US President Donald Trump said Saturday that he is considering taking part of the funding back to the World Health Organization (WHO), after freezing contributions to the body in April.
“This is one of the numerous concepts being considered under which we would pay 10% of what we have been paying for many years, putting ourselves at the level of much lower payments in China,” Trump said on his Twitter account.
“I have not yet made a final decision. All funds are frozen,” added the president from the Camp David (Maryland) presidential residence outside Washington, where he spends the weekend.
The United States canceled its contributions to the WHO after Trump directly criticized the agency’s actions in managing the coronavirus crisis and said it had “caused many deaths.”
The US, the largest taxpayer to date, contributes between 400 and 500 million dollars annually to the WHO, among its mandatory and voluntary contributions Trump has also accused the WHO of bowing to pressure from China.
This Friday, the president announced the “Operation at Ultrafast Speed”, as he has baptized the initiative, with the aim of having a coronavirus vaccine ready by the end of the year.
“We are working under the assumption that we will have a vaccine in the relatively near future,” Trump said at a White House press conference with the team tasked with leading the task.
The United States, the current focus of the pandemic, reached this Friday the figure of 1,442,924 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 87,493 deaths, according to the independent count by Johns Hopkins University.
New York State remains the great epicenter of the pandemic in the United States with 345,813 confirmed cases and 27,841 deaths, a figure similar to that of France and Spain and only below the United Kingdom and Italy.