WHA rejecting proposal on Taiwan shows power of one-China principle
Published: May 28, 2024 08:21 PM
The 77th World Health Assembly (WHA) is held in Geneva, Switzerland on May 27, 2024.Photo: Xinhua

The 77th World Health Assembly (WHA) is held in Geneva, Switzerland on May 27, 2024. Photo: Xinhua

By showing unwavering support for the one-China principle, the majority of the international community has once again thwarted attempts by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) authorities to participate in the World Health Assembly (WHA) without recognizing the 1992 Consensus. After "fighting" for eight years, the DPP and some external forces backing it have yet to realize the power of the one-China principle and that all efforts going against this trend will only be swept away by the great wave of the times.

The 77th WHA kicked off in Geneva, Switzerland, on Monday. The Assembly, the highest decision-making body of the World Health Organization (WHO), on the same day rejected a proposal by some countries on Taiwan's participation in the annual assembly as an observer. According to Xinhua News Agency, representatives of many countries expressed their support for such a decision by the WHA.

Since taking power, the DPP authorities have constantly refused to recognize the 1992 Consensus, which embodies the one-China principle. Instead, they have chosen to stubbornly pursue the secessionist route of "Taiwan independence," leading to the collapse of the political basis for Taiwan's participation in the WHA.

Instead of correcting their wrongdoings, the DPP authorities prefer to take the wrong path of instigating their so-called friends to make Taiwan-related proposals at the annual assembly. Only those with malicious intentions and a guilty conscience would choose to take a deceitful path rather than the correct one.

The theme of this year's WHA is "All for Health, Health for All." In the face of such a theme, some voices in the US claimed that the WHO's "failure" to invite Taiwan to participate in the 77th WHA "sends a message that health really isn't 'for all.'" Such remarks are calling black white, as they completely ignore the DPP authorities' refusal of the 1992 Consensus and hype on Taiwan's participation at the WHA.

On the other hand, it is those forces that "speak for Taiwan" under the banner of "safeguarding global public health cooperation and security" that have emboldened the DPP to keep politicizing health issues over the past eight years and seize political benefits in the name of expanding the so-called "international space."

These external voices have overlooked an important fact - the Chinese mainland has prevented forces on the island of Taiwan from using WHA participation to justify independence, but has always prioritized the health and well-being of Taiwan compatriots.

According to a statement from the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Monday, over the past year alone, medical and technical experts from China's Taiwan region took part in WHO technical activities 21 times, which involved 24 participants, and all the applications were approved by the central government. Besides, there is an International Health Regulations Contact Point in the Taiwan region for it to promptly access and report to the WHO concerning information related to health emergencies. All these prove that the mainland has not blocked channels for Taiwan to participate in WHO technical communication and cooperation and that the region is far from becoming a "gap" in global anti-epidemic efforts as some countries have claimed.

Similar to the recent two-day military exercises around the Taiwan island by the mainland's People's Liberation Army, the DPP's failure at the WHA for the eighth consecutive year serves as a wake-up call for the Lai Ching-te authorities that have just taken office: Denying the 1992 Consensus and deviating from the one-China principle will lead to tense and turbulent cross-Straits relations, ultimately jeopardizing the interests of Taiwan residents. It is a futile effort to make moves undermining the cross-Straits status quo while accusing the mainland of doing so to absolve itself of responsibility.

Receiving eight rejections in a row at the WHA does not demonstrate the "persistent fighter" image that the region's authorities and some countries want to portray; it only proves how the DPP is becoming increasingly loathsome and shameless year after year. If Taiwan authorities continue further down this wrong path of seeking "Taiwan independence" by relying on external forces, what awaits them will be more than mere rejections.