Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has alleged that the United States is pushing its relationship with China to “the brink of a new Cold War”. His statement assumes significance as it comes amid soaring tensions between the two countries over Coronavirus, Hong Kong’s status and other issues. Wang Li also alleged that the US was trying to politicise the origins of coronavirus with an aim to ‘stigmatise’ China.
China accuses US of pushing relations to ‘brink of new Cold War’| Key points
1. “It has come to our attention that some political forces in the US are taking China-US relations hostage and pushing our two countries to the brink of a new Cold War,” the Chinese foreign minister said while addressing a press conference at China’s week-long annual parliamentary session.
2. Wang Yi, however, did not disclose which political force he was referring to. According to China watchers, he was referring to US President Donald Trump who has been attacking China for hiding information on COVID-19 that has led to the death of tens of housands of people across the globe.
3. Taking a jibe at the US for not effectively handling the threat posed by COVID-19 pandemic, Wang Yi said, “I call on the US to stop wasting time and stop wasting precious lives.”
4. Referring to consistent US demand of a probe into the “source” of COVID-19, Wang Yi said that China was “open” to international cooperation to identify the source of the novel coronavirus. However, he added that the investigation must be “free of political interference”.
5. Wang also alleged that some political figures in the US rush to label the virus and politicise its origins, stigmatising China. He also went to the extent of saying that in addition to the devastation caused by the novel coronavirus, a political virus is also spreading through the US.
6. “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.
7. A large number of scientists believe that coronavirus jumped from animals to humans after emerging in China, possibly from a market in the central city of Wuhan where exotic animals were sold for meat.
8. Many countries, including US and Australia, have called for an investigation into the exact origins of the virus. Even the WHO has urged Beijing to invite them in to investigate the source.
9. China, on its part, has agreed for the probe into the source, in principle. However, it has proposed that the “global response” to Covid-19 should only be assessed when the pandemic is over.
10. WHO members on Tuesday adopted a resolution, tabled by the European Union, at the UN body’s first virtual assembly to review the international handling of the pandemic, but it does not single out China.