Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton Thursday accused the World Health Organization of being "in the pocket of China" and slammed its chairman, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus as a "two-bit third-rate international bureaucrat" with a "well-deserved reputation for corruption."
"The president is right, that we need to condition future funding of the WHO on reforms going forward, transparency about the past, on the replacement of the leadership at the WHO, and the admission of Taiwan, at least as an observer to the WHO," the Arkansas Republican said on Fox News' "America's Newsroom."
"If we can't do that, then we're going to have to establish our own organization and invite members of the civilized world to join us using American standards of transparency and accountability."
Tedros, he also said, was a cabinet minister in Ethiopia at a time when China was "investing deeply there and bribing cabinet officials."
Wednesday, President Donald Trump criticized the agency's response to the coronavirus outbreak and threatened to withhold funding, and said the WHO favors China.
Tedros warned that politicizing the health crisis would result in "many more body bags," which Cotton said "disgusted" him.
"That's why Dr. Tedros needs to be fired (and) frankly needs to be investigated so we can find out just how deeply in China's pocket he is," he said.
The senator also complained that the WHO seems to be "more interested in politically correct appeasement of China, (by) calling the virus something besides what it should be called, which is the China virus or the Wuhan coronavirus than it was trying to get to the truth."
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