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Czechs and Slovaks to get 100,000 extra vaccines each from EU partners – Metro US

Czechs and Slovaks to get 100,000 extra vaccines each from EU partners

FILE PHOTO: A woman holds a small bottle labelled with
FILE PHOTO: A woman holds a small bottle labelled with a “Coronavirus COVID-19 Vaccine” in this illustration

PRAGUE (Reuters) – The Czech Republic and Slovakia, both under severe pressure from the coronavirus pandemic, will each receive an extra 100,000 doses of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine from their European Union partners.

Both have ranked among the world’s worst affected countries in recent weeks, with hospitals running out of beds and personnel, and have tried to accelerate their vaccination programmes.

“Thanks to EU solidarity and the Commission’s SOS mechanism, the Czech Republic will receive an extra 100,000 doses of @pfizer next week,” Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis tweeted on Wednesday.

Slovak Prime Minister Igor Matovic posted a comment on Facebook, saying: “Slovakia can rely on its European partners in tough times. I am glad that we were able to reach a final agreement on the so-called ‘SOS’ vaccines.”

Matovic has also looked beyond the EU for help, shaking his own ruling coalition by ordering buying doses of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine.

The Czech Republic has also been offered a loan of 100,000 doses by France, and smaller amounts by Israel and some German states.

Neighbouring Austria also said it would get extra vaccines from the EU as it struggles with the highly transmissible South African variant of the coronavirus.

(Reporting by Robert Muller; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

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