US President Donald Trump in a scathing letter to Director-General of World Health Organisation (WHO) highlighted the health organisation's alleged 'failed response' in successfully tackling the COVID-19 pandemic by calling out the global organisation for its 'lack of independence' from People's Republic of China.
In a four-page letter, US reviewed the organisation's handling of the outbreak alleging that since December 2019, stating it had ignored 'credible reports' and had 'failed to independently investigate them' due to their affiliation with China. Trump warned them that if they didn't show 'substantive improvement' and 'independence' from China, US' temporary decision of halting funding to the health organisation would become 'permanent'.
The letter added that WHO made repeated claims about the virus that were 'grossly inaccurate and misleading', including mentioning at one point of time that 'human-to-human transmission does not occur in the new strain of Coronavirus.' Trump in his letter also alleged that they took too long in declaring the outbreak public health emergency of 'international concern.' "By the time you declared the virus a pandemic on 11 March 2020, it had killed more than 4000 people and infected 100,000 in over 114 countries," read the letter.
While concluding the letter Trump highlighted how the same organisation had dealt with the SARS outbreak under a different director-general with great efficiency. "The only way forward for the World Health Organisation is if it can actually demonstrate independence from China." Trump stated that if 'substantive improvement' was not seen in the organisation in the next 30 days then his temporary halting of funding, would become permanent'.
This is the letter sent to Dr. Tedros of the World Health Organization. It is self-explanatory! pic.twitter.com/pF2kzPUpDv— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2020
Even in the past, Trump has not minced his words when it comes to expressing his feelings towards WHO. In his most recent comments, Trump called WHO, China's 'puppet'. His accusations come amid the global pandemic, where Trump believes that the WHO has been biased towards China. Last month, Trump had halted all US' funding to the organisation accusing it to be 'China-centric'. A few days ago, China stated that they would provide USD 2 billion to the World Health Organization over two years to fight the coronavirus pandemic. However, the White House has said that China's newly announced funds its way to overwrite its failure in handling the coronavirus outbreak.
The WHO at the World Health Assembly on Monday acceded to the resolution signed by 123 members countries of the WHO seeking an independent investigation into the pandemic. This comes despite China voicing strong objection to the resolution saying that it was 'premature' to launch a probe into the origin of COVID-19. The resolution has received overwhelming support from all the member countries of the European Union and 50 African nations, and also India