Essential equipment shipping from EU countries to arrive in India this week, says bloc

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Brussels [Belgium], April 27 (ANI): A shipment of urgently needed oxygen, medicine and equipment will be delivered over the coming days by the EU Member States to India, following the country's request for support through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, which is coordinated by the Emergency Response Coordination Centre of the European Commission, the bloc said on Tuesday.

According to an official statement by the European Commission, Ireland is set to provide 700 oxygen concentrators, 1 oxygen generator, 365 ventilators; Belgium would provide 9,000 doses of antiviral medicines Remdesivir; Romania would provide 80 oxygen concentrators and 75 oxygen cylinders; Luxembourg to provide: 58 ventilators; Portugal: 5,503 vials of Remdesivir, 20,000 litres of oxygen per week and Sweden to provide 120 ventilators

The bloc further stated that the support has been made in line with the coordinated effort by EU Member States currently underway to pool their resources in responding rapidly to tackle the alarming epidemiological situation in India.

More EU support from the other Member States is expected to be given in the coming days, including from France and Germany.

Janez Lenarcic, Commissioner for Crisis Management said: "The EU stands in full solidarity with the Indian people and is ready to do our utmost to support them at this critical time."

"I would like to thank our Member States that came in numerously with generous offers of help, showing that the EU is a trusted partner and a friend at times of need. The reach of the EU Civil Protection Mechanism goes well beyond the EU's borders. Our Emergency Response Coordination Centre is facilitating the logistical arrangements and the EU will cover the brunt of the transport costs," he added in a statement.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Tuesday expressed the bloc's solidarity to India as it currently fights the second wave of the pandemic reporting over 3 lakh cases for six days in a row.

"The EU stands with India. A first shipment of urgently needed oxygen, medicine and equipment will be delivered over the coming days under the EU Civil Protection Mechanism," she said in a tweet.

"I want to thank Ireland, Belgium, Romania, Luxembourg, Portugal, Sweden for their solidarity. France and Germany expected soon," she added. (ANI)