GT chief editor Hu Xijin gets likes on Weibo for support to US, UK people fighting COVID-19 pandemic

By GT staff reporters Source:Global Times Published: 2020/3/29 16:08:20 Last Updated: 2020/3/30 0:11:22

Hu Xijin File Photo: GT

Calls from Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times, in a series of posts on his personal social media accounts to support the people and healthcare workers in many Western countries including the US, the UK, Spain and Italy in their fight against the novel coronavirus epidemic have gained widespread support from the Chinese netizens. 

Although China and the US have recently had a war of words and intensive diplomatic conflicts over the epidemic situation and a number of other issues as the US government and politicians have made a series of provocations to China by naming the virus with racist and offensive terms, Hu, an influential media figure as well as an active social media user with more than 22 million followers on Sina Weibo, in the last couple of days, has been rallying support to people and medical workers worldwide including in the US who are combating the COVID-19 pandemic.   

More than 100,000 people in the US have been infected with the novel coronavirus, and over 1,700 have died. In the last 24 hours, 380 new deaths were reported, a situation which is more severe than at the height of the outbreak in China. The US is facing a serious challenge from the worsening outbreak, Hu said in a post on Saturday afternoon.  

Photo: screenshot of Sina Weibo account of Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times

Hu said he was willing to move beyond his political and ideological differences with some Americans and express strong support for Americans fighting the epidemic. 

"To me, there is no contradiction between fighting back against the extreme rhetoric of US politicians and supporting the American people's fight against the epidemic. Novel coronavirus is the common enemy of all mankind. The US is not only the most developed country, but also the center of many global activities. If the US can't combat the epidemic, there is no real victory in the world against this deadly virus. The virus does not recognize national boundaries, and our efforts against the pandemic must be transnational," read Hu's post. 

The US response to the virus is different from China's, and I sincerely wish that American society will succeed in strengthening the common human defense against the virus, it said. 

The post has been liked for over 23,000 times as of press time and garnered around 4,800 comments. 

Photo: screenshot of Sina Weibo account of Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times

Hu also said in another post published on Saturday that tribute should be paid to medical staff in European countries such as Spain and Italy. To date, 9,444 medical workers in Spain have become infected with COVID-19, compared with 6,205 in Italy. Among them, as many as 45 medical workers have died in Italy. The infection rates among medical personnel in the two countries during the epidemic are much higher than that in China, which may be due to their lack of protective equipment and experience.

"Although they are thousands of miles away and we have different languages, I'm going to light a candle for the medical staff who are working in the frontlines of the pandemic in Europe, North America and around the world tonight, and hope more people will show respect for them," he said in the post.

Photo: screenshot of Sina Weibo account of Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times

"At this special time of the day, I hope many people will join me in shouting: Stay strong, UK and Europe!" Hu wrote in a post on Friday night. The post came after Prince Charles and Prime Minister Boris Johnson were reported to have tested positive for novel coronavirus.

Despite persistent unfriendly sentiment and rhetoric toward China among some Western social media platforms and mainstream media outlets, many in China applauded Hu's effort to draw a clear distinction between some hostile US politicians and the American public and rally support for the latter. 

These posts have also attracted hundreds of thousands of likes and comments on Weibo as of press time.  

An online user said, "Stay strong American people, hope that these insidious politicians you have elected will regain a conscience soon."

Currently, the US has surpassed China to become the country with the most confirmed cases of the COVID-19 in the world. As the new disease epicenter with more than 120,000 cases, the people and medical workers in the US are facing an extremely serious situation and great pressure.

"We know how it feels, because we went through the dark night. Now it's your turn, American friends, and I think you can make it, even though I don't like your government," said a Chinese Weibo user. 

"American people are ordinary people. I hope the American public can overcome the virus soon," another online user said in a Weibo comment. 

"Hope the world can go out of the darkness of the pandemic," another said.

Hu also expressed respect for medics around the world, especially those who have sacrificed their lives in combating this battle faced by all countries and regions. 

Posted in: SOCIETY

blog comments powered by Disqus