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Some people stigmatizing China by using term 'Chinese virus' in reference to COVID-19: Chinese envoy

In an apparent reference to US President Donald Trump’s repeated reference to the global ‘coronavirus pandemic’ as ‘Chinese virus’, Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong on Monday said that some people stigmatizing China by using such terms. “Some people have kept stigmatizing China & using ‘Chinese virus’ in reference to COVID-19. Such language contravenes WHO guidelines against the use of geographical terms in naming diseases. Chinese people are strongly opposed to it,” Weidong tweeted.

The ambassador’s strong comments can be seen as a response to US President Donald Trump’s repeated use of the term ‘Chinese virus’ while referring to the COVID-19 disease which has claimed over 15,000 lives worldwide. According to news agency AFP, Italy has recorded the highest number of deaths due to the COVID-19 disease. 5,476 deaths have been reported from the European country. China, where the deadly contagious virus, first originated, has reported 3,270 deaths. 2,182 people have lost lives due to the Novel Coronavirus in Spain.

Calling for global solidarity against the coronavirus outbreak, the Chinese envoy said, “It’s important that everyone has the same approach when it comes to COVID-19.”

“President Xi Jinping has said that to prevail over a disease that threatens all, unity and cooperation is the most powerful weapon,” the ambassador tweeted.

He assured that China would cooperate with the countries across the globe to prevent and control the coronavirus pandemic.

While addressing a news conference on the issue of coronavirus pandemic, Trump had said, “It’s not racist at all. It comes from China. I want to be accurate.”

While briefing the media on his administration’s coronavirus response, the US President on Sunday said: “I’m a little upset with China. I’ll be honest with you, because as much as I like (Chinese) President Xi (Jinping) and as much as I respect and admire the country.”

“They should have told us about this,” he said, adding that when he had heard about the spread of the deadly virus in China, he had told his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping that he would like to send a team of American doctors to China to help the country to cope up with the situation.

However, Xi rejected the offer, Trump claimed in the press conference

The US president said it is “out of pride” that China didn’t “want us to send people” and “they didn’t really respond”.

“I wish they could have told us earlier about what was going on inside,” Trump said.

“We didn’t know about it until it started coming out publicly,” he said.

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