China’s ambassador to the UK has hit back at the United States, saying that Washington should not seek to “bully” Beijing. During a rare question and answer session, Liu Xiaoming dismissed claims of a Chinese cover up of the coronavirus pandemic due to a lack of transparency at the beginning. However, the last colonial governor of Hong Kong, Lord Patten, told Sky News that the Chinese Communist Party has serious questions to answer.
He said: “This isn’t an argument we have with China and those wonderfully brave doctors who tried to blow the whistle on what was happening in Wuhan.
“We have an argument with the Chinese Communist Party, and with people like the ambassador.
“He’s an example of what the Chinese foreign ministry themselves call ‘wolf diplomacy’. You can’t honestly believe a word he says.
“We know, and everybody in China knows that the virus in its first stages of epidemic was covered up.”
Lord Patten continued: “There were deliberate lies, that’s well known.
“At the end of January, even the Chinese foreign minister was telling the Australian foreign minister that this virus was all curable and preventable.
“At the same time, the Chinese were buying large amounts of medical supplies from Australia.
“There is so much evidence that supports, unhappily, the fact that the Chinese Communist Party, because it’s always secretive, trying to protect itself, let this get out of control.”
The former governor added: “In January to February, five million people left Wuhan and the province for other parts of China and other parts of the world.
“That’s why it started spreading and exactly the same thing happened with SARS, though it wasn’t quite as bad.
“As long as there is this Chinese Communist dictatorship under Xi Jinping which has rowed back on the sort of changes and reforms which were being made in the past, we do need to look at a new relationship with the Chinese Communist regime.”
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Lord Patten also told Sky: “I think we have to do this cross-Government, I think we have to do this with our allies.
“I hope the next American administration will behave rather more sensibly in the way it deals with these issues and works with its allies.
“We all have a stake in trying to make sure that China doesn’t bully the world.
“In Hong Kong, the Chinese Communists are trying to use the fact that we’re all concentrating understandably on fighting this terrible epidemic in order to turn the screws on Hong Kong.
“We’ve got to make it clear that we stand up for values we believe in passionately.”
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