Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus , Director-General while speaking on Wednesday, defended the WHO’s work and called for an end to the politicisation of Covid-19.
After first attacking the WHO the previous day, President Trump renewed his criticism at his news briefing on Wednesday, saying the organisation must “get its priorities right”. He said the US would conduct a study to decide whether it would continue paying contributions,
Mr Trump said he would consider ending US funding for the UN agency.
He accused the WHO of being “very China-centric” and said they “really blew” their pandemic response.
Dr Tedros has now dismissed the comments, insisting: “We are close to every nation, we are colour-blind.”
Also answering questions at the briefing on Wednesday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the administration was “re-evaluating our funding” of the WHO, adding; “Organisations have to work. They have to deliver the outcomes for which they were intended”.
Covid-19 first emerged last December in the Chinese city of Wuhan, which has just ended an 11-week lockdown. An advisor to the WHO chief earlier said their close work with China had been “absolutely essential” in understanding the disease in its early stages.
Mr Trump’s attacks on the WHO come in the context of criticism of his own administration’s handling of the pandemic.
What did the WHO chief say?
“Please, unity at national level, no using Covid or political points,” Dr Tedros said. “Second, honest solidarity at the global level. And honest leadership from the US and China.
“The most powerful should lead the way and please quarantine Covid politics,” he appealed, in comments seen as a response to Mr Trump, who said on Tuesday the WHO appeared to be “very biased toward China”.Skip Twitter post by @realDonaldTrump
The W.H.O. really blew it. For some reason, funded largely by the United States, yet very China centric. We will be giving that a good look. Fortunately I rejected their advice on keeping our borders open to China early on. Why did they give us such a faulty recommendation?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 7, 2020