UN chief defends WHO’s performance as Trump slams its handling of coronavirus
UNITED NATIONS: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has defended the World Health Organisation (WHO), saying the UN agency had done "tremendous work" in fighting coronavirus, after US President Donald Trump accused it of being "China centric" and criticized its handling of the pandemic.
"For the Secretary General, it is clear that WHO under the leadership of Dr Tedros (Adhanom Ghebreyesus) has done tremendous work on COVID-19 in supporting countries with millions of pieces of equipment being shipped out, on helping countries with training, on providing global guidelines," Stephane Dujarric, spokesperson for UN Chief Antonio Guterres, told reporters in response to a question.
"WHO is showing the strength of the international health system," he added.
The spokesman was asked whether the secretary-general has a comment on Trump's statement in which he denounced the WHO and threatened to review US funding of the Geneva-based agency.
"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?" Trump tweeted earlier in the day.
Dujarric said looking back, WHO has also done tremendous work in fighting Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo, putting its staff in the frontlines. - AFP