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Taiwan's top health official meets U.S. counterpart

2012/05/22 12:27:37

Geneva, May 21 (CNA) Health Minister Chiu Wen-ta expressed appreciation for the United States' support for Taiwan's greater participation in World Health Organization (WHO) activities during a meeting with his American counterpart in Geneva Monday.

Chiu, who is heading Taiwan's delegation at the annual meeting of the World Health Assembly (WHA), met with Kathleen Sebelius, head of the Department of Health and Human Services, on the first day of the May 21-26 conference.

Sebelius reaffirmed that the U.S. will continue to support Taiwan's participation in the WHA as an observer and that such participation should be normalized by allowing it to take part in more WHO activities, in line with a recent State Department report.

Chiu said he expressed Taiwan's appreciation for U.S. support on behalf of President Ma Ying-jeou and invited Sebelius to attend an international health forum in Taipei this November.

The State Department's report, published in late April, expressed concern about the WHO's apparent lack of transparency in deciding Taiwan's designation in the world health body.

It said that the WHO did not have any discussion with its members before deciding to refer to Taiwan as a "province of China" instead of "Chinese Taipei."

Taiwan's health minister did not have any contact with his Chinese counterpart, Chen Zhu, on the first day of the meeting.

(By Tsao Yu-fan and Lilian Wu)