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China tells 'brazen lie' about Taiwan joining WHO tech meetings: MOFA

ROC Central News Agency

2018/05/23 23:10:06

Geneva, May 23 (CNA) Taiwan angrily refuted China's claim Wednesday at the World Health Assembly (WHA) that over the past five years, Taiwanese delegates have participated in almost all the technical meetings hosted by the World Health Organization (WHO), saying that it was a brazen lie.

The Chinese delegates told a WHA gathering that China's government cares very much about the health and wellbeing of the 23 million people in Taiwan and has made proper arrangements for Taiwan to take part in global health projects under the principle of "one China."

Over the past five years, Taiwan has sent delegates to "almost all technical meetings" sponsored by the WHO, the Chinese representatives said.

According to Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), however, Taiwan applied to take part in 154 WHO technical meetings in the period 2009-2017, but was accepted to only 46. In 2017, only five of Taiwan's 18 applications were approved, the ministry said.

MOFA said the 23 million people of Taiwan, who can be represented only by a popularly elected government, are infuriated by the Chinese delegates' groundless statements at the international meeting, which were a brazen lie.

At least 16 countries have openly endorsed Taiwan's right to be represented at the ongoing WHA, the decision making body of the WHO. For the second year in a row, Taiwan's request to participate as an observer, as it had done from 2009 to 2016 when the Kuomintang (KMT) was in power, was rejected.

China has used its influence to block Taiwan's participation in the WHA since President Tsai Ing-wen of the Democratic Progressive Party took office in May 2016.

(By Tang Pei-chun, Tai Ya-chen and S.C. Chang)

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