Trump threatens permanent freeze of WHO funding

Video credit: Reuters Studio
Published on May 19, 2020 - Duration: 01:20s

Trump threatens permanent freeze of WHO funding

U.S. President Donald Trump threatened on Monday to permanently halt funding for the World Health Organization (WHO) if it did not commit to improvements within 30 days, and to reconsider the membership of the United States in the body.

Libby Hogan reports.

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Trump threatens permanent freeze of WHO funding

U.S. President Donald Trump has threatened to permanently freeze funding to the World Health Organization.

In a late Monday tweet, Trump said he would make a temporary freeze of funds indefinite, if the WHO did not commit to improvements within 30 days.

The president suspended U.S contributions to the WHO last month and accused it of promoting China's quote "disinformation" about the coronavirus outbreak.

In a letter attached to Trump's Monday tweet, he told WHO head, Dr. Tedros Adhanom, the only way forward now was if the WHO could demonstrate independence from China, and said his administration had already begun reform discussions with Tedros.

Earlier, Trump had said the WHO had done quote - "a very sad job" in its handling of the virus.

The U.S. contibuted more than $400 million dollars to the WHO in 2019 - around 15% of the organization's budget.

Also on Monday, the WHO said an independent review of the global virus response would begin as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, it received further backing and a hefty pledge of $2 billion dollars from China.

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