US President backs proposal to probe WHO’s response to COVID-19 pandemic   

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Washington D.C. [US]: US President Donald Trump has backed Australia-led calls for an independent inquiry into the WHO’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Re-tweeting a media report which mentioned several countries “backing Australia’s push for a probe into the COVID-19 pandemic”, the US President tweeted: “We are with them.” World Health Organisation (WHO) has faced criticism globally over the handling of the pandemic.

At the 73rd session of the World Health Assembly, the African group of nations extended support to a draft resolution that seeks global investigation into the spread of COVID-19.

Earlier a total of 62 countries, including India, backed a joint effort by Australia and European Union, calling for an independent inquiry into the WHO’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a draft resolution proposed for 73rd World Health Assembly (WHA) meeting.

The draft calls for “impartial, independent and comprehensive” probe into the coronavirus crisis. Besides, an inquiry into the actions of the World Health Organization (WHO) and “their timelines pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“Initiate, at the earliest appropriate moment, and in consultation with the Member States a stepwise process of impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation, including using existing Mechanisms, as appropriate, to review experience gained and lessons learned from the WHO-coordinated international health response to COVID-19,” the draft report read.

European nations and Australia have been gathering support for an “impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation” of “the WHO-coordinated international health response to COVID-19”.

Last month, Australia was the first country to call for an independent inquiry into how the coronavirus started.
However, the motion has not found the mention of China or the city of Wuhan where the outbreak is believed to have started.

Other major countries named in the EU-backed draft include Japan, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, South Korea, Brazil, and Canada.