Home / News / India /  Donald Trump all praise for India after deal on hydroxychloroquine

Within a day of reportedly threatening India with possible retaliatory measures if it did not release stocks of an anti-malarial drug for possible treatment of covid-19, US president Donald Trump late Tuesday did a U-turn, showering praises on India and prime minister Narendra Modi.

“I bought millions of doses. More than 29 million. I spoke to Prime Minister Modi, a lot of it comes out of India. I asked him if he would release it. He was great. He was really good. You know they put a stop because they wanted it for India. But there is a lot of good things coming from that," Trump told Fox News.

In a telephone conversation over the weekend Trump requested Modi to lift its ban on exports of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), talked up by Trump as a drug for covid-19. India on 4 April banned exports of HCQ through a notification, without exemptions on humanitarian or other grounds.

On Tuesday, India formally announced that it was lifting the curbs and would consider its export on a case-by-case basis. The exports were contingent on sufficient availability of the drug domestically.

But, Trump had reportedly threatened India with consequences if it did not lift the embargo.

“I said we’d appreciate you allowing our supply to come out. If he doesn’t allow it to come out. That would be okay but, of course, there may be retaliation," news reports quoted Trump as saying at the daily White House briefing on the coronavirus outbreak on Monday. “Why wouldn’t that be?" he added.

The US is the worst-affected country due to the covid-19 pandemic. The virus has caused almost 400,000 infections and more than 12,000 deaths in the US.

With New York emerging as a major hotspot with more than 3,200 deaths commentators note that covid-19 has caused more deaths in the city than the 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre.

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