Boris Johnson said he was “delighted” to meet Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, but urged vaccine-skeptical right-wing populists to jab against Covid-19.
With new Foreign Secretary Liz Truss at the residence of the British Consulate General in New York, the prime minister said he had promised to come to Brazil before the pandemic “bummer”.
Mr Johnson said: “But we are working together on vaccines. AstraZeneca This is a great vaccine. I have AstraZeneca.”
As the press was escorted out of the room at the end of the bilateral meeting, Mr Johnson told them: “Thank you everyone, get the AstraZeneca vaccine.”
He turned to Mr Bolsonaro and said: “I’ve had it twice.”
Mr Bolsonaro, who has made strange claims about vaccines, including that they can turn people into crocodiles, pointed to him and waved his finger.
“Not now,” he said through an interpreter, before laughing. Both men were masked throughout the exchange.
He discussed his own fight against the coronavirus infection, before Mr Bolsonaro bragged that he had developed “excellent” immunity to the disease.
Mr Bolsonaro, who has campaigned on his anti-vaccination stance, arrived in New York ahead of the 76th UN General Assembly on Sunday when he was pictured eating a slice of pizza on the street with Brazilian ministers and aides – reportedly Violation of local regulations for non-vaccinated eaters after a fall.
He has been condemned for falling ill with Covid after his own resistance to several public health measures to control the virus in Brazil, which has seen Brazil worst-hit by Covid in South America and around the world.
Separately, Mr Johnson told world leaders he was “increasingly disappointed” that their commitments to tackle the climate crisis “are nowhere near enough”.
The prime minister warned during a UN meeting that the gap between what industrialized countries have promised and what they are actually delivering is “huge”.
Mr Johnson was expected to challenge Mr Bolsonaro, a notorious climate change skeptic, on deforestation during his visit to New York.
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /