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COVID-19: US suspends funding to WHO

The United States is suspending funding to the World Health Organization amidst claims the group “covered up” information on the outbreak of the coronavirus in China.

The Trump administration continues to studies what Donald Trump called the group’s “disasterous” role in “covering up” the outbreak of the coronavirus in China.

“The reality is the WHO failed to obtain, vet and share information in a timely fashion,” Mr. Trump said, adding that “The WHO failed in its basic duty and must be held accountable.”

“Tremendous amounts of time” were “lost” due to what Mr Trump called the WHO’s slowness. He is being accused of ignoring warnings from his own intelligence agencies of the virus’s severity, and his own plodding an ineffective response.

Mr Trump accused the WHO on “opposing travel bans” and repeating Chinese government “propaganda” that the virus could not be transferred from person to person.

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The US leader issues a mild threat to withdraw from the organisation, which he rightly says is largely dependent on American monies, saying, “we’ll have no choice but to do that” unless the group changes its actions.

His administration plans to redirect dollars meant for the WHO to work with countries on health issues “in other ways.” As usual, he did not describe what those “other” avenues might be.

He repeated his misleading statement that Washington sends the WHO “$400m to $500m” each year. Budget documents show it is closer to just over $100m annually.

The “America first” president panned China for only devoting around “$40m” annually to the WHO’s coffers, and lamented world leaders for allowing the group to defend China while it, according to the Trump administration, misled the world about Covid-19.

Source: Reuters

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