At the annual session of the World Health Organization on Monday, its member countries decided to postpone discussions on the participation of Taiwan as an observer. Washington “condemned” this “exclusion”, saying it “further undermines the credibility” of this UN agency.
A decision postponed until later. The countries members of the World Health Organization (WHO) decided, Monday, May 18, to postpone the debates on the participation of the island of Taiwan as an observer, on the first day of the annual session of the assembly of the UN agency. This is in response to a request from several countries, including the United States, which immediately “condemned” the decision.
On the first of two days of this virtual assembly, the countries agreed to debate the Taiwanese issue when the debate resumed, with the WHO hoping that it would be possible to continue them later in the year. No country opposed this proposal.
Shortly after, Washington, however, “condemned” the decision in a statement. US Foreign Minister Mike Pompeo Strangled “Lack of Independence” of WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Accused of “Choosing Not to Invite Taiwan Under Pressure from the People’s Republic of China” .
“Credibility further damaged”
Washington said the decision to “exclude” the island “further damaged the credibility” of the UN agency, which has already been criticized by the United States for its handling of the pandemic.
WHO, one of the main missions of which is to coordinate health emergencies, is accused by the United States of having neglected an early warning from Taiwan on the seriousness of the coronavirus which appeared in China at the end of December – which denies the UN agency.
The United States, supported by certain countries, then called on the WHO to “invite Taiwan” to the AMS, despite opposition from China. Beijing considers Taiwan an integral part of its country.
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Washington strengthens attacks on Beijing
“As the world continues to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, we need multilateral institutions that respect their statutory missions and serve the interests of all their member states, instead of playing politics, while lives are at stake, “protested Mike Pompeo in the statement.
“No one questions the fact that Taiwan has put in place one of the most effective responses in the world to stem the pandemic, despite its geographic proximity to the cradle of the virus in Wuhan, China,” he said.
“It is not a surprise. Transparent, healthy and innovative democracies like Taiwan always respond better and faster to pandemics than authoritarian regimes do,” added the secretary of state, on the front line to denounce China’s “responsibility” for the spread of the new coronavirus.
According to him, the director general of WHO “had the legal authority and had the necessary precedents” to invite Taiwan to the annual meeting.
“The Chinese Republic’s slanderous actions to silence Taiwan demonstrate how hollow its claims for transparency and international cooperation against the pandemic sound, and make the difference between China and Taiwan even more blatant”, he lamented again.
President Donald Trump has already suspended the United States’ important contribution to the WHO. He accuses him of having “crashed” by aligning himself with Chinese positions at the start of the epidemic.
Exclusion from WHO in 2016
If Taiwan is finally invited, it would actually be a return from the island. Because after having had observer status, Taiwan was excluded from the WHO in 2016, the year in which Tsai Ing-wen came to power. The president refuses to recognize the principle of the unity of the island and mainland China within the same country.
In Geneva, the WHO assures that it is up to the Member States alone to decide whether to accept Taiwan. Shortly before the opening of the meeting, Taiwanese chief diplomat Joseph Wu said that Taiwan had agreed to postpone the discussion so that today’s discussions could focus on the pandemic.