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Israel to exchange 700,000 COVID-19 vaccine with South Korea



Israel on Tuesday said it is exchanging around 700,000 doses of BioNTech/Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine with South Korea.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett had urged vaccination in recent weeks, pointing to the limited shelf life of vaccine doses in the country until the end of July.

Israel will immediately send the 700,000 doses to South Korea, the government in Jerusalem announced earlier.

South Korea would in turn send the same number to Israel from a shipment in September and October.

In mid-June, a similar deal with the Palestinian Authority had failed.

Israel had wanted to exchange about 1 million vaccine doses, but after the delivery of about 100,000 vaccine doses, the Palestinian representatives cancelled the deal.

The vaccine doses did not meet the specifications, they said, referring to their imminent expiry date.

In Israel, in spite of a high vaccination rate, the number of registered new Coronavirus infections has been rising significantly for about two weeks.

According to the Ministry of Health, 344 people tested positive on Sunday.

The last time more than 300 new Coronavirus infections were recorded in one day was at the beginning of April.

Israel to exchange 700,000 COVID-19 vaccine with South Korea

Most of the new infections were linked to the Delta variant, which was first detected in India. Many of those infected were younger people.

The number of people severely infected with COVID-19 increased slightly to 35. No deaths related to the virus had been registered for about two weeks.

Israel is considered a model country in the fight against the Coronavirus because of its successful vaccination campaign.

Out of a population of around 9.3 million, 5.7 million people have received the first vaccination and 5.2 million were fully vaccinated.

This corresponds to 56 per cent of the population.

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