Wang Yi: Covid-19 blame game 'will bring disaster' - RTHK
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Wang Yi: Covid-19 blame game 'will bring disaster'

2020-09-28 HKT 22:33
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  • Foreign Minister Wang Yi says nations have no choice but to work together. Photo: Reuters
    Foreign Minister Wang Yi says nations have no choice but to work together. Photo: Reuters
The coronavirus is a wake-up call for the world, and trading blame "will only bring greater disaster", China's foreign minister said on Monday.

Days after China and the United States lashed out at each other on UN platforms over the coronavirus outbreak, Foreign Minister Wang Yi told a forum in Beijing that individual countries had "turned the solemn international venue of the UN into a performance space for serving their own politics and self-interest".

Beijing has recently moved to reshape the pandemic narrative away from its early outbreak in Wuhan to a story of the country's success in stopping the virus spread.

But the US has led nations criticising Beijing for its handling of the epidemic. They allege that Beijing suppressed news of the respiratory disease when it first emerged last year and initial advice played down risks of transmission.

"Apart from working together and helping each other, we have no other choice," Wang added at the event co-hosted by the China Public Diplomacy Association, where he sought to position China as a responsible major power.

Wang's remarks came less than a week after US President Donald Trump used his annual address to the UN General Assembly to attack China's record, and the US ambassador to the global body took an outraged tone that surprised diplomats.

Trump in his speech demanded action against China for spreading the "plague" of Covid-19 to the world, drawing ire from Beijing.

"As UN Secretary-General (Antonio) Guterres emphasised, this epidemic is not only a wake-up call, but also a crisis drill," said Wang.

"In the face of global challenges such as the epidemic, if we go our own way or treat our neighbours as the enemy, it will only bring greater disaster." (AFP)