WHO Fails to Finalize Global Pandemic Treaty

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WHO Fails to Finalize Global Pandemic Treaty
No Agreement Reached on Pandemic Response Framework

The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that it failed to secure a global pandemic treaty after two years of intense negotiations. The proposed treaty aimed to establish a unified international response to future pandemics, but negotiations were hindered by significant disagreements among member states.

Roland Driece, co-chair of WHO’s negotiating board for the agreement, confirmed that countries could not reach a consensus. The final draft was expected to be presented at the upcoming World Health Assembly in Geneva, starting Monday, but key issues remained unresolved.

“We are not where we hoped we would be when we started this process,” Driece stated. He emphasized the critical need for a binding international agreement to enhance global pandemic preparedness and response.

Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, maintained optimism despite the setback. “This is not a failure,” he said. “We will try everything — believing that anything is possible — and make this happen because the world still needs a pandemic treaty.”

Negotiations have stalled primarily due to disagreements over intellectual property rights, the sharing of pathogen data, and equitable access to vaccines and medical technologies. Countries in the Global South have demanded more equitable access to these resources, while high-income countries have been reluctant to make concessions.

U.S. Republican senators recently voiced their concerns, arguing that the draft treaty would undermine intellectual property rights and overly empower WHO. They urged President Biden not to sign the agreement in its current form.

Thank goodness our enemies are incompetent.

The House Freedom Caucus sent Biden a letter demanding he stand against the W.H.O.’s push for a “global pandemic treaty.”

The House Freedom Caucus sent Biden a letter demanding he stand against the W.H.O.’s push for a “global pandemic treaty.”

Precious Matsoso, another co-chair of WHO’s negotiating board, acknowledged the challenges but remained hopeful. “We will make sure that this happens, because when the next pandemic hits, it will not spare us,” she said.

The ongoing negotiations underscore the complexity of achieving global consensus on health policies, especially when national interests and global equity are at stake.

For further details, you can read the full articles from AP News and Politico on the recent developments.