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Iran Press TV

Rouhani: Iran to administer 1.4m coronavirus vaccine doses by Friday

Iran Press TV

Saturday, 17 April 2021 10:03 PM

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says approximately 1.4 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccines will be administered in the country by Friday, in a bid to vaccinate high-risk groups.

"By [Friday], approximately 1.4 million vaccines will be injected, God willing," Rouhani said in remarks on Friday.

He said the first high-risk group, which includes 7 to 8 million people older than 65, will be soon vaccinated in Iran.

After they are vaccinated, the president continued, "we will move ahead to the second [high-risk] group."

"All the efforts are aimed at, God willing, importing vaccines and providing people with them … and then the people would be able to move on from this issue toward a more promising future," he added.

Later in the day, the Iranian Health Ministry said 319 more people had died of the highly infectious disease in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of recorded deaths from the virus in Iran to 66,327. The ministry also announced 21,312 new cases.

Earlier this month, Rouhani recalled the difficulties of importing sanctions, saying, "Wherever there is a vaccine, we immediately provide money to purchase it."

"I want to say that this is not a simple matter," he said. "The administration, the Health Ministry and the Central Bank have taken all the necessary measures … and I stress that nothing comes before the issue of vaccines for us."

Elsewhere in his Saturday remarks, Rouhani said his administration has made great efforts to develop a homegrown vaccine as soon as possible.

"We are very hopeful that we'd be able to use the domestic vaccine in summer," the president added.

Last month, the Islamic Republic unveiled a new COVID-19 vaccine developed by the Defense Ministry's research center. The first phase of the human trial of the vaccine, dubbed Fakhra, was launched during a ceremony in Tehran on March 16.

In addition to Fakhra, Iran has developed three other vaccines, including Coviran Barekat developed by experts at the Headquarters for Executing the Order of Imam Khomeini, Razi COV-Pars vaccine developed by the Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute, and Soberana 2 vaccine which is a joint venture between Cuba's Finlay Vaccine Institute and Iran's Pasteur Institute.

Iran OK's phase 3 of Soberana 2's clinical trial

Also on Saturday, the spokesman for Iran Food and Drug Administration (IFDA) announced that the Iranian Health Ministry has issued a Code of Ethics for phase 3 of the clinical trial research of Soberana 2 vaccine.

"Phase 3 of the clinical trial of this vaccine is the last stage of the studies of this candidate … and if the results are successful and approved, a mass production and consumption license will be issued," Kianoush Jahanpour told IRIB news.

Jahanpour said phase 3 of the trial began in Cuba a month ago and 48,000 people have so far received the vaccine in that country.

The vaccine "has shown significant safety and efficacy in phases 1 and 2 of its clinical trials and appears to be somehow unique," he added.

Iran finalizes deal with Russia to import 60 doses of Sputnik V

On Thursday, Iran's envoy to Moscow said Iran has finalized a contract with Russia to import 60 million doses of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine in the coming months.

Kazem Jalali said the contract was signed between the Iranian Embassy in Moscow and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to buy 60 million doses of the vaccine, which is enough to vaccinate 30 million people.

He also said Iran will receive the vaccines within seven months (May 22-December 21).

Earlier, the head of the RDIF had announced that the production of the Sputnik V will soon be organized in Iran, Serbia and Italy within months.

"The Russian vaccine is already being manufactured in Belarus and Kazakhstan. Production will soon begin in Serbia and Iran. Thus, we sign partnerships with various countries and companies. Apart from that, we expect the vaccine production to be organized at Adienne Pharma & Biotech Italian plant within several months," Kirill mitriev said.

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