TIMES May 16, 2000
bid for WHO membership snubbed again
WRITER, WITH AGENCIES
issue of Taiwan's entry into the WHO was again forced off
the agenda at the organization's 53rd World Health Assembly
in Geneva yesterday, due to opposition from seven member
nations, including China.
was the fourth time Taiwan's WHO entry had been blocked
proposal to admit Taiwan was filed by five nations, namely
Burkina Faso, Honduras, Nicaragua, Palau and Haiti.
was joined by Cuba, Pakistan, Uruguay, Russia, Bangladesh
and Cape Verde in opposing the move, citing UN resolution
No. 2758, passed in 1972, which had approved China's membership
of the WHO and resolved the issue of China's representation.
Simultaneously, the Assembly's move revoked the membership
of the Republic of China.
Assembly's steering committee spent 20 minutes yesterday
discussing the issue before deciding not to list the Taiwan
issue on the agenda.
from Taiwan, led by outgoing Department of Health director
Chan Chi-shean (¸â±Ò½å) had earlier expressed hopes that
Taiwan could be admitted with observer status, similar to
that of the Palestinian Authority and the Vatican.
status under the World Health Assembly does not require
UN-recognized statehood, and even NGOs use this category
to attend the body's annual assemblies.
justified Taiwan's entry to the organization by detailing
circumstances surrounding the devastating earthquake that
struck the island last Sept. 21, leaving in its wake more
than 2,300 dead.
to the decision of the steering committee, the Ministry
of Foreign Affairs said in a statement released last night
that its determination to join the world health body remained
unchanged, and that further attempts would be made in the
statement also thanked the efforts of its allies in attempting
to put the Taiwan issue on the agenda, while recognizing
the sensitive nature of the issue.
January report to the US Congress, the State Department
reiterated its policy that the US would not support Taiwan's
entry into international organizations in which statehood
is a prerequisite, such as the WHO, but would assist the
country in gaining "meaningful participation."