Daily US Times: China’s foreign minister has accused the United States of spreading ”conspiracies and lies” about the coronavirus, sparking up tensions between the two countries.
On Sunday, Wang Yi told reporters that the US has been infected by a “political virus” that compels some politicians to repeatedly attack China.
He urged the US to “stop wasting time and stop wasting precious lives” in its response to the Covid-19 outbreak.
President Donald Trump has been facing huge criticism for his handling of the pandemic. He repeatedly blamed China for trying to cover up the outbreak.
Mr Wang repeated China’s assertions again on Sunday that it had acted responsibly to safeguard global public health since the virus first emerged in December.
What else did China say?
While speaking at a news conference, Mr Wang said that “some political forces in the US are taking China-US relations hostage”.
He did not mention what the forces were, but said they were trying to “push our two countries to the brink of a new Cold War”.
He said: “Aside from the devastation caused by the novel coronavirus, there is also a political virus spreading through the US.”
But he called for co-operation between Beijing and Washington in tackling the outbreak.
“This political virus is the use of every opportunity to attack and smear China. Some politicians completely disregard basic facts and have fabricated too many lies targeting China, and plotted too many conspiracies.”
He said both the US and China bear a major responsibility for world peace and development.
China’s accusation of conspiracies and lies against the US when the later is struggling to contain the virus.
What’s the bigger picture here?
In recent works, President Trump and China have traded repeated barbs in recent weeks, on issues from the World Health Organization (WHO) to potential lawsuits against China over its alleged cover-up of the outbreak.
The two world’s biggest economies and powers have experienced longstanding friction over issues such as human rights and trade, but tensions have risen dramatically amid the pandemic.
Mr Wang said on Sunday that the suggestion that US states could bring legal action against China was “a daydream” and lacked any precedent.
The foreign minister also defended the World Health Organization (WHO) and its chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who has been the target of recent US criticism.
Last week, President Trump accused the WHO of being a “puppet of China” that had let Covid-19 spin “out of control” at the cost of “many lives”.
In the letter, Mr Trump outlines a 30-day ultimatum for the body to commit to “substantive improvements” or risk losing millions and US membership altogether.
It was addressed to WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, and it criticises of the body’s response to the coronavirus since December.
He said an independent evaluation would take place “at the earliest appropriate moment”.
On Monday night, Mr Trump published the letter on Twitter, following a day of heavy US criticism of the health agency.
The US president accuses in his letter to Dr Tedros that the WHO of having an “alarming lack of independence” from China. He also accuses the agency of having “consistently ignored” what he describes as “credible reports” of the virus spreading in Wuhan at the start of December or even earlier.
Mr Trump cites reports the WHO delayed an emergency declaration under pressure from President Xi Jinping and criticizes the agency’s praise of China’s “transparency” amid reports of censorship and lack of international cooperation.
In the letter, the president accuses the WHO of failing to comment on virus-related racial discrimination allegedly happening within China.
This is not the first time China accuses US of spreading conspiracies and lies about the coronavirus. Several Chinese officials cited that node before.