U.S. will not tie political strings to vaccine distribution -Blinken

Blinken on Tuesday (June 1) said the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden would focus on equitable distribution of the vaccines and not tie political strings to the process, a criticism at times directed at China.

"Sometime in the next week to two weeks – we will be announcing the process by which we will distribute those vaccines, what the criteria are, how we will do it," Blinken said during his first trip as secretary of state to Latin America, which is fighting to contain COVID-19.

"We will distribute vaccines without political requirements of those receiving them."

On Monday, Biden said his administration would send at least 20 million doses of the Pfizer Inc/BioNTech SE , Moderna Inc and Johnson & Johnson vaccines, on top of 60 million AstraZeneca Plc doses he had already planned to give to other countries.

The Biden administration has been under pressure to share vaccines to help curb worsening outbreaks from India to Brazil, where health experts fear new, more contagious coronavirus variants could undermine the effectiveness of available shots.

Blinken said the announcement would reveal the criteria and details of the process but that the United States would focus on the equitable distribution and work in coordination of the COVAX vaccine sharing facility.