Vaccine Diplomacy The Surprising Success of Sputnik V

For Russian President Vladimir Putin, the development of the Sputnik V vaccine is a welcome boost to his country's image. And it has been received with open arms in Latin America. In Europe, though, people remain skeptical. Rightly so?
By Christian Esch, Jens Glüsing und Christina Hebel, in Moscow and Rio de Janeiro
A delivery of vaccine from Russia arriving in Bolivia

A delivery of vaccine from Russia arriving in Bolivia

Foto:

David Mercado / REUTERS

DER SPIEGEL 13/2021
SPIEGEL International
"We staff members were vaccinated before the monkeys, right after the mice and at the same time as the hamsters and guinea pigs."

Alexander Ginzburg, Director of the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology

"We underestimated the degree to which Sputnik would be associated with a race in the West."

Kirill Dmitriev, head of the state-owned Russian Direct Investment Fund

Gamaleya Director Ginzburg: "I can understand the skepticism. From outside, the process looked overly hasty, as though we were trying to be the first."

Gamaleya Director Ginzburg: "I can understand the skepticism. From outside, the process looked overly hasty, as though we were trying to be the first."

Foto: Denis Sinyakov / DER SPIEGEL
At the current pace, Russia will need three years before half the population has received at least one dose of vaccine.
People waiting to be vaccinated at the GUM department store on Red Square

People waiting to be vaccinated at the GUM department store on Red Square

Foto: NATALIA KOLESNIKOVA / AFP
With additional reporting by Alexander Chernyshev