Trump slams NYTimes for fake news on United States role in breastfeeding proposal

Pauline Gross
July 10, 2018

The hundreds of delegates in attendance expected an effortless approval of the resolution by the World Health Assembly, which is the decision-making body of WHO.

Health advocates scrambled to find another sponsor for the resolution, but at least a dozen countries, majority poor nations in Africa and Latin America, backed off, citing fears of retaliation, according to officials from Uruguay, Mexico and the United States.

"The failing NY Times Fake News story today about breast feeding must be called out", the president tweeted.

Although the USA and many other countries promote a "breast is best" policy, many mothers are unable to breastfeed for a variety of reasons like medical challenges, insufficient maternity leave, or inability to afford time away from work often required for exclusive breastfeeding. Many women need this option because of malnutrition and poverty, ' he wrote on Twitter on Monday.

The US directed its ire at Ecuador when the South American nation agreed to introduce the resolution.

At the United Nations World Health Assembly this spring officials from the United States held up a resolution created to promote breastfeeding by attempting to remove specific language according to the New York Times.

Threats to end vital USA military aid and punishing trade measures forced the Ecuador delegates to drop out.

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"We recognize not all women are able to breastfeed for a variety of reasons", it added, saying they should have "full information about safe alternatives".

World Health Organization representatives when those initiatives were first introduced by a delegation from Ecuador, the New York Times reported on 8 July 2018. The Ecuadorian delegates acquiesced, and health advocates struggled to find another sponsor for the resolution.

The State Department declined to comment. Infant formula companies "use aggressive, clandestine and often illegal methods to target mothers in the poorest parts of the world to encourage them to choose powdered milk over breastfeeding", the report said. According to the Times, the saga shows how the Trump administration backs corporations over the public good and how the Trump administration is disrupting the rules-based order. "At what point do they start laughing at us as a country?"

Russian Federation ultimately sponsored the resolution and the American delegation did not issue any threats to the country. Nevertheless, the USA delegation sought to wear down the other participants through procedural maneuvers in a series of meetings that stretched on for two days, an unexpectedly long period.

The World Health Assembly at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva.

The Times notes a 2016 series in the Lancet in which researchers estimated that universal breastfeeding could spare the lives of 823,000 children each year and save $302 billion in economic losses.

In a 2011 deposition, he became enraged when lawyer Elizabeth Beck asked for a break to pump breast milk for her infant daughter.

Other reports by GizPress

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