China’s ambassador to the United Nations has hit back at Washington over US Ambassador Kelly Craft’s remarks accusing China of failing to work ‘in good faith’ with the international community to defeat COVID-19 and prevent the emergence of new pandemics.
“Enough is enough,” Ambassador Zhang Jun said, speaking at a virtual UN Security Council meeting on Thursday.
“You have created enough troubles for the world already,” the official added. “Regrettably, we have once again heard noises from the US that are so at odds with the atmosphere of the meeting,” Zhang continued, referring to the subject of the meeting – the global battle against the pandemic.
Rejecting the “baseless” claims about China’s alleged responsibility for the pandemic and calling Washington “completely isolated” from the international community with its millions of COVID-19 cases and 200,000+ deaths, Zhang asked why, “with the most advanced medical technologies and system in the world,” the US “turned out to have the most confirmed cases and fatalities?”
“The US should understand that blaming others will not solve its own problems,” the diplomat suggested, accusing Washington of spreading a “political virus” of disinformation, confrontation and division.
“If someone should be held accountable, it should be a few US politicians themselves,” the Chinese diplomat added, presumably referring to comments made by US President Donald Trump on Tuesday at his speech to the General Assembly that China should be “held accountable” for failing to halt air travel in the pandemic’s early days to “infect the world” with the “plague.”
Urging the US to “wake up,” Zhang suggested that it’s time for “a major power” like America to actually “behave like a major power”, and join other major countries in shouldering “special responsibilities” in response to the virus.
Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia joined Zhang in his criticism of Craft, saying Russia regrets “the fact that the representative of the United States chose this meeting and the platform of the Security Council to make unfounded accusations against one of the members of the Security Council”.
UN Chief Slams Security Council Amid Bickering
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres blasted the Security Council over the infighting, suggesting that it was a “lack of global preparedness, cooperation, unity and solidarity” which caused the virus to spread around the world in the first place.
“The pandemic is a clear test of international cooperation – a test we have essentially failed,” Guterres said, adding that he would “fear the worse” if the global climate crisis were handled in a similar fashion.
US officials have repeatedly attacked China and its ruling Communist Party for their alleged mishandling of the coronavirus crisis, with the pandemic becoming one of half-a-dozen major areas of dispute between the economic superpowers amid tensions over trade, technology transfer, the South China Sea, Hong Kong, and alleged mistreatment of Uyghur peoples in Xinjiang.