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Zimbabwe approves J & J vaccine for emergency use

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Zimbabwe has approved the U.S. Johnson and Johnson Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use.

It is the first vaccine produced by a Western country to be licensed in the country.

Zimbabwe's Drug Control Authority said in a letter to the government cited by journalists that the vaccine meets its quality, safety and efficacy requirements.

Only vaccines from China, India and Russia have been approved so far in the southern African country,

The government had been criticized for refusing an African Union donation of three million doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

It cited problems with storage of the product and possible side effects, despite rising cases of infection and a shortage of vaccine.

The Johnson and Johnson vaccine doses require the same temperature as the Chinese Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines.

The United States and the European Union have imposed economic sanctions on Zimbabwean entities and individuals over the past decade for human rights violations.

In 2020, President Emmerson Mnangagwa unsuccessfully sought support from the UN for the removal of sanctions, which he said were hampering the country's economic development.

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