Oman’s Foreign Minister has expressed his “heartfelt” thanks for a gift of COVID-19 vaccine from India.

Welcoming the delivery of 100,000 doses, Foreign Minister Sayyid Badr Albusaidi said: “This initiative is a testimony of the bonds of friendship and cooperation between our governments and peoples.”

The vaccines were handed over to Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Saidi, Oman’s Minister of Health by Munu Mahawar, India’s Ambassador to Oman.

In a statement the Indian Embassy said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the resilience of India-Oman strategic partnership, as close engagement and cooperation have continued between both the countries in addressing the urgent matters related to the pandemic.”

The doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine were produced by the Serum Institute of India, having undergone clinical trials to ensure they are safe.

Health workers from Oman have been trained in using the vaccine through programmes run jointly by the health ministries of the two countries.