The Palestinian Authority said Monday it had pushed back the rollout of its coronavirus vaccination campaign due to a delay in deliveries.
The PA had said it was anticipating a shipment by the middle of this month, enabling it to start vaccinations for the general public in the West Bank while sharing stock with Hamas, the Islamist group who controls the Gaza Strip.
"There has been a delay in the arrival of the vaccine," Palestinian prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh said ahead of a weekly cabinet meeting, without providing further details.
He said the launch of vaccinations for the general public would be announced "at a later time," when sufficient supplies arrive.
The Palestinian Authority is expecting some two million doses ordered from various manufacturers, in addition to vaccines from the UN-backed COVAX program, set up to help less wealthy nations procure vaccines.
It began vaccinating frontline healthcare workers earlier this month with an initial procurement of 10,000 doses of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine as well as several thousand doses of the Moderna product given to the PA from Israel's own stock.
The Jewish state, which is carrying out one of the world's fastest vaccination campaigns per capita, has faced international calls to share its stocks with Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza.
Under the terms of the Oslo Accords, however, the PA is responsible for the healthcare of its own population and has repeatedly said it is obtaining its own vaccines via a UN scheme. It has also never overtly asked Israel for assistance.
The PA has registered nearly 115,000 coronavirus cases in the West Bank, including nearly 1,400 deaths, while Hamas has recorded nearly 53,600 cases in Gaza, including 537 deaths.