Blinken Demands WHO Invite Taiwan Into Decision-Making Body Over Chinese Objections
Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday issued a statement that’s sure to once again provoke Beijing, urging the World Health Organization (WHO) to formally invite Taiwan’s participation in the global body which works alongside the UN.
China has long seen such a proposal as an “illegal” violation of the longstanding One China policy, which both the UN and WHO have thus far upheld. Ignoring this, Blinken called on the WHO to facilitate Taiwan’s participation in the upcoming World Health Assembly meeting which is set for the last week of May in Geneva.
“There is no reasonable justification for Taiwan’s continued exclusion from this forum, and the United States calls upon the WHO Director-General to invite Taiwan to participate as an observer at the WHA – as it has in previous years, prior to objections registered by the government of the People’s Republic of China,” Blinken said in a statement Friday.
China has consistently blocked Taiwan’s participation even as an ‘observer’ going back to 2016.
Blinken argued that Taiwan is a “reliable partner” and a “vibrant democracy,” saying that—
“We urge Taiwan’s immediate invitation to the World Health Assembly.”
He said the urgency of stopping the global pandemic means “political disputes” must not get in the way, given the virus knowns no boundaries or conflicts over autonomy.
“Global health and global health security challenges do not respect borders nor recognize political disputes,” Blinken’s statement continues.
Blinken calls on WHO director-general @DrTedros to invite Taiwan to participate in the World Health Assembly.
“There is no reasonable justification for Taiwan’s continued exclusion from this forum….” https://t.co/UVIcpo1L2P
— Chuck Ross (@ChuckRossDC) May 7, 2021
“Taiwan offers valuable contributions and lessons learned from its approach to these issues, and WHO leadership and all responsible nations should recognize that excluding the interests of 24 million people at the WHA serves only to imperil, not advance, our shared global health objectives.”
The fresh Friday statements echoed similar statements of US officials at the G-7 meeting in London at the start of this week. China’s Foreign Ministry has vehemently fought Taiwan’s WHA entry on the basis that Taipei and its backers refuse to “recognize that both sides of [the Taiwan Strait] belong to one and the same China.”
Fri, 05/07/2021 – 19:40