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CHINA and Cuba continued to lead the global fight against the coronavirus pandemic today.
The two countries have sent tonnes of aid and teams of medical experts to nations most affected by the contagion.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced the arrival of specialist equipment from China on Thursday night, which he said would allow thousands to be tested.
A team of medics from Cuba also arrived to help with relief efforts.
Vice-president Delcy Rodriguez explained in a joint press conference with Chinese ambassador Li Baorong that Venezuela would continue collaborating with Beijing, adding that more supplies would arrive in the country next week.
The response by the socialist countries to the coronavirus pandemic has been in sharp contrast to that of the so-called developed capitalist countries and institutions.
Earlier this week the International Monetary Fund (IMF) refused an emergency $5 billion loan to Venezuela, claiming that it could not do so when some of its member states refuse to recognise Mr Maduro as the country’s democratically elected leader.
Washington has been accused of manipulating the coronavirus to increase pressure on Iran.
Increased US sanctions have left Iran unable to buy much-needed medical supplies, despite researchers predicting a death toll as high as 3.5 million.
The US is also continuing to squeeze Venezuela and Cuba with punitive trade embargoes.
The aim of the economic blockade of Cuba, implemented in the 1960s was to “bring about hunger, desperation and overthrow of the government,” according to the US State Department.
The same strategy is being deployed against Caracas, where the US hopes to stoke internal opposition to the Bolivarian government.
But it is failing in both countries, with huge public support for Mr Maduro and Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel.
Venezuela’s Attorney General, Tarek William Saab, hit out at “a massive violation of human rights” with the US continuing to block the purchase of medical supplies through its blockade.
“It is ethically unacceptable that such sanctions be maintained against Venezuela. Those who radically oppose the Venezuelan state must take a step forward and ask for the cessation of these measures,” Mr Saab said.
“Are they going to ask for more sanctions against our country, are they going to block Venezuelan trade more, are they going to be spokesmen for a massacre by the coronavirus against our people?”
UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres called for international unity in fighting the coronavirus, saying: “Global solidarity is not only a moral imperative, it is in everyone’s interests.”
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