Israel Vaccinated Over 50,000 Palestinians With Israeli Work Permits Against COVID

Campaign to vaccinate Palestinians who work in Israel and West Bank settlements sees high compliance by laborers, as settler leader calls on Israel to give COVID jabs to all West Bank Palestinians

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Palestinian laborers working in the Barkan industrial zone queue up to receive their first dose of the Moderna coronavirus vaccine, last week.
Palestinian laborers working in the Barkan industrial zone queue up to receive their first dose of the Moderna coronavirus vaccine, last week. Credit: MENAHEM KAHANA - AFP

Over 50,000 Palestinians with permits to work in Israel and West Bank settlements have received the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine, according to a joint statement by the Israeli Health Ministry and the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) released last Thursday.

Last week, Israel began vaccinating Palestinians working in Israel and West Bank settlements; the most recent figures, from March 11, were provided by the Health Ministry and COGAT, who are leading the vaccination campaign with what they claimed was a high compliance by the laborers.     

On Monday, David Elhayani, the leader of the Yesha Council of West Bank mayors called on the Israeli government to vaccinate all Palestinians living in the West Bank during a meeting with the chairman of the Palestinian Workers' Organization Mohammed Arif Masad.

Arif Masad, a resident of Burqin, near Jenin in the West Bank, represents about 65,000 Palestinian laborers working in Israel and has recently announced his candidacy in the presidential election for the Palestinian Authority. 

At the meeting in the Jordan Valley Regional Council, Elhayani said, "I call on the Israeli government, on behalf of both of us, to vaccinate all Palestinians against the coronavirus. We live together, both in Judea and Samaria as well as in Israel and the time has come to vaccinate everyone."

Yesha Council leaders and Arif Masad discussed the joint lives of Palestinians and Israelis and the importance of Israeli control over the West Bank. They discussed in length the importance of inoculating the Palestinian population in the West Bank and the Jordan Valley who comes into daily contact with the Israeli residents of these areas.  

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