China will not invite international experts to investigate the source of COVID-19 until after securing the “final victory” over the virus, Beijing’s UN ambassador in Geneva said Wednesday.
China’s priority is first beating the pandemic — and secondly countering the “absurd and ridiculous” US politicization of the new coronavirus, Chen Xu told reporters in an online briefing.
The World Health Organization says it is waiting on an invitation from China to take part in its investigations into the animal origins of the virus, first reported in the city of Wuhan in December.
Asked when the WHO could expect an invitation, Chen replied: “The top priority, for the time being, is to focus on the fight against the pandemic until we win the final victory.
“It’s not that we are allergic to any kind of investigations, inquiries, or evaluations,” he said, as they could aid international efforts to prepare for future public health emergencies.
“For whether or how the invitation will take place, we need to have the right priority setting at this moment, and on the other hand, we need the right atmosphere.”
Chen said the atmosphere had been soured by “politically-motivated” accusations against China, “smearing, demonising” its handling of the initial outbreak.
US President Donald Trump has been increasingly critical, saying last week he had seen evidence linking COVID-19 to a maximum-security virology lab in Wuhan and threatening new trade tariffs.
China will not invite international experts to investigate the source of Covid-19 until after securing the "final victory" against the virus https://t.co/6sMOMXuoIB
— The National (@TheNationalUAE) May 6, 2020
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday that there was “enormous evidence” showing that the new coronavirus originated in the Wuhan lab.
US mindset ‘constant problem’
“It’s really alarming for a high-ranking official… to air views like this,” countered Chen.
“Some of the American politicians, the mindset is a constant problem. They adopted an approach that is against anything from China.
“We cannot allow this kind of political virus to spread freely without any curbing. “We need to focus firstly to save lives, secondly to stop the political virus.”
More than 250,000 people have been killed by COVID-19. The United States is the worst-hit country with more than 70,000 deaths.
Chen said Trump and Pompeo’s allegations about the source of the virus were simply them trying to “shift responsibility”.
“The purpose is only deflection of their own failure at this moment to curb the spreading of the virus in the United States,” the ambassador said.
Trump has accused the WHO of being too close to China and of having mismanaged and covered up the spread of the virus.
Chen offered full support to the UN health agency and insisted there was no question of its director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus having been “influenced by China”.
Pompeo constantly blams China for virus origin
US Secretary of State has constantly blamed China for coronavirus outbreak. He insists that the Wuhan Institute of Virology is the main source of this pandemic and, believes that the virus was manufactured in this lab.
Answering questions during a press briefing, Mike Pompeo said that China should allow the inspection of Wuhan’s lab so that it becomes clear what is really going on there.
The Director of this Virology lab, during a CGTN interview, has also rejected these claims. The P4 lab at Wuhan became the center of speculation when it was revealed for the first time that dangerous species of viruses are being studied at this lab.
This automatically leads to the wide-spread belief that coronavirus, which is also a dangerous virus, may have originated in this lab.
But all these claims seem irrelevant as the World Health organization and White House coronavirus response coordinator, Dr. Anthony Fauci categorically reject the theory of coronavirus origin in a lab.
China has almost defeated the coronavirus and has reopened the major cities across the country. But still the virus continues to haunt the Chinese people and cases most often emerge.
AFP with additional input by GVS News Desk