Wed, May 24, 2006 - Page 2 News List

US, Canada and Mongolia laud progress

By Chang Yun-ping  /  STAFF REPORTER , IN GENEVA

The US, Canada and Mongolia applauded Taiwan's prompt compliance with the most recent International Health Regulations (IHR) at a WHA committee meeting in Geneva yesterday.

Mark Abdoo, International Health Officer of the US Department of Health and Human Services, lauded Taiwan's early compliance with the regulations, which were adopted on May 23 last year.

Abdoo told a committee meeting on the application of the IHR and strengthening global preparations against an avian influenza pandemic that he supported Taiwan's inclusion in the global bird flu prevention network. He suggested that Taiwan's Center for Disease Control could be the local coordinator for such a network.

The Canadian and Mongolian delegates expressed similar sentiments. The Canadian delegate also recognized the memorandum of understanding that was signed between China and the WHO Secretariat last year to facilitate technical exchanges between Taiwan and the WHO.

Eight of Taiwan's diplomatic allies yesterday threw their support behind the nation's participation in the bird flu prevention network.

However, the delegate from China tried to prevent the committee from discussing Taiwan's inclusion in the bird flu prevention network.

The Chinese delegate requested that the committee's chair erase all discussions related to Taiwan from the minutes of the meeting.

Oman's delegate endorsed China's position.

The US delegate objected to the move and asked the Secretariat's legal advisor to keep the minutes intact. The US delegate questioned whether China had the power to speak on behalf of four other WHO members and to demand on their behalf that the discussion records related to Taiwan be erased.

The WHO Secretariat's legal advisor ruled that the minutes should be kept intact.

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