Iran says more than half of its population has been vaccinated

Iran announces that 44 million people in the country have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

COVID-19 vaccine
COVID-19 vaccine

Iran announced on Saturday it has now fully vaccinated 44 million people, more than half of its population of 85 million, against COVID-19, The Associated Press reported.

The country’s Health Ministry said the 44 million received two doses of the vaccine.

Iran, which has for months wrestled with the worst outbreak in the Middle East of COVID-19, has recorded at least 128,000 deaths since the start of the pandemic. The ministry also announced that there have been more than 3,500 new cases of infections in the past 24 hours, as well as 118 deaths.

The government also noted that the daily death toll numbers have been decreasing in recent months, something Iranian experts attribute to vaccination. The highest single daily death toll was on August 24, with 709 fatalities, according to AP.

In a clear sign of the scale of the outbreak in Iran, dozens of top officials have fallen ill, including lawmakers who tested positive and some who have died.

High-profile deaths in Iran from the coronavirus include a member of the council advising the Ayatollah, a former ambassador, a newly-elected member of parliament, an adviser to Zarif and a re-elected member of parliament.

Earlier this month, Iran's Foreign Minister, Hossein Amir Abdollahian, tested positive for coronavirus.

Iran generally uses the China-made Sinopharm vaccine, though the Russian Sputnik-V and the vaccine made by the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca are also in use.

The Islamic Republic has also used its domestically produced COVIran Barekat vaccine, though there is no data on its safety or efficacy.