Taxpayer Groups Call on UN’s Anti-Tobacco Convention to Allow Media Coverage


Taxpayer advocacy groups around the globe are calling on the World Health Organization to open this week’s anti-tobacco convention in New Delhi, India, to the news media.

Since the proceedings could not take place without taxpayer funding, journalists should not be prohibited from covering public policy deliberations that could have significant ramifications for taxpayers, the advocates argue in a letter to WHO’s director-general and delegates of the World Health Assembly.

Instead, the World Health Organization should “operate in a more fiscally responsible, more transparent manner and strive to become a leader in promoting press freedom,” the coalition of taxpayer advocacy groups say in the letter, a copy of which was obtained by The Daily Signal.

WHO was founded in 1945 as an arm of the United Nations to help alleviate sickness and promote health across the globe.

The fact that the U.N. hosts World Press Freedom Day while banning journalists from the events of an affiliated organization is “hypocritical and despicable,” one American reporter told The Daily Signal.

In 2003, WHO used its authority under the U.N. to create a treaty called the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control to “protect present and future generations from the devastating health, social, environmental and economic consequences …read more