The United States, the organization’s largest donor, has committed to give WHO $ 893 million over the current two-year funding period, a State Department spokesman told The Washington Post.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the family’s giant philanthropy, is the next largest donor to the WHO after the US, which is responsible for close to 10 percent UN agency funds.
As The Anne Postan The Post reported, the president said on Tuesday that the cessation of U.S. funding will continue for a period of 60 to 90 days “while a review is conducted to assess the role of the World Health Organization and is highly mismanaged and mask the spread of the corona virus.”
“We have not been treated well,” Trump said at a press conference on Tuesday. He added, “WHO is pushing misinformation about the virus to China.”
It remains unclear whether the United States will cut money to major international organizations, or if Trump sets conditions for the resumption of U.S. payments. at a later date, The Post reported.
The announcement appeared as a potentially devastating blow to the agency during the coronavirus pandemic, because US donations constituted nearly 15 percent of all voluntary donations made worldwide.
Criticism from Gates, whose foundation has committed up to $ 100 million as part of a global response to this pandemic, arising when Trump has tried to fend off mistakes for the government’s failure to respond eagerly and early to the deadly novel coronavirus.
Also defending WHO is US Secretary General António Guterres, who, although not naming Trump, the word that it “is not the time to reduce resources for the operation of the World Health Organization or other humanitarian organizations in the fight against viruses.”
“Now is the time for unity and the international community to work together in solidarity to stop this virus and its devastating consequences,” he said.
Others, such as the American Medical Association, called Trump’s announcement to cut WHO funding “a dangerous move in the wrong direction.”
“Cutting funding to WHO – rather than focusing on solutions – is a dangerous step at a crucial time for the world,” the organization said in a statement. statement. “AMA is very concerned about this decision and its broad consequences, and we strongly urge the President to reconsider.”
While some of Trump’s conservative allies are now focusing on WHO as involved in efforts to cover up the Chinese outbreak, others are urging the president to delay moving forward by delaying funding.
“If the president wants to truly hold WHO accountable, counter Chinese efforts to blame COVID-19, and reform WHO to better respond to the next pandemic, he must not cut funding – at least not yet,” write Brett D. Schaefer, an expert at the conservative Heritage Foundation and a member of the US Contribution Committee.
This is not the first time Gates has questioned the country’s response to a pandemic. In a TED interview Last month, Gates, despite not mentioning Trump’s name, suggested that the urge to relax socially distanced to reopen the country carelessly.
“There really is no middle ground, and it’s very difficult to tell people: keep hey, keep going to a restaurant, go buy a new house, ignore a pile of corpses in the corner. “We want you to continue shopping because there might be politicians who think GDP growth is the most important,” Gates said. “It’s very irresponsible for someone to suggest that we can have the best of both worlds.”
In a March 31, ed for The Post, Gates stressed that while the US lost valuable time to get out of its response, there was still a way forward for recovery through decisions made by “the science, data and experience of medical professionals.”
“There is no question that the United States missed an opportunity to get ahead of the novel coronavirus. But the window for making important decisions has not been closed, “Gates wrote. “The choices we and our leaders make now will have a big impact on how quickly the number of cases starts to fall, how long the economy stays closed and how many Americans have to bury their loved ones because of co-19.”
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