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The war in Ukraine at the heart of the World Health Assembly – World


The war in Ukraine “with devastating consequences” will weigh on the discussions of the 194 member countries of the WHO this week in an attempt to build a reform of the global health system, whose shortcomings are laid bare by the interminable pandemic of Covid-19. “The consequences of this war are devastating, in terms of health, on the populations, on the establishments and on the health personnel, who are targeted”, denounced in a video message the French President Emmanuel Macron, from the start. opening of the World Health Assembly in Geneva.

He called on members to adopt on Tuesday a resolution initiated by Ukraine, which denounces the attacks perpetrated by Moscow on the health system but also the serious consequences of the invasion on food in many countries. If the text strongly condemns Russia, it does not provide “in any case for expulsion”, argued a Western diplomat.

Many countries believe that health cooperation is a separate area that should be preserved. This war “does not make us forget that many other emergencies, on the rest of the planet, must continue to mobilize us. The pandemic in the first place”, underlined the Head of State.

Reappointment of WHO director general despite hiccups

The renewal for five years of the director general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is acquired despite the hitches that marked his first term, such as his attitude deemed too conciliatory towards China at the start of covid-19. The general manager was also attacked for reacting too slowly to the scandal of sexual exploitation of certain employees. But without a rival and with the support of the heavyweights of the organization, the first African director general of the WHO will be able to continue his work.

France, which presented its candidacy with Germany, “gives him its confidence to continue the transformation of the WHO in the coming years”, recalled President Macron.

The covid has exposed the weaknesses of the organization

The Covid-19 pandemic has laid bare what is not working in the global health system. The Assembly will therefore look into revamping the International Health Regulations (IHR), to enable a more effective and rapid response to health emergencies.

In the same vein, the Assembly should decide on the creation of a Standing Committee on Emergencies stemming from the WHO Executive Board and activating within 24 hours in the event of a health emergency of international concern the highest level of alert of WHO.

At the same time, work has been launched on a new international agreement on global health, which for its supporters should be binding, and could complement the RSI.

The cases of monkey pox raise the specter of a new large-scale crisis worrying the health authorities.



letelegramme Fr Trans

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