(NEW YORK POST) – Ireland plans to quadruple its contributions to the World Health Organization after President Trump’s suspension of US funding amid the global coronavirus pandemic, officials said Thursday.
The country will raise funding to more than $10 million next year, pending a review, according to Simon Coveney, Ireland’s Tanaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade.
“#Ireland strongly supports @WHO in efforts to coordinate a global response to combat #COVID19. So many countries rely on @UN expertise and capacity to save lives. Ireland is quadrupling our normal annual financial contribution to @WHO for 2020 to €9.5 million,” Coveney said on Twitter.
The announcement came after Trump said he will instruct his administration to halt funding while reviewing WHO’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis, saying the group failed to report accurate information from China during the outbreak’s early days.
Coveney later criticized Trump’s decision to halt funding as “indefensible” in the “midst of global pandemic.”
Ireland’s Health Minister Simon Harris also tweeted, “Any effort to undermine its [WHO’s] work is dangerous, illogical & harmful.”
Overall, the US is the largest contributor to the WHO, contributing about $553 million of the group’s $6 billion budget last year.