ROC condemns WHA denial of press passes to Taiwan journalists

The ROC Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a press release May 22 expressing deep disappointment that Taiwanese journalists are being denied press passes for the 70th World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland. It called on WHO members and the international media to urge the WHO to respect freedom of the press and not prevent Taiwanese media from covering the meeting for political reasons.

The WHO is tasked with ensuring the health security of all humankind, and has a corresponding responsibility to protect the right to knowledge and freedom of speech. Its giving in to political pressure and restricting Taiwan’s press access to the assembly is a clear violation of a universal human right that the UN aims to embody. MOFA has asked the ROC’s diplomatic allies and other friendly nations to express profound concern to the WHO.

MOFA reiterated that the WHO should abide by its own constitution by working for the health of all human beings without distinction of race, religion, political belief, or economic or social condition. It should also safeguard freedom of the press by upholding the right of Taiwanese journalists to cover the WHA.