Middle East/North Africa

Israel to give one million vaccines to Palestinian Authority

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Israel on Friday announced its plans to give about 1 million doses of coronavirus vaccines to the Palestinian Authority, with Palestinians agreeing to transfer a similar amount of vaccine doses to Israel when they receive it later this year.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the new Israeli government agreed to transfer doses of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine that will soon expire to Palestine for use. Palestine in turn said that it would reimburse Israel with a supply of vaccines that it is set to receive in September or October. A total of nearly 1.4 million doses of coronavirus vaccine could be exchanged between the two nations.

“We will continue to find effective ways to cooperate for the benefit of people in the region,” Foreign Minister Yair Lapid tweeted about the agreement on Friday.

Israel has been able to execute an immensely successful vaccination rollout plan, with 85 percent of its adult population being vaccinated against COVID-19. The country has fully reopened and lifted the requirement for citizens to wear masks in public, according to the Tribune.

Human rights groups have criticized Israel in the past for failing to share its vaccine supply with the nearly 4.5 million Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza.

About 380,000 Palestinians in West Bank and about 50,000 in Gaza have been vaccinated against the coronavirus to date. Over 300,000 COVID-19 infections have been reported in both territories and nearly 3,545 coronavirus-related deaths have been reported, the Tribune noted. 

Tags Coronavirus coronavirus vaccine Israel Palestine

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