UK minister apologises

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London

British health minister Sajid Javid apologised for and deleted a tweet urging people to take a Covid-19 vaccine and not to “cower” from the virus, saying on Sunday he had made “a poor choice of word”.

Javid, who replaced Matt Hancock as health minister last month after his predecessor stepped down for breaking Covid rules by kissing an aide in his office, had been criticised for using the word “cower” when tens of thousands in Britain have died from the virus and many are trying to keep safe.

Britain, which has one of the highest official Covid death tolls, has shifted its strategy to fight coronavirus from using restrictions to limit its spread to opening up society in the hope vaccines will protect most people from serious illness.

Cases are high, but so is uptake of Coid-19 vaccines, and officials argue the shift is needed to help businesses in sectors such as hospitality and the night-time economy.

Writing on Twitter, Javid said on Sunday he had “deleted a tweet which used the word ‘cower’.”

“I was expressing gratitude that the vaccines help us fight back as a society, but it was a poor choice of word and I sincerely apologise.

Like many, I have lost loved ones to this awful virus and would never minimise its impact.”—Reuters

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