Nov 03, 2020

Taiwan: European Policy-makers Sign Petition Supporting Access to WHO

The Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs annonced last Sunday that 106 lawmakers from seven Eastern European countries voiced support in recent weeks for Taiwan’s participation at the World Health Assembly (WHA), which is set to reconvene next Monday. In separate letters sent to World Health Organisation (WHO) President Tedros Adhanom, the lawmakers collectively expressed a “high-level of support” for Taiwan’s participation at the WHO’s 73rd annual assembly, citing Taipei’s “exemplary” record of controlling the spread of Covid-19. “Excluding 23 million Taiwanese people from participating in the WHO is not only a violation of their human rights, but also detrimental to global cooperation in the prevention of the pandemic,” a ministry statement read. 

Taiwan has been praised internationally for its successful handling of the pandemic. It was the first country to have reached a record of 200 days without a locally-transmitted case and has reported a total of 563 cases and seven deaths since the start of the outbreak.

Taipei’s bid for a seat at the WHO has been backed by policymakers from Czechia, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Slovakia. Signatories included Poland’s Waldemar Andzel and the Czech Republic’s Marek Benda. 

Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs has separately thanked the signatories for their support and called on other officials to back Taiwanese participation at the WHA “in the interests of all parties involved.” 

The joint petitions were also welcomed by Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen. “We all know that by allowing us to share in the #TaiwanModel, #TaiwanCanHelp the world,” she tweeted.