While most countries are holding China accountable for misinformation, falsification of reports and hiding the actual number of positive cases as well as the spread of the novel Coronavirus, China has resorted to shifting the blame.to the US, alleging conspiracy and fabrication of false evidence.
Allegations and Negligence
These allegations surfaced in light of the recent lawsuit filed by the US against the Chinese authorities for manufacturing the COVID-19 as a biological weapon and for negligence in reporting the actual number of cases in the country.
The infamous COVID-19 has been reported to have originated in the Wuhan province of China and was the worst-hit region in the world up until recently as the US took the lead in the number of positive cases identified.
The signs of the coronavirus were prevalent from the last few months of 2019, however, the Chinese government only alerted the World Health Organisation (WHO) of the threatening danger of the virus on 31st December 2019, which seemed to been sourced from bats in the local wet market.
Several fingers rose in China as people blamed their bizarre eating habits for the spread of the virus, though the form of contraction of the first case has not been identified.
Previously China had reported several cases of pneumonia and respiratory illness in the Hubei Province in Wuhan. A Chinese doctor, Dr. Li Wenliag found a common signs and symptoms amongst the patients and started a group chat amongst fellow medics to discuss the strain which was similar to SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome). However, the chat got leaked and Dr. Li was detained by the police for the spread of false rumors. Months after the whistleblower was detained, the Chinese Government reached out to WHO in December. Dr. Li was diagnosed with coronavirus in early January and died late February following which the government acquited him of the charges.
This highlights not only negligence on behalf of government authorities but also an attempt to deny the very existence of the virus, which had taken several lives by then.
Biological weapon and warfare
The US government alleges the Chinese government for manufacturing it as a bioweapon on the basis of the studies and development of nanoscience chemist Dr. Charles Leiber and other professors at the Harvard being paid by Chinese authorities. Further, the US parties also mentioned that the Wuhan province was the only area in the country to have a microbiology lab with a BSL 4 indicating the manufacturing of deadly substances.
The Chinese officials were outraged at these allegations and worked in full force to shift the blame to the US for conspiracy stating that the COVID-19 was a CIA manufactured weapon brought into the country during the military games held in Wuhan in October 2019, shortly after which the first cases surfaced. China claims that almost 300 US athletes were a part of the event, which was more than the number of athletes from other countries and that not a single US athlete won a medal, indicating some form of strategy or false play.
The statement made by SARS pioneer Zhong Nanshan told a press conference that the novel coronavirus “may not have originated in China” was shared all over the country by the media.
Further, two Chinese officials, Zhao Lijian and Hua Chunying took to twitter to highlight the major US conspiracy to blame China for the virus and bring upon the country great global condemnation. On February 20, research sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Institute for Brain Research declared that the Wuhan seafood market might not have been the source of the novel coronavirus.
On February 27, the day of epidemiologist Zhong’s statement, the Communist Party of China’s official mouthpiece, the People’s Daily backed the research, which raised doubts on the assertion that China was the country of origin of the novel coronavirus. This claim pushed further emphasis on US conspiracy against China.
China blames Italy
China further went on to blame Italy as well, which is also one of the worst-hit regions in the world. China mentioned a paper published by an Italian doctor in the earlier months of November and December 2019 where a “strange case of pneumonia” had appeared. They have used this report to claim that the virus initially broke out in Italy and was circulating in Lombardy before the first few cases in China.
Will these questions be answered?
The Chinese authorities are angered by the allegations and are consistently working to push the blame onto other countries, though it contradicts whistleblower Dr. Li’s findings. Though the origin is highly debated and has become a source of conspiracy theorists to formulize several theories, there may never be any actual evidence to support the various claims. Whether the Chinese government’s allegations hold any truth or is just an effort to shift the global burden to some other nation will remain unanswered