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Israel to donate 1m doses of COVID-19 vaccine to African countries

Caption: A vial of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is seen in this photo.(Yonhap)
Caption: A vial of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is seen in this photo.(Yonhap)
Israel is to donate 1 million doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine against COVID-19 to African countries through the international COVAX vaccine distribution program, the Embassy of Israel in Seoul said in a press statement Thursday.

Israel made the pledge after discussing the donation with Israel’s prime minister’s office, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Health.

According to the embassy, Israel has strengthened relations with African countries, which saw the African Union Commission grant Israel an observer status in the African Union in July.

Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said that Israel has joined the international effort to vaccinate populations who have not had fair access to vaccines.

According to Lapid, Israel can contribute to the mission and be a partner in eradicating the pandemic around the world.

“While coronavirus vaccines aren’t distributed across the entire world in order to defeat the pandemic, new coronavirus variants will develop in areas where vaccination rates are low,” Lapid said.

The press statement highlighted that the donation of vaccines will reach close to a quarter of the countries in the African continent and contribute to strengthening ties between Israel and the African region.

“Covax is a global vaccine distribution mechanism centered in Geneva for the procurement and equitable distribution of coronavirus vaccines,” the statement said.

By Sanjay Kumar (sanjaykumar@heraldcorp.com)
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