US: American President Donald Trump’s administration on Tuesday formally notified the United Nations that the United States is withdrawing from the World Health Organization, AFP reported. The US is the largest contributor to the global agency. The country had contributed $400 million (approximately Rs 3,040 crore) to the organisation last year – nearly 15% of its entire budget.
The United States’ notice of withdrawal, which is effective July 6, 2021, has been submitted to the UN secretary general, who is the depository for the WHO, an unidentified administration spokesperson said. Under the law, the US must give WHO a year’s notice if it intends to withdraw, and meet all the financial obligations in the current year.
The decision comes at a time when the global coronavirus count is over 1.17 crore, while the toll has crossed 5.43 lakh, according to the Johns Hopkins University. Of these, 29.96 lakh cases are from United States, making it the worst-affected country in the world. Over 1.31 lakh people have died so far.
Trump had first announced that he planned to halt funding to the WHO in April, claiming that the organisation had deliberately covered up the early days of the pandemic to support China. On May 18, Trump had given WHO an ultimatum of 30 days to make “substantive improvements”. But, the global health body has repeatedly denied Trump’s claims that it promoted Chinese “disinformation” about the coronavirus.