New Delhi, Feb 7 (PTI) Afghanistan on Sunday thanked India for providing 5,00,000 doses of the coronavirus vaccine to the war-ravaged nation and described the assistance as a clear sign of 'generosity and commitment' towards the strong partnership between the two countries.
India sent the vaccine doses to the people of Afghanistan as a gift, officials said.
In a tweet, Afghan Foreign Minister Mohammed Haneef Atmar expressed his 'profound gratitude' to the government and people of India as well as his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar for sending the consignment and helping Afghanistan in checking the spread of the pandemic.
Atmar described India's assistance as a 'clear sign of generosity, commitment and strong partnership'.
The consignment of the vaccine doses was received by Afghanistan's acting Minister of Public Health Waheed Majroh from Charge d'Affaires of the Indian embassy in Kabul Raghuram S.
The vaccines arrived in Kabul by an Air India flight. India is the first responder to deliver COVID-19 vaccines to Afghanistan, according to the Indian embassy in Kabul.
India had earlier gifted more than 20 metric tonnes of medicines to Afghanistan as part of assistance to help the country deal with the pandemic.
Last week, external affairs ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said India had sent 56 lakh doses of coronavirus vaccines under grants assistance to a number of countries while 100 lakh doses were sent under commercial supplies.
In a major announcement, India had on January 19 said it will send COVID-19 vaccines under grant assistance to several countries including Bhutan, Maldives, Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Mauritius.
India is one of the world's biggest drugmakers, and an increasing number of countries have already approached it for procuring coronavirus vaccines. PTI MPB RDM RDM