The Israeli Minister of Health told CNN that he believes that Israel has no obligation or responsibility to supply the coronavirus vaccine to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, but emphasized cooperation in treatment to avoid a surge of new Covid-1
Prior to Yuli Edelstein’s comments, the World Health Organization (WHO) stated that it had held informal discussions with the Israeli Ministry of Health on the “temporary priority target group” that might provide vaccines to the Palestinian health workforce.
“We are working with the Palestinians to ensure that they receive appropriate treatment for coronavirus patients. At this stage, we do not provide vaccines, but we do understand that it is in Israel’s interest to ensure that we do not get vaccinated and get out of trouble. , And in Palestine, the number is increasing rapidly,” Edelstein said on CNN’s New Day.
Israel is a world leader in vaccinating people, and nearly 20% of the population has received at least one dose of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. But it has been criticized by some human rights organizations, which say that it is also obliged to provide vaccines to Palestinians under international law.
For example, Amnesty International said last week: “The Israeli government must stop ignoring its international obligations as an occupying power and take immediate action to ensure that the COVID-19 vaccine is provided equally and equitably to Palestinians in its West Bank and West Bank. Gaza zone.”
Organizations such as Amnesty International point out that the Fourth Geneva Convention refers to ensuring that “necessary measures are taken to stop the spread of infectious diseases and epidemics” in other duties of the occupying power.
Israel contends that the Oslo Agreement signed with the Palestinians in the 1990s handed over the health care responsibilities of Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza to the Palestinian Authority.
The Director of the Department of Public Health of the Palestinian Ministry of Health told CNN that the Palestinian Authority did not seek assistance from Israel for vaccines. This contradicts Mustafa Barghouti, chairman of the Medical Relief Committee Alliance, who himself is a major Palestinian political figure. . He told CNN that the Palestinian Authority had correctly administered approximately 10,000 doses to medical staff. Barguti said Israel has rejected the request.
The WHO stated that it has been told that the Israeli Ministry of Health is ready to “explore” the options for immediate vaccines for medical personnel in the Palestinian territories, but has been told that “due to the shortage of vaccines in Cuba, vaccines are currently not available” to Israel. “
Edelstein told CNN: “This is our interest; this in no way represents our obligation or responsibility. The Palestinians are in charge of the Palestinian Authority… But as has happened in the past few months That way, we are always ready to help with equipment, good suggestions, products or drugs, and this cooperation will continue.”
The Palestinian Ministry of Health said on Monday that it had registered the Russian Sputnik V vaccine for so-called emergency use. According to the Russian Direct Investment Fund for vaccine development, the first batch is expected to reach the territory within a month. The Ministry of Health said it has also signed contracts with three other Covid-19 vaccine suppliers.