United States President Donald Trump has called on the United Nations to “hold China accountable for their actions” with regard to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. He made the call in a speech to the world body’s General Assembly on Tuesday.
In that speech which was prerecorded from the White House, Trump blamed the Chinese government for the global spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, which has now infected 31 million people worldwide and killed more than 965,000.
“In the earliest days of the virus, China locked down travel domestically, while allowing flights to leave China and infect the world,” the U.S. president said in his address.“
“The Chinese government, and the World Health Organization, which is virtually controlled by China, falsely declared that there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission.
“The United Nations must hold China accountable for their actions,” he added. The virus originated in China.
Trump also said that the U.S. had three potential coronavirus vaccines that were in the final stage of clinical trials and promised to distribute them globally. The Trump administration had previously said it would not participate in the WHO-led coronavirus vaccine effort.
Earlier this year, Trump said that he had suspended U.S. funding to the organization pending a review, citing what he called “the World Health Organization’s role in severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus.”
Chinese President Xi Jinping, who also addressed the U.N. remotely, said that Beijing will “continue to narrow differences and resolve disputes with others through dialogue and negotiation.”
“Facing the virus, we should enhance solidarity and get through this together,” Xi said, adding that world leaders should follow “the leading role of the World Health Organization.”
“Any attempt of politicizing the issue or stigmatization must be rejected,” Xi said.