“Fulfill your obligations to us”, said the Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, in his appeal to the international community to deliver promised vaccines against COVID-19.
The PM’s office said: “the prime minister urged friendly countries and companies, as well as the World Health Organization, to “fulfill their obligations to us.”
UN deliveries expected this month through COVAX, the WHO-backed program to assist poorer nations, are now delayed.
The virus has surged through the West Bank and Gaza Strip and Israel has come under significant international criticism for giving its own population vaccines without doing the same for Palestinians. This week, the government began vaccinating Palestinian laborers who work in Israel.
However, that effort will only vaccinate a small percentage of the roughly 5 million Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied West Bank and blockaded Gaza Strip. Israel says under past peace accord, it is not responsible for vaccinating the Palestinian populations in those areas. Human rights groups say Israel remains an occupying power with an obligation to assist the Palestinians.