KABUL: China has pledged to deliver 700,000 of COVID-19 vaccines to Afghanistan, Afghan health officials said, in a boost for immunization campaign which has already begun with a number of Afghans now vaccinated.
According to the ministry of public health, 280,000 members of the Afghan security forces, more than 120,000 doctors and health workers and 560,000 civilians have so far been vaccinated.
The vaccine is 91 percent effective for people who have already had COVID-19 – 76 percent effective for adults up to 50 years old – and 83 percent effective for people above the age of 50.
The vaccine will be handed over to the Afghan government in the near future, according to the health officials.
“China will donate 700,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Afghanistan. We are with Afghanistan in overcoming difficulties,” Chinese ambassador to Afghanistan Wang Yu said in a tweet.
Previously, China provided 400,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Afghanistan besides other medical and humanitarian support to help the country during the pandemic.
This is as the ministry of public health reported of the new UK-variant cases of coronavirus in 18 of 34 provinces, with Mirwais Alizai deputy spokesman for the ministry saying that the most cases of the UK-variant disease were found in Nangarhar province in the east.
Alizai said that the first case of coronavirus was registered in Nangarhar in April. Nangrhar has crossing points with Pakistan’s tribal regions where thousands of people commute on a daily basis.
Kabul, Herat and Kandahar are the other provinces where the new UK-variant cases of coronavirus have been seen, while Alizai warns of further outbreak of the disease to all provinces.
The UK-variant Covid virus was first reported in September 2020 in the southeast of Britain and speedily broke out to all parts of the country as well as to other European states.
Afghanistan on Monday recorded 628 new cases of coronavirus and 24 deaths. The new cases and fatalities were reported across the country in the past 24 hours.