The World Health Assembly has again rejected Taiwan’s request to join its annual gathering amid routine objections from China and despite strong support from a coalition of countries including the US, UK, France and Australia.
The assembly – the forum through which the World Health Organization is governed – on Monday decided not to extend an invitation for Taiwan to attend the 21-30 May event in Geneva as an observer. China and Pakistan spoke against the bid, while the Marshall Islands, Belize, Nauru and Eswatini – four of Taiwan’s 13 formal diplomatic allies – spoke in support.
Taiwan’s ministry of foreign affairs said its participation in the WHA was a matter of global public health. “Politics should not be allowed to take precedence over professionalism. It is not only unfair and unjust to shut Taiwan out due to Chinese political pressure, but also poses a serious threat to global health.