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AFP
April 14, 2021

Muslims mark Ramazan under Covid shadow

World

AFP
April 14, 2021

WASHINGTON: US health authorities on Tuesday recommended a pause in the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine over blood clot fears, as surging coronavirus cases in many parts of the world overshadowed the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramazan. Europe, the worst-hit continent, passed the threshold of one million coronavirus deaths, while South Asian countries battle a spiralling outbreak of the disease that has crippled the global economy.

Vaccination drives are giving hope to people fed up with restrictions that are well into a second year, and India -- which is experiencing a record surge in cases -- was given a boost as it authorised Russia’s Sputnik V Covid-19 drug.

But the US campaign to vaccinate most of its population hit a hurdle on Tuesday as regulators recommended the use of the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine be paused "out of an abundance of caution".

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centres for Disease Control are looking into six reported cases of a rare blood clot in patients who have received the shot -- among more than 6.8 million J&J doses administered in the US.