Valletta, Aug 19 (IANS) Malta has donated 40,000 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine and the same amount of rapid test kits to Libya, according to the country's Health Minister Chris Fearne.
The donations were part of a European Union effort to supply vaccines and test kits to countries that are lagging behind in their vaccination roll-out, the Xinhua news agency reported.
Fearne's announcement on Twitter on Tuesday included photos of the vaccines and test kits being loaded onto an Air Malta plane bound for Libya, a war-torn country in North Africa.
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus commended Malta for the gesture, in a reply to Fearne's tweet.
Meanwhile, WHO Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge also thanked the Maltese government. "You show that international solidarity and national leadership go hand in hand. No one is safe until everyone is safe," he tweeted.
According to the latest WHO figures, as of Wednesday there have been 284,618 confirmed cases of Covid-19 and almost 4,000 deaths from the disease in Libya. The country has a population of almost 11 million, and had administered 764,233 doses as of August 9.
Malta has vaccinated over 85 per cent of its adult population, and around 90 per cent of those who were eligible to receive the vaccine, including children over 12 years old.