Tuesday 26 April 2016

The WHO's Dictatorship World Tour

DG of the WHO Margaret Chan, all of a flutter in Moscow 2014
Following a jolly bash in Putin's gay-hating, airliner-destroying Russia in 2014, it appears the world's anti-smoking industry has found another place where they feel very much amongst friends.
THE Department of Health will send two officials to a nanny state anti-smoking conference in Turkmenistan tomorrow despite the country being run by a mad dictator, The Sun can reveal. 
In recent years the cultist leaders of the former Soviet state have imprisoned thousands of political opponents, banned the foreign press and also banned ballet, beards and even dogs.
To the tobacco control industry, these guys could almost be cousins, so I can see the appeal.
Turkmenistan’s President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov uses the title “Arkadag” or “Protector”.
Whereas Margaret Chan just calls him "my next squeeze".
[The respected Human Rights Watch group say] “The government thoroughly denies freedoms of association, expression, and religion, and the country is closed to independent scrutiny.”
Sounds rather like a World Health Organisation FCTC event, doesn't it?

I wonder where the global anti-smoking Goliath might arrange a beano next? I hear there are some interesting characters in Libya and Iraq whose views on smoking are right up tobacco control's street.

Anyway, despite the UK government describing Turkmenistan's human rights record as "of significant concern", Andrew Black's Department of Health team is delighted to attend and are even touting some plus points.
Last night the Department of Health defended sending their staff to the repressive state, as the tickets and hotel will be paid for by the World Health Organisation. 
“Our officials’ travel, accommodation and subsistence is being paid for by the WHO, at no cost to the British taxpayer.”
At no cost to the taxpayer? What, you mean apart from the £3.6 million of taxpayer cash the DoH has already shovelled to the WHO ... just so they can then use some of it to pay for hotels and travel for a DoH delegation in a basket case nation run by a raving lunatic? Wouldn't that be called money laundering in any other sphere?

Isn't it interesting that whenever tobacco control is mentioned, anywhere in the world, it always involves corruption and someone lying to the public.

UPDATE: Via @AgentAnia, here is a WHO dictatorship tour venue that I missed from last week.

Zimbabwe, eh?

Such a wazzock, isn't he?

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