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ISTANBUL, Jan 20 — Turkey has vaccinated more than one million people against the novel coronavirus in the first week of a national inoculation drive, according to health ministry figures issued today.
But the drive has lost some of its momentum after more than 600,000 people were inoculated in the first two days.
Turkey began the campaign with the CoronaVac jab produced by China’s Sinovac last Thursday.
On Tuesday, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca called Turkey’s progress “one of the fastest in the world”.
In comparison, France had vaccinated around 585,000 people by yesterday, after starting its campaign on December 28.
Turkey has now given a first shot to more than one percent of the population of more than 83 million people.
The campaign kicked off with healthcare workers and moved on to those over the age of 80 on Tuesday.
But while Turkey has signed up for 50 million doses of CoronaVac, it is due to receive just three million by the end of the month, limiting the potential pace of the rollout.
In December, Turkey also reached a deal to receive 4.5 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech jab by late March.
Ankara has officially registered 24,328 Covid-19 deaths and nearly 2.4 million virus infections but has never seen its daily death toll exceed 300, avoiding the grim death rates recorded in European countries such as Britain and Italy. — AFP
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