Eighty-three members of the civil society in Nepal have made an appeal to China, asking the northern neighbor for more vaccines, oxygen supplies as well as other Covid-19 related material and medicines. This is perhaps the first instance of the Nepali civil society making such an appeal with China, even as there have been many instances of similar appeals to various western countries.
Below is the full text of the appeal.
Citizen Appeal to The People’s Republic of China (Date: May 12, 2021)
Covid-19 cases in Nepal have increased by 1200 percent in the last few weeks. The positivity rate of tests conducted stands consistently over fifty percent. The country’s health infrastructure has been pushed to the brink with health professionals and frontline workers stretched thin across the country. We are witnessing the fastest spread of COVID-19 globally and the coming months are certain to be an uphill battle. In this context, it is becoming increasingly clear that Nepal will require the help of our neighbors to mitigate the unfolding humanitarian disaster.
China is not only a neighbor but a good friend to Nepal, a relationship attested particularly in times of crisis. The unwavering support China provided when Nepal was at its most vulnerable, in the aftermath of the earthquakes in 2015 and the blockade that followed, remains fresh in the hearts and minds of all Nepalis. Our gratitude for this support knows no bounds.
While diplomatic relations between Nepal and People’s Republic of China date back to 1955, human relationships have lasted much longer and continue to be strong. It is during these unprecedented times, on behalf of the citizens of Nepal, we would like to appeal—once again—to the government and people of the People’s Republic of China to extend your whole-hearted assistance to urgently respond to Nepal’s grave health and humanitarian situation:
It is well established that vaccination is the only solution to this pandemic. With only 1 percent of the population fully vaccinated, Nepal is in a precarious position. As we write this, the Government of Nepal has scheduled the second dose inoculation for those who received the first dose of the VeroCell vaccine—numbering some 800,000 in total—that were donated by China. While this has offered a glimpse of hope for some, it is simply not enough. We would like to appeal to the Chinese government to support Nepal with additional vaccines so as to curb unnecessary loss of human life as a result of lack of access to vaccines.
An acute shortage of oxygen has impacted the ability of our health institutions to offer their services. The GoN says we immediately need some 50,000 cylinders of oxygen to ride out this wave. China's offer of 20,000 cylinders and other medical essentials has already exhibited your kind willingness to support and we request the extension of this support with swift transport and further oxygen plant, oxygen concentrators and any other assistance to aid the oxygen supply in the country.
Basic necessities to combat the virus are growing scarce as the number of infected continue to grow. In this context, we would like to appeal for your assistance with PPE and testing kits, masks and other medical equipment that can help our health care workers safely provide the basic necessary services to the affected.
As the first country to successfully bring this deadly virus under control, your experience and resources have been crucial. As such, we would appreciate any emergency medical team support that you can extend to Nepal to assist our Nepali frontline workers on the ground in this fight against the pandemic.
We are left with no option but to lay our hopes on the kind support of our neighbors and friends at this crucial junction. We would thus humbly request her excellency Ambassador Hou Yanqi to convey our appeal and expedite any and all support to Nepal from the People’s Republic of China.