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WHO chief says "regret" U.S. decision to halt funding to WHO

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 08:24, April 16, 2020

GENEVA, April 15 (Xinhua) -- World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Wednesday said the WHO regretted the U.S. decision to halt its funding to the WHO.

Speaking at a virtual press conference from Geneva, Tedros said that WHO is reviewing the impact of any withdrawal of U.S. funding and will work with its partners to fill any financial gaps to ensure the work continues uninterrupted.

"Our commitment to public health, science and to serving all the people of the world without fear or favor remains absolute. Our mission and mandate are to work with all nations equally, without regard to the size of their populations or economies," he said.

"The U.S. has been a longstanding and generous friend to WHO, and we hope it will continue to be so," the WHO chief said.

"WHO is not only fighting COVID-19. We're also working to address polio, measles, malaria, Ebola, HIV, tuberculosis, malnutrition, cancer, diabetes, mental health and many other diseases and conditions," he noted.

Tedros called all the nations to be united in the common struggle against a common pandemic, because "When we are divided, the virus exploits the cracks between us."

"WHO is committed to serving the world's people, and to accountability for the resources with which it is entrusted," he said.

Earlier on Tuesday, U.S. President Donald Trump announced that he had instructed his administration to suspend funding to the WHO, which he accused of "severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus."

Shortly after the announcement, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that the WHO must be supported, as it is "absolutely critical" to the world's efforts to win the war against COVID-19.

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