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14 February 2020, 12:26

Cui Qiming: Belarus' support to China in fight against novel virus shows peoples' deep friendship

Cui Qiming. An archive photo
Cui Qiming. An archive photo

MINSK, 14 February (BelTA) – Belarus' efforts to support China in its fight against the novel virus reflects deep friendship between the Belarusian and Chinese people, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of China to Belarus Cui Qiming told BelTA.

“China will surely defeat the pneumonia epidemic caused by a new type of coronavirus. This year the country has experienced an outbreak of pneumonia caused by a new type of coronavirus. Faced with the epidemic, the Chinese people, led by President Xi Jinping, have become even more united in the fight against the epidemic. The Chinese government, with a highly responsible attitude towards the Chinese people and the world community, has taken unprecedented measures to prevent and combat the epidemic with a view to stop the spread of the epidemic and protect public health,” he said.

“A few days ago, my Belarusian friends called it an important fact that the Chinese government built a new hospital for 1,000 beds within just ten days. I said that this fact not only reflects ‘the speed of China' in times of crisis, but also shows that the unity and determination of the Chinese government and people to fight the epidemic is as strong as it can be. The measures we have taken so far have produced results. The number of patients who have been cured of the new type of pneumonia has far exceeded the number of fatal cases. The growth rate of the suspected cases has slowed down,” Cui Qiming said.

According to the ambassador, although the epidemic situation is still grave, the government and people of China are confident that they will be able to deal with it.

“Success or failure in the fight against epidemics is associated not only with the health and safety of the Chinese people, but also with the health and safety of the whole world. The Chinese government has been sharing all the information openly and transparently with the World Health Organization and other countries, including Belarus, and has invited experts from the WHO and other organizations to visit Wuhan. We have taken comprehensive and rigorous measures to prevent and combat the outbreak of the epidemic. The requirements of many measures far exceed the requirements of WHO recommendations and international health regulations. For example, as for Wuhan, the city was closed down to stop the spread of the virus,” the head of the diplomatic mission said.

In his words, on 13 February, 492 new cases of the novel virus were diagnosed worldwide, which is just 0.8% of the number of the people who contracted the virus in China on that day. “The measures taken in China were widely supported and highly assessed by the international community. WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus hailed the measures to fight the epidemic. The WHO reiterated that there were no reasons to take unnecessary restrictions in international travel and called on the international community not to believe the rumors. Recently, the World Health Organization assigned the pneumonia caused by a new type of coronavirus the name COVID-19, thus demonstrating the strong support of the international community for the measures taken by China, which is sharply in contrast with the materials by some media outlets which still call the disease ‘The Uhan pneumonia' and use the term ‘the Chinese coronavirus',” Ambassador Cui Qiming.

He expressed the hope that the media outlets that still use the wrong name of the disease would correct themselves as soon as possible. “Of course, we do not intend to downplay the problems caused by the epidemic. At the same time, we also express the hope that countries around the world will respect WHO's professional recommendations and continue to cooperate with China as normal," the diplomat said.

The ambassador emphasized that after the beginning of the pneumonia epidemic caused by a new type of coronavirus, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko sent a message to Chinese President Xi Jinping expressing support. He also ordered the Belarusian government to provide emergency humanitarian assistance to China and repeatedly instructed the relevant authorities to support the Chinese people's fight against the epidemic, and urged not to trust false information.

“The ministries of foreign affairs, healthcare, education and other government departments of Belarus have taken appropriate measures and are developing really effective cooperation with China. Belarus has now provided two shipments of humanitarian aid, which have already arrived in our country. The Chinese appreciated the friendly, non-discriminatory measures taken by the relevant Belarusian authorities with respect of Chinese citizens living abroad, employees of Chinese companies and Chinese students. Many Chinese users are now using the phrase ‘A friend in need is a friend indeed' to thank Aleksandr Lukashenko and the Belarusian people for the deep friendship ties with the Chinese people,” Ambassador Cui Qiming said. “I want to emphasize that the actions of Belarus not only reflect the deep friendship and strong support of the Belarusian president and the Belarusian people but also reflect the high level of development of Chinese-Belarusian relations, trust-based comprehensive strategic partnership and mutually beneficial cooperation under the strategic leadership and personal care of the leaders of the two countries. We sincerely thank the people of Belarus for the timely and important assistance provided to China, and we believe that this will further strengthen the firm resolve of the Chinese government and people in the fight against the epidemic,” the ambassador added.

The ambassador assured that China will continue to strengthen ties with the international community, including Belarus, and joint fight against the epidemic.

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