France, Germany drop negotiations to reform WHO after US tries to dictate terms, EU officials say

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French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President Donald Trump at the G20 meeting in Hamburg, northern Germany, in July 2017. JOHN MACDOUGALL / AFP via Getty Images

  • France and Germany are out of negotiations to reform the World Health Organization because the United States is trying to dictate the terms, Reuters reported.
  • The G7 alliance is drafting a reform document which will ultimately be voted on by the G20 and the UN.
  • The United States is expected to leave the WHO in July 2021, after Donald Trump criticized the WHO for invading China during the pandemic.
  • The German and French health ministries say it is wrong that the United States is leading the negotiations.
  • “No one wants to be dragged into a reform process and get a glimpse of a country that has just left the WHO,” a senior EU official told Reuters.
  • For more stories visit www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

France and Germany have abandoned plans to reform the World Health Organization because the United States is trying to take control, Reuters reported.

Members of the G7 alliance have spent weeks drafting a reform document that will eventually have to be approved by the G20 and the UN to enter into force.

The WHO has been criticized – most vocally by Donald Trump – in recent months for its handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Trump accused the WHO of helping China “mislead the world” at the start of the pandemic, which began in the Chinese city of Wuhan.

But the United States, which last month said it would leave the WHO in July 2021, is trying to dictate the terms, according to several European officials who spoke to Reuters.

The US plan is too extreme for France and Germany, and countries’ health ministries have told Reuters it is wrong for the United States to lead the negotiations.

The Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, seen in April 2020.

Fabrice COFFRINI / Getty Images

The substance of the US-led proposal is not known. However, a European official involved in the negotiations told Reuters it was “rude”.

“No one wants to be dragged into a reform process and get a glimpse of it from a country that has just left the WHO,” a senior EU official involved in the talks told Reuters.

However, the United States is not alone in criticizing the WHO.

“Everyone has criticized Tedros,” a negotiator from a European G7 country told Reuters, referring to WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

A Trump administration official told Reuters: “It is unfortunate that Germany and France ultimately chose not to join the group in approving the road map. “

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