UAE Transfers 20,000 Doses of Russia's Sputnik V COVID Vaccine to Gaza

The vaccines, which arrived through the Rafah Border Crossing with Egypt and without Israeli involvement, were secured by Abbas rival Mohammed Dahlan

Jack Khoury
Jack Khoury
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A Palestinian health worker displays a box of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine sent by United Arab Emirates at Rafah crossing in the southern Gaza Strip today.
A Palestinian health worker displays a box of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine sent by United Arab Emirates at Rafah crossing in the southern Gaza Strip today.Credit: IBRAHEEM ABU MUSTAFA/ REUTERS
Jack Khoury
Jack Khoury

The United Arab Emirates transferred Sunday 20,000 doses of the Russian Sputnik V coronavirus vaccines to the Gaza Strip.

The shipment entered through the Rafah Border Crossing on the Strip's border with Egypt, without Israeli involvement.

Last week, about a thousand coronavirus vaccine doses were sent to Gaza by the Palestinian Health Ministry in Ramallah, with Israeli approval.

Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said Thursday that the vaccine shipment from the UAE is intended to help Gazans during a critical point in the pandemic. He added that during the first stage, medical staff, the elderly and chronically ill citizens will be prioritized for inoculations.

Mohammed Dahlan, a former senior Fatah official and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abass' chief rival, secured the delivery from the UAE, where he has been living in exile.

Dahlan is close to the Gulf state's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, and said in a statement that he would continue to aid the residents of Gaza through additional deliveries of vaccine doses. His statement mentioned neither the Palestinian Authority nor Hamas in the run-up to the Palestinian elections slated for May and July.

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