Sen. Martha McSally accused the World Health Organization of “covering up” for China in the COVID-19 pandemic and said the director of the organization needs to step down.
The Arizona Republican called out WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during an appearance on Fox Business’ “Mornings with Maria” Thursday, calling for his resignation over the organization’s mishandling of the coronavirus outbreak, which originated in Wuhan, China.
(Source: Fox Business via Senator Martha McSally/YouTube)
“I’ve never trusted a communist. And their cover-up of this virus that originated with them has caused unnecessary deaths around America and around the world,” McSally told host Maria Bartiromo in speaking of the Communist Party of China.
Recent reports have questioned the validity of China’s statistics regarding the number of cases and fatalities in the country as more than 1 million people worldwide have been infected with the virus. McSally, who is up for reelection this fall, contended that the WHO failed in its oversight of China’s data reporting and Tedros, who has led the global organization since 2017, should relinquish his post.
“The WHO needs to stop covering for them. I think Dr. Tedros needs to step down. We need to take some action to address this issue. It’s just irresponsible, it’s unconscionable what they have done here while we have people dying across the globe,” she told Bartiromo.
The GOP lawmaker, who was appointed to the Senate after former U.S. Sen. John Kyl resigned, agreed with Florida Sen. Rick Scott who, earlier this week, accused the WHO of “helping Communist China cover-up” the full impact of the virus and called for a congressional probe.
McSally concurred with her Republican colleague, saying that “we need to look at addressing the WHO as well.” She also addressed funding for the organization, suggesting U.S. debts to China “should be forgiven, as a minimum.”
But a spokesman for the WHO contended that the organization expects members “to report data in a timely and accurate manner.”
“Membership in WHO and signing up to the International Health Regulations both carry with it the responsibility to prioritize public health, nationally and internationally, not only because global health norms say so, but because the two are inextricably linked, as this global pandemic has made clear to the world,” Tarik Jašarević said, though he did not address McSally’s remarks directly, according to Politico.
Political analyst Ian Bremmer, during an appearance on the “Fox News Rundown” podcast on Thursday, also accused the WHO of “carrying a lot of water for China because they want access and they want the funding.”
Tedros, who recently praised President Donald Trump for his “political commitment and political leadership” saying he was “doing all he can,” spoke about the pandemic at a press conference on Thursday.
The 55-year-old Ethiopian politician expressed that he was “deeply concerned” about the “rapid escalation and global spread” of the virus.
“Over the past five weeks, we have witnessed a near exponential growth in the number of new cases, reaching almost every country, territory, and area,” he said.
“There’s been a deluge of fantastic, scientifically based, evidence-based publications coming in on a daily basis,” Tedros said.
“I think we need to be very careful also not to be profiling certain parts of the world as being non-cooperative or not transparent,” he added. “And we need to look at transparency across the board, and we need to look at solidarity across the board.”
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