From Michael Nicholas
NEW YORK ( Reuters ) – China and the United States backed a UN Security Council draft resolution to tackle the Coronavirus pandemic on Thursday, but it was ” shocked and sorry ” that Washington changed its stance on Friday , a Chinese diplomat said ..
An American diplomat denied the statements and said that the United States did not agree with the text.
The fifteen Security Council members have been trying for more than six weeks to agree on a text that ultimately aims to support a call by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on March 23 for a ceasefire in global conflicts so that the world can focus on the pandemic.
But talks have stalled due to a confrontation between China and the United States over whether to mention the World Health Organization . Diplomats said that Washington does not want such a reference and China insisted that the decision should include this, while some other members see that the reference or not to the WHO is a marginal issue..
Washington halted funding Health Organization after he accused President Donald Trump too much focus on China and encourage ” disinformation ” China virus outbreak on Corona , which is denied by the organization.
The Security Council appeared to have reached a compromise late on Thursday, according to diplomats, and according to the latest version of a French-Tunisian draft resolution..
They added that, instead of mentioning the health organization by name, the draft referred to ” specialized health agencies .” But the United States rejected the wording on Friday because it is a clear signal to the World Health Organization.
He said the Chinese diplomat , who spoke on Saturday on condition of anonymity that ” the United States agreed to the compromise text and change its position is shocking and unfortunate“.
He added that China supported the draft resolution.
The US diplomat, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, said that the United States did not agree with the text that the US mission to the United Nations sent to Washington for review on Thursday..
Diplomats said Beijing and Washington have raised the possibility of their use during the negotiations , the right of veto ( veto ) over the issue of the reference to WHO.
Approval of any draft resolution requires the support of nine Security Council members and the non-use of a veto by France, Russia, Britain, the United States, or China.