Secret Meetings at the WHO

The International Health Regulations Review Committee is holding secret meetings this week to discuss the proposed amendments to the IHR that have been submitted by 14 member nations.

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Yes, the proposed “Pandemic Treaty” is of serious concern, but it also (again) appears to be acting like a sophisticated decoy.

The WHO is actively working to adopt amendments to the International Health Regulations.

The following 14 nations have secretly submitted proposals for amendments to the IHR. Four of the nations submitted proposals on behalf of multiple other nations.

  1. Armenia
  2. Bangladesh
  3. Brazil
  4. Czech Republic on behalf of the Member States of the European Union
  5. Eswantini on behalf of the WHO African Region Member States
  6. India
  7. Indonesia
  8. Japan
  9. Namibia
  10. New Zealand
  11. Russian Federation on behalf of the Member States of the Eurasian Economic Union
  12. Switzerland
  13. United States of America
  14. Uruguay on behalf of MERCOSUR.


These documents (proposed amendments to the IHR) are currently NOT publicly available. (If you uncover these documents, please share them with me A.S.A.P.) The proposals were to have been submitted by September 30, 2022. Then they were to have been shared with all 194 member nations A.S.A.P.

It appears that NO public comment is planned.

The newly formed International Health Regulations Review Committee is meeting “privately” this week to discuss proposed amendments to the IHR.

YOU and I were not invited.

The WHO has recently created a VERY CONTROVERSIAL “IHR Review Committee” to PRIVATELY deal with these potentially disparate submissions. It is feared that this is an attempt to hijack the negotiation process. By definition, the Review Committee meetings are “private.”

For those who have eyes to see, and are able to read between the lines, I believe that the recent actions taken by the WHO (and documented below) are highly inappropriate and potentially incendiary.



Rule 1

The meetings of expert committees shall normally be of a private character. They cannot become public except by the express decision of the committee with the full agreement of the Director-General.

4.6 In the exercise of their functions, the members of expert advisory panels and committees shall act as international experts serving the Organization exclusively; in that capacity they may not request or receive instructions from any government or authority external to the Organization.

4.12 For each meeting an expert committee shall draw up a report setting forth its findings, observations and recommendations. This report shall be completed and approved by the expert committee before the end of its meeting.

4.13 The Director-General may direct to the attention of the chairman of an expert committee any statement of opinion in its report that might be considered prejudicial to the best interests of the Organization or of any Member State. The chairman of the committee may, at his discretion, delete such statement from the report, with or without communicating with members of the expert committee.

October 24-28, 2022: (IHRRC)

Face-to-face meeting (5 days, Geneva, Switzerland), with, a one day meeting, on 26 October 2022, with Member States, United Nations and its specialized agencies and other relevant intergovernmental organizations or nongovernmental organizations in official relations with WHO, in accordance with Article 51.2 of the IHR, which will also include presentations of rationale for amendments proposed by States Parties, and, if needed, additional discussions of the IHR Amendments RC with each State Party that has proposed amendments;

CLICK HERE to learn how YOU can help uncover these secret proposals



You may have already heard about the World Health Organization’s proposed “Pandemic Treaty.” Please be aware that, while the proposed “Pandemic Treaty” is a clear and present danger to both fundamental individual freedoms as well as the sovereignty of nations around the world, the proposed “Pandemic Treaty” also functions as a decoy that is designed to distract your attention away from the quietly proposed amendments to the existing International Health Regulations (IHR).

I have written extensively over the past year (see the list of articles below) about the attempts of the Biden administration to quietly get the World Health Assembly to adopt amendments to the IHR. We, the people of the world, won that battle!

IMHO, these secretly proposed amendments to the International Health Regulations are more of an immediate threat to our freedoms and sovereignty than the proposed “Pandemic Treaty.”

The International Health Regulations are already existing international law. While they really are NOT very powerful, the IHR is commonly accepted as legally binding international law.

The World Health Organization sees the opportunity to amend these existing laws in order to seize more authority and power.

It is easier to amend existing law than to create, adopt and approve a new treaty.

For the proposed “Pandemic Treaty” to be adopted, the World Health Assembly would need to achieve a 2/3 majority (130 out of 194 member nations). Then, for the proposed “Pandemic Treaty” to come into full effect, each of the 194 member nations would ALSO need to adopt it according to their nation’s rules (2/3 vote of the Senate, for instance) and enact legislation to bring each nation’s laws into agreement with the “treaty.” If the Senate, or the Parliament of any given nation failed to agree to approve or ratify the treaty, then the nation would not be bound by any such treaty.

However, in order to adopt amendments to the IHR, the World Health Assembly only needs to achieve a simple majority (98 out of 194 member nations). Additionally, the real danger of the proposed amendments to the IHR is far more immediate than the proposed “Pandemic Treaty” because, once amendments are adopted by the World Health Assembly, each member nation is ASSUMED to have already agreed to the amendments unless they muster the political will to reject the amendments as detailed in Article 61 of the IHR. The member nations do NOT need to go through the process of formally adopting any amendments.

SIMPLY STATED: The path to approving amendments to the existing International Health Regulations is much easier than the path to a completely new “Pandemic Treaty.”

In the case of a proposed “Pandemic Treaty,” a government could easily delay and simply ignore the treaty, but in the case of amendments that had been adopted by the World Health Assembly, each nation would be ASSUMED to accept them unless the people rise up and force their government to pro-actively reject the amendments.

It would be a huge mistake to wait until the amendments have been adopted and it is too late to stop them.

IMHO, it will be much easier, and far more prudent, to rise up now and take control of this process before it has a chance to get started, gain momentum and get out of control.


The combined timeline of the Working Group for Amendments to the International Health Regulations (WGIHR) and the International Health Regulations Amendments Review Committee (IHRRC) is below:

September 30, 2022: (IHRRC)

Deadline for the submission of proposed amendments to the IHR from member nations.

October 1, 2022: (IHRRC)

Deadline for the Director General to convene the IHR Amendments Review Committee.

October 6, 2022: (IHRRC)

Closed virtual meeting to elect Chair, Vice-Chair, and Rapporteur of the IHR Amendments RC, and define the Methods of Work;

October 24-28, 2022: (IHRRC)

Face-to-face meeting (5 days, Geneva, Switzerland), with, a one day meeting, on 26 October 2022, with Member States, United Nations and its specialized agencies and other relevant intergovernmental organizations or nongovernmental organizations in official relations with WHO, in accordance with Article 51.2 of the IHR, which will also include presentations of rationale for amendments proposed by States Parties, and, if needed, additional discussions of the IHR Amendments RC with each State Party that has proposed amendments;

November 14-15: (WGIHR)

First meeting of the WGIHR

November 16-17, 2022: (IHRRC)

Closed virtual working meeting;

November 28 – December 2, 2022: (IHRRC)

Face-to-face meeting (5 days, Geneva, Switzerland) for report drafting purposes, with, at least, one day meeting with Member States, United Nations and its specialized agencies and other relevant intergovernmental organizations or nongovernmental organizations in official relations with WHO, the Bureau of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB), and the WGIHR;

December 5-7, 2022 (INB)

Third meeting of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body scheduled to reveal the “Conceptual Zero Draft.”

December 15-16, 2022: (IHRRC)

Closed virtual working meeting;

January 9-13, 2023: (IHRRC)

Face-to-face meeting (5 days, Geneva, Switzerland) for finalization of the report, with, at least, one day meeting with Member States, United Nations and its specialized agencies and other relevant intergovernmental organizations or nongovernmental organizations in official relations with WHO, the Bureau of the INB, and the WGIHR.

January 15, 2023

WGIHR is scheduled to submit amendments to the Director General of the WHO.

May 2023

The WHO consistently claims that their goal is to consider these amendments at the 77th World Health Assembly in May 2024, but the amendments COULD be voted on by the 76th World Health Assembly in May 2023.

The sole [official] purpose of the International Health Regulations Review Committee (IHRRC) is to provide technical recommendations to the Director-General on amendments proposed by State Parties to the IHR, as decided by the Health Assembly in Decision WHA75(9).



These “technocratic rulers” have been put in the position of deciding the fate of the future of the world and everyone in it.


I suggest that you send every member of the IHRRC an email on a daily basis, requesting copies of the documents (proposed amendments to the International Health Regulations) that were submitted by the 14 nations until We the People receive access to this hidden information.

Do NOT expect a reply, but if you do receive a reply, please share it in the comments below.





Patrick Omwanda Amoth


Acting Director General for Health, Ministry of Health, Nairobi, Kenya


Dr. Patrick Amoth is the Director General for Health in the Ministry of Health, Kenya as well as the immediate former Chair of the World Health Organization’s Executive Board.

A consultant obstetrician and gynecologist of immense repute, Dr. Amoth previously headed the Directorate of Public Health at the Ministry, where he spearheaded strategy development for effective delivery of health services in all the 47 counties in Kenya and was centrally involved in the inception and alignment of Universal Health Coverage for the country. Dr. Amoth headed the technical management of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country, serving as a member of the Multi-Agency National Emergency and Response Committee on Coronavirus pandemic in Kenya as well as co-chairing the Ministry of Health COVID-19 Management Taskforce. He currently chairs the Kenya’s National Taskforce on the response to Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).

Dr. Amoth’s has had expansive experience in Kenya’s Civil Service having risen from a Medical Officer Intern at a Provincial Hospital before becoming the Medical Superintendent in the Country Referral Hospital. Dr. Amoth is credited with having had excellent managerial skills as well as robust and successful resource mobilization skills that he put in use while working as the District Medical Officer for Health, initiating various programs, and revolutionizing infrastructural improvement of most hospitals that were under his area of management.

Dr. Patrick Amoth is a graduate of the University of Nairobi’s Medical School and has a Masters in Obstetrics and Gynecology from the same university. He also holds a Diploma in Health Systems Management form Galilee College in Israel.


H.E. Ambassador Juan José Gómez Camacho


Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Institute, School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, Washington DC, United States of America


Ambassador Juan José Gómez-Camacho is a senior fellow and member of the teaching faculty of the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Foreign Policy Institute, School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, United States of America SAIS’ Foreign Policy Institute, as well as a member of the teaching faculty of SAIS.

He holds a Bachelor Degree in Law from Iberoamericana University in Mexico City and an LLM from Georgetown University in Washington D.C. He joined the Mexican Foreign Service in 1988.

During his 30 years of diplomatic career, he has gained vast experience and has played a key role in addressing emerging global challenges, both political and economic. Most significantly, he led negotiations on what today is known as the Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Framework, a global deal between countries, the pharmaceutical industry, laboratories and civil society to ensure greater coordination and coherence in responding to future global pandemics; and, along with the Swiss Ambassador to the UN, he led the drafting and negotiations of the UN Global Compact for a safe, orderly and regular migration adopted in December 2018. He launched discussions between Member States and introduced into the UN Agenda the impact of Artificial Intelligence and Exponential Technological Change.

Ambassador Gómez-Camacho is one of the most senior and experienced Mexican diplomats. He served as Ambassador of Mexico to Canada starting in 2019; Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations from February 2016 to February 2019; Ambassador to the European Union as well as to the Kingdom of Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (2013-2016); Permanent Representative of Mexico to the Office of the UN and other International Organizations based in Geneva, Switzerland (2009-2013), as well as Ambassador to the Republic of Singapore and to the Union of Myanmar and the Sultanate of Brunei Darussalam (2006-2009).

Additionally, Ambassador Gómez-Camacho has written and co-authored a considerable number of articles on a range of issues related to Foreign Policy and International Law.


Clare Wenham

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Associate Professor of Global Health Policy, Department of Health Policy, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, United Kingdom


Dr Clare Wenham is Associate Professor of Global Health Policy. She is the Director of the MSc in Global Health Policy and sits on the steering committee of the LSE Global Health Initiative. Clare is an interdisciplinary health policy/international relations academic, with research that also contributes to public policy and public health through an empirical focus on global health security. Her research explores the preparation for and response to epidemics by state and non-state actors, the political challenges of this multi-stakeholder landscape and the effects of epidemic mitigation policies.

Clare’s work focuses on the politics of infectious disease preparedness and response. Her research includes critical analysis of financing mechanisms, increasing convergence of global health security with universal health coverage, novel infectious disease surveillance methods, the role of the WHO, contextualising the structure of global health governance during Ebola as a point of failure, and the risk of “over-securitizing” health. She has also explored theoretically how international relations can contribute to resolving issues caused by COVID-19 and how feminist theory can contribute to disease governance. This has led to policy engagement with the WHO, UK Cabinet Office, for the European Union.  At the national level, Clare has used empirical case studies to understand how different governments approach infectious disease control, with notable studies focused on Panama, Cuba, Thailand and the UK.

A second area of her research is the gendered impact of epidemic policy, where she considers how the gender neutrality of global health security policy differentially affects women. She has used empirical case studies from Zika, with a particular concentration on access to sexual and reproductive health services; and from COVID-19, highlighting the impact on women’s economic participation, the role of gender advisors and the failures within the World Health Organisation (WHO). Clare’s work on this has contributed to policy development at the European Parliament, WHO and UN Women, and is often cited by the UK government and media outlets. She is currently Co-PI on the Gender & COVID Project.

Prior to joining LSE, Clare worked at the Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and in policy at the Faculty of Public Health (UK). She has a PhD in International Relations from Aberystwyth University.


Mohammad Abdelfattah


Undersecretary for Preventive Affairs, Preventive Medicine Sector, Ministry of Health and Population, Cairo, Egypt


Obijiofor Aginam


Principal Visiting Fellow, United Nations University, International Institute for Global Health, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


Obijiofor Aginam, PhD has held senior positions at the United Nations University serving as Senior Research Fellow & Chief of International Cooperation and Development at the United Nations University-Institute for Sustainability and Peace, United Nations University headquarters in Tokyo (2007-2013), and Deputy-Director and Head of Governance for Global Health at the United Nations University-International Institute for Global Health (UNU-IIGH) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (2013-2019). He is currently a Principal Visiting Fellow at UNU-IIGH, Adjunct Research Professor of Law and Legal Studies at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, and most recently a Visiting Research Fellow at UN University-Institute on Comparative Regional Integration Studies (UNU-CRIS), Bruges, Belgium. He was a tenured Associate Professor of Law and Legal Studies at Carleton University, (2001-2007), and Global Health Leadership Officer at the World Health Organization headquarters, Geneva (1999-2001) where he worked on the review of the International Health Regulations (IHR) in the Communicable Diseases Cluster of WHO. He has been a fellow of the Social Science Research Council of New York on “Global Health Security and Cooperation”. Dr. Aginam has served as legal consultant of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) on “governance of anti-microbial resistance”, and trade and food safety involving field missions to Bangladesh and Laos. He was a member of the United Nations Inter-Agency Taskforce on Non-communicable Diseases (2014-2019), and a visiting professor at the University for Peace, Costa Rica, and universities in Italy, South Africa, and Japan. He serves on the editorial board of Global Health Governance: The Scholarly Journal for the New Health Security Paradigm. Dr Aginam holds a PhD in Law from University of British Columbia. He is the author of several publications on global health security, governance, diplomacy, and regulatory issues in pandemic preparedness and response including Global Health Governance: International Law and Public Health in a Divided World.


Mohannad Al-nsour


Executive Director, Eastern Mediterranean Public Health Network (EMPHNET), Amman, Jordan


Executive Director

Eastern Mediterranean Public Health Network (GHD|EMPHNET)

Dr. Mohannad Al-Nsour is a medical doctor and an internationally recognized expert in field epidemiology, operational research, and public health systems. Dr. Al-Nsour assumed several positions such as a notable researcher, advisor, and director during his career path. He also served as a consultant on several assignments with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization and the American University of Beirut. Dr. Al-Nsour has been leading the Eastern Mediterranean Public Health Network (EMPHNET) since 2009, by providing strategic assistance and operational solutions, and guiding the enrichment of Field Epidemiology Training Programs (FETPs) and public health initiatives in the region. Under Dr. AlNsour’s leadership, GHD|EMPHNET emerged as a prominent collaborative platform to serve the region and support national efforts to promote public health policies, applied epidemiology, surveillance, International Health Regulations (IHR), resource mobilization, and public health program development among others. Dr. Al-Nsour is a lecturer and speaker at regional and international levels covering public health topics such as leadership, field epidemiology, delivering evidence-based recommendations, creating new opportunities, and being a catalyst for change. Some of his areas of expertise are infectious diseases, non-communicable diseases (NCD), and global health. Dr. Al-Nsour serves on several regional and global initiatives, association and networks as he is a member of the Steering Committee for the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN), Training Programs in Epidemiology and Public Health Interventions Network (TEPHINET), International Epidemiological Association, and more. He is currently leading the establishment of the Public Health Forum and the NCD Alliance in Jordan.


Gian Luca Burci

Italy, Switzerland

Adjunct Professor of international law and Academic Adviser in the Global Health Centre, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva, Switzerland


Gian Luca Burci has been Adjunct Professor of international law at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva since 2012.  He is also the Director of the joint LLM on Global Health Law and Governance between the Graduate Institute and Georgetown Law School, as well as Academic Adviser in the Global Health Centre of the Graduate Institute. His courses include the law and practice of international organizations, the role of WHO in global health law and governance, the role of an international legal counsel and global health law.

Before this appointment, Prof. Burci served in the Legal Office of the World Health Organization from 1998 to 2016 and was its Legal Counsel from 2005 to 2016. Professor Burci previously worked in the International Atomic Energy Agency (1998-1999) and the Office of the UN Legal Counsel (1989-1998). During his service in WHO, he was involved in the negotiation and implementation of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the revision and implementation of the International Health Regulations, WHO’s response to the 2009-2010 H1N1 influenza pandemic and the 2014-2016 Ebola outbreak.

Prof. Burci holds a post graduate degree in law from the University of Genova, Italy. His areas of expertise are public international law, the law of international organizations as well as global health governance and law. Prof. Burci is the co-author of the leading English book on WHO, editor of the first research collection on global health law, co-editor of the first research handbook on global health law and author of numerous articles and book chapters on a variety of topics including the law of international organizations, UN peace and security functions, international immunities, as well as global health law.


Adelle Chang On

Trinidad and Tobago

County Medical Officer of Health, Ministry of Health, Trinidad and Tobago


Dr. Adelle-Lisa Chang On has supported the implementation of the International Health Regulations (IHR) in her role as County Medical Officer of Health, Ministry of Health, Trinidad and Tobago. She received her medical training from the University of the West Indies (2004) and her MPH from Harvard University (2010). She is also a graduate of the WHO IHR Implementation Course (2013). Dr. Chang On has served on WHO’s Scientific and Technical Advisory Group on Geographical Yellow Fever Risk Mapping (GRYF) and the COVID-19 IHR Emergency Committee.


Andrew Forsyth

New Zealand

Manager, Public Health Strategy, Ministry of Health, New Zealand


Manager, Public Health Capability, Ministry of Health, New Zealand. 

Mr Forsyth has more than 25 years’ experience in various positions with the New Zealand Ministry of Health. His work focuses on the development and implementation of public health law.  In 2016/17 this included revising New Zealand’s infectious disease legislation to include human rights principles.

He has also been involved in New Zealand’s government level responses to a range of acute public health threats, including SARS in 2003, pandemic influenza in 2009, the Canterbury earthquake in 2011 and he has been involved involvement with New Zealand’s readiness activities for Ebola virus disease during 2014.

During 2018 Mr Forsyth contributed to the Health-led, whole of government, engagement with WHO’s Joint External Evaluation team.  He is currently leading the Health (Drinking Water) Amendment Bill through the Parliamentary process.

He participated in the inter-governmental negotiations on the International Health Regulations during 2004 and 2005. Since then he has served as an adviser and consultant to WHO in various capacities relating to the implementation of the IHR 2005 and the Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases and Public Health Emergencies, principally in the Western Pacific region.

In 2010 Mr Forsyth served on the Review Committee established to review the performance of the IHR 2005 and the global response to pandemic influenza A (H1N1) and in 2014 he served on the Review Committee on Second Extensions for Establishing National Public Health Capacities and on IHR Implementation.

In 2056/16 he was a member of the Review Committee on the Role of the International Health Regulations (2005) in the Ebola Outbreak and Response.


Lawrence Gostin

United States of America

Professor, Founding O’Neill Chair in Global Health Law, and Faculty Director, O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, Georgetown University, Washington DC, Unites States of America


Lawrence O. Gostin is University Professor, Georgetown University’s highest academic rank, and Founding O’Neill Chair in Global Health Law. He directs the World Health Organization Center on National and Global Health Law. He served on high-level advisory committees for the World Health Organization, including WHO reform, smallpox, pandemic influenza, and genomic sequencing data. He is working with WHO on the global COVID-19 response, including impacts on the health workforce and international migration. He served on the WHO/Global Fund Blue Ribbon Expert Panel on Equitable Access in Global Health and co-chaired the LancetCommission on Global Health Law.

Gostin served on two global commissions on the West Africa Ebola epidemic, and was senior advisor to the UN Secretary General. Prof. Gostin also served on the drafting team for the G-7 Summit in Tokyo on global health security. He currently serves as a member of the Independent Panel for a Global Public Health Convention. He also serves on the Panel for the Global Health Security Index.

Prof. Gostin is Global Health editor, Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). He’s a Member of the National Academy of Medicine and sits on its Global Health Board. He also serves on the National Academies’ Committee on the Analysis to Enhance the Effectiveness of the Federal Quarantine Station Network based on Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic. President Obama appointed Prof. Gostin to the President’s National Cancer Advisory Board.

Prof. Gostin holds the National Academy of Medicine’s Adam Yarmolinsky Medal for distinguished service of science and health. The American Public Health Law Association awarded Gostin its Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award.

Prof. Gostin’s latest book, Global Health Security: A Blueprint for the Future (Harvard Press, 2021) won the prestigious Association of American Publishers PROSE Award for the best book on Professional and Scholarly Excellence in Biological and Life Sciences.

In the United Kingdom, the National Consumer Council bestowed Prof Gostin with the Rosemary Delbridge Memorial Award for the person “who has most influenced Parliament and government to act for the welfare of society.” He is elected to the Royal Society of Public Health and to the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal College of Physicians.


Roojin Habibi


Research Fellow, Global Strategy Lab, York University, Toronto, Canada; Fellow, Canadian International Council; Lecturer, Lincoln Alexander School of Law, Toronto Metropolitan University, Toronto, Canada


Roojin Habibi is a research fellow of the Global Strategy Lab at York University, a fellow of the Canadian International Council, and a lecturer at Lincoln Alexander School of Law, Toronto Metropolitan University. Her research examines how laws, norms and international relations shape global health and the realization of health-related human rights. She is the recipient of several research awards and distinctions, including the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Scholarship, and the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Doctoral Award.

Having worked across government, nongovernmental and international organizations, Roojin takes a multisectoral and collaborative approach to international law scholarship. Her interdisciplinary research is published across journals of public health and medicine, scholarly legal and social science journals, commissioned reports, foundational textbooks and casebooks of law, as well as public-facing news and media outlets. In 2019, she was lead author and rapporteur of a consensus-based interpretation of Article 43 of the 2005 International Health Regulations (‘the Stellenbosch Consensus Statement on Legal National Responses to Public Health Risks’). This consensus statement, developed in collaboration with fifteen eminent global health law scholars from around the world, provided a first-of-its-kind consolidation of the legal parameters governing the application of cross-border health measures in response to public health risks. Following this, the ‘Stellenbosch Consensus’ served as the catalyst for a permanent gobal health law research collaborative known as the “Global Health Law Consortium,” which Roojin has centrally helped build since 2020.

Roojin is a member of Canada’s Ontario Bar, and holds a law degree (J.D.) from the University of Ottawa’s French Common Law program, a specialization in transnational law from the University of Geneva, and a Master’s of Science in Global Health from McMaster University. She regularly teaches and advises students in graduate programs ranging from law and the social sciences to public health and medicine, and is fluent in English, French and Farsi.


George Haringhuizen

The Netherlands

Chief Legal Officer, Centre for Infectious Disease Control, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), Bilthoven, The Netherlands


Hani Jokhdar

Saudi Arabia

Deputy Minister for Public Health, Ministry of Health, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia


MBBCh, MSc, and PhD in public health and infectious disease prevention and control Deputy minister for public health Chairs the Hajj and Umrah Preparatory Committee Public Health Authority Board member Saudi Commission for Healthcare Specialty Board member In charge of the Primary Health care services, Preventive Health Programs, the International Center for Mass Gathering, IHR, Hajj and Umrah and the Healthy city program. Chairs the Public Health Emergency Operating Center Chairs the National Committee for Infectious Diseases Hani has been involved in many publications and conferences. He represents the MOH in several Governmental boards and International events.


Yang Liu


Assistant Professor, Law School, and Director of the Center for Global Law and Strategy, Law and Technology Institute, Renmin University of China, Beijing, China


Dr. LIU Yang is an expert in international health law. He teaches international health law, international law and International Organizations at Renmin University of China, where he also directs the Center for Global Law and Strategy. Prior to entering academia, he worked at the International Court of Justice as a Judicial Fellow. Dr. Liu holds a doctorate in Law from the University of California, Los Angeles, a master degree from Harvard Law School, and receives his bachelor and master degrees in law from Tsinghua University in Beijing.


Rana Safdar


Chief, Field Epidemiology & Disease Surveillance Division, National Institute of Health, Islamabad, Pakistan


Dr. Rana Muhammad Safdar has an illustrious career in healthcare service delivery spanned over a period of 3 decades. Having a medical degree and postgraduate qualifications in areas of Public Health from Armed Forces Postgraduate Medical Institute (AFPGMI) Rawalpindi, Dr Safdar earned fellowships in areas of Field Epidemiology and afterwards Emerging Infectious Disease Epidemiology from University of Iowa, USA and Health Metrics & Evaluation from University of Washington, USA as well as the Faculty of Public Health (FFPH) UK.

Dr. Safdar’s working with Pakistan’s health system includes a postgraduate professional experience of a quarter century wherein he remained actively engaged in disease prevention and control interventions at different levels. During the time, he made extensive contributions to the national health system starting as a Medical Officer in Basic Health Unit to the top national assignment of the Director General Health – Pakistan. Besides serving all national priority disease control programmes in Pakistan including EPI, Polio Eradication, Prevention & Control of Viral Hepatitis as well as HIV/AIDS, TB, and Malaria, he also served in International Organizations such as UNAIDS & US CDC, on deputation basis, after selection through competitive processes. His principal assignment at present is Chief of Field Epidemiology & Disease Surveillance Division at NIH Pakistan. He also served as the National Focal Point for IHR and authored concept and national plan for Integrated Disease Surveillance & Response System for Pakistan.

After massive Polio outbreaks of 2014, Dr. Safdar was tasked to serve as the National Coordinator of Pakistan’s Polio eradication initiative. He transformed the program immediately by conceptualizing and operationalizing a national Network of Emergency Operations Centres (EOCs) that provided a joint operations, security and communication platform to all Government stakeholders as well as international partners, with completed clarity of command and control by the Government. Security Forces were formally engaged in support of the program operations and country made remarkable achievements during 2015-2018 bringing cases to single digit through the successful implementation of ‘One Team’ approach that was globally acknowledged as a role model for public health service delivery.

Following political change and resurgence of Polio in 2019, he was brought back to lead the country out of crisis. This time he was simultaneously assigned the leadership of both the EPI and PEI programs. This unified leadership helped Pakistan in synergized planning and alignment of efforts and resources. Accordingly, despite challenges posed by COVID pandemic, huge gains were made in strengthening of immunization system across Pakistan, high quality SIAs as well as Enhanced Outreach for essential immunization. This helped in building a strong immunity wall against Polio and other vaccine preventable diseases such as Measles, Diphtheria, Tetanus etc. Efforts led to a smooth high transmission season of 2021 bringing country closest to virus interruption. Dr. Safdar was subsequently moved as DG Health in March 2021.

As COVID-19 struck Pakistan, as the Coordinator of the National Emergency Operations Centre and National Manager, Expanded Programme on Immunization, Dr. Safdar also led the process of development and implementation of national COVID-19 surveillance and response system encompassing issuance of daily situation reports and conducting risk assessments that formed basis of all critical decision making at the National Command Operations Center, National Immunization Management System, National Health Helpline 1122 etc. He also led negotiations with GAVI enabling Pakistan to benefit from donation of almost 110 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine from COVAX.


Aalisha Sahukhan


Head of Health Protection, Ministry of Health and Medical Services, Suva, Fiji


Head of Health Protection

Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services

Dr Aalisha Sahukhan is the founding Head of Health Protection at the Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services. In this role, she leads the Fiji Centre for Disease Control (Fiji CDC), the Environmental Health Unit, and the Health Emergencies and Climate Change department. Health Protection is also Fiji’s National Focal Point (NFP) for the International Health Regulations (2005) and Dr Sahukhan serves as lead representative of the Fiji NFP.

Dr Sahukhan is a medical doctor specialising in public health and infectious disease epidemiology. She has chaired national health task-forces and led responses to multiple epidemics, including meningococcal C, measles, and leptospirosis. Dr Sahukhan is a health leadership team member, a national spokesperson, and technical lead for Fiji’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. She also represents Fiji on the IHR Learning Working Group, the Member States Working Group on Strengthening WHO Preparedness and Response to Health Emergencies (WGPR), and the WHO Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB) to draft and negotiate a WHO convention, agreement or other international instrument on pandemic prevention, preparedness and response.

Dr Sahukhan is a member of the International Health Regulations (2005) Roster of Experts, as an expert in public health, including infectious disease epidemiology and emergency management. In 2022, Dr Sahukhan was  appointed to the IHR Review Committee regarding amendments to the International Health Regulations (2005).

Dr Sahukhan is a medical graduate of the Fiji School of Medicine, and a Fulbright Scholar, graduating with a Master of Public Health and a Graduate Certificate in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University.


Dilhani Samarasekera

Sri Lanka

Consultant Community Physician, Quarantine Unit, Ministry of Health, Colombo, Sri Lanka


(MBBS, MSc in Community Medicine, MD in Community Medicine)

Dr. S. Dilhani Samarasekera, is a Consultant Community Physician in Sri Lanka. She obtained her MBBS from Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo in 1998, MSc in Community Medicine from Post Graduate Institute, University of Colombo in 2003 and MD in Community Medicine from Post Graduate Institute, University of Colombo in 2009. Her MD theses was on “A Community based comparative study on disability, psychosocial aspects, healthcare seeking behaviour and morbidity control of people with chronic filarial lymphoedema in Colombo district”.  She has undergone her post-doctoral training at Institute of Health & Society, Newcastle University, United Kingdom

She has worked in many public health units of Ministry of Health including Anti Filariasis Campaign, Rabies Control Programme, National STD/AIDS Control Programme and Quarantine Unit. After becoming the Board-Certified Specialist in Community Medicine in 2010, she was the first Consultant Community Physician posted to Anti Filariasis Campaign (AFC) of Ministry of Health in 2011. She has involved in many activities including Mass Drug Administration Program, Transmission Assessment Surveys and research during her stay at Anti Filariasis Campaign. She is one of the chief editors of National Documentation on Certification of Elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis in Sri Lanka which was submitted to WHO to obtain the Certification on Filariasis Elimination as a Public Health Problem in 2016.

Since 2017, she is working at Quarantine Unit of Ministry of Health which involves in maintaining health security of the country with other stakeholders including animal, human, aviation, marine, agriculture, radiation, chemical, security forces and environmental sectors. Quarantine unit is one of the National Focal Points of International Health Regulations-2005 in Sri Lanka. The airport health offices, port health offices, Assistant port health office (which gives yellow fever, meningococcal and oral polio vaccines to travellers) and immigration health unit (which coordinates with inbound health assessment unit to screen resident visa applicants for Tuberculosis, Malaria, HIV and Filariasis) in Sri Lanka are under this unit. As the Consultant Community Physician of the Quarantine Unit, she was involved in providing technical guidance to stakeholders and was a member of the local panel involved in Joint External Evaluation in 2017. She was involved in preparation of National Action Plan of Health Security (NAPHS) 2019-2023 in Sri Lanka. Further, she is involved in conducting the activities related to Coordination and Points of Entry capacities in NAPHS, coordinated and involved in conducting WHO Documenting the progress following JEE and implementation of NAPHS in Sri Lanka in 2019, coordinating and conducting the annual workshop to fill the State Party Annual Reporting Tool and reporting to WHO. With the other stakeholders, she was involved in conducting Simulation Exercises and After-Action Reviews.

During the COVID pandemic she was actively involved in minimizing the risk of transmission among workers and travelers at points of entry. She is in many technical committees and was involved in preparation of guidelines, standard operating procedures issued for travelers and the community by Ministry of Health and convenor of the committee to formulate health criteria on tourism.


Vyacheslav Smolenskiy

Russian Federation

Deputy Head, Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing (Rospotrebnadzor), Moscow, Russian Federation


Graduated in 2002 from the Tver Medical University, Dr Smolenskiy joined the state public health agency Rospotrebnadzor in 2004 in the Epidemiological Surveillance Department. In 2008, he took the position of Deputy Director of the Science and International Cooperation Department and between 2011 and 2018 he served as Director for Science and International Relations.

Dr Smolenskiy got his PhD in epidemiology in 2012. He also received a master’s degree in business administration from the Kingston University in London. He is an author and co-author of more than 20 scientific publications, including on biological security and IHR related topics, and 2 monographs.

In his day-to-day work, he coordinates multilateral and bilateral international relations of Rospotrebnadzor with UN agencies (including WHO, FAO, UNAIDS, Codex Alimentarius, IAEA etc), relevant international and intergovernmental organizations (CIS, G20, BRICS, WB, SCO, WTO, OECD, BTWC, ASEAN, APEC).

Since 2006, he leads the participation of the Russian Federation in international cooperation and development assistance in the area of public health, especially in implementing IHR and fighting communicable diseases. In this capacity, he worked with more than 20 countries. During the last 10 years under the supervision of Dr Smolenskiy, Rospotrebnadzor implemented more than 20 programs to assist developing countries in Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Africa and South-East Asia in fighting infectious diseases and building their capacities to prevent and respond to outbreaks. He coordinated and was directly involved in the Russian participation in response to the Ebola outbreak in Guinea, led assistance missions to Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Vietnam and other countries. In February 2020, he headed the Russian mission to China to conduct consultations on the disease caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-COV2.

His areas of expertise are: public health, IHR implementation, pandemic preparedness and response, global health security, vaccination, epidemic modeling and forecasting, biosecurity, outbreak rapid response teams and mobile labs.


Sunita Sreedharan


Lawyer and Registered Patent Agent, New Delhi, India


Sunita K Sreedharan is an advocate and a patent agent licensed to practice in India. In her 22 years’ law practice, Sunita developed expertise in Intellectual Property Law more notably in Patent Law and Biodiversity laws of India. Sunita represents clients before the Intellectual Property Offices, the High Courts, the National Biodiversity Authority. She successfully argued on the seminal business method case before the Indian Patent Office, Madras High Court and the IPAB.

Sunita is the founder of SKS Law Associates a Delhi based IP law practice which has earned international reputation for handling intellectual property especially patents in highly specialized areas of technology.

She earned LL.B. (awarded Gold Medal) from The School of Legal Studies, Cochin University of Science and Technology, LL.M. from The George Washington University Law School, Washington DC, USA, M.Sc. in Cytogenetics, an MBA in Human Resources Management and Diploma in Computer Science on Systems Analysis and Design. Prior to the practice of law,

A Temporary Advisor to the WHO, Sunita has worked on the effective implementation of International Health Regulations (IHR) 2005

Sunita has had the distinction of being nominated for the “IP Woman of the Year 2008” Award by the organizers of IP Summit held in Brussels on December 4, 2008. She has been recently inducted in the rosters of the International Who’s Who of Professionals. Sunita is a member of LES, APAA, AIPPI and INTA, and has been empanelled as legal counsel for the Protection of Plant Variety and Farmers’ Rights (PPV & FR) Authority, Ministry of Agriculture and later as legal advisor on the Central Technology Management Institute, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR). She has been involved in the drafting of various parliamentary bills requiring protection of various intellectual properties including the access and benefit sharing of traditional knowledge.

Sunita is a prolific author and has received several national and international awards in recognition of her work.

Thanks for reading down this far in the article. Here is some advanced information regarding the intrigue that is happening in regards to the IHR.

The substack article below included a guest blog that is so important, I quoted the entire guest blog below. I highlighted specific sections in bold, but the important thing is that you comprehend the big picture.

I suggest that you subscribe to Geneva Health Files.

Geneva Health Files
The Review Committee on the IHR Amendments: Questions on Fairness of Content & Procedure. [Guest Essay]
Hi, Six months is a long time in global health Geneva. Just as the champions for a Pandemic Accord got comfortable with the reality of negotiating a new instrument under the aegis of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body, it now appears the process towards amending the IHR has suddenly acquired critical mass…
Read more

Amendments: Questions on Fairness of Content & Procedure.

By K M Gopakumar & Nithin Ramakrishnan

Many developing country Member States  and observers were caught by surprise, earlier this year, when the WHO secretariat suggested that the IHR amendment proposals can be referred to a IHR Review Committee (Review Committee). This was during the discussions on the timeline of the IHR amendment process, at the Working group on strengthening WHO preparedness and response to health emergencies  (WGPR).  There are a few reasons for their surprise.

First, whenever amendment proposals to international legal instruments are submitted by sovereign states, it is not the practice to allow a panel of experts acting in their individual capacity, to offer comments on such proposals. The normal practice is that such proposals are treated on an equal footing and opened for negotiations to find a consensus.

Second, Article 55 of the IHR deals with the amendment process and there is no such requirement to submit the amendment proposals to the scrutiny of any Review Committee. Article 55 (1) reads: “Amendments to these Regulations may be proposed by any State Party or by the Director- General. Such proposals for amendments shall be submitted to the Health Assembly for its consideration”. Article 55(2) states that the Director General should communicate the amendment texts to all State parties at least four months before the Health Assembly at which it is proposed for consideration”.

Article 50(1)(a) states that “The Director-General shall establish a Review Committee, which shall carry out the following functions: (a) make technical recommendations to the Director-General regarding amendments to these Regulations”. However, it is understood that such technical recommendations are generally after the adoption of amendments or whenever any amendment proposals come from the DG. The word used in Article 50(1) is amendment and not amendment proposals. The 75th World Health Assembly (WHA) adopted the amendment proposed by the USA without referring to the IHR Review Committee, for example.

While many Member States welcomed the Secretariat’s suggestion in good faith to appoint a IHR Review Committee, they also insisted that the mandate of the Review Committee should be under Article 50 and 51. However many seasoned negotiators and observers viewed this unprecedented suggestion from the Secretariat as a move to rig the process and content of EB 150 decision [EB 150 (3) ] to amend the IHR.

The battle lines on the discussions around the IHR amendments were already drawn, when developed countries proposed more stringent obligations on preparedness especially surveillance without any corresponding obligations on various aspects health response. There is no clarity on the obligations for predictable availability of health products required for the response to public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC), and for the access and benefit sharing emanating from the utilisation of samples of pathogens collected from humans. Developed countries like the EU want to limit the equity elements in the health emergency only to the pandemic context and therefore do not want such obligations to include the IHR amendments.

Director-General Exceeds the WHA Mandate?

The  Terms of Reference (ToR)  of the IHR Review Committee endorses the above mentioned apprehensions. The mandate emanating from the WHA 75(9),  provides for technical recommendations on the proposed amendments. It states: “in accordance with Part IX, Chapter III, of the International Health Regulations (2005), in particular Article 50, paragraphs 1(a) and 6, with particular attention to be paid to the fulfilment of the letter and spirit of Article 51, paragraph 2, to make technical recommendations on the proposed amendments referred to in sub-paragraph (c) below, with a view to informing the work of the WGIHR”.

It appears that the DG Tedros has stretched the mandate under Article 50(1)(a) and entrusts the mandate to IHR Review Committee to pass judgment on the proposals from State Parties.

Setting Boundaries

The Terms of Reference  prima facie set boundaries on the scope of the amendments. For instance, the first task: Analysis of each of the proposed amendments to the IHR submitted no later than 30 September 2022, has many variables. As per this mandate, the IHR Review committee is expected to carry out an analysis of the pertinence of the amendment proposals vis-à-vis the purpose and scope of the IHR, as defined in Article 2. It raises an interesting question on how the Review Committee would carry out such an exercise on a proposal to amend Article 2 of the IHR.

(Article 2 of the IHR:  The purpose and scope of these Regulations are to prevent, protect against, control and provide a public health response to the international spread of disease in ways that are commensurate with and restricted to public health risks, and which avoid unnecessary interference with international traffic and trade.)

The Review Committee is also expected to check the “Compatibility and consistency with the Working Draft of a WHO Convention, Agreement, or other International Instrument on Pandemic Prevention, Preparedness and Response” (Document A/INB/2/3). This is quite a baffling assignment because the content of the document is not even a negotiated document and only a compilation by the Secretariat and the Bureau of INB. This proposed instrument is expected to deal with only pandemics – a subset of Public Health Emergency of   International Concern (PHEIC). Thus, it can be inferred that, examining the compatibility of amendment proposals with a document where there is no consensus or clarity regarding the normative content is an attempt to limit the inclusion of equity provisions in IHR by stating that equity will be addressed in the new pandemic instrument. 

This move sets a de-facto scope of the amendment proposal by overruling the decision of the World Health Assembly and the Executive Board.  EB150(3) sets the scope of the IHR amendment, which explicitly states that the Amendments should “address specific and clearly identified issues, challenges, including equity, technological or other developments, or gaps that could not effectively be addressed otherwise but are critical to supporting effective implementation and compliance of the International Health Regulations (2005), and their universal application for the protection of all people of the world from the international spread of disease in an equitable manner.”

Surprisingly, the ToRs do not even refer to the EB 150 decision in the scope of work which really sets the boundary for the amendment proposals.


A mandate to override the prerogative of State Parties?

The mandate  of  the Review Committee as per WHA 75 (9)  is to “to make technical recommendations on the proposed amendments”.   However, the ToRs also give the mandate for reformulation and/or clarification.

According to the ToRs, “ rewording, rephrasing, inclusion of cross- references to other relevant articles of the IHR, inclusion of compliance monitoring elements – and/or consolidation, if/when necessary, of the text of the article intended to be amended, as well as of the text of any other article of the Regulations that needs amendments for the article intended to be amended to be applicable. Such proposals shall ensure the internal consistency, integrity, and robustness of the text of the IHR, as well as the compatibility and consistency with any other relevant international legal instrument under the auspices of intergovernmental and international organization. Each of the above mentioned proposals for reformulation and/or refinement by the IHR Amendments RC shall be accompanied by its rationale, including the reason/s why amendments proposed by States Parties have not been totally or partially retained, or have been reallocated to an article different from the one initially intended to be amended.”

This gives a clear mandate to the Review Committee even to recommend the deletion of an amendment proposed by States Parties. This could vitiate the negotiating process. By commenting on the proposals of State Parties, the Review Committee can potentially be seen as exercising power.

Similarly, the ToRs also tasks the Review Committee  “to advise on definitions of terms, either new or existing terms the meaning of which might be changed following the proposed amendments, to ensure clarity and consistency; as well as to advise on whether the inclusion, in the text of the IHR, of an explicit taxonomy related to the nature of amendments (e.g., targeted amendments, conforming amendments, technical adjustments, updates, “reopening the instrument”) is warranted and, if so, to formulate a proposal in that respect.”.

This is an attempt to classify the proposals on whether they fall within the definition of targeted amendments. This could also discredit progressive proposals that do not fall within the category of ‘targeted amendments.


Extended Timeline

Though the WHA 75(9) sets time line to the “Review Committee submit its report to the Director-General no later than 15 January 2023”, ToR extends this further to January 2024.


While the mandate of WHA75(9) only requires to provide technical recommendations on the proposed amendments submitted before 30th September 2022, the ToR is asking the Review Committee to review “the package of amendments agreed by the WGIHR” later in December 2023-January 2024. This back door extension of the duration of the Review Committee bears the danger of unduly influencing the negotiations. 


The Terms of Reference shows that the Review Committee is a ploy to reinforce the status quo in the IHR Regime by discrediting the proposals of developing countries aiming to bring equity and justice in the international public health emergency regime. The ToRs clearly move away from the spirit of WHA decision 75(9), which agreed in good faith, to refer the amendment proposals to the Review Committee for technical recommendations.

Such a process may create trust deficit in the functioning of Working Group on Amendments to the IHR (2005) (WGIHR), the State Party mechanism to lead the amendment process. Such a move may also create trust deficits even before negotiations on the amendments begin.


We would wait to see if the process will be fair and legitimate.


For any information about this Review Committee, please contact

Terms Of Reference
189KB ∙ PDF File


This is the 40th article in this series.

  1. Pandemic Treaty
  2. The People’s Treaty
  3. Speaking Truth To Power
  4. WAKE UP and Smell the Burning of Our Constitution
  5. Abolish the WHO
  6. Pandemic Mitigation Project
  7. An Open Letter to the WHO
  10. Multilingual information regarding the proposed amendments to the International Health Regulations.
  11. THEY will control nothing, and WE will be free
  14. URGENT: Speak Your Mind NOW
  18. Turn up the Heat
  19. We’ve Got Our Eye On WHO
  20. WE WON
  24. Get the United States OUT of the United Nations and The World Health Organization A.S.A.P.
  25. What is the government of the United Kingdom hiding?
  27. #ScrewTheWHO
  28. Speak Your Mind
  29. The Pandemic is Over
  30. WHO: Informal Focused Consultation #1
  31. I thought the Lancet was a medical journal
  32. Email and Call Your Delegate
  33. World Health Organization Virtual Press Conference on Global Health Issues
  34. Help Wanted Analyzing WHO Public Comments
  35. World Health Organization Public Hearings
  36. The Second WHO Informal Focused Consultation
  37. CANADA
  38. The People’s Amendments to the International Health Regulations
  40. Secret Meetings at the WHO

by James Roguski

The old system is crumbling, and we must build its replacement quickly.

If you are fed up with the government, hospital, medical, pharmaceutical, media, industrial complex and would like to help build a holistic alternative to the WHO, then feel free to contact me directly anytime.


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One Response to “Secret Meetings at the WHO”

  1. ian says:

    This comment is a little rude, insomuch as I never read the article. I haven’t got time just now, but it annoys me so looks like a both barreler. Forced vaccination is coming. They’re not just taking over Russia this time and destroying their Royal family, it’s gonna be the world. If you’re gonna fight, now’s a good time to start.
    That was with no drink last night too. I don’t understand what people see in it. Spring water and fresh air are all I need. Having said that, it’s shopping day. Aldi and Tescos. I get my orders to stay out of that middle aisle in Aldi, and don’t be buying any shite like electronic cat flaps. I said, well it could come in handy, you never know when we might get a cat. NO STAY OUT. yes dear. Then, Like a test of how successful my subservience is, I have to walk down the drink aisle in Tesco’s. Having said that, the drink is cheaper in England and ASDA Carlisle is only 7 miles from home. NO, ok dear.