BEIJING, March 21 (Xinhua) — Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Friday that the Chinese side is willing to join hands with the British side as the country is in a tough fight against the novel coronavirus epidemic.
Wang made the remarks during his telephone conversation with British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.
He said that the epidemic is breaking out in many parts of the world, and the number of confirmed cases in European countries such as Britain is increasing, for which China expresses sincere sympathies with the British side and believes that the British people can come together and ultimately overcome the epidemic.
“When the Chinese people are facing the severe challenges of the epidemic, the British side has extended a helping hand, which we will remember in our hearts,” said Wang, adding that at this difficult time when Britain is fighting the epidemic, China is also ready to join hands with Britain.
China still faces an arduous epidemic prevention and control task, but it will manage to provide a batch of medical supplies to the British side and help facilitate the purchasing through commercial means, he said.
He also said that the top priority for China’s epidemic prevention and control is to avoid a rebound, adding that China is willing to carry out joint prevention and control with Britain, and hopes Britian can strengthen border control, maintain the essential cross-border flow between the two countries, and prevent cross-infection to the greatest extent.
Wang said that the Chinese side has been sharing epidemic-related information and carrying out anti-epidemic cooperation with the international community in an open, transparent and responsible manner since the beginning of its fight against the outbreak, adding that the country is currently providing various forms of support to nearly 100 countries in need.
What is alarming is that some people are trying to politicize the epidemic, label the virus and stigmatize China, Wang noted, adding that such detrimental acts will undermine the solidarity and cooperation of the international community and hinder the joint efforts of all parties to combat the epidemic.
Wang said he believes that all countries, including Britain, will uphold an objective and fair attitude and resist this narrow-minded approach.
Noting that many overseas Chinese, including Chinese students, work, study and live in Britain, Wang called them bridges of friendship between the two countries.
It is hoped that the British side will attach great importance to and protect their health and safety, and provide timely and necessary medical care, he added.
Raab spoke highly of China’s notable achievements in fighting the epidemic, and thanked China for its sympathies with Britain, and for providing medical supplies and facilitating procurement.
Noting that the British side attaches great importance to China’s experience in the COVID-19 fight, Raab said his country stands ready to strengthen coordination with China and other countries in epidemic prevention and control, vaccine research and development, and in assisting countries with fragile medical systems, so as to promote international cooperation and strive for an early victory over the epidemic.
The British government will spare no effort to ensure the health and safety of overseas Chinese in his country, he added.
Voicing opposition to politicizing the epidemic, Raab stressed that the British side totally agrees with China’s position that the origin of the virus is a scientific issue that requires scientific and professional opinions.
He also urged that all sides work together to overcome the hardship amid the epidemic.
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