WHO backs Australia’s call for independent virus inquiry.
Australia’s push for an independent inquiry into the coronavirus pandemic has been vindicated globally with widespread backing of the probe, including from China.
More than 110 countries at the World Health Assembly on Monday night backed a resolution calling for an impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation of the international response to the pandemic.
Health Minister Greg Hunt says the probe needs to protect against the health risks of wildlife wet markets and include all populations or partners.
“We need to learn the lessons from this pandemic and ensure we have the strongest possible global health architecture, with an enhanced ability to prevent and respond to future outbreaks,” he told the assembly.
WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus promised a review would come “at the earliest appropriate moment”.
US President Donald Trump supported the probe by retweeting an AAP Newswire/SBS story on the motion.
We are with them! https://t.co/H7DRHXPJYb
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2020
Chinese President Xi Jinping also backed a WHO-led review and said his country had acted with “openness and transparency and responsibility” all along.
But his comments came as China’s commerce ministry announced all Australian barley imports would be slapped with tariffs totalling 80.5 per cent from Tuesday.