The United States President, Donald Trump, has announced the suspension of funding to the World Health Organisation, claiming the agency had covered up the seriousness of the COVID-19 outbreak in China allowing it to spread around the world.
Mr Trump on Tuesday at a press conference said he has instructed his administration to halt funding while “a review is conducted to assess the WHO’s role in severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus.”
Mr Trump had accused the WHO of wasting “tremendous amounts of time” in its coronavirus response.
While Mr Trump blamed the international health agency for the pandemic, reports show that he also ignored warnings from his own intelligence agencies of the virus’s severity.
The president had six days ago threatened to suspend the U.S. funding for the agency while expressing grievances with its handling of the novel coronavirus.
“They missed the call. They could have called it months earlier. They would have known, and they should have known, and they probably did know,” he had earlier said.
According to Mr Trump, WHO prevented transparency over the outbreak. The United States is the largest contributor to the UN body – provided $400 million last year — and will now “discuss what to do with all that money that goes to the WHO.”
“With the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have deep concerns whether America’s generosity has been put to the best use possible,” Mr Trump added.