Donald Trump has officially kicked off the process to pull American funding from The World Health Organization.
The US president threatened to halt money being sent to the global health protection organisation in April because of the coronavirus outbreak.
President Trump, who was facing backlash for his handling of the pandemic in America, tried to shift the blame onto The WHO for allegedly not telling the rest of the world quick enough about the virus.
America is the largest single financial contributor to the organisation, giving around $400 million every year.
A State Department spokesperson has confirmed that President Trump has formally informed UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres that he has begun the US pullout.
It will come into effect by July next year, which leaves the move open to be repealed if he loses the federal election in November.
Trump's main rival, presumptive Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden, has already signalled he will overturn the ruling if he wins the White House.
"Americans are safer when America is engaged in strengthening global health. On my first day as President, I will rejoin the @WHO and restore our leadership on the world stage," the former vice president tweeted.
Upon news of the financial pullout, the President copped heavy criticism from opponents.
Senator Robert Menendez, the top democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, said: "To call Trump's response to COVID chaotic and incoherent doesn't do it justice .This won't protect American lives or interests -- it leaves Americans sick & America alone."
But Trump has stuck to his guns in blaming The WHO for the pandemic. In April, he said 'The WHO failed to obtain, vet and share information', and they 'failed to investigate credible reports in China'.
He continued: "They parroted and publicly endorsed the idea that there was not human to human transmission despite evidence to the contrary.
"Our countries are now experiencing - look all over the world - tremendous death and economic devastation because those tasked with protecting us by being truthful and transparent failed to do so. It would have been so easy to be truthful. And so much death has been caused by their mistakes.
"We will continue to engage with the WHO to see if it can make meaningful reforms. For the time being, we will redirect global health and directly work with others. All of the aid we send will be discussed at very powerful levels."
America has more coronavirus cases than anywhere else in the world, with 3.02 million out the 11.7 million global cases. More than 113,000 people have died and there are nearly two million active cases.
Florida recently set a record for a single-day infection case rise, with more than 11,000 tests coming back positive.
Featured Image Credit: PA
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read