Afghan journalist first to receive vaccine

Afghan journalist first to receive vaccine

A prominent journalist was the first to receive the Covid-19 jab in Afghanistan as the country launched its national vaccination campaign on Tuesday.

Journalist Anisa Shaheed was first to receive a dose, followed by a doctor and two members of the Afghan security forces.

At a ceremony to mark the start of the campaign, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said media workers are continuously targeted by those who want to silence their voices.

"Our voices for freedom, equality and national sovereignty of the country will never be silenced," he said.

He added that as Afghan security forces fight terrorist threats, health workers are fighting the threat posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

"I have ordered that a monument should be built containing the names of all those doctors and nurses who have lost their lives in order to honour their sacrifices," he said.

In early February, Afghanistan received 500,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine from India.

The health ministry aims to vaccinate some 250,000 people, with priority given to health workers battling the epidemic.

According to the latest data, the pandemic has so far killed more than 2,400 people in the country and more than 55,000 people have contracted the virus.