UK's 'Herculean' vaccine target can be achieved, minister says

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Britain's PM Johnson holds a news conference, in London

LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's "Herculean" aim to vaccinate around 14 million of the most vulnerable people against COVID-19 by the middle of next month is achievable, his vaccine minister said on Wednesday.

Johnson has set a target of vaccinating the elderly, including care home residents, the clinically vulnerable and frontline workers - around 14 million people - by mid-February.

Asked if it was achievable to vaccinate 14 million people by the middle of February and 2 million vaccinations each week by the end of this month, Minister for COVID Vaccine Deployment Nadhim Zahawi said it was.

"It is a Herculean effort," he told Sky, adding that it was stretching but deliverable. He said that 1/4 of people over 80 years old had been vaccinated with their first shot.

(Reporting by Sarah Young and Kate Holton; writing by Guy Faulconbridge)