China indignant over Trump's virus label
China is strongly indignant at and firmly opposes US stigmatization by calling the novel coronavirus “Chinese virus,” a foreign ministry spokesperson said on Tuesday, urging the United States to correct its mistakes and stop making groundless accusations against China.
Geng Shuang made the remarks at a press conference when asked to comment on US President Donald Trump’s tweet on Monday, in which he called the novel coronavirus “Chinese virus” and said it has affected US industries.
“The United States will be powerfully supporting those industries, like Airlines and others, that are particularly affected by the Chinese Virus. We will be stronger than ever before!” Turmp tweeted.
Speaking in Beijing, Geng said: “Recently, some US politicians have connected the novel coronavirus with China, aiming to stigmatize China. We are strongly indignant at and firmly oppose that.”
The World Health Organization and the international community are clearly opposed to stigmatization by associating the virus with specific countries and regions.
“We urge the US side to immediately correct its mistakes and stop making groundless accusations against China.”
Saying the novel coronavirus disease has been reported and has spread to many places around the world, Geng said it is imperative for the international community to cooperate in the fight against the pandemic.
The US should first manage its own business well, and play a constructive role in international cooperation on the pandemic fight and safeguarding global public health security, he added.
Reactions followed through and Trump’s affirmation drew wide criticism, with some saying labeling the pandemic a “Chinese virus” is racist and others calling Trump “the American virus.”
“Our Asian-American communities — people YOU serve — are already suffering. They don’t need you fueling more bigotry,” tweeted New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, whose state is one of the hardest-hit by the virus.
“I’ve been deathly afraid of this exact moment where Trump turns to racism and xenophobia and calls COVID-19 the ‘Chinese Virus.’ We are in deep trouble as a nation now that President of the United States makes the conscious decision to go down this dark path of hate,” tweeted Eugene Gu, founder and CEO of Cool Quit.
“Disappointed to hear Trump calling COVID-19 the ‘Chinese virus.’ I’ve faced racism by fellow classmates growing up and it affected me in a lot of bad ways,” said Jeffrey Chang from Canada.