Canadian breastfeeding advocates alarmed by U.S. opposition to UN resolution

Canadian breastfeeding advocates alarmed by U.S. opposition to UN resolution

"They also had co-sponsored the original resolution so they were very supportive of the breastfeeding protection mechanisms in the resolution so we really have to commend them for that".

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

Mr. Trump said the country "strongly supports" breastfeeding, but the issue the USA representatives had was with denying access to formula.

Between 21 and 26 May 2018, the World Health Organization (WHO) held their 71st World Health Assembly, which is attended by delegates from all WHO member state and serves as that organization's primary decision-making body.

At the conference, Ecuador sponsored a proposal that recognized mother's milk as the healthiest option for nursing newborns.

The resolution, which was based on decades of scientific research, encouraged countries to limit false or deceptive advertising of breast milk substitutes, and called on governments to publicly support breastfeeding. Russian Federation ultimately sponsored the resolution and the American delegation did not issue any threats to the country.

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

Ecuador capitulated and did as the Americans demanded, The Times reported.

The Ecuadorian delegates acquiesced, and health advocates struggled to find another sponsor for the resolution.

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Several other countries backed away from sponsoring the resolution in fear of USA threats.

'We were astonished, appalled and also saddened, ' said Patti Rundall, policy director of Baby Milk Action, a pro-breastfeeding advocacy group.

The president's tweet was a direct response to an article published by The New York Times on Sunday, titled "U.S. Opposition to Breast-Feeding Resolution Stuns World Health Officials." . But Russia rescued the resolution by stepping in and introducing it.

The Americans did not threaten Moscow as they did Ecuador and other countries, according to the Times.

But the popularity of breastfeeding can cut into sales of infant formula manufacturers, and companies who produce formula have a long history of interfering in global affairs to promote formula over breastfeeding at the expense of infant health.

A spokesperson for HHS told the Times, "We recognize not all women are able to breast-feed for a variety of reasons". It added that "not all women are able to breastfeed", and they "should have the choice and access to alternatives".

The State Department declined the Times' request to comment and said it could not discuss private diplomatic conversations.

According to the Times report on Sunday based on interviews with dozens of meeting participants, USA negotiations in Geneva objected to the resolution encouraging breastfeeding around the world and allegedly resorted to intimidation tactics to bully other countries into dropping it.

The Times said more than a dozen participants from different countries at the assembly confirmed the "showdown over the issue".

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