Serbia’s Parliament Speaker Ivica Dacic and Interior Minister Aleksandar Vulin have received Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine at the Belgrade-based Torlak Institute of Virology, TASS reported.
After the vaccination Vulin and Dacic addressed the media. “The issue of vaccination always gets a political dimension. Currently, some 100 vaccines are undergoing testing around the world. Now the world needs billions of vaccines and there are problems with production. It is necessary to make sure that the use of a certain vaccine does not turn into political pressure,” Dacic said, noting that Serbia offered the opportunity to take vaccines from various countries, including from Russia.
According to Dacic, Serbia’s authorities seek to demonstrate confidence in vaccination. “We wanted to show that we trust vaccination and so offer people to do the same,” the parliament speaker said. In his turn, Vulin said he had taken the vaccine because he trusted doctors.
In reply to a question whether restrictions could be imposed on travel over the Western countries’ refusal to recognize that vaccines unregistered by them were effective, Vulin said he did not rule out this. Meanwhile, he said it would be inhuman to make people’s travel dependent on the vaccine’s choice.
Serbia launched vaccination with the vaccine developed by the US company Pfizer on December 24. Earlier, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said that Serbia had paid the EU nearly 7 mln euro but it received twice as few doses than it had ordered: 4,800 instead of 10,000.
On December 31, Serbia’s National Medicines Agency authorized the use of the Russian coronavirus vaccine Sputnik V. The vaccine conforms to all requirements stipulated by laws and regulations, which confirms its quality, efficiency and safety, the news agency says, citing the agency’s spokesman. The vaccine has passed all the required checks made in accordance with the law. The country has received 2,400 doses of the vaccine and is expected to get more by the end of January.