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Mauritania begins covid vaccine campaign

A sign board reading 'The Chinese Vaccine is here!' is pictured in Nouakchott, Mauritania on 22 March 2021 [MED LEMIN RAJEL/AFP/Getty Images]
A sign board reading 'The Chinese Vaccine is here!' is pictured in Nouakchott, Mauritania on 22 March 2021 [MED LEMIN RAJEL/AFP/Getty Images]

Mauritania today began its COVID-19 vaccination campaign as a shipment of 50,000 doses arrived from China.

President Mohamed Ould Ghazouani supervised the process, which took place in the National Hospital Centre in the capital Nouakchott.

According to the country's state news agency, Nouakchott's medical staff will get the jabs first, followed by medical staff in all other cities and people with chronic diseases and vulnerable groups.

The Health Ministry said that Sinopharm vaccines were received as part of the cooperation with China.

Last February, Mauritania received 5,000 doses of the US-German Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine as a gift from the United Arab Emirates.

Sidi Ould Zahaf, public health director at the Health Ministry, said that the government would educate citizens about "the quality, nature and purpose of the vaccine without requiring any citizen to take the dose".

The North African country has so far confirmed 17,712 infections, including 447 fatalities and 16,962 recoveries.

READ: Mauritania's ex-president threatens to break silence, reveal new information

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