Dear Ms ｘｘｘ,
Thank you for your email dated 13 May 2008 to the Rt Hon David Miliband about Taiwan's application for membership of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and for observer status at the World Health Assembly (WHA). I have been asked to reply.
The UK government agrees that one of the fundamental rights of every human being is to have the highest attainable standards of health available to them and the UK government is committed to making this a priority around the globe.
Further more, we agree that Taiwan's absence from systems for co-ordination of international health issues is undesirable. In common with our EU partners, we hope the WHO will adopt practical measures to allow Taiwan to participate in its activities.
We do not believe that supporting Taiwan's bid for observer status of the World Health Assembly would bring any practical benefit. On the contrary, we see it as a largely political move which simply serves to impede the practical solution we all want. Taiwan's effective participation can only be achieved with the agreement of all WHO members, including China.
We and the EU have been supportive of attempts to find a workable solution and will continue to work for this, including by exploring more practical approaches with the new Taiwanese administration.
Martin Barber I East Asia Regional Team
Far Eastern Group I Foreign & Commonwealth Office I King Charles Street I London SW1A 2AH
(Tel: +44 (0)20 7008 1795 I (FTN: 8008 1795 I 2 Fax: +44 (0)20 7008 3669 I :www.fco.gov.uk
﹦﹦﹦﹦﹦ 午後的補充 ﹦﹦﹦﹦﹦
Dear Mr. Barber,
Thank you for your letter. And I appreciate that you take the time to reply even though Taiwan's bid for WHA observer status has been rejected again this year. It simply saddens me that the WHA has yet again ignored the basic human right the 23 millions Taiwanese people deserve.
In your letter, you described the Taiwan bid as a 'political move'. I am strongly offended by that statement. The WHO is a political organization, and the reason Taiwan is not in it, is a result of China's 'political moves' to oppress Taiwan on the international stage. Of all parties concerned, it is the WHA that allows politics to interfere with the issue of basic human rights.
In the 2005 WHO International Health Regulations, issued after the SARS epidemic, it stipulates that health is a basic human right and any unity should not be excluded from it. The US, Japan and EU parliament has been supportive of Taiwan's bid to the WHO. Taiwan, on the other hand, has proven itself to be a valuable member in the global health community -- ranking second healthiest country in the world in 2000, pumping out international collaborated health research articles faster than the world trend, and providing medical aids in Latin America, north India, south Pacific island countries and Africa.
Although Taiwan has been rejected by the WHA this year, it is my sincere hope the the UK will take the welfare of the 23 millions people to heart and support Taiwan in our next bid. And yes, it will be another 'political move' by the Taiwanese government and people, but also a move for the benefit and welfare of a healthier global community.