torsdag 21. mai 2020

China could shape any result in its favor by putting off the WHO investigation until after the pandemic

As Xi Jinping prepared to address the World Health Assembly on Monday, it seemed like the Chinese leader might be in a vulnerable spot. More than 100 countries had signed onto a resolution calling for an independent probe into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic. While the language in the document was thoroughly diplomatic, and did not call out any particular country, it grew out of a push by Australia to look into China's own failures in the initial stage of the crisis, and went against Beijing's stated desire for any investigation to be run by the World Health Organization (WHO) itself. 

Chinese officials previously described Canberra's proposal as "highly irresponsible," and accused Australian officials of undermining global efforts against the virus. But when Xi addressed the annual meeting of WHO members, he took a more conciliatory tone: of course China was willing to support an investigation into the virus -- once the pandemic is over.