Taiwan rebuffs accusations it racially attacked WHO chief

Taiwan has angrily condemned accusations from the World Health Organization's (WHO) boss that racist slurs against him had come from the island

2020-04-09 09:25:00 AM

Taiwan has angrily condemned accusations from the World Health Organization's (WHO) boss that racist slurs against him had come from the island.

Taiwan has angrily condemned accusations from the World Health Organization's (WHO) boss that racist slurs against him had come from the island

Tedros is not a popular figure in Taiwan due to suspicion he is too close to China and the WHO's listing of Taiwan's virus case numbers under China's, despite it being totally separately governed.US President Donald Trump sharply criticised the WHO on Tuesday, accusing it of being too focused on China and issuing bad advice during the coronavirus outbreak.

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Taiwan Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Joanne Ou said Tedros' accusations were groundless and "imaginary" and Taiwan had not made any racist comments nor encouraged anyone to do so.Tedros' comments were irresponsible and he should clarify them and apologise to Taiwan, Ou said.

"The concept of racism does not exist in Taiwan. We do not have a problem of racism," she told reporters.Taiwan has been proud of its early and so far effective measures against the coronavirus, logging just 379 cases and five deaths to date, far lower than many of its neighbours.

The WHO said last month it was closely following the development of the coronavirus in Taiwan and learning lessons from how they are fighting it.However, Taiwan says the WHO ignored its questions at the start of the outbreak and has not shared with member states information Taiwan has provided, including details on its coronavirus cases and prevention methods.

Under the slogan "Taiwan can help", the government last week announced the donation of 10 million faces masks to the United States, Europe and the 15 countries which still maintain formal diplomatic ties with the island.Ou said Taiwan would donate another six million masks, to northern and eastern Europe, Latin America, Southeast Asia and US states hardest hit by the pandemic.

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