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LATIN AMERICA | 15-02-2021 16:44

Vaccine shortage forces Rio de Janerio to suspend Covid jabs

Brazilian city Rio de Janeiro is forced to suspend its vaccination programme due to shortages, fuelling further frustrations with President Jair Bolsonaro's government.

Rio de Janeiro will suspend its Covid-19 vaccination campaign until next week because the Brazilian city has run out of doses, Mayor Eduardo Paes said Monday.

"I have been informed that the new doses did not arrive. We will have to interrupt our campaign tomorrow [Tuesday]," Paes wrote on Twitter.

He said the campaign would resume next week with a new delivery of Chinese-developed vaccine CoronaVac.

One month into hard-hit Brazil's immunisation drive, several critical areas have run into vaccine shortages, fueling frustration with President Jair Bolsonaro's government.

Rio, Brazil's second-biggest city, had warned last week it only had enough vaccine to last until Saturday.

The iconic beach city of 6.7 million people has cancelled its famed carnival celebrations, originally scheduled for this week, in a bid to contain infections.

The city has recorded nearly 18,000 deaths from Covid-19, making it among the hardest hit in Brazil.

Nearly 240,000 people have died of Covid-19 in Brazil, the second-highest death toll worldwide, after the United States.

– AFP

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