22:58 GMT30 May 2020
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    COVID-19 Puts Nations on Hold (281)
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    The US earlier harshly criticised the World Health Organisation (WHO) for allegedly aiding China, which Washington accuses of hiding the real numbers on the coronavirus infection and other crucial data in the first months of the COVID-19 outbreak. The US suggestion to "reform" the global body was later supported by a majority of G7 members.

    The Russian Foreign Ministry has stated that Moscow views attacks and accusations by certain western states against China and the World Health Organisation (WHO) as "groundless" and "inappropriate".

    "Certain countries have intensified their biased and groundless attacks against states and international organisations, attempts to shift the blame for the current epidemiological crisis on them, which is extremely inappropriate in the existing complicated situation", the spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

    The statement comes in the wake of the US repeatedly accusing Chinese authorities of obscuring crucial information about the development of the COVID-19 outbreak in the country during the early stages, such as the number of infected and diseased as well as allegedly hiding that the virus can be transmitted between humans. Beijing denies these claims and insists it reported all developments in a timely manner.

    US President Donald Trump separately attacked the WHO, claiming it was "China-centric", helped Beijing to hide the facts about the outbreak, and acted inefficiently in the early stages of the pandemic. POTUS went on to stop US funding for the global health body. America contributes roughly 15% of the WHO's budget.

    While Trump’s decision was branded by many in the international community as “poorly timed” due to the ongoing pandemic, the White House said that members of the G7, including the UK, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, and Japan have called to conduct a “thorough review and reform” of the WHO in light of the "chronic mismanagement of the pandemic" by the global health body.

    At the same time, some G7 members, namely Germany, expressed their "full support" for the WHO contrary to the White House statement about the group's position towards the organisation.

    Topic:
    COVID-19 Puts Nations on Hold (281)

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