The prime minister announced the universal vaccination of adult inhabitants on 19 islands of the country, with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Kyriakos Mitsotakis described the plan entitled “Blue Freedom” for vaccination on islands with more than 10,000 inhabitants, while he stressed that the first large tranche of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccines at the end of the month will be directed to the islands.

He also stated that the goal is the universal vaccination of all the islands of Greece, with the exception of Crete, by the end of June.

Vaccination with Johnson & Johnson for all residents over the age of 18 on 19 islands

“The goal is the universal and complete vaccination of the permanent residents of the islands by the end of June at the latest. That is, for our islanders to welcome this summer safe and completely shielded from the coronavirus. It is clear that this program wants to support local island communities and their economy. However, it aspires to offer a positive sign to the overall image of our tourism,” stressed Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, opening the teleconference for operation “Blue Freedom” which provides for the vaccination of all permanent residents of the islands by the end of June.

Operation “Blue Freedom” concerns the universal vaccination of all residents over 18 years of age on 19 islands, with the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine, while vaccinations in 32 islands have already been completed and in another 36 will be completed by the end of May. In this context, new vaccination centers are being set up by the national health service forces and mobile vaccination teams that will support the completion of the universal vaccination. The operation will be supported by voluntary organizations and mobile medical units, an exclusive donation of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation implemented by NGOs “Renaissance and Progress”, “Child’s Smile” and “Symplefsi”. It is also planned to include vaccination centers in private units.

Aim to build the first massive immunity wall

“The first large receipt of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccines at the end of the month will be directed there, to you, so that the first mass wall of immunity can be erected. Because more than 700,000 of our fellow citizens live on our 19 largest islands. So it is a great opportunity that you should take advantage of, to be used primarily by the local government and to mobilize the vast majority of your residents in favor of vaccination. The organization of the campaign with the help of the Armed Forces in our islands is characterized by professionalism, security, and absolute accuracy. “Blue Freedom” will take place at the same time as the national campaign,” Kyriakos Mitsotakis clarified.

“This initiative has a complex dimension that, health, social, economic, but also geostrategic, in some aspects, dimensions. It is therefore a national affair and that is why it must succeed as the operation “Freedom” succeeds and of course in order to do that we will need your help and support,” added the Prime Minister addressing the 4 Regional Governors and the mayors of the 19 islands who participated in the teleconference.

Great attention from everyone as we open gradually

“As we gradually open up economic and social activity, a lot of attention is required from everyone. So that we do not have local outbreaks, local epidemics, which will lead us to take local restrictive measures. I believe that we can avoid this from the moment that we will all act responsibly and as from this weekend the inter-municipal movements will open and the islands will start to have visitors from the big urban centers, specific announcements will be made tomorrow by the Government on the way in which our fellow citizens will be able to travel within Greece, especially in terms of travel to and from the islands”, the Prime Minister noted, closing the teleconference.

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