The head of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanon Ghebreyesus, has criticised the coverage of the war in Ukraine, calling it racist. He argued that other parts of the world are also facing crises but they are not being given equal consideration because those people are “not white”.
He cited emergencies in Ethiopia, Yemen and Syria, but noted that very little humanitarian aid had been sent to these countries.
Mr Ghebreyesus said that he can experience a bias in this world when more attention is being given to Russia-Ukraine war but other countries in need of help are not getting the same attention.
“I need to be blunt and honest that the world is not treating the human race the same way,” the WHO chief, who is from Ethiopia, said.
Mr Ghebreyesus then questioned if the world gives “equal attention to Black and white lives”. “Some are more equal than others. And when I say this, it pains me. Because I see it. Very difficult to accept, but it’s happening,” he added.
The remarks were in reference to the ongoing civil war in his hometown in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, which has been overtaken by Eritrean and Ethiopian forces. The civil war in Tigray is the longest in modern history.
Since a truce was declared in Tigray three weeks ago, very little aid has reached there.
When Russia launched the offensive against Ukraine in February, many social media users had slammed the coverage of the event by television channels.
Twitter users slammed the choice of words used in the television prorgammes, which dubbed the attack as “unthinkable” because “European people with blue eyes and blonde hair are being killed”.