U.K.’s Johnson, Global Health, Development Experts React To Pompeo’s Claim WHO Leader ‘Bought’ By China

The BMJ: Covid-19: A world without WHO is a world in danger, experts warn
“The World Health Organization’s lack of power to ensure its members follow its advice and problems with funding may have hampered its response to the covid-19 pandemic, but accusations that it has not been transparent or is China-centric are unfounded, experts have said…” (Mahase, 7/22).

Devex: ‘We need a strong WHO,’ says Trump’s former USAID chief
“The former head of the U.S. Agency for International Development told Devex he was disappointed to see the agency left off the White House Coronavirus Task Force, which President Donald Trump assembled in late January. Mark Green, who now leads the McCain Institute for International Leadership in Washington, announced his resignation from USAID less than two months later, on March 16. … Asked whether he thinks withdrawal from WHO represents an evidence-based decision on the part of the Trump administration, Green told Devex he believes that ‘there is broad recognition — not just here in the U.S., but elsewhere — that we need to build institutions capable of leading us in the future, that WHO needs to be strengthened. But all of those things, I think, are better dealt with in calmer times’…” (Igoe, 7/23).

The Independent: Boris Johnson refuses to back WHO chief after U.S. claims China ‘bought’ his election
“Boris Johnson has refused to back the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) after Washington claimed he had been ‘bought’ by China. The prime minister’s spokesman also swerved a question about whether the U.K. believed the election of Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus had been ‘rigged’ — as alleged by Mike Pompeo, the U.S. secretary of state. Instead, he said the government was pushing for ‘reform’ of the WHO, although — unlike Donald Trump — not withdrawing funding…” (Merrick, 7/22).

The Telegraph: In the eye of the storm: how WHO leader refuses to be blown off course
“…Part of the problem stems from the rules governing WHO — voted on by member states including the U.S. … So, if it wants to keep a nation harboring a dangerous pathogen on side it must be diplomatic in its dealings. It also cannot release any communications with member states without that country’s say so. Another problem may be the opaque leadership election process for the WHO top job. Member states vote in a secret ballot and the story goes that developing countries were strong-armed into voting for Dr. Tedros by China, who promised them financial largesse…” (Gulland, 7/22).

Xinhua: Renowned U.K. expert on global health denounces Pompeo’s WHO attack
“…David Nabarro, the British candidate who ran against Tedros for the role of WHO director-general in 2017, told the Daily Telegraph that he has been working with Tedros on COVID-19 since Jan. 31. ‘In all the time that I’ve worked with him since then I’ve seen him being fair-minded and responsive to all nations, and concentrating on what matters the most, which is getting on top of this pandemic,’ he was quoted by the British newspaper as saying. ‘I just don’t recognize the kind of remarks made by the U.S. Secretary of State,’ he added…” (7/23).

The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.

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