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WHO chief: US had access to virus information ‘from day one’

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday hit back at US President Donald Trump's criticisms of the UN body's handling of the coronavirus, saying the White House had been informed "from day one."

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday hit back at US President Donald Trump’s criticisms of the UN body’s handling of the coronavirus, saying the White House had been informed “from day one.”

“There is nothing hidden from the US. From day one,” said UN health chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus at a press conference in Geneva.

He confirmed a report in The Washington Post on Sunday that US health experts had received ongoing information regarding the coronavirus situation in China from WHO representatives as it unfolded.

The US isn’t the only country with its own experts at the WHO: Other countries also have representatives, but that doesn’t mean they have an advantage over other countries. “We give our information to everyone,” he said, adding that it’s a prerequisite for prevention.

Trump has ordered a halt in payments to the WHO, after partially blaming the organization for the scale of coronavirus-related deaths and for what he says is an over-reliance on information from China.

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