Palestinian Government Turns Down Israel’s Offer of One Million Vaccines

On Friday, the Palestinian Authority called off a deal with Israel to receive nearly one million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

According to the Associated Press, the new Israeli government said it would transfer Pfizer vaccines that were about to expire; then, the Palestinian Authority would reimburse it with an equal quantity of vaccines once it received them from the pharmaceutical company in September or October. The Israeli government announced in a statement that up to 1.4 million doses might be exchanged.

The Fight is On to Get Those Vaccines

According to Haaretz, three additional countries have apparently approached the Israeli government in an attempt to obtain the vaccine doses denied by the PA.

According to The Times Of Israel, the PA already received the first shipment of 100,000 pills when it announced its rejection of the aid.

According to The Wall Street Journal, a spokesman for PA Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said that Palestine’s refusal to response to the specifications within the deal became more than apparent. The PA rejected all of the one million doses offered, due to the expiration date of the initial shipment of vaccines, which was set to expire at the end of June.

The vaccines are entirely safe, according to Israel’s health ministry, and the PA was aware that the first batch was about to expire. According to Israeli health experts, the remaining vaccines will expire a month later, at the end of July.

The PA terminated the vaccine agreement because Palestinians complained that the vaccinations were tainted; this happened despite the fact that the vaccines were not outdated and were of the same stock that Israel used to treat its own residents.

As the terrorist organization Hamas (which governs the Gaza Strip) grows in popularity among Palestinians, the PA is trying to maintain its grasp on the West Bank, historically known as Judea and Samaria. 

It Might Be Political

A national poll done by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in Ramallah just last week revealed the popularity of the PA’s primary competitor, Hamas. Hamas’ popularity has risen considerably since the recent war between both the Gaza terrorist group and Israel. According to the research, 84 percent of Palestinians think abuse happens in PA organizations.

Since Israel already has enough vaccine doses to meet its requirement, it decided to provide them to the PA to distribute. Following the agreement to turn over the vaccinations to the Palestinian Authority, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said on Twitter they will continue to find practical methods to collaborate for the good of people in Gaza

Israel reportedly hoped to reduce the risk of COVID-19 growing amongst Israelis via the Palestinian community, which is mainly unvaccinated.

According to The Wall Street Journal:

The Palestinian Authority has fallen behind in its vaccination campaign, owing to a shortage of vaccines and a lack of healthcare facilities.

According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, 445,412 Palestinians residing in the West Bank and Gaza Strip have received at least one shot, accounting for less than 9% of the population. Only about 4.5 percent of the population has received all of their vaccinations.