International community opposes Taiwan’s WHA participation, reaffirms One-China principle

The international community, echoing China’s stance, opposes Taiwan’s WHA participation, citing adherence to the one-China principle. Diplomatic tensions, UN Resolution 2758, cross-strait relations, global health governance, Taiwan’s exclusion.

The diplomatic arena is once again witnessing tensions as the question of Taiwan’s participation in the World Health Assembly (WHA) looms large. Recent statements from a Chinese representative underscore the stark opposition of the international community to Taiwan’s involvement in the upcoming WHA session, reigniting debates surrounding the island’s status and the adherence to the One-China principle.

Yang Zhilun, minister-counsellor of China’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations (UN) Office in Geneva, delivered a decisive message during a briefing on Saturday. He asserted that the overwhelming majority of nations have reasserted their commitment to UN General Assembly Resolution 2758 and their unwavering support for the One-China principle. This stance, backed by a significant portion of the global community, reinforces China’s position regarding Taiwan’s representation on international platforms.

The controversy surrounding Taiwan’s participation in global health forums has been a longstanding issue, reflecting the complex geopolitical dynamics of the region. Despite Taiwan’s considerable achievements in public health and its desire for meaningful participation in global health discussions, its exclusion from the WHA remains a contentious matter, largely influenced by diplomatic sensitivities surrounding its status.

In 1971, the UN General Assembly passed Resolution 2758, acknowledging the People’s Republic of China as “the only legitimate representative of China to the United Nations.” This resolution forms the basis of the One-China principle, which asserts that there is only one China in the world, and Taiwan is an inseparable part of China. As such, China insists on the sole representation of the Chinese nation in international organizations, including the WHO and its decision-making body, the WHA.

Taiwan’s exclusion from the WHA not only underscores the intricacies of cross-strait relations but also highlights broader geopolitical tensions in the Asia-Pacific region. As the global community grapples with pressing health challenges, including the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the need for international cooperation and solidarity is more crucial than ever. Yet, Taiwan’s absence from key decision-making forums raises questions about inclusivity and the effectiveness of global health governance mechanisms.