YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — The Armenian government kept encouraging people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 after receiving at the weekend 100,000 doses of a vaccine donated by China.
The shipment of the CoronaVac jab manufactured by the Chinese company Sinovac marked the single largest batch of a coronavirus vaccine airlifted to Armenia so far.
“Hard times reveal true friends who join forces to fight against the pandemic,” the Chinese Embassy in Yerevan said, announcing the shipment on Friday, April 30.
Armenia received 24,000 doses of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine on March 28 and 43,000 doses of Russia’s Sputnik V jab in the following weeks.
The government’s vaccination campaign launched on April 13 has attracted little public interest so far. According to Health Minister Anahit Avanesyan, only about 3,000 Armenians making up roughly 0.1 percent of the country’s population had received a first vaccine dose as of May 2.
“We are calling on our fellow citizens to actively apply to polyclinics and get vaccinated,” Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan wrote on Facebook after he and his wife were inoculated on Monday morning. He warned that countries around the world may ban unvaccinated foreigners from entering their territory later this year.