In a recent turn of event, Beijing accused the United States President Donald Trump of trying to ‘shift the blame’ for coronavirus pandemic. Donald Trump had on March 20 accused China of covering up information on coronavirus which made the 'world suffer'. However, while speaking to an international media outlet, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang reportedly said that some people on the US side are trying to stigmatise China’s fight against the epidemic and shift the blame onto China.
In an escalating row between the two powers, Gang further reportedly added that the approach ignores the great sacrifice made by the Chinese people to safeguard the health and safety of humankind, and slanders China’s major contribution to global public health. He further also added that China has shared data with the US throughout the health crisis. This recent exchange also marked an escalation in a bitter war of words between China and the US over the past week.
Meanwhile, Trump launched a scathing attack on China and said the world is paying a ‘very big price’ for covering-up the facts on coronavirus. During a press briefing along with the members of White House Coronavirus Task Force, Trump said that if the threats of the virus would have been made public at an earlier stage, the virus could have been contained to the area where it started. Trump also accused China of suppressing the initial reports of the coronavirus outbreak and its severity which caused Chinese and international experts to miss critical opportunities to prevent a pandemic.
Trump even justified the branding of the novel coronavirus pandemic as the ‘Chinese virus’. However, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has explicitly advised against it. While China has slammed Trump and other US officials for referring the virus as “Chinese Virus” or “Wuhan Virus”, the US President has been trying to justify the term. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio also lashed out at Trump for stigmatising a race and a particular community saying the US President doesn’t need to incite a backlash against the already suffering Asian-American communities.