey until March at a December summit.