Iran has made a breakthrough in its testing of a locally formulated coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine according to the country’s president, IRNA reported on August 12.
During a cabinet meeting, Hassan Rouhani thanked scientists in Iran for their work in pursuing a working vaccine that would be distributed at no cost to citizens once approved, but he did not detail the scope of the breakthrough.
His comments come following Russian President Vladimir Putin’s August 11 claim that Russia has developed the world’s first safe vaccine against the coronavirus, named Sputnik V, that it was ready to administer to Russians.
The approval of the Russian vaccine after less than two months of human testing before so-called “phase 3” testing has been greeted with criticism from some experts who described the approach as reckless and unethical, saying it risked exacerbating rather than helping manage the coronavirus pandemic.
Rouhani said: “In recent months, with the efforts made, good steps have been taken to produce drugs and vaccines for the coronavirus, and this path must continue with strength and speed until the final and definitive result is reached.”
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