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Beijing’s state TV suggests China is not the source of the coronavirus pandemic

Beijing’s state broadcaster has suggested that China did not cause the global coronavirus outbreak because it has exported ‘very few’ cases to other countries.

The China Central Television Station told its audience that most countries’ infections had came from ‘elsewhere’.

It said that the outbreak in Canada was caused by the United States, the US epidemic had come from Europe and the source of France’s crisis remains ‘unknown’.

The state-controlled station condemned what it called ‘unbelievable lies’ from American politicians after some of them suggested that China should be responsible for the pandemic, which has killed more than 300,000 people globally.

Beijing’s state broadcaster said in a report on Tuesday that China had exported ‘very few’ cases to other countries, suggesting the country had not caused the coronavirus pandemic

The origin of the coronavirus remains as one of the most sensitive topics to Beijing and the centre of an ongoing diplomatic dispute between Beijing and Washington.

The US accuses China of covering up the full scale of its epidemic and hiding the virus’s origin.

China accuses the US of carrying out ‘smear campaigns’ and avoiding its responsibilities in containing the disease. A spokesperson also suggested that the virus was planted in Wuhan by the US troops.

US President Donald Trump further hardened his rhetoric towards China on Thursday, saying he no longer wishes to speak with Xi Jinping and warning he might cut ties with Beijing over the rival superpower’s handling of the virus.

Chinese state media yesterday said that Beijing could interfere with the upcoming US presidential election in retaliation for Washington’s blaming the coronavirus pandemic on Beijing.

US President Donald Trump has said that he no longer wishes to speak with Chinese President Xi Jinping and warning he might cut ties with Beijing over the rival superpower's handling of the virus. Pictured, Trump speaks after a tour of a medical supply company on May 14

US President Donald Trump has said that he no longer wishes to speak with Chinese President Xi Jinping and warning he might cut ties with Beijing over the rival superpower’s handling of the virus. Pictured, Trump speaks after a tour of a medical supply company on May 14

Chinese state-run newspaper the Global Times claimed that Beijing was drawing a plan of retaliation against the US after some American politicians and states blamed China for the coronavirus pandemic. Chinese President Xi is pictured at a political meeting in Beijing in 2018

Chinese state-run newspaper the Global Times claimed that Beijing was drawing a plan of retaliation against the US after some American politicians and states blamed China for the coronavirus pandemic. Chinese President Xi is pictured at a political meeting in Beijing in 2018

The China Central Television Station (CCTV) hinted that China is not the source of the pandemic in a programme aired on Tuesday. 

It claimed that Beijing ‘effectively cut off the chain of transmission’ and had exported ‘very few’ cases abroad.

The report started by blasting US President Trump for ‘targeting China’.

It quoted Trump saying: ‘I am not happy with China. They should have stopped this at the source. [They] could have stopped it right at the source.’

The Chinese station argued that China had carried out ‘the most comprehensive, severe and thorough control and prevention measures’ to tackle the contagion.

The state-controlled station flaunted China's 'most comprehensive, severe and thorough control and prevention measures' to prove it should not be held responsible for the crisis. Pictured, mask-donning patients wait at Wuhan Red Cross Hospital in Wuhan on January 24

The state-controlled station flaunted China’s ‘most comprehensive, severe and thorough control and prevention measures’ to prove it should not be held responsible for the crisis. Pictured, mask-donning patients wait at Wuhan Red Cross Hospital in Wuhan on January 24

The report then cited New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who said on Monday that the strain of the coronavirus hitting New York had come from Europe, not China.

Gov. Cuomo did mention how the virus ‘attacked us from Europe’ at a press briefing. But he also said ‘the virus had travelled from China to Europe’, which CCTV failed to mention. 

The programme went on to listed several countries, including Canada, France, Russia and Australia, which ‘did not get the virus from China’.

CCTV quoted New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who said on Monday that the strain of the coronavirus hitting New York had come from Europe, not China. But the station did not report that Cuomo (pictured on May 11) said that 'the virus had travelled from China to Europe'

CCTV quoted New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who said on Monday that the strain of the coronavirus hitting New York had come from Europe, not China. But the station did not report that Cuomo (pictured on May 11) said that ‘the virus had travelled from China to Europe’

It claimed that the outbreak in Canada was caused by travellers from the United States, citing the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which in turns cited statistics from ‘several Canadian states’ without specifying.

CCTV also said the source of France’s outbreak remains ‘unknown’ and that none of the imported cases in Russia came from China.

It added that Australia and Japan had also got the virus from elsewhere, citing the nations’ health authorities. 

The programme then slammed US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for ‘spreading the rumour’ that the virus had come from a virus laboratory in Wuhan.

It stressed that China built the Wuhan Institute of Virology in collaboration with France and the lab ‘has strict protective measures’ in line with the international standard.

Chinese state media labelled the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo 'evil' and 'insane' after he said 'enormous evidence' showed that the coronavirus had escaped from the Wuhan lab

Chinese state media labelled the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo ‘evil’ and ‘insane’ after he said ‘enormous evidence’ showed that the coronavirus had escaped from the Wuhan lab

Chinese officials decided to build the Wuhan Institute of Virology after the country was ravaged by an outbreak of SARS in 2002 and 2003. A researcher is seen working inside the P4 laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan on February 23, 2017

Chinese officials decided to build the Wuhan Institute of Virology after the country was ravaged by an outbreak of SARS in 2002 and 2003. A researcher is seen working inside the P4 laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan on February 23, 2017

The Wuhan Institute of Virology (pictured) is affiliated to the Chinese Academy of Sciences

The Wuhan Institute of Virology (pictured) is affiliated to the Chinese Academy of Sciences

China has been aggressively refuting any reports that refer to it as the birthplace of the pandemic.

The country’s experts claimed in January that the virus had come from wild animals sold as food at a market in Wuhan, where the outbreak started in December.

However, in February, Beijing started to change its narrative and suggest that the pathogen might have come from abroad when infections in Europe began to soar.

An investigation carried out by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention showed that the virus had been passed onto humans by wild animals sold as food at the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan, state news agency Xinhua reported on January 26

An investigation carried out by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention showed that the virus had been passed onto humans by wild animals sold as food at the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan, state news agency Xinhua reported on January 26

‘The epidemic of the novel coronavirus pneumonia indeed took place in China, in Wuhan… but it does not mean its source is in Wuhan,’ said Dr Zhong Nanshan, the leader of a team of experts appointed by China to tackle the health crisis.

Earlier this month, Chinese state media labelled Pompeo ‘evil’ and ‘insane’ after he said ‘enormous evidence’ showed that the coronavirus had escaped from the Wuhan lab.

Beijing insists the WHO has found no evidence that the novel coronavirus was manmade. It has repeatedly denied the claims that link the virus to the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

China asks the US to ‘meet halfway’ after Trump threatens to cut ties

China on Friday urged the United States to meet it halfway and strengthen cooperation in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic after President Donald Trump threatened to sever bilateral ties.

‘To maintain the steady development of China-US relations is in the fundamental interests of the people in both countries, and is conducive to world peace and stability,’ said foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian at a press briefing.

‘At present, China and the US should continue to strengthen cooperation against the epidemic, defeat the epidemic as soon as possible, treat patients, and restore economy and production. But it requires the US to meet halfway with China.’

China's foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian called for US cooperation on the pandemic

China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian called for US cooperation on the pandemic

The comments came after Trump further hardened his rhetoric towards China, threatening to cut ties with the rival superpower completely as relations have steadily deteriorated over the pandemic.

‘There are many things we could do … We could cut off the whole relationship,’ Trump said Thursday in an interview with Fox Business News.

‘You’d save $500 billion if you cut off the whole relationship.’

Trump said that his relationship with Chinese President Xi Jinping is ‘very good’, but added ‘right now I just don’t want to speak to him’.

The threat came a week after a trade call between the US and Chinese trade negotiators in which both sides stressed their commitment to the Phase One trade deal reached in January.

However, the fulfilment of the deal looks increasingly tenuous in the face of the pandemic and a looming global economic downturn.

In the pact signed in January, China agreed to buy $200 billion more in US goods over two years than it did in 2017 — before the trade war erupted and triggered tariffs on billions of dollars of two-way trade.

Tensions have ratcheted up between Washington and Beijing as they traded barbs over the origin of the pandemic that first appeared in late 2019 in the Chinese city of Wuhan, which Trump has dubbed ‘the Plague from China’.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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