Representative Chris Smith (R-NJ), a senior member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the chairman of the House Subcommittee on Global Health, Global Human Rights & International Organizations, claimed that there has been “far too little scrutiny” and “far too few questions asked” regarding the implications of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) “pandemic treaty” for the United States. Amid the WHO’s rush to finalize the wording of its so-called “treaty,” which will be put to a vote during the World Health Assembly meeting in May, Smith held a press conference on Monday.
Several experts joined Smith to draw attention to the severe problems with the “treaty,” such as the lack of openness during the negotiations, the WHO’s violation of American rights and sovereignty, the document’s extensive funding of abortion, and its favoritism toward China.
Among those who joined Smith were:
- Rep. Brad Wenstrup, DPM (R-OH), Chairman of the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic;
- Ambassador Andrew Bremberg, Former Permanent Representative of the United States to the European Office of the United Nations and President of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation;
- Dr. Monique Wubbenhost, OBGYN, global health expert, Senior Research Associate at the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture, and Former Senior Deputy Assistant Administrator in the Bureau for Global Health at the US Agency for International Development (USAID);
- Tony Perkins, President, Family Research Council
Smith used a report from UN News on January 22 to highlight the importance of the agreement’s potential effects on Americans, stating that “such agreements made between countries have legal standing and are binding.”
The congressman stated that the WHO’s agreement “is under consideration by the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB) in Geneva, who likely will present a final text on May 27th for a World Health Assembly vote.” He also noted that “far too little scrutiny has been given, far too few questions asked as to what this legally binding agreement or treaty means to health policy in the United States and elsewhere outside of the INB.”
As Smith pointed out, “an executive agreement bypassing Senate ratification would be an egregious mistake,” it is crucial to know if the Biden administration will present the so-called “treaty” to the U.S. Senate “for its constitutionally-required advice and consent as a prerequisite for ratification.”
The New Jersey representative further expressed his concern about some of the most grievous issues attached to the WHO’s agreement, including:
- The “billions of dollars U.S. taxpayers will be required to give according to Article 20 of the Agreement in ‘annual monetary contributions … to the WHO Pandemic Agreement.”
- Article 6 calls for the “continued provision of … essential health services,” which, Smith noted, includes abortion on demand.
“There is absolutely no ambiguity here,” Smith emphasized, adding that the WHO includes abortion in its list of essential health care services.
The WHO stated in November 2021 that “lack of access” to abortion “is a critical public health and human rights issue,” even though the majority of countries restrict and regulate abortion.
“Paragraph 13 of the Pandemic Agreement affirms the need to prioritize ‘equity and respect for human rights,’” Smith observed, but noted, “the WHO made clear that it construes the killing of unborn children by abortion—dismemberment, child beheading, and starvation, and that’s how the abortion pill works—to be a human right.”
The congressman noted that the WHO had even gone so far as to bestow “official relations with WHO” status on the pro-abortion International Planned Parenthood Federation and that the WHO executive board is “expected to vote in May to give another abortion-promoting organization – the Center for Reproductive Rights” the same status.
Article 18, which aims to “combat false, misleading, misinformation or disinformation,” was another point Smith brought up.
“Will there be any room for dissent on vaccines, therapeutics, virus transmission, and the like—especially among scientists and health professionals—or will groupthink again crowd out other viewpoints?” the congressman asked. “We have reason for concern—past could be prologue.”
UN News reports that Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of WHO, expressed concern to the executive board about the need to quickly resolve “several outstanding issues” to reach a consensus on the “treaty.”
“A failure to deliver the pandemic agreement and the International Health Regulations amendments will be a missed opportunity for which future generations may not forgive us,” he said.