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If the World Health Organization Wants to continue receiving funding from the United States, it should replace its current chief executive, a group of Republican lawmakers said on Thursday.
The plan, defined in a letter to President Trump members of the House GOP Foreign Affairs Committee, was the last salvo fired at the head of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who is facing an increasingly careful review of his actions coronavirus pandemic.
In recent weeks, critics have accused Tedros of looking away when China allegedly silenced whistleblowers and updated data on the initial virus epidemic in Wuhan city months ago – a This situation has turned into today’s pandemic, which has made more than 2.1 million people sick and more than 145,000 killed worldwide.
The pandemic could have been better contained if the WHO had ensured that China provided accurate data from the start, said GOP lawmakers. But that did not happen, they added.
“This has allowed countries around the world, including ours, to fight the virus with incomplete information and wasted precious time,” lawmakers wrote to Trump, according to The Hill. “Unfortunately, as a result, we will have to count the lives lost in China and the world for too long.”
“We will have to count the lives lost in China and the world for too long.”
The letter was signed by Mike McCaul, a ranking member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, R-Texas, and 16 other Republican members of the panel, according to The Hill.
Lawmakers also accused Tedros of having a “troubled health emergency response record” and a “PRC kissing record” [Chinese] propaganda and politics ”, undermining its credibility.
“As such, we have lost confidence in the ability of Director-General Tedros to lead the World Health Organization,” lawmakers wrote to Trump, adding, “In light of the information presented in this letter, we recommend conditioning any future fiscal year. Voluntary contributions for 2020 to WHO in the event of the resignation of Director-General Tedros. “
“We have lost confidence in the ability of Director-General Tedros to lead the World Health Organization.”
In a Thursday appearance on Fox News’ America’s Newsroom, McCaul described China’s handling of the Wuhan epidemic as “worst concealment in human history. “
The letter to Trump came two days after the president announced plans for the United States suspend WHO funding. The president said the United States contributes $ 400 million to $ 500 million a year to the United Nations-supported organization, a far greater contribution than any other nation.
Republicans in Congress largely supported the president’s announcement, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats spoke out against the decision.
“This decision is dangerous, illegal and will be quickly challenged,” Pelosi said in a statement, according to The Hill.
Former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, in an appearance in Fox News’s “Daily Briefing” on Tuesday, also expressed reservations about cutting funding, saying it would end leverage with the WHO.
“If you are not at the table,” she said, “you are not able to get the kind of reform you need.”
Speaking to journalists on Wednesday in Geneva, Tedros said he expects to face a public inquiry into his handling of the coronavirus crisis as WHO member states seek “to ensure transparency and the responsibility”. He said the investigation would likely take place after the crisis ends.
“There is no doubt that areas for improvement will be identified,” he added, “and we will all have lessons to learn. But for now, I’m focusing on stopping this virus. “
Julia Musto and Charles Creitz of Fox News contributed to this story.