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January 31, 2021 8:14 pm

Israel to Provide 5,000 Vaccine Doses to Palestinian Medical Workers

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

A health worker fills a syringe with a dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the Appleton Village Pharmacy, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Widnes, Britain, January 14, 2021. Photo: REUTERS/Jason Cairnduff.

Israel will provide 5,000 doses of a coronavirus vaccine to the Palestinian Authority in order to vaccinate frontline medical workers, reports indicated Sunday.

The Agence France-Presse reported that the transfer was approved by the Defense Ministry and confirmed by a spokesperson.

“I confirm we are going to send 5,000 vaccines to medical teams in the Palestinian Authority,” a spokesperson for Defense Minister Benny Gantz said.

A Palestinian official dismissed the offer, telling the AFP it was a “symbolic move” and “will not help us.”

Israel has been pressured by its critics in the international community to provide vaccines to the Palestinians, even though it is under no legal obligation to do so.

According to signed agreements dating back to the 1990s, the PA is the sole responsible authority for health matters in its areas of control, including the procurement and distribution of vaccines.

The PA has already reached agreements with four separate vaccine providers, and has not asked Israel for assistance.

Nonetheless, the United Nations, the NGO Human Rights Watch, and other groups noted for their animus toward Israel have demanded that Israel vaccinate Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza.

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