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China calls on Washington to focus on the fight against the global pandemic

CHINA urged the US to stop politicising the global coronavirus crisis today, responding to President Donald Trump’s remarks in which he accused Beijing of a cover-up.

Chinese Foreign Minister Geng Shuang insisted that China had kept all relevant bodies, including the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Washington, up to date with its domestic situation in a timely, open and transparent manner.

He was responding to comments made by Mr Trump to reporters on Saturday in which he said that he had wished “China would have told us more about what was going on.”

It followed claims by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who accused China, Russia and Iran of “carrying out disinformation campaigns related to the coronavirus pandemic.”

Mr Trump has repeatedly referred to Covid-19 as “the Chinese virus.” Beijing has warned that the White House is reportedly set to launch a propaganda campaign accusing China of orchestrating a cover-up and causing a global pandemic.

Mr Geng branded the accusations a “clumsy slander” against China, whose efforts in fighting the coronavirus outbreak have won praise from the international community, including the WHO.

China has sent teams of medical experts and tons of aid to countries most affected by the coronavirus, including Iran and Italy.

By contrast, the US has been accused of manipulating the crisis by increasing sanctions on countries including Cuba, Venezuela and Iran to apply “maximum pressure.”

But now the US is in danger of becoming the new epicentre of the virus. Mr Trump has been accused of ignoring intelligence reports warning of the potential impact of the disease as far back as January.

Mr Geng said the US  has squandered precious time won by China in the fight to defeat Covid-19 and said that “defaming, scapegoating and shifting blame to others is immoral and irresponsible.”

“It will do nothing to help the US’s Covid-19 prevention work and global co-operation in pandemic control,” he insisted, calling on Washington to “manage its own business well” and play a positive role in international efforts.


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