U.S. President Donald Trump has received global condemnation over his decision to halt funding for the World Health Organization (WHO) over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
He said that the WHO must be held accountable for its delay in dealing with the coronavirus, and turning a blind eye to China's "disinformation" about the virus that likely led to a wider outbreak.
Global reaction to Trump's move was fast, as many world countries and organizations condemned the US president's decision.
The European Union,
The European Union (EU) slammed Trump's decision to halt funding to the WHO, saying it was unjustified during the coronavirus pandemic.
"Deeply regret U.S. decision to suspend funding to WHO. There is no reason justifying this move at a moment when their efforts are needed more than ever," EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Twitter.
On Wednesday, Germany denounced the US decision to suspend payments to the WHO, as Foreign Minister Heiko Maas warned against "blaming others" for the coronavirus crisis.
"Blaming others won't help. The virus knows no borders," Maas wrote on Twitter.
China said that it was “seriously concerned” about the US decision, urging Washington to fulfill its obligations during the coronavirus crisis.
“China is seriously concerned about the US announcement to suspend funding for the WHO,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told a regular press briefing.
A senior Russian official condemned the US President's decision to freeze on funding for the WHO, describing it as selfish response to the global coronavirus pandemic.
"It is a sign of the very selfish approach of the US authorities to what is happening in the world due to the pandemic," he added.
"Such a blow to this organisation just when the international community is looking towards it... is a step worthy of condemnation and every reproach," the diplomat said.
He said Russia is urging the US to "cease further attacks on the WHO and take a responsible course."
Ireland’s Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said that Trump's decision was “indefensible.”
“This is indefensible decision, in midst of global pandemic. So many vulnerable populations rely on WHO — deliberately undermining funding and trust now is shocking. Now is a time for global leadership and unity to save lives, not pision and blame!” he tweeted.
Nearly 2 million people globally have been infected and more than 124,000 have died since the disease emerged in China late last year, according to a Reuters tally.
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said it was not the time to reduce resources for the WHO.
"Now is the time for unity and for the international community to work together in solidarity to stop this virus and its shattering consequences," he said in a statement.
The United States is the biggest overall donor to the WHO, contributing more than $400 million in 2019, roughly 15% of its budget.