The United States of America (USA) has officially withdrawn from the World Health Organization (WHO) after breaking relations with a global public health body in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.
The U.S. has submitted its official withdrawal notification with a 1-year notice period to the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Gutteres. The notification which is valid until July 6, 2021, can be referred if required.
USA’s top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Bob Menendez (N.J.), tweeted that the white house has informed Congress of the withdrawal plans.
Congress received notification that POTUS officially withdrew the U.S. from the @WHO in the midst of a pandemic.
To call Trump’s response to COVID chaotic & incoherent doesn’t do it justice. This won’t protect American lives or interests—it leaves Americans sick & America alone.
— Senator Bob Menendez (@SenatorMenendez) July 7, 2020
The United States is by far the largest contributor to WHO with an annual funding supply of more than $400 million. Health experts have warned that a suspension of funds would severely damage the global health organization.
Earlier in May, the US President Mr. Donald Trump threatened to make the temporarily frozen U.S. funding to WHO permanent in May unless “substantive improvements” are made to the international organization.
Trump had also said at the time that unless those improvements were made, he would review American membership in the WHO.
The World Health Organization has come under heavy criticism over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
Much of that judgment focused on the organization’s dependence on Chinese coronavirus data and its early appreciation of that government’s response to the emerging crisis even as WHO officials internally expressed disappointment with the lack of information shared by the nation about the spread.