The recent decision by the United States President Donald Trump to halt his country’s funding to the World Health Organization (WHO), has been received with a lot of mixed feelings. First, from World leaders especially the Secretary General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres who has not only qualified it as “untimely, but uncalled for” at a moment when the organization is pleading for funds (at least $1bn), and solidarity to help fight the pandemic. Secondly, the medical experts who are now the eyes and ears of the entire World in their day-to-day struggle to bring sanity.
Though it is true that announcing such a decision President Donald Trump did not close the door with regards to its eventual funding, it is also no more a secret that President Trump has long questioned the value of the United Nations and scorned the importance of multilateralism as he focuses on an "America First" agenda. Since taking office, Trump has quit the UN Human Rights Council, the UN cultural agency UNESCO, a global accord to tackle climate change and the Iran nuclear deal.
Thus, by suspending the US funding at a time when the World needs aid and solidarity most, does not give a good image of a country known for her unlimited generosity. 60 to 90 days (time to review the process) might not be long, but is largely enough to save thousands or millions lives, bring the pandemic under control, boost the economy and put smiles on the faces of many people who have been leaving in fear and psychological agony. Everyone knows that before coming up with such a decision, President Trump and his health advisers have weighed the pros and the cons and know very well that is not time for scapegoat, but international solidarity.
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