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Coronavirus: Hungarian foreign minister says country will test Russian vaccine

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A pedestrian wears a protective mask at the Baross square metro station in Budapest, Hungary, Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020.
A pedestrian wears a protective mask at the Baross square metro station in Budapest, Hungary, Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020.   -   Copyright  Zoltan Balogh/MTI via AP
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Hungary will test a Russian coronavirus vaccine, the country's foreign minister has said.

Peter Szijjarto said that 10 initial doses of Russia's Sputnik V would undergo testing in Hungary.

The announcement comes after Hungary became the first country in Europe to receive samples of the drug last week.

Szijjarto said last week that a Hungarian drug manufacturer was in negotiations with Russian partners on possible domestic production of the drug.

The announcement comes after Hungary became the first country in Europe to receive samples of the drug last week.

The Sputnik V vaccine was hailed in August by Russian President Vladimir Putin as the world's first COVID-19 vaccine to be registered.

Sputnik V has not completed late-stage clinical trials and the European Medicines Agency has yet to assess the vaccine.

A review of the Russian vaccine trial in the Lancet found that the results of the Russian vaccine were "encouraging" but needed more work.

In September, the vaccine had mostly been trialled on healthy young soldiers. The editor-in-chief of the Lancet told CNN that the results of the study in September were encouraging but that it was premature for the vaccine to be in public use.

Hungary's Szijjarto says the country is also in negotiations with three Chinese vaccine makers, and purchased 2.8 million doses of a Chinese antiviral medication.

The central European country has also reserved 12 million doses of vaccine from manufacturers in Europe and the United States, including British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, Belgium-based Janssen and the joint US-German vaccine from Pfizer-BioNTech.