The West African nation of Togo on Monday received 210,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses from Turkey as part of increased cooperation between the two countries, Togolese authorities announced.
The Turkish donation of China’s Sinopharm vaccine is due to help Togo continue its ongoing vaccination campaign of its population of more than 8 million.
The vaccines, ceremonially delivered by Turkish Ambassador Esra Demir, come to reinforce the country’s current vaccination scheme, according to Moustafa Mijiyawa, Togo’s health minister.
They also mark the strengthening of relations between Togo and Turkey, he said.
"It is the concretization of the discussions on health between our two presidents some time ago," Mijiyawa added.
Demir said “the donation is a promise from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan,” UNICEF Togo said on Twitter.
Since the start of the pandemic, Togolese authorities have recorded over 2,600 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 243 deaths. On Sunday, 138 active cases were reported.
Togo officially has nearly 3 million doses of vaccine available for use for its accelerated vaccination campaign underway since Nov. 26.
The country is aiming for 2 million vaccinations by Dec. 31, or about double the current number.
Authorities are on alert since the appearance of the new omicron variant and have taken measures to stem its spread, including a 72-hour quarantine for visitors from South Africa, where the variant was first detected.
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