Washington, DC – Today, the House of Representatives passed S.812, the Senate version of H.R. 1145, a bipartisan bill led by U.S. Representative Young Kim (CA-39) and Brad Sherman (CA-30) to restore Taiwan’s observer status in the World Health Organization.
This bill would direct the Secretary of State to implement a strategy to restore observer status for Taiwan in the WHO and the WHO’s decision-making body, the World Health Assembly (WHA). From 2009 until 2017, Taiwan had observer status until it was revoked due to pressure from the People’s Republic of China.
“Taiwan has proven time and time again to be a trusted ally of the United States and a world leader in global health security. However, they have been blocked by the Chinese government from contributing to vital collaboration the WHO. U.S. support for Taiwan is more important than ever as we see Chinese government officials eye an invasion of Taiwan amid the Russian Federation’s unprovoked war against a free and sovereign Ukraine,” said Kim. “I thank my colleagues for coming together in a bipartisan, bicameral manner to send a united message to Taiwan that we value their input in the WHO and that giving them a seat at the table benefits us all. A threat to freedom anywhere is a threat to freedom everywhere, and I will always to be an unwavering voice for global human rights and freedom.”
“Taiwan is a vital democratic ally of the United States and we must aggressively combat all efforts to isolate Taiwan from the international community and international organizations” said Congressman Sherman. “As the world continues to manage the COVID-19 pandemic, there has never been a more urgent time for Taiwan to have a voice at the World Health Organization – and H.R.1145 takes us one step closer to making that a reality. Whether it’s the World Health Organization, the U.N. climate change convention, or Interpol, we must continue fighting for Taiwan to have a seat at the table in all international organizations.”
The House version of S.812, H.R. 1145 has nearly 130 cosponsors including House Foreign Affairs Committee Ranking Member Michael McCaul (TX-10), Chair Gregory Meeks (NY-05), as well as Asia, the Pacific, Central Asia and Nonproliferation Subcommittee Ranking Member Steve Chabot (OH-01) and Chair Ami Bera (CA-07). The bill passed out of the Foreign Affairs Committee in March 2021.