The Wuhan Coronavirus has spread like wild fire throughout the globe. With over 4,00,000 positive cases now in the world and 18,907 deaths at the time of writing this article, the virus has taken the shape of a pandemic that is now being fought by completely locking down entire nations. It now emerges that on the 31st of December, Taiwan had written to the WHO (World Health Organisation) raising questions about the human-to-human contact aspect of the virus and the WHO had summarily ignored Taiwan.
Traditionally, due to Beijing’s objections, Taiwan has been denied membership to most international organizations including the WHO. Beijing forcefully alleges Taiwan as part of its territory that must one day be reunified with the mainland. China asserts that Taiwan has no right to participate in International Diplomacy, and WHO, which is now being mocked at as Wuhan Health Organisation, catapulted to Chinese demands.
Speaking to reporters in Taipei, the island’s Centres for Disease Control chief Chou Jih-haw said that it written to the WHO and China as early as Dec 31, asking for information about the newly uncovered virus outbreak in China’s Wuhan province, including whether there was human-to-human transmission.
“We asked them whether there’s a possibility of human-to-human transmission. We indeed asked them and reminded them of the matter,” Chou said. He said the WHO confirmed it had received the letter but did not respond to it.
While Taiwan officials had gone to China for research, they were also not allowed to see any patients or even go to the Wuhan market from where the Coronavirus had originated.
The WHO, in a statement to Reuters, did not directly address the issue of Taiwan being ignored, but said its office in China was informed of the “pneumonia of unknown cause” on Dec 31.
“Since that time until now WHO has regarded the event as very serious and applied the full range of attention to it from across the organisation,” it said.
In Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang denounced what he said were efforts to “politically manipulate” the outbreak, and that the WHO dealt with Taiwan under the “one China” principle.
It is pertinent to note that the WHO had acted almost complicit with China in hiding the severity of the Wuhan Coronavirus. WHO had declared the Wuhan coronavirus, which emerged from China and swiftly spread to other parts of the world, a pandemic only on March 11. Experts are of the view that this laxity and callousness has caused more than 14,700 deaths across the globe and that the organization’s director-general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, like China’s Xi Jinping, should be held accountable for recklessly managing this deadly pandemic.
On the 11th of January, the WHO had even said that it did not recommend any specific travel precautions to travellers to and from Wuhan, China.
While it is well known now that the coronavirus infection had started and was spreading as early as November 2019, till January 14, the Chinese authorities have claimed that the Covid-19 did not show human to human transmission. A tweet by WHO that has now gone viral on social media reveals how China has been misleading the world about the pandemic.
That Taiwan wrote to the WHO as early as 31st December and till the 14th January, the WHO was maintaining that Coronavirus does not spread human-to-human shows the complicity of WHO in letting China lie its way through unleashing a pandemic on the world.