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Irish deputy PM says COVID-19 vaccinations may begin before April 2021

FILE PHOTO: A woman holds a small bottle labeled with a "Vaccine COVID-19" sticker and a medical syringe in this illustration taken April 10, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo

DUBLIN (Reuters) - The Irish government expects to be able to begin to vaccinate vulnerable people against COVID-19 in first quarter or first half of 2021, Deputy Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said on Sunday.

“I’m increasingly optimistic, as is government, that we will see a vaccine approved in the next couple of months and that in the first half or first quarter of next year it’ll be possible to start vaccinating those most at risk,” Varadkar told RTE radio.

Reporting by Conor Humphries; Editing by Andrew Heavens