Beijing condemns Taiwan's attack on WHO chief, urges end of political rig of COVID-19 pandemic
Beijing on Thursday expressed strong condemnation against Taiwan's attack on Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO), and urged Taiwan's Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) authority to immediately stop the political rig of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Zhu Fenglian, spokesperson for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, made the remarks on Thursday, saying the scheme to jeopardize one-China policy and get a membership in WHO banking on the novel coronavirus outbreak will not succeed.
Zhu also slammed the DPP for conniving in the wanton spread of racist remarks by the internet mob from its camp.
The spokesperson added the DPP took whatever means to "bank on the epidemic to seek independence," and urged the DPP to immediately stop political manipulation.
Earlier on Thursday, China's Foreign Ministry also expressed strong opposition.
"China opposes any attempt to use the epidemic for purpose of politicization or stigmatization, and strongly condemns the personal attacks and racist words and deeds against WHO Director-General Tedros," Zhao Lijian, the ministry spokesperson told reporters at Thursday's daily press briefing in Beijing.
The responses came after the WHO chief on Wednesday accused Taiwan's foreign affairs authorities of being linked to a months-long campaign against him during the COVID-19 pandemic, which the DPP authorities have denied and required an apology.
Taiwan used to participate in the World Health Assembly with an observer status as "Chinese Taipei," a special arrangement made through cross-Strait consultations on the basis of both sides' adherence to the 1992 Consensus.
Because the DPP refuses to recognize the consensus, the prerequisite for Taiwan's participation in the assembly has vanished.
(With input from Xinhua News Agency)
(Cover: WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a news conference on the outbreak of COVID-19 in Geneva, Switzerland, March 16, 2020. /Reuters)