Trump’s Chinese Virus tweet adds fuel to fire with Beijing
President Donald Trump for the first time on his Twitter feed used the phrase “Chinese Viruse” stepping up friction between the world’s two biggest economies as each tries to deflect blame for a deadly pandemic.
Trump, who has previously called the disease a foreign virus,” tweeted on Tuesday; “The United States will be powerfully supporting those industries, like Airlines and others that are particularly affected by the Chinese virus.” Trump has previously retweeted supporter who called it a “Chinese Virus”
With the coronavirus spreading from China into the US and around the world, both nations are trading tit-for-tat-claims about its origins. The tense back and forth over what to call the virus is the latest chapter in a broader clash between the world’s two largest economies that ranges from trade and military competition to network equipment made by Huawei Tech co.
Chinese ministry of foreign affairs spokesman Gen Shuang said at a press briefing on Tuesday that Trump’s tweet smears Beijing, state broadcaster CCTV reported. “We are very angry and strongly oppose it, “ he said, “The US should redress its mistake and stop baseless attacks against China.” Hours before the Trump’s tweet, secretary of state Michael Pompeo told top Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi the Trump administration strongly objects to China’s efforts to shift blame for the coronavirus to the US, according to a state department readout.
Pompeo “stressed that this is not the time to spread disinformation and outlandish rumours, but rather a time for all nations to come together to fight this common threat”, according to the readout.