The novel coronavirus needs origin-tracing, and so does the political virus, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said here Sunday.
Wang made the remarks while meeting the press with Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto when responding to how China views a small number of countries using the origin-tracing of the novel coronavirus as a pretext to attack and smear China.
Wang noted that COVID-19 origin-tracing is a serious scientific matter, which should be studied by scientists so as to better guard against future risks.
Wang said that all the foreign ministers he met agree that the origin-tracing should not be manipulated by politics. It should not be used to blame any one country, let alone splitting the international community, he added.
"Only when we unite can we truly defeat the virus," he said.
"From openly referring to the coronavirus as 'the Wuhan virus' to blatantly pulling out of the WHO, the United States has from the very beginning tried to politicize the epidemic, stigmatize the virus, and use origin-tracing as a tool. It has ignored the hard work of scientists and used intelligence means to carry out the so-called origin-tracing, hyping the 'lab leak theory' which presumes guilt," Wang said.
"The purpose of the United States is clear. It is to shift responsibility for their botched epidemic response and achieve the political purpose of discrediting and suppressing other countries," Wang said. He added it is necessary to record this ugly page in the annals of humanity's fight against the epidemic.
Emphasizing that China has always participated in international origin-tracing cooperation with an open attitude, Wang said China has twice invited WHO experts to carry out joint research on origin-tracing and made great efforts to this end.
Wang added that the experts went to every place they asked to see and met everyone they wanted to meet. They made the scientific conclusion that a laboratory leak is extremely unlikely and made important recommendations such as "searching for early cases in various places and countries around the world" and "studying the possibility of cold-chain transmission of the virus."
"The next phase of tracing should build on this and study early cases in many countries around the world, Wang said. He noted that Chinese medical experts and scientific research experts held a press conference to clarify a series of rumors with facts and data and make clear China's solemn position in a scientific manner a few days ago.
Pointing out that political viruses also need origin-tracing, Wang said the WHO Secretariat notified its member states about a work plan on a second-phase origins study. It has surprised scientists since it is inconsistent with the requirements of the resolution of the 73rd World Health Assembly. It also ignores the conclusions and recommendations of the first-stage joint research report.
It seemed that when the United States returned to the WHO, it was not focused on joining the international fight against the epidemic, but continued to spread political viruses through the platform, Wang added.
He said as an independent and sovereign country, China will not and cannot accept any work plan that is not a real plan to find the virus but a plan to discredit China.
Up until now, nearly 60 countries sent letters to the WHO, agreeing with the results of the first phase of origin-tracing research and opposing the attempt to politicize the study of the origins, Wang noted.
Wang reiterated that origin-tracing needs cooperation rather than discrediting, truth rather than lies, and respecting science rather than political manipulation. Wang added China would continue to support and participate in global origin-tracing cooperation in the spirit of openness, transparency, science and cooperation.