MPs issue mandatory summons for WHO’s Bruce Aylward to testify before committee


OTTAWA — Members of Parliament have issued a mandatory summons to Canadian World Health Organization expert Bruce Aylward, after he turned down repeated invitations to testify to a House of Commons committee.

Aylward is the renowned epidemiologist who led a team of WHO experts to China to study the COVID-19 outbreak in February.

He and the WHO have come under criticism by some in Canada for his report on China’s ability to curb the spread of the viral disease, which has since become a worldwide pandemic.

The House of Commons health committee has invited Aylward to testify by video conference from Geneva, Switzerland, twice in the last month.

He turned them down, and the WHO instead offered to answer written questions.

The committee voted unanimously Thursday to issue a mandatory summons, but it can only be enforced once he returns to Canadian soil.