Czech Republic receives additional 41,000 Pfizer vaccines from Hungary

The vaccines will be given to the O2 Universum Center in Prague, where up to 7,000 vaccines will be administered pet day.

ČTK

Written by ČTK
Published on 05.06.2021 09:48 (updated on 06.06.2021)

Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš received about 41,000 Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccines from Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto on Friday afternoon.

The vaccines were delivered directly to the O2 Universum Center in Prague, where up to 6,000 doses a day are currently being administered. By mid-June, that number should rise to 7,000 doses a day, Babiš said.

Back in April, Slovenia, Hungary, and Austria each promised to give vaccines to the Czech Republic.

They agreed to redirect about 80,000 doses after the Czech Republic rejected a compromise regarding additional distribution of ten million doses within the EU.

The Czech Government Office told Seznam Zpravy there was a delay and that the promised vaccines should be delivered by the end of June.

In April, Slovak Prime Minister Eduard Heger promised a gift of 10,000 doses from Moderna.

On Friday, iROZHLAS.cz said the vaccines were given as a loan, citing government spokesperson Jana Adamcová.

"Regarding the vaccines from Slovenia, Hungary, and Austria, this is a loan we will return after we have enough vaccines," Adamcová stated.

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Babiš noted that Hungary had previously donated 160 lung ventilators to the Czech Republic, as well as 200 hospital beds.

"When fighting along with (Austrian Chancellor) Sebastian Kurz within the framework of Europe for distribution of vaccines according to population size, the declared solidarity failed to manifest," Babiš said.

"This was not nice. Then I called on my friends, and (Hungarian Prime Minister) Viktor Orban was the first to promise a delivery of 40,000 vaccines."

Szijjarto said Hungary had delivered the vaccines to the Czech Republic because the two countries were friends, their economies were interconnected, and their tourists like to visit each other's countries.

He also mentioned the agreement between Hungary and the Czech Republic (and other countries in Central Europe), under which residents can now travel without any limitations provided they are at least three weeks after their first vaccine dose. This must be proven by a national certificate.

On Monday, Czech military aircraft carried over 100,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine from Belgrade, which was donated to the Czech Republic by Serbia.

Since the start of the vaccination last December, roughly 5.66 million doses have been administered. Over 1.65 million Czechs have completed their vaccination.

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The pace of the vaccination is speeding up. More than 100,000 doses per day have been administered six days in recent weeks. On Wednesday, a record 112,231 people were vaccinated.

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