Chinese experts warn Japan not to blindly follow US’ virus game

By Xu Keyue Source:Global Times Published: 2020/5/26 19:08:00

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, wearing a face mask amid concerns over the spread of COVID-19, attends an upper house committee meeting at the parliament in Tokyo. Photo: AFP

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the novel coronavirus had spread from China in response to the word war between China and the US amid the pandemic, which Chinese experts said shows Japan took the side of the US, as the latter is politicizing the health emergency issue and trying to mount a global campaign against China.

Abe said on Monday that "it's true that the novel coronavirus spread from China to the world" while stressing that Japan, as a  US ally, aligns well with core US values and will cooperate to deal with various international issues, Japan's Asahi Shimbun reported.

China opposes politicizing and stigmatizing the origin of the virus, which goes against the efforts and expectations of China and Japan to jointly combat the pandemic, Zhao Lijian, spokesperson of China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said at Tuesday's press conference.

Blindly following a certain country for political reasons should not override scientific judgment and cooperation as the most powerful weapons for the international community to battle against the pandemic, Zhao said.

Zhao noted that tracing the origin of the coronavirus is a serious scientific issue, which must be based on facts and science, studied by scientists and medical experts.

Li Haidong, a professor at the Institute of International Relations of the China Foreign Affairs University, told the Global Times on Tuesday that Abe's remarks showed Japan yielded to US power as it considers the Japan-US alliance the backbone of its national security and cornerstone of its diplomacy.

As the US politicizes and stigmatizes the epidemic issue, and tries to mount a global campaign against China, Abe showed that Japan has to take the side of the US, Li said. 

Abe's response again indicated that Japan needs US' protection in terms of national security but is dependent on the Asian countries, especially China, in terms of economy and trade, which put it in an embarrassing situation.

Li condemned US' malicious attempt to drive a wedge among Asian countries and warned Japan not to blindly follow US' "blame game" over the pandemic issue like Australia, which would eventually hurt its national interests.

Observers said the tensions between China and the US may lead some countries to waver. China needs both capacity and principle to unite with the majority of countries, while at the same time ensuring that the process of unity does not harm China's key interests.

Zhou Zijun, a public health expert at Peking University, told the Global Times that no matter where the virus came or spread from, the birthplace of the virus and hard-hit regions bear no original sin, urging the international community to stop the "blame game" and fight the pandemic together.


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