Pope Francis on Sunday urged greater international cooperation, “in a transparent and disinterested way,” in the search for treatments and a vaccine for Covid-19, the respiratory illness caused by the novel coronavirus.

“I wish to support and encourage the international collaboration that is taking place with various initiatives to respond adequately and effectively to the serious crisis we are experiencing,” Francis said in his Regina Caeli message.

“It is important, in fact, to bring together scientific capacities, in a transparent and disinterested way, to find vaccines and treatments and to guarantee universal access to essential technologies that allow every infected person, in every part of the world, to receive the necessary health care,” he added.

His remarks came a day before a virtual global pledging conference hosted by the European Commission, which has an initial fundraising goal of 7.5 billion euros (8.2 billion dollars) for research on diagnostics, treatment and vaccines.

Source: dpa/MIA