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Government to respond to WHA invite issue: health minister
Publish Date: 2017/05/08
Update Date: 2017/05/08
Taipei, May 7 (CNA) Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung said Sunday that the government is set to hold a press conference the next day to explain its response measures if Taiwan does not receive an invitation to attend the annual World Health Assembly (WHA) after the deadline for online registration for this year's session ends that day.

This year, the World Health Assembly (WHA), an annual meeting of the decision-making body of the World Health Organization (WHO), will take place May 22-31 in Geneva, but Taiwan has yet to receive an invitation from the WHO Secretariat.

Since 2009, Taiwan has attended as an observer with the name Chinese Taipei under an agreement between the government of then-President Ma Ying-jeou, the government in Beijing and the WHO.

However, due to a cooling of cross-Taiwan Strait relations after President Tsai Ing-wen took office in May 2016, Taiwan last year received an invitation to the summit shortly before the deadline for online registration ended.

For the first time since 2009, the invitation for Taiwan to attend the WHA last year sparked controversy because it mentioned U.N. Resolution 2758, WHA Resolution 25.1 and the "one China" principle underlying the two documents.

Also Sunday, the Taiwan United Nations Alliance (TAIUNA) announced that it will hold a press conference Monday to outline its plans to send a promotional team to Geneva on May 19 to lobby for Taiwan's entry into the WHO ahead of the international body's general assembly.

Following past practice, the TAIUNA team will continue to promote Taiwan's bid for membership of the WHO near the venue of the WHA this year by distributing leaflets, a spokesman for the team said. 
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