Chinese President Xi Jinping praises China over handling coronavirus

Chinese President Xi Jinping says China has acted in an ‘open and transparent manner’ over coronavirus

  • The Chinese leader praised China’s anti-virus efforts during a ceremony today
  • He claimed the nation handled the pandemic in an open and transparent manner
  • China also helped other countries save lives with ‘concrete actions’, Xi added
  • The event is to honour the ‘heroes’ of China’s ‘people’s war’ against COVID-19 

Chinese leader Xi Jinping has praised China’s role in battling the coronavirus pandemic during a televised ceremony in Beijing on Tuesday.

He told the audience that China has acted in an ‘open and transparent’ manner over the contagion while helping other countries save lives with ‘concrete actions’.

The speech comes after Beijing today is holding a special event during which the Chinese President honoured the ‘heroes’ of China’s ‘people’s war’ against COVID-19.

Chinese leader Xi Jinping (pictured speaking today in Beijing) has praised China’s role in battling the coronavirus pandemic during a televised ceremony in Beijing on Tuesday

Beijing today is holding a special event during which the Chinese President Xi Jinpinng honoured the ‘heroes’ of China’s ‘people’s war’ against COVID-19. The picture shows a general view of the meeting at the Great Hall of the People (GHOP) in Beijing on Tuesday

Chinese President Xi Jinping (centre) awards medal to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) expert Zhang Boli (left) during a meeting commending role models in the country’s fight against the COVID-19 epidemic at the Great Hall of the People (GHOP) in Beijing today

President Xi also expressed support for the World Health Organization, in a repudiation of US criticism and a bid to rally domestic support for Communist Party leadership.

Xi told a televised assembly at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing that China´s battle against COVID-19 demonstrated the strengths of its socialist system and traditional Chinese culture in stirring motivation, building consensus and pooling resources.

‘We are willing to do whatever it takes to protect people´s lives!’ Xi told participants, most of whom wore masks and exercised social distancing.

The coronavirus was first detected in the central city of Wuhan late last year, and the US and others have alleged the outbreak spread out of control because China withheld information about it. 

China says it acted swiftly and responsibly but has rejected calls for an independent investigation into its handling of the emergency.

China has also been a key supporter of the WHO against accusations, mainly from the US, that the organisation is too ‘China-centric’ in its orientation. Washington is in the process of withdrawing from the U.N. health agency, to which it still owes back dues.

Xi said China would continue to support the WHO in playing a ‘leading role in the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.’

‘All selfishness, scapegoating and confusing right and wrong will not only hurt a country and its people, but harm people of all countries,’ Xi said.

China itself had ‘helped save a great number of lives from COVID-19 around the world with concrete actions,’ Xi said, pointing to the export of 209,000 ventilators, 1.4 billion protective suits and 151.5 billion masks. China also sent medical staff to assist a handful of countries.

Attendees wearing face masks watch an event to honour some of those involved in China’s fight against COVID-19 at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Attendees applaud as Chinese President Xi Jinping walks to his seat at an event to honour some of those involved in China’s fight against COVID-19 at the Great Hall of the People

During the meeting, Xi also conferred the Medal of the Republic, China’s highest civilian award, on famed respiratory disease expert Zhong Nanshan, honouring his work in battling both COVID-19 and SARS, a disease caused by a related virus that occurred in 2002-03 

During the meeting, Xi also conferred the Medal of the Republic, China’s highest civilian award, on famed respiratory disease expert Zhong Nanshan, honouring his work in battling both COVID-19 and SARS, a disease caused by a related virus that occurred in 2002-03.

There was no mention of Li Wenliang, the doctor who was punished for spreading information about a new infectious disease in Wuhan, and whose death from COVID-19 in February sparked nationwide outrage. 

Zhang Boli, a specialist in combining traditional Chinese and Western medicine in treating COVID-19, Zhang Dingyu, head of Wuhan´s designated coronavirus-treating Jinyintan Hospital, and Chen Wei, a military medical scientist who who worked on treatment and a vaccine, also received the People’s Hero award for their work.

China has not reported any COVID-19 illnesses from local transmission in more than three weeks, with all of the new cases detected in that time among travellers from abroad. China has reported a total of 4,634 deaths from 85,144 cases of COVID-19.

Attendees bow their heads during a moment of silence at an event to honour some of those involved in China’s fight against COVID-19 at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Tuesday

Xi said China would continue to support the WHO in playing a ‘leading role in the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.’ Chinese President Xi Jinping is pictured watching as an honour guard carrying medals marches at an event to honour some of those involved in China’s fight against COVID-19 at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Tuesday

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