TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Countries like Germany, Japan, and New Zealand, as well as diplomatic allies, voiced support for Taiwan’s case for observer status on Tuesday (May 25), the second day of the World Health Assembly (WHA), according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA).
The delegations emphasized that in the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, the global community cannot afford to leave out any part of the world, CNA reported.
German health ministry official Bjoern Kuemmel told a committee meeting that the pandemic could only be defeated if the principle of tolerance becomes paramount. If the safety of everybody cannot be guaranteed, then nobody’s safety can be guaranteed, he said, adding that the world cannot afford any blind spots on its map.
An official at Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, Takei Sadaharu (武井貞治), said the WHA should study regional examples of success in the fight against COVID, including that of Taiwan.
At the full assembly, New Zealand Health Minister Andrew Little called for global solidarity and opposed the politicization of health issues, while Czech delegate Michal Kaplan said the World Health Organization (WHO) should behave like a professional organization and stay away from politics.
Taiwan’s diplomatic allies also joined the fray, with Honduran Health Secretary Alba Consuelo Flores calling Taiwan to be admitted as an observer. Mary Isaac, the minister for health and wellness in Saint Lucia, mentioned Taiwan’s record in the fight against COVID as well as its supply of technology and aid to other countries as evidence of the nation's ability to contribute to global health, MOFA said.