Headlines May 19, 2020
62 countries seek probe into Covid-19 crisis
Sixty-two countries, including India, have backed a joint effort by Australia and the European Union, calling for an independent inquiry into the World Health Organisation (WHO)‘s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is according to a draft resolution proposed for 73rd World Health Assembly (WHA)that started on Monday.
The draft calls for “impartial, independent and comprehensive” probe into the coronavirus crisis. It also calls for an inquiry into the actions of the WHO and their timelines relating to the pandemic.
“Initiate, at the earliest appropriate moment, and in consultation with the Member States a stepwise process of impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation, including using existing Mechanisms, as appropriate, to review experience gained and lessons learned from the WHO-coordinated international health response to COVID-19,” the draft report reads.
Last month, Australia was the first country to call for an independent inquiry into how the coronavirus outbreak started. Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne said, “”This is about collaborating to equip the international community to better prevent or counter the next pandemic and keep our citizens safe.”
The motion does not mention China or the city of Wuhan where the outbreak is said to have started. Other major countries to back this call are Japan, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, South Korea, Brazil, and Canada.