European leaders turn to Israel for COVID-19 vaccine advice as Israel begins second round of shots

January 10, 2021 by Aryeh Savir - TPS
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Several European leaders have turned to Israel for advice on its operation to vaccinate the population against Coronavirus (COVID-19) as the country began to administer the second shot.


Nurse demonstrating the Coronavirus vaccination process at the Sheba Medical Center at Tel HaShomer in  Ramat Gan.    Photo by Eitan Elhadez-Barak/TPS

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen and other leaders have called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in recent days to congratulate him on the success of the COVID-19 vaccines operation taking place in Israel and to be updated on its details.

Kurz called Netanyahu on Friday and congratulated him on the success of the vaccine operation.

“They discussed possible cooperation in the fight against the Coronavirus,” the Prime Minister’s Office stated.

Netanyahu also spoke with Danish Prime Minister Frederiksen about the fight against the Coronavirus and the spread of the various mutations of the virus.

Frederiksen expressed “great interest” in the successful vaccine operation in Israel and sought to learn from the Israeli experience on the issue. The two agreed to deepen professional bilateral cooperation.

Several days ago, Netanyahu spoke with Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades who congratulated him on the vaccine operation and they also discussed possible bilateral cooperation on the issue.

Netanyahu and Health Minister Yuli Edelstein received on Saturday night the second dose of the Pifezer-developed COVID-19 vaccine at Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer.

Netanyahu shared that in his 17th conversation with Pfizer Chairman and CEO Albert Bourla they agreed on additional “huge shipments” of vaccines for Israel, which “will enable us to vaccinate all citizens of Israel over 16 within two months, by the end of March at the latest.”

The first shipment is due to arrive on Sunday and “we will be able to open our economy quickly, the pubs, restaurants, gyms, schools, synagogues and theatres.”

Edelstein updated Sunday that 1,817,000 Israelis have received the first Pfizer vaccine in the three weeks of Operation Lend a Shoulder to inoculate the population.

The Ministry of Health updated Sunday morning that it documented 5,030 new infection cases over the past 24 hours.

Of the 81,858 tests done over the weekend, a high 6.3% returned positive.

993 patients hospitalized with Corona are in serious condition, 231 of them are on life support.

Since the outbreak in February 2020, 3,645 Israelis have died of the virus.

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