A summit between China and the European Union has now been delayed as per the statement by the EU Commission on March 17. Confirming an earlier report by an international news agency, the meeting which was publically not announced by China was expected to take place between Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and the new European Commission and the European Council presidents, Ursula Von der Leyen and Charles Michel between March 30-31.
The EU spokesperson reportedly said that EU and China have jointly decided the summit would not take place on the scheduled date in a bid to allow both sides to “focus on the pandemic” which has rocked the world since it originated in the Chinese province of Wuhan in late December 2019. The EU official further said that both China and the EU will stay in contact and will agree on a date once the situation begins to normalize. That would also include a proper preparatory process to allow substantive results and then the summit would take place in Beijing.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said on March 16 that the best way to combat the unprecedented outbreak of deadly coronavirus for all countries is to ramp up their testing programs. The WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a conference in Geneva that the “simple message” he has for all countries is “test, test, test”. He further added that the countries will remain unsuccessful to tackle the pandemic if they fail to test all suspected cases and remain “blindfolded”.
WHO chief said, “But the most effective way to prevent infections and save lives is breaking the chains of transmission. And to do that, you must test and isolate. You cannot fight a fire blindfolded.
He added, "And we cannot stop this pandemic if we don’t know who is infected. We have a simple message for all countries: test, test, test. Test every suspected case.”