Tagging China as 'non-transparent' should be avoided: WHO official
Updated 17:20, 02-Apr-2020

Asian countries including China are contributing "fantastic" scientifically based research publications about the COVID-19 outbreak "on a daily basis," and should not be tagged as "non-transparent," said Mike Ryan, executive director of the WHO's Health Emergencies Program.

"I think we need to be very careful not to be profiling certain parts of the world as being uncooperative or non-transparent. We need to look at transparency across the board. We need to look at solidarity across the board," he said during a media briefing on Wednesday.

He took an example of the information on virus shedding, saying he read reports on the topic from Germany, Singapore and the U.S., but China alone provided four reports.

"We thank all of those countries for sharing that early data with us," he added.

His comments refuted some media reports which accused China's figures on COVID-19 of being "opaque."

He also urged all countries to unite at this time to enhance cooperation.

At the end of the press conference, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted that this is the first ever pandemic caused by a new coronavirus. "There are many unknowns and that's why some of the things we didn't know may come today as known including the asymptomatic cases. Let's accept things with open mind and trust what's coming, but, of course, at the same time [stay] ready to verify."