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Morocco vaccinates prisoners as it continues robust campaign

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Morocco

Around 300 inmates at Al Arjat 1 prison in Sale, a city about 15 kilometers (9 miles) from Rabat, were given a COVID-19 vaccination on Wednesday as part of authorities' attempts to curb the spread of the virus in Morocco.

According to the General Delegation for Prison Administration (DGAPR) and the Health Ministry, at least 12,000 of the 85,000 prisoners in the North African country have been vaccinated since the national campaign began in January.

All the staff working for DGAPR have received their jab.

"Our efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19 in prisons started from the first case in April 2020," said Taoufiq Abtal, head of the health division at the DGAPR.

Prisoners receiving the jab appeared thankful, with one commenting that he had not expected the campaign inside prisons to take place.

Since the pandemic began last year, 626 cases and 11 deaths have been recorded among the prison population, according to official figures.

In April 2020, more than 5,600 prisoners were released by King Mohammed VI to avoid contagion in the country's overcrowded jails.

Across Morocco over 8 million people have now had their first COVID-19 jab, while nearly 5 million have been fully vaccinated with two doses.

The country registered 9,131 deaths and 517,808 confirmed cases since March 2020, according to John Hopkins University.

AP

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