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Statement on Taiwan's Meaningful Participation in UN Specialized Agencies United States Mission to the United Nations September 17, 2008

OT0812E | Date: 2008-09-19

The General Committee of the United Nations (UN) today [Wednesday, September 17, 2008] considered Taiwan's participation in UN specialized agencies. The United States has long supported meaningful participation for Taiwan in these specialized agencies, including in the World Health Organization (WHO). Such participation would enable the international community to better address pressing global challenges.

Consistent with our one China policy, the United States supports Taiwan's membership in international organizations where statehood is not a prerequisite, including in the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum. When membership is not possible, we are strongly in favor of arrangements that will allow the people of Taiwan to participate meaningfully in the activities of international organizations. We do not support membership for Taiwan in organizations that require statehood such as the UN.

In the WHO, we strongly support Taiwan's observer status in the World Health Assembly (WHA), the supreme governing body of the WHO. We also support the involvement of experts from Taiwan in appropriate technical-level meetings. Without opportunities for participation in the WHO, Taiwan's 23 million inhabitants have only restricted access to health alerts and public health programs to which they have much to contribute, and from which they could and should benefit.

(This statement has been posted on the website of the U.S. Mission to the United Nations at )