OPINION / EDITORIAL
Taiwan authorities’ WHA attempt a fiasco: Global Times editorial
Published: May 25, 2021 12:43 AM

Photo taken on January 30, 2020 shows the headquarters of the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. Photo: Xinhua

Photo taken on January 30, 2020 shows the headquarters of the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. Photo: Xinhua

The 74th World Health Assembly (WHA) kicked off on Monday and has decided not to invite the island of Taiwan as an observer to attend the assembly, which has been proposed by some countries. For the fifth year in a row, the WHA objected the Taiwan-related proposal. Thirteen countries that maintain the so-called diplomatic relations with the island submitted abovementioned proposal. It concluded that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) authorities have lost their shirts like previous years, maybe even worse.

The DPP authorities have recently been stressing that international support for Taiwan's participation in the WHA this year is historically high, making every effort to create momentum for its return to the WHA this year. What they referred to is the joint statement supporting Taiwan's attendance released by top diplomats of the G7 countries and of some members of parliament of Western countries early this month.

But who is the real international community? Since the US and several other Western powers control the world's major public opinion institutions, can they pretend to be the international community just by speaking jointly with their allies and through small clique multilateral mechanisms? They can verify it in UN institutions. In the WHA, where every country has one vote, those Western countries, plus the countries which have so-called "diplomatic relations" with Taiwan are clearly the absolute minority.

The G7 countries declared their support for Taiwan's participation in the WHA, but none of them dared to propose it to the assembly. It is because they know that the vast majority of the 194 members of the WHO support the one-China principle. They cannot break through this international consensus. The only result for their participation in the proposal is humiliating. Therefore, they only paid lip service, but none of them dare to put it into practice. They left this humiliating task to Taiwan's 13 "diplomatic allies."

In fact, the bigger the drama over Taiwan's participation in the WHA is, the more it finally proves how overwhelming the vast majority of the global community supports the one-China principle and how isolated the G7 countries are in supporting Taiwan. According to the Chinese Foreign Ministry, this year, more than 150 countries have expressed support for Beijing's decision to oppose Taiwan's participation in the WHA through diplomatic channels. Over 80 WHO members sent letters to the WHO to express their commitment to the one-China principle and  their opposition to the island's participation in the WHA. So even if there is going to be a vote, the G7 plus Taiwan's 13 "diplomatic allies" will have no chance to win.

The WHA issue is just another example of how the West attacks China in the name of the world and then receives a smack in the face by the global community. The US has repeatedly solidified different voices in the West to pressure China over the so-called human rights issues in Xinjiang and Hong Kong. However, each time they have formed only a small, and fixed circle, as the number of countries that support China in the UN Human Rights Council is overwhelming. It is purely delusional for the DPP authorities to dream that it will break into the WHA under the support of some Western countries.

The DPP authorities said they would not be able to get information on fighting the epidemic without attending the WHA. The Chinese mainland has repeatedly refuted such nonsense narratives. They recently accused the Chinese mainland of blocking Taiwan's access to the vaccine. When the Chinese mainland said it is willing to offer the vaccine, Taiwan authorities accused the mainland of feigning good intentions, saying they have not received official information from Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group, a Chinese company with the deal to distribute BioNTech SE and Pfizer Inc.'s COVID-19 vaccine in "Greater China." 

We wonder: If the US is willing to provide Taiwan vaccines, can the Chinese mainland prevent it? Just as Mayor of the City of Taipei Ko Wen-je said the US has not offered Taiwan even a single dose. 

All this is caused by the DPP authorities playing extreme politics and damaging cross-Straits relations. A lawmaker in Taipei said on Monday that, if Taiwan wants to join the WHA, the DPP authorities should return to the line of former leader Ma Ying-jeou when it comes to the cross-Straits issue. There are many things for the DPP authorities to reflect on. Perhaps the most important of them will be: They take the wrong key to rely on the US.
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