Tensions have risen a notch between Beijing and Washington. China declared itself 'on the brink of a new Cold War' with the United States on May 24, 2020, through its Foreign Minister intermediary. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi deplored the renewed tensions with Washington over the coronavirus epidemic.
China attacking the United States
'It is most regrettable that while the coronavirus is still out there, a "political virus" is also spreading in the US,' the head of Chinese diplomacy said before the press, without naming the American president. He added that this political virus was 'jumping at any opportunity to attack and slander China,' referring to the words of Donald Trump who, in recent weeks, has repeatedly accused the Chinese authorities of having delayed communicating, or lied about crucial data regarding the seriousness of the virus.
Wang Yi added:
Some political forces in the US are taking China-US relations hostage and pushing our two countries to the brink of a "new Cold War".
In response to Donald Trump's attacks
The two superpowers have already been on edge for two years now following the trade war launched by the Trump administration, based on reciprocal customs surcharges that penalised international trade. But the coronavirus pandemic has pushed the tension between the two powers to the limit.
Nevertheless, the main reason for these declarations lies elsewhere: Donald Trump has mentioned the possibility of asking Beijing to pay billions of dollars in compensation for the damage caused by the pandemic. In addition, the United States has called for an international investigation into the origin of the virus. China is 'ready' for international cooperation to identify the source of the novel coronavirus, said Wang Yi.
International cooperation on the coronavirus
However, for the Chinese minister, such cooperation will have to be free from 'political interference', he warned. On Monday, Chinese President Xi Jinping said he favoured a 'comprehensive assessment' of the global response to the novel coronavirus once the pandemic has been stopped.
In a video message to the WHO annual meeting, the Beijing minister ruled out any shortcomings in his country's handling of the epidemic, assuring that China had always shown 'transparency' and 'accountability' regarding the issue.