Iran Receives First Batch of Covid-19 Vaccines From Russia

Iran received its first batch of Covid-19 vaccines on Thursday with the arrival of a flight carrying Sputnik V jabs from Russia, the semi-official Fars News Agency reported.

The 500,000 doses are the first of three shipments from Russia, Fars said, adding that the vaccines were being transferred to the Health Ministry.

Iran has the worst coronavirus outbreak in the Middle East, with some 1.4 million people infected and more than 58,000 dead so far.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has banned the import of British and U.S.-made vaccines, although the health minister this week announced the import of 4.2 million AstraZeneca doses through the World Health Organization’s COVAX facility.

The daily death count from the coronavirus fell to an eight-month low of 67 on Thursday but Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said hospital admissions were rising in some provinces and warned of the possibility of a new wave.

Images from the semi-official Tasnim news agency showed little adherence to social distancing with large crowds around Tehran’s main bazaar.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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